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Peyton Sellers wins track title at SoBo, Philip Morris inches closer to national title

South Boston Speedway

Peyton Sellers is once again the Late Model Stock Car track champion at South Boston Speedway.

Sellers won the second of two races at SoBo’s GCR Presents Spaulding Equipment NASCAR Late Model T-75  on Saturday night (Sept. 8) to secure his fourth championship at the track, edging Philip Morris for the title. He came from the rear to finish second in the first of the twin-75s.

“This is a big deal. They get harder every time when you race heads up against Philip Morris every week,” Sellers said. “He won a few more races than we did, but we won the battle this year. That’s all we can ask for.

“We had a really, really solid year. We didn’t have a lot of bad luck, had a lot of good finishes. That’s what it takes to win championships.”

Sellers said each championship he wins is more special because he has a better understanding of all the hard work it requires.

Morris, meanwhile, won the first race of the evening and finished second to Sellers in the second, all but clinching the NWAAS national championship.

“By all accounts of what I can see, [the championship] is [clinched],” Morris said. “But I lost a national championship [before when] somebody came out of the blue and beat us… I guess God’s gonna seal it when Father Time gets us to [Sept.] 16th.”

Morris said that he plans to contend for the national championship and South Boston’s championship again next season.

Sellers brought out his backup car for Stuart Crews to race, filling the field for the first race for Morris to grab more national points. Sellers had planned to leave the car loaded up and not race it, but had a change of heart.

“Philip and his guys never came to me and asked me… I got down to realizing it was one point and one more car would make a full car count for Philip,” Sellers said. “We’re bitter rivals on the track and off the track too, but at the end of the day, we respect each other. And if I can do something to help him, I know he would me.”

Morris appreciated the gesture from Sellers.

“Peyton Sellers and HC Sellers and the whole Sellers bunch, they’ve always helped me,” Morris said. “I don’t know if they were trying to help me tonight, but I can’t think of a time they weren’t on my side… I’ve borrowed motors at the same track they were racing at and won. It says a lot about their program and their sportsmanship.”

Morris started from the pole in the first race and led all 75 laps to get his 10th SoBo win of the season.

“The thing was just really good tonight,” Morris said. “That’s about as much gas pedal as I’ve ever been able to put in on this racetrack without having to hold it wide open all the way around.

On a lap 51 restart, Morris gave Sellers the inside line, but shot off like a rocket to hang on to the lead and win the race.

Sellers qualified second for the first feature, but elected to start from the rear so he could be eligible for more passing points. Just five laps in, Sellers had already cracked the top 10. Sellers broke into the top five with a pass on Austin Thaxton on lap 33, and at the halfway point in the race, Sellers was fourth.

The first caution came out on lap 41 when Raymond Pittman III spun into the inside wall. This gave Colin Garrett and Mike Jones a shot at Morris, but the No. 01 got a huge jump on the restart to maintain the lead.

Sellers took advantage of the restart to get all the way up to third. After Jones pitted from second place with a suspension problem, Sellers moved up to second. Garrett’s shot a win vanished after he pitted for engine issues two-thirds into the race.

A big pileup on the backstretch, involving Danny Willis Jr and Jason Barnes, happened on lap 50, giving Sellers an opportunity to race Morris for the win. Morris got the jump on his championship counterpart and went on the win, while Sellers finished in second — his ninth runner-up finish of the season.

With the field inversion for the second feature, Sellers started in eighth and Morris in 10th. Mark Keesee Jr, who finished the first race in ninth, led the field to the green. Just three laps in, Sellers and Morris had moved up to third and fourth.

Sellers restarted alongside Keesee on the lap 6 restart and took the lead from the outside, bringing Morris with him. Morris hung with Sellers, peaking underneath him several times. Morris would dive low and get a faster corner entry, but Sellers ran a groove higher to get the faster run off.

“I knew that [Morris] was extremely loose on the throttle,” Sellers said. “I knew at some point I was going to have to slide up to the top groove and make it work, and that’s what I did.”

Morris pulled alongside Sellers several times in the waning laps, but the thought didn’t cross his mind to wreck his rival for the win.

“It was going to take something that I wasn’t willing to do to get around him,” Morris said. “I really just wanted to try to do it in my own lane or a lane other than my own lane, but without using my bumper.”

Sellers held on to win his third race of the season and the track championship.

GCR Presents Spaulding Equipment NASCAR Late Model T-75 Race #1 Results

  1. Philip Morris
  2. Peyton Sellers
  3. Thomas Scott
  4. Justin Carroll
  5. Colin Garrett
  6. Austin Thaxton
  7. Nathan Crews
  8. Terry Carroll
  9. Mark Keesee Jr
  10. Quincy Adkins
  11. Charles Barnes
  12. Raymond Pittman III
  13. Danny Willis Jr
  14. Jason Barnes
  15. Mike Jones
  16. Mike Looney
  17. Dennis Holdren
  18. Stuart Crews

GCR Presents Spaulding Equipment NASCAR Lat Model T-75 Race #2 Results

  1. Peyton Sellers
  2. Philip Morris
  3. Austin Thaxton
  4. Thomas Scott
  5. Mark Keesee Jr
  6. Terry Carroll
  7. Nathan Crews
  8. Charles Barnes
  9. Raymond Pittman III
  10. Quincy Adkins
  11. Danny Willis
  12. Mike Jones
  13. Jason Barnes
  14. Justin Carroll
  15. Colin Garrett

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