Bobby Measmer, Jr. grabbed the lead from Ryan Preece with less than five laps to go and held on to claim his first career Southern Modified Racing Series (SMRS) Presented By PASS win in the Charles Kepley Memorial 125 Friday night at Concord Speedway. After being mired by bad luck, Measmer, a former track champion at Concord, took his first career Tour-type Modified win in front of an excited group of hometown fans.
“To finish second to Ryan Preece is an accomplishment, but I saw he was tight from the center off and I knew it was just a matter of time before I could get him,” said Measmer in victory lane. “We’ve worked really hard, but I tell you, it hasn’t sunk in yet.”
Winston-Salem, NC’s Brandon Ward scorched the treacherous speedway in qualifying with lap of 117.417 miles per hour to claim the C&C Race Souvenirs Pole Award. But, after the top six qualifies redraw, Ward would move back to the sixth starting position, while Cale Gale and James Civali would move up to the front row.
Gale would lead the first six laps before Civali would take a turn up front. Civali dominated the early portions, while former two-time North-South Shootout winner Burt Myers was making his way through the field. Myers started last after crashing his primary car in qualifying, but was up to 10th by lap 33 driving his back-up machine. The first caution of the night would wave for debris on lap 50.
On the restart, Preece applied heavy pressure to Civali and would take the lead on lap 54. Civali struggled mightily with the handling on his machine and would eventually spin in the short chute with 50 laps to go. Everyone, with the exception of Chase Hunt, would take the opportunity to pit for new tires and fuel.
Back under green, Hunt would lead until being bypassed by Ward on lap 76. Ward too was struggling with handling problems and would be overtaken by Preece for the lead in turn three with 35 laps to go. The final caution of the night would wave with 19 laps to go when Hunt slammed hard into the turn one wall.
Over the final few laps, Preece, Measmer, Burt Myers, and John Smith would battle hard for the lead. Measmer managed to wrestle the lead away from Preece with less than five laps to go. As Preece and Myers battled for second, the two made contact in turn three allowing Measmer to pull away and go on to a popular win at his home track. Myers just beat out Preece at the line for second, while Smith and Jason Myers rounded out the top five. With his second place finish, Burt Myers claimed the Jerry Hunt Superstore Hard Charger Award.
The Southern Modified Racing Series Presented By PASS will be in action once again for 125 laps, along with the PASS South Super Late Models, on Friday, June 17 at Anderson Motor Speedway. Entry forms will be available at SouthernModifiedRacingSeries,com. Be sure to “Like” the Pro All Stars Series and Southern Modified Racing Series on Facebook or follow us on Twitter at @PASSSLM14.