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    Eventual winner David Payne turns his final practice laps before qualifying for the Super Late Model event. Travis Dockery • Clay County Progress

Payne banks $3,000 in Brasstown

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Tri County Racetrack found itself in a unique situation following its latest rain out. Track promoter Ray Cook combined that show with the Labor Day Championships and on Monday, Sept. 2 fans were treated to a double main event. The IronMan Super Late Model series made it’s first visit to Brasstown while the Southeastern Late Model Sportsman series were in town for their annual visit. Fans were delighted to an action-packed night of racing and as the dust settled, David Payne and Kenny Collins celebrated main event wins.

The IronMan Super Late Model race did not disappoint and fans were on the edge of their seat, if not standing, for the majority of the 35-lap race. Robby Moses and Collins made up the front row and brought the field up to full speed. Collins was able to use the momentum from the high line to grab the lead on lap one and Payne snuck by Moses to take the second spot. 

At first, it seemed as if Collins would pull away but Payne slowly started reeling him in. As the pair caught lap traffic, Payne’s No. 8 caught Collins and just when it looked like a lead change was inevitable, the yellow flag flew due to a stopped car.

On the restart Collins was again able to pull away slightly but once Payne’s tires warmed up “The Coach” was on the attack. After working the bottom line for the majority of the laps, Payne jumped to the high side where he found speed. Deja vu hit when a caution flag once again squashed Payne’s potential pass.

The next restart saw Collins jump to the top side to try to hold Payne off. In response, Payne took his car down low. Collins’ car was too loose to stay topside so the No. 1 returned to the low line and Payne gladly moved up. Lap after lap fans could be seen enthusiastically waving on their favorite in the battle. With the top two in the middle of a dog fight, Moses was able to catch them to make it a three-car battle for the win. 

As the trio exited turn four on lap 32, Payne was finally able to shoot past Collins on the outside. Collins tried to regain the top spot but ran out of laps and Payne took the win. With Collins crossing the strip second, Moses had to settle for third.

In victory lane, after receiving a check for $3,000, Payne said, “Man what a great race. Thanks to Kenny for racing me clean.” Payne went on to praise the track surface saying, “We’ve raced at three different tracks this weekend and no other track has given us the ability to run high, low or wherever. This place is awesome.”

The Super Late Model race might have been a tough pill to swallow but he had to jump into his Sportsman car and bring the Southeastern Late Model Sportsman feature up to speed as he was the pole-sitter. That main event started the same way the Super Late Model race ended.

While leading, Collins came under attack from Jason Deal. With just a handful of laps completed, Deal completed a slide job coming out of turn four to grab the lead. Not to be outdone, Collins dropped low for the crossover and went to the top of the leader board in turn one. Not to be outdone, Deal showed, he too, could manage a crossover move and put his No. 7 back out front. Collins refused to concede and wrestled the lead away from Deal.

In the midst of the lead changes Dalton Cook cut his way through the field and into the third spot. Deal slowly faded from Collins and into the grip of Cook. After moving into the second spot, Cook set his sights on Collins. He was gaining on the leader but ran out of laps and Collins passed under the checkered flag to claim the $1,500 top prize. Cook was second and Deal snuck by Jacob Anderson at the line to take third.

Tri County Racetrack will host the annual Tarheel Nationals go-kart races Saturday, Sept. 14.

Clay County Progress

Mailing Address: PO Box 483, Hayesville, NC 28904
Physical Address: 43 Main Street, Hayesville, NC 28904
Phone: 828-389-8431
Fax: 828-389-9997