Connect with us

Pro Late Models

The Reason Five Flags Speedway Stripped Stephen Nasse of the Snowflake 100 Win

It’s the second year in a row that 5 Flags Stripped Nasse of a Derby Week win

Daylon Barr Photography

The most prestigious Pro Late Model race of the season was decided in the scoring tower.

Stephen Nasse executed what appeared to be a textbook bump-and-run on rival Bubba Pollard in the final corner of the final lap of the Snowflake 100 on Saturday night at Five Flags Speedway, was flagged the winner at the finish line, but had the victory stripped away from him by race control as Pollard spun into the inside retaining wall.

Nasse was literally on the frontstretch taking pictures with the trophy at the time the decision came down, a credulous smile appearing on his face as the announcement came over the public address system.

It was the second year in a row that he won a race at the Super Bowl of Short Track Racing and had the trophies taken from him moments later.

The Stephen Nasse Snowball Derby Disqualification, One Year Later

Nasse drove his car away from the victory staging area, replaced by newly declared winner Jake Johnson, whom was scored second at the time of the checkered flag.

Instead of packing up, Nasse drove his car to the technical inspection area and discussed the decision with speedway officials. The Jett Motorsports No. 51 went through the technical inspection process as Nasse and crew issued an unofficial protest of the results.

Simultaneously, the local Outlaw Stock division took over an hour to complete a crash filled race, preventing race director Nicholas Rogers from joining the meeting that was scheduled for inside the inspection shed.

Once that race had ended, Rogers and track general manager Tim Bryant joined Nasse and chief technical director Ricky Brooks inside the inspection shed for a contentious closed-door meeting.

After a 20 minute conversation, Brooks emerged with the trophy and placed it on Johnson’s car, signaling that he was officially the winner. Nasse remained in the tech shed and continued to make a case of some kind to Bryant, Rogers and Brooks for another 20 minutes.

Bryant left, and Nasse followed five minutes later, walking to a waiting golf car and zipping towards the Jett Motorsports hauler.

Nasse did not take questions on Saturday night.

https://twitter.com/speed51dotcom/status/1335445715103911943

Meanwhile, Bryant returned to the tech shed and a separate meeting continued with Rogers and Brooks. Rogers took questions and offered the following explanation for the penalty.

“Due to the contact from the Nasse machine to the Pollard machine, it was deemed that there was rough driving involved, that caused Pollard to spin out,” Rogers said. “We looked at multiple replays and slowed the video down, watched the wheel movement, attitude of Bubba Pollard’s race car to see if he ever regained any kind of control.

“In my opinion, he did not. It was a continuous act that caused Bubba to spin off the nose of Nasse. For that reason, he was penalized to the rear of the lead lap, declaring the 15 car the winner.”

Rogers said the conversation was over Jett Motorsports protest of the decision.

“If I were a racer in his shoes, the kid ran his guts out, ran a great race,” Rogers said. “If the contact hadn’t happened on the last lap or if the contact hadn’t been as hard to where both of them came to the checkers, you would have had a different result here.

“They both ran a great race, one of the best short track races I had seen in a long time, between several of them. Unfortunately, there was contact that resulted in a car spinning and for that reason, there was a DQ … not a DQ but sending to the rear of the lead lap.”

Did Nasse and his outspoken, aggressive and hard-driving reputation play a factor in the decision from Rogers standpoint?

“Not to me,” Rogers said. “I’ve had very little issue with Stephen on the race track. He’s a heck of a driver. Whether it’s tonight or tomorrow, we have the best short track drivers in the country in it. You have some guys that run rougher than others.

“Stephen ran with us all year and was our Southern Super Series champion and I told him that I couldn’t remember a time that I penalized him for any kind of rough driving incident. There might be one out there, but it wasn’t memorable enough that I can cite it tonight and recall it as I was speaking to them.

“His reputation does not play a factor in my decisions, nor does any driver.”

Bryant walked away from the tech shed without taking question, appearing to speak on the phone, and driving away from the impound compound in his pickup truck.

The Snowball Derby will take place on Sunday afternoon with both Nasse and Pollard amongst the field of 36.

If you like what you read here, become a Short Track Scene Patreon and support short track journalism!

Read more Short Track Scene:

Matt Weaver is the owner and founder of Short Track Scene. Weaver grew up in the sport, having raced himself before becoming a reporter in college at the University of South Alabama. He is also the associate motorsports editor of Autoweek Magazine and its website, which allows him to cover the highest levels of the sport.

7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Jim

    December 6, 2020 at 3:39 am

    Stephen Nasses’ win was stolen. I cannot ever remember a time where they took any win from a driver thats aggressive enough to move the leader on the last lap last corner bump and run. Seen many spun cars off the nose of the P2 last corner move that was junked. My question is these the same tech guys that DQ him last year? Could these guys be butt hurt a year later from NASSES social media blasts?

  2. Larry

    December 6, 2020 at 8:02 am

    Great call, that was not a bump and run, that was I’m going to win this race no matter what I have to do!!!

  3. Mike Mctighe

    December 6, 2020 at 11:09 am

    Thats why racing sux and is it worth watching he did nothing wrong

  4. Anonymous

    December 6, 2020 at 11:57 am

    Terrible call on behalf of the track.

  5. Kenny

    December 6, 2020 at 12:41 pm

    Never met Nasse, however, just imagine if that had been another driver that performed the bump and run…say Chase Elliot? Derek Thorne? or if Bubba Pollard had bumped Nasse? If Rogers can honestly say he would have DQ’ed those guys, fine, I’m good with it. I was watching the wreck unfold directly in front of me in turn 4. In my opinion, Bubba did’t make the usual move to just take the bump and ride up the track to save the car. He just turned left to keep his position. That’s his move, and it didn’t work. Bump and runs are traditional, even in Nascar, and will always be with us. There’s always a loser, this night there were two, Nasse and Pollard. Still a great race, and I’ll say this, Tim Bryant always sticks up for his officials – good or bad.

  6. Anonymous

    December 6, 2020 at 4:57 pm

    This place was a joke last night I threw my Sunday tickets in the trash. They seem to let some drivers do what ever then penalize others for the same thing was very disappointed we all pay good money to watch are drivers and I don’t think any of them want to hurt their on cars

  7. Gary

    December 6, 2020 at 8:50 pm

    Too harsh.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Facebook

Archive

Advertisement

More in Pro Late Models