On Saturday at Bowman Gray Stadium, Tim Brown not only fended off Junior Miller but also shook the monkey off his back. Brown claimed the checkered for the Great Clips 100 – the first time he had visited Winner’s Circle in two months.
Brown, a resident of Rural Hall, was the fastest qualifier for the GMAC Insurance Modified Series. In a stroke of good luck, he plucked second as his starting spot when the entire field randomly drew for the beginning lineup.
Michael Clifton of Walkertown started on the pole but was quickly passed by the #83 of Brown when the green flag waved. It wasn’t long, though, until a caution came out, and Brown had to defend his lead in a double-file restart.
Junior Miller of Danbury took to the outside to threaten Brown, but the “King of the Modifieds” was unable to grab the lead away. But Miller tried again – and again and again – as multiple restarts gave him repeated chances to slip by Brown.
“You can’t win the race running third,” said Miller. “But you get on the outside and you’ve got a shot at winning the race.”
Miller gave a few stout taps to Brown in the early parts of the race but knew that car problems would most likely keep him from taking the checkered himself. “We had a good car the first thirty laps. Then the swagger messed up and we had a second place car,” said Miller.
Almost as nerve-wracking as Junior Miller on your bumper, Tim Brown also had to deal with a great deal of lapped traffic. “They’re racing too - but once the leader catches you, you shouldn’t race them that hard for that long,” said Brown, referring to extended battles with competitors trying to stay on the lead lap.
But Brown weathered it all to lead every lap and take the checkered. “You always worry with those double file restarts and lapped traffic. It’s never over until you take that checkered flag,” said Brown.
The #83 team is hopeful that this is the start of greater things to come for the rest of 2011. “It’s a brand new car. It’s a little bit different even though it came from the same chassis manufacturer. It likes a little different stuff than what I’ve been used to running over here, so we’ve had to play with it some,” said Brown. “After tonight, I think we’ll leave it.”
Miller, who has also been plagued with bad luck this season, finished second right behind Brown. “You’re never happy unless you win the race, but it’s the best finish we’ve had this year,” said Miller.
Chris Fleming of Mount Airy finished third, with Burt Myers of Walnut Cove taking fourth.
Unofficial Race Results
GMAC Insurance Modified Series
Great Clips 100 – 100 laps
183Tim BrownRural Hall, NC 269Junior MillerDanbury, NC 313Chris FlemingMount Airy, NC 41Burt MyersWalnut Cove, NC 577Lee JeffreysWallburg, NC 63Terry GaitherWalkertown, NC 728Joseph BrownWinston-Salem, NC 871Dean WardWinston-Salem, NC 94Jason MyersWalnut Cove, NC 1059Danny BohnHuntersville, NC 1153Jonathan BrownWinston-Salem, NC 1250Michael CliftonWalkertown, NC 1317Johnny SuttonHarrisburg, NC 1448Brad RobbinsWinston-Salem, NC 155Randy ButnerPfafftown, NC 1664Steven TruellWinston-Salem, NC 1711Ricky KnappDenver, NC 1804Kevin PowellWinston-Salem, NC 1966Ronnie CliftonWalkertown, NC 207Bobby ReedClemmons, NC 2181Austin PackWalkertown, NC 2363David BeckClemmons, NC 2423Brian LoftinLexington, NC 2575Robert JeffreysWinston-Salem, NC