It was beautiful weather on Saturday, 4/12, for the second 100-lap Paramount Kia Big 10 Challenge race at Hickory Motor Speedway in NC. There were 26 late model cars entered in the event. Justin qualified p. 15.
At the outset of the race, the first 10 cars quickly spread out running single file. Mid-pack on back was a different story with mostly everyone doubled up. Justin did some great side by side racing running the inside line for most of the first 15 laps.
Laps 16 to 26 the drivers settled down and were running single file with Justin in p. 18. Lap 26 saw Justin begin to move forward doing again some great side by side racing until the first caution came out on lap 31. Justin had advanced to p. 15.
Lap 31 seemed to go on forever. The first re-start saw an engine let go putting oil down on the track. There were three more re-starts with three more quick cautions before they finally were able to go onto lap 32. Only the first six cars were running single-file. Everyone else was doubled up. Justin had fought his way up to p.10 when on Lap 42 he was turned coming out of turn 2. He did an amazing save to keep from hitting anything but he would re-start in the back of the field.
Racing hard on the outside now coming up through the field while running p.18 there was a huge pile up on the front stretch before the entrance to turn 1. Justin again did a great job of getting the car stopped in time before being collected in this pile up of at least 10 cars. This brought out the red flag for the clean up.
On the re-start, Justin began to move up through again on the outside. He had made it back up to p. 10 when a 30 lb. lead weight came off the car ahead of him and went through the front of the car into the radiator causing Justin to spin going into turn 1. He drove out of the spin keeping the car from hitting the wall but with the damage to the radiator he was unable to continue at Lap 57.
Very unfortunate end. This race showed excellent car control by Justin in running side by side for most of the race, for being able to make split second decisions to miss all the wrecks, to be able to drive the car out of a spin so as to not hit the wall after such an unexpected event of a lead weight flying through the front of the car, as well as the great communication from his spotter, Bobby, throughout the entire race.
The next 100-lap race will be held 4/26.
Denver , NC – 2/10/14 – Justin Bolton had a very successful start to his career with Lee Faulk Racing. After the first six races in a stock car Justin had accumulated 2 wins along with 3 top 5 finishes and 1 top 10 finish, including a win in the coveted Fall Classic 100 at Hickory Motor Speedway in his last race of the season for 2013.
Bolton will make the move up to late model stock this year and compete for the ZLoop Big 10 championship at Hickory Motor Speedway. Justin who is already considered a “veteran” of the team after one short year will have a few new faces to learn. Not only will he have new teammates, Kate Dallenbach and Bret Holmes, but Bolton will be working with his new crew chief, Bobby Orr, as well.
Bobby Orr, the son of one of short tracks’ great – the late Pete Orr, will work full time with LFR this year specifically with Justin Bolton as crew chief and spotter.
“We have grown every year we have been in business and we felt like it was time to surround ourselves with more great people and talent. Bobby has been close to our family my whole life and I look at him as a brother. He will fit great with our system and knows a lot about these cars. He learned from one of the best, his dad. Bobby looks at this as more than a job but also something to be proud of and he takes pride in taking a part in building LFR better than ever. I know he’s going to give Justin 110% and I feel confident that they will be contending for wins this year as well. Justin showed last season he has the natural ability to win at this level and with his work ethic and focus there is no doubt in my mind he will be successful again this season. ” team manager Michael Faulk stated about the newly formed relationship.
Some people believe that running four late model teams is too much to handle; however, LFR has a much different outlook on this. Rather than a disadvantage, the team believes being able to simulate working team conditions similar to that of a cup team will only help the drivers prepare better for what is to come as they move up the NASCAR ladder.
“From the next level on drivers will be forced to work with teammates in multi-car team situations. We try to model our business plan after those of the super powers in the big 3 NASCAR series. There will most likely not be a situation for these drivers fortunate enough to make it where they are the only driver on the team competing for the same goal. We feel that we offer an opportunity for young drivers to learn what it takes to win a championship under the pressure of a multi-car team situation. As far as I know we are the only driver development team that is structured in this way, therefore I believe this is a big advantage that our program offers over any other that will allow them a seamless transition into the next level of their career as they will be more prepared for what is to come. “ Faulk said.
Bolton finished 2013 with a win and he looks to continue his success into this season as his first ZLoop 100 lap event is the first race of the season on March 8, 2014. Bolton will also compete in the annual Fall Brawl 150, which the team also won in 2012 with driver Pietro Fittipaldi.