Former UARA Champion Lee Tissot led flag to flag from the outside pole and dominated the UARA-STARS Courtesy Chevrolet 150 at Kingsport Speedway on Saturday night. Kyle Grissom, Alex Yontz, Brennan Poole and Coleman Pressley completed the top five.
Tissot started alongside of Sunoco Pole winner Brennan Poole but once the green flag dropped, the driver of the No. 25 Copeland Creek Cabins/Don’s Diesel Truck Performance Center Ford used the top lane to motor around Poole. The 2003 UARA Champion held off the current series point leader through the opening two-thirds of the race and at times pulled out to a full straightaway advantage.
“We’ve been good ever since we unloaded on Friday and tonight proved that,” said Tissot after the race in victory lane. “I was just trying to ride and save what I could during the first part of the race because I knew they’d be coming as we got closer to the end. It was just so hard to do that because this car was that good.”
Kyle Grissom made his way by Brennan Poole with 40 laps to go for the runner-up spot and, with the help of a couple of caution flags towards the end of the race and a green-white-checker restart, was able to make advances on the No. 25 of Tissot. Grissom’s No. 31 Bloomingdale Car Care Chevrolet appeared to be better as the runs went longer, but that did not hamper him in making some desperate maneuvers after the race’s final restart.
“Kyle did everything he had to do over there to try and get by me,” remarked Tissot when asked about the contact in turn two on the final lap. “It was fun racing with him. But there was no way after leading this whole race I was going to let him get by me that easy. This one’s very special. I can’t put it into words how special it is because it’s been so long since I’ve won a UARA race. The competition here has gotten extremely tough the past few years.”
“I did about everything I could except for wreck him on that last restart,” said a disappointed Grissom after the race. “We had a good car, much better than when we unloaded, so we’re really happy with second tonight considering how bad we were when we came off of the truck on Friday. We did finish ahead of Brennan [Poole], so we made up a few points on him, but it’s still a pretty big gap.”
The win marked Tissot’s sixth victory of 2011 at Kingsport Speedway, a track where he has five weekly series wins and is currently locked in a tight point battle with Nate Monteith for the track championship.
Alex Yontz drove the C&J Energy Services Chevrolet to a season-best third place finish behind Tissot and Grissom, while Brennan Poole and Coleman Pressley rounded out the top five. Andy Mercer, Jesse Little, Eric Turner, Scott Turlington and George Miedecke completed the top ten.
Three of the night’s cautions involved No. 54 J&W Cars and Tires Chevrolet of Kaleb Pressley. Despite being caught up in three separate incidents not of his own doing, the Asheville, NC, driver managed to finish on the lead lap in 11th and was awarded the ARBodies Hard Luck Award. Other major award winners included Jesse Little, who won his second Rookie of the Race award with his seventh place finish and series newcomer Eric Turner, a dirt super late model driver from Missouri, who claimed the Holley Performer of the Race award in his very first race on a paved surface of any kind. The G Force South shift of the Race award went to Alex Yontz, Tissot was also the Marlowe Racing Chassis half way leader and he attained the Tilton most laps led award.
The UARA-STARS will be in action again this week on Friday night, August 19, at Anderson (SC) Motor Speedway. The event was added to the existing UARA schedule just a week and a half ago to replace the cancelled North Wilkesboro Speedway event. Spectator gates open at 5pm with racing beginning at 8. Jeremy Burns who won the June 3, 2011 UARA race at Anderson will be there once again to take on the UARA regulars and vie for his second UARA win there. Burns will also be bringing his younger brother to make his UARA debut at Anderson.
Racing with the STARS will be the Front Wheel Drives, BM Modifieds, B Minis and the Carolina Vintage racers to make it another action packed UARA specical.
For more information on the UARA-STARS, visit www.uara-stars.com or call (828) 692-3833.
1 25 Lee Tissot 151
2 31 Kyle Grissom 151
3 77 Alex Yontz 151
4 7 Brennan Poole 151
5 59 Coleman Pressley 151
6 10 Andy Mercer 151
7 97 Jesse Little 151
8 16 Eric Turner 151
9 48 Scott Turlington 151
10 9 George Miedecke 151
11 54 Kaleb Pressley 151
12 3 Randy Hawkins 151
13 18 David Roberts 150
14 22 Keith Stiltner 148
15 92 Candace Muzny 110
16 26 Joey Herques 67
17 9 Darrick Coomer 67
18 21 Justin Wright 2