Peyton Sellers is no stranger to overcoming adversity to win races at South Boston Speedway.
During the season-opener on March 20, Sellers had to work his way up from the back of the pack twice in the second Late Model Stock race due to an invert and early-race spin to earn a clean sweep of the weekend.
A similar task was in front of Sellers on Saturday afternoon, as he was forced to start ninth on the 14-car grid after winning the first 75-lap feature with relative ease.
Instead of a spin, the biggest obstacle standing in front of Sellers’ second victory of the afternoon came in the form of 2016 ValleyStar Credit Union 300 winner Mike Looney.
Sellers and Looney pulled no punches on each other as they battled for the win in the closing laps, which saw the two make contact with one another on a couple of occasions.
While Looney was determined to best South Boston’s 2006 track champion, Sellers ultimately held on for what he knew was a well-earned victory.
“When you line up to race Mike Looney, you expect a battle,” Sellers said. “That’s what happened here today. My car fired off really well and we were able to get fresh air quicker than he could but I knew he was coming.”
Looney initially was not a problem for Sellers but a competition caution on Lap 41 gave the opportunity he needed to make a run at Sellers.
Sellers relentlessly tried to pass Looney on the bottom at the expense of his own sheet metal. He finally cleared Looney with 25 laps to go and managed to hold him off for the win.
“We had to work [Looney] hard on that restart,” Sellers said. “I hit him a few times and he got into me a few times but that’s what a car race is all about. Mike Looney is as good of a driver you can get out here and you never get an easy win over Mike.”
While Sellers celebrated another great weekend in victory lane, Looney could not help but feel dejected after doing everything possible to get the lead only to end up settling for a second-place finish.
“That sucked,” Looney said. “This is a successful outing for us with this being the second night out for this car. It’s a shame to tear the side of it off like that but I knew my only shot of beating [Sellers] was to get by him on the restart. We got a good launch and pinched him down but he was too strong.”
Sellers’ two victories on Saturday give him four through five races at South Boston, which has provided him confidence as South Boston transitions into night racing next month.
“We feel really good right now,” Sellers said. “Our cars are running good but we have to make some adjustments on them. As we get close to the Fourth of July race, we have to get our stuff a little better. Our guys are digging deep and we have to keep working just as hard.”
With the Thunder Road Harley-Davidson 200 being South Boston’s hardest and most prestigious race, Sellers knows that efficiency and perfection will be needed for him to defend his win from 2019.
Those qualities will be imperative with Looney expected to be among the drivers filing an entry for the event.
Late Model Stock Race No. 2 Results:
1. Peyton Sellers
2. Mike Looney
3. Aaron Donnelly
4. Mark Wertz
5. Jacob Borst
6. Stuart Crews
7. Jason Barnes
8. Carter Langley
9. Camden Gullie
10. Terry Dease
11. Chris Elliott
12. Raymond Pittman
13. Eddie Johnson
14. Chris Johnson