KENNEDALE, Texas (Sept. 8, 2023) — After weeks of intense heat across North Texas, a fast-moving line of strong thunderstorms tried to put a damper on a major event.
Twelve Heats for Southern SportMods and eight for Factory Stocks were contested on Friday evening, as officials prepared for their huge Southern SportMod Super Nationals at Kennedale Speedway Park.
Two rounds of eight-lap qualifiers were run off in SportMods, with John Rabozzi, Johnny Torres, Jerrett Bransom, Shannon Hartline, Mark Patterson and Garret Rawls all winning first-round Heats. David Phillips, Josh Graham, Bradley Poor, Albert McCall Jr., Landon Capps and Jeff Reynolds won their respective Heats in the second round to show they plan on making some noise, as well.
Tonight, SportMod teams will have a pair of C Mains, two B Mains and a 30-lap A Main that pays $5,000-to-win and $500 to start. A whopping 62 teams were on hand Friday night to attempt their way into this high-stakes Fall Special. Teams from all over the state brought their best piece to Kennedale.
In Factory Stock, Richard George Jr., Tommy Williams, Bryan Curtis and young hotshoe Cameron Cook all won first-round Heats. In the second round, Eddie Grmela, Chris Wolfe, Trey Smitherman and Rodney White all earned wins. Saturday night's big Factory Stock A Main promises to be entertaining.
Two support divisions also saw some track time on Friday evening before rain spoiled the party. Eco Mods and Dwarfs were slated for a full program of Heats and features. Chance Morris and AJ Gardner secured Eco Mod Heat wins, while Jeff Patterson and Troop Miller won their Dwarf car qualifiers.
Along with the 62 Southern SportMod teams and 39 Factory Stocks on hand Friday, there was a solid contingent of those support class teams there, as well. All combined, an impressive 130 entries filled the pits ensuring a fabulous program of racing to cap the program Saturday night.
This event actually kicked off on Thursday evening with a huge Pit Party for racers. A buffet-style feed was well-attended and enjoyed by racers before the mood turned to competition. Three Heats were run for Qualifying for tonight's prestigious Southern SportMod All-Star Showdown.
In Heat 1, Dean Abbey, Shannon Hartline, Jason Hunter and Jeff Shepperd showed good speed in the top four positions. In Heat 2, Alex Hickham, Cutter Spalding, Jerrett Bransom and Jeff Reynolds were all fast, while Kyle Wilkins, Garret Rawls, Trevor Cogburn and Daniel Patterson led the way in Heat 3.
Kennedale Speedway Park has enjoyed a healthy season during which they maintained a big car count in all regular divisions. Fed by well-heeled teams from around the greater DFW area, promoter James Lopez and his staff host over 100 quality race teams every Saturday night. It's a spectacle like no other.
The Southern SportMod Super Nationals get back into action tonight (September 9) with the balance of qualifying races to finish setting the field for the A Mains. Several spots are still open in the features, so drivers will be pushing hard to make the show. With cooperation from weather, it promises to be huge.
You can replay all of the action from Friday's program at Kennedale Speedway Park with qualifying for the SportMod Super Nationals with a subscription at RaceOnTexas.com. With over 400 events on the Live steaming schedule this year, it's home to some of the best short track content available on the planet.
When you sign up today, choose your favorite or hometown track, and start enjoying great content while supporting your local track even when you can't attend in person.
By Phil Whipple, RaceOnTexas.com Staff Writer