In recent years, the Easter Bunny 150 at Hickory Motor Speedway in North Carolina has become a major for Super Late Model drivers across the country, and the 2018 edition has an entry list that reflects it.
Despite only counting points towards the Pro All Stars Series South championship, the event has an all East Coast flair, pitting the best of PASS South versus an all-star list of PASS North invaders. That is the case this year too, and for good reason, as the top-5 finishers next Saturday will each received guaranteed starting positions for either the Oxford 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway in August or the inaugural Commonwealth Classic at Richmond Raceway in October.
One of the aforementioned invaders coming from the north is Scarborough, Maine’s Garrett Hall. In last November’s Mason-Dixon MegaMeltdown at Hickory, Hall was one lap away from taking home $15,000 when he got tangled up with a lapped car and lost out to hometown favorite Brandon Setzer.
“My team and I are going to Hickory looking for some redemption and plan on getting a top five finish to get locked into the 250 or Richmond,” Hall said in a press release. “It’s huge to be qualified into those events and it will make it much easier for us when we go to those races.”
Hall is also using the race as a tune-up for the PASS North season, which doesn’t begin until April 8 for the Thompson Icebreaker.
“We have a lot going on between racing at Hickory, then to Thompson for the North season opener, and then to Oxford afterwards,” Hall said. “But I feel like we are well prepared for the upcoming season and excited to go to Hickory and start it off right.”
Hall will have no shortage of competition on Saturday as fellow New Englanders Ben Rowe, Derek Griffith, Derek Ramstrom, DJ Shaw, Bryan Kruczek, Jimmy Renfrew, Sammy Gooden, Joe Squeglia Jr., Gabe Brown, Jake Johnson, Travis Stearns, Dennis Spencer Jr. and Wyatt Alexander have already filed entires.
The southern contigent already includes the likes of two-time PASS South champion Matt Craig, Kodie Conner, Tate Fogleman, Jeff Batten, and Jimmy Doyle. Jerrick Johnson will pilot the MyComputerCareer machine and will be joined by former Hickory winners, Brandon Setzer and Tyler Church, as well as Trevor Noles, Max McLaughlin, Kevin Floars.
And two Canadian provinces are currently represented by Ontario’s, JP Josiasse and New Brunswick’s, Lonnie Sommerville, returning to Hickory for the first time in a number of years.
A surprise late entry, as revealed by Speed 51 on Tuesday, was national short track superstar Bubba Pollard. It will be the first time he and Craig have shared the track since their incident at the Greenville Pickens Meltdown in January.
“I’m there to win races,” he told Speed51. “I’m not going for him. You’ll never forget it, that’s for sure. It’s always in the back of your mind, but I’m there to win races.”
The action kicks off on Friday, March 30 with optional practice for all competing divisions from 2 – 5:20 p.m.. On Saturday, March 31, practice will begin at 1 p.m., followed by qualifying at 4 p.m., the pit party at 5:30 p.m., last chance race at 6:30 p.m., and features for the PASS South Super Late Models and SMRS Tour Modifieds at 7 p.m.
The complete known entries can be viewed below.
- JIMMY RENFREW
- BUBBA POLLARD
- BRYAN KRUCZEK
- PRESTON PELTIER
- SAMMY GOODEN
- JOE SQUELIA JR
- GABE BROWN
- TREVOR NOLES
- LONNIE SOMMERVILLE
- BEN ROWE
- MAX MCLAUGHLIN
- BRANDON SETZER
- TYLER CHURCH
- TATE FOGLEMAN
- DEREK GRIFFITH
- JAKE JOHNSON
- TRAVIS STEARNS
- KEVIN FLOARS
- DEREK RAMSTROM
- KODIE CONNER
- DENNIS SPENCER
- JEFF BATTEN
- MATT CRAIG
- DJ SHAW
- JIMMY DOYLE
- JERICK JOHNSON
- GARRETT HALL
- WYATT ALEXANDER
Read more Short Track Scene:
- South Boston Preview and Fan Guide
- Ty Gibbs learns a valuable lesson about racing at Myrtle Beach
- Molly Helmuth impresses at Myrtle Beach
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