LUCAMA, NC — Matt Bowling started on the pole for the first of two twin 40-lap Late Model Stock Car races and never relinquished the position, leading all 40 laps and running away with the victory, after setting a blistering pace during the opening race of a big night at Southern National Motorsports Park on Saturday night.
The oppressive heat affected his competitors but also affected Bowling.
“It’s really hot out here, we’ve been fighting it since we unloaded earlier this morning,” Bowling said. “It’s really bad not only in the car but outside also. We just have to remember to stay hydrated and make sure, we’ve had to change every part on this car at least twice this weekend.”
Matt, in his first race at SNMP this season, called his crew “the best around” after the win. Bowling won by almost a quarter of a second over Chris Chapman.
“The best thing the car has going for it is the great forward drive it has,” Bowling remarked. “I was a little snug in the middle of the corner but once it was going straight, it had a lot of drive and was a pretty fast car.”
The win is a “great” one at a track that Bowling has not had success at in the past.
“This track is possibly my worst,” Bowling commented. “To finally get a win here at SNMP is a great start to the night for my team and hopefully, we can keep the momentum going into the second 40-lapper.”
The win, Bowling’s seventh of the season is sure to help him in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series points standings, as Bowling who was last year’s runner-up in points for the state of Virginia, currently, sits first in national points and was 16 points ahead of NASCAR Modified driver Keith Rocco.
In a pre-race conversation, Bowling said, “my focus, at least at Southern National is more on a win than on points, but anytime you can get a win, it helps a lot for sure.”
Bowling finished fifth in the second race.