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LUCAMA, NC – Rusty Daniels’ twin victories in Saturday night’s races at Southern National Motorsports Park are a career highlight for the veteran racer from Alliance, North Carolina.

Daniels executed the winning pass in the first of two races on the 22nd lap of the race, getting around four-time Southern National Motorsports Park track champion Deac McCaskill.  After getting around McCaskill, who was racing for Ronald Renfrow, Daniels held him off and went on to score the victory.

“He’s the best there is in short track racing,” Daniels said of McCaskill.  “Of course he’s driving somebody else’s car.  He’s tight, we were tight.  We were able to make it better than he did.  Just can’t thank everybody enough.  We’ve been about the fastest all day but I don’t ever count my chickens before their eggs are hatched.

“We were hoping for a good run and ended up getting lucky.”

Daniels battled with McCaskill for several laps before getting under him in turn one.  The two drivers traded a little paint, sending McCaskill up the hill and allowing Daniels to take the lead and the win.

“I think I got in him a little bit,” Daniels remarked.  “He was kind of holding me up a little bit.  Just one of those things, moved him a little bit but did what we had to do.”

The victory was Daniels’ first win of the 2016 season.  He backed that up later in the evening in the second 40 lap feature race.  Daniels passed Alex Fleming for the lead on the fifth lap of the race and never looked back, beating out Clay Jones and Bradley McCaskill to complete the sweep.

“We worked on the car,” Daniels stated.  “We made a lot of small adjustments all year.  We’ve just been working and working and working and finally got it to where we can drive it to my style.  Just can’t thank everybody enough.”

Daniels’ performance was rejuvenating for his entire team after they struggled a bit in 2015.  In 2014, Daniels scored five victories when racing at Southern National as well as at East Carolina Motor Speedway.  His performances on Saturday night has him back where he wants to be – winning races.

“We haven’t had some good finishes but we’ve had the car better,” Daniels explained.  “Now, we’ve hit on it.  We’re in good shape so I’m very pleased with tonight’s performance and see what we can do next time we come back.”

Beating Deac McCaskill and Clay Jones, who are both legends in the Eastern North Carolina racing scene, was more satisfying than just the wins themselves for Daniels.

“Deac’s probably one of the best short track racers in Eastern North Carolina and Clay follows right along behind him with a bunch of wins,” Daniels elaborated.  “So, we got them tonight and we’ll try to get them again.

The two victories came in races that featured full car counts for NASCAR Whelen All-American Series (NWAAS) state and national points.  After winning both races, Daniels knows he will jump up several spots in the NWAAS North Carolina state standings and now has his sights set on winning the state title.

“I noticed the other night with the couple finishes we had, we’re in the top 20,” Daniels commented.  “Now I’m going to press that crowd pretty hard for the state title.  Mighty good points night tonight.  That will put us in the hunt there.”

Unofficial Results

Race #1

  1. Rusty Daniels
  2. Deac McCaskill
  3. Clay Jones
  4. Brenden Queen
  5. Alex Fleming
  6. TJ Barron
  7. Bradley McCaskill
  8. Ricky Jones, III
  9. Tyler Matthews
  10. Melvin Langley
  11. Gerald Benton
  12. Paul Williamson
  13. Malik Koonce
  14. Cameron Bowen
  15. Tim Allensworth
  16. Chris Chapman
  17. Savannah Beasley
  18. Mike Queen
  19. Michael Fose – DNS

Race #2

  1. Rusty Daniels
  2. Clay Jones
  3. Bradley McCaskill
  4. Tyler Matthews
  5. Alex Fleming
  6. Deac McCaskill
  7. Brenden Queen
  8. TJ Barron
  9. Cameron Bowen
  10. Ricky Jones, III
  11. Melvin Langley
  12. Gerald Benton
  13. Paul Williamson
  14. Chris Chapman
  15. Tim Allensworth
  16. Savannah Beasely
  17. Malik Koonce
  18. Mike Queen
  19. Michael Fose — DNS

Marquis comes from St. Charles, Maryland and has a widespread background in journalism, having covered politics in Washington and Maryland as well as nearly every form of auto racing, including NASCAR, IndyCar, AMA Motocross and IHRA Drag Racing. Now living near Emerald Isle, North Carolina, Marquis covers Late Model Stock Cars and Super Late Models in the Carolinas and Virginia.

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