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Young Pickrel Gaining Experience, Respect In First Year At South Boston Speedway

SOUTH BOSTON, Va. (August 17, 2016) – Jordan Pickrel has quietly gained confidence, respect and some pretty good finishes at South Boston Speedway this season.

He’s fourth in the Budweiser Pure Stock standings behind a couple of third-place finishes and several top fives. And he’s leading the division’s rookie-of-the-year standings.

Not bad considering he’s just 16 years old and this is his first season in a full-body stock car. In fact, he didn’t even know how to drive a straight-gear transmission until a month before the season.

“It’s been pretty difficult at times,” said Pickrel, who made the move to South Boston this season after three years of racing Bandoleros. “We’ve had a good car week-in, week-out. We’ve wanted to get a win, but we’ve had a lot of little things happen.

“The rookie-of-the-year award is the key for us. We talked about that before the year started. Realistically we wanted to improve, keep the car together, win the rookie-of the-year and maybe run for a championship next year.”

Even with the success there has been a learning curve for Pickrel. There were some early gear-shifting problems. “That was difficult at first since I hadn’t driven a straight gear until a month before.”

And working the traffic in a stock car was an entirely different world from the smaller Bandoleros.

“Passing has been the most difficult thing for me to learn,” said Pickrel, who is being home-schooled. “…to learn to pass and to give everyone plenty of room when I pass.”

He’s had a pretty good set of eyes in the sky to help him from the spotters’ stand: Bert Sellers, who has spotted for his son Peyton Sellers in the Late Model division for years. “Bert has helped me so much spotting for me … they (the Sellers family) have all helped me so much.

Making clean passes has been important to Pickrel. He knew that was the best way to make an impression on the rest of the field.

“The other drivers have helped me, but it’s been about earning their respect,” said Pickrel, who doesn’t have his driver’s license yet, just his learners’ permit. “You can’t do that overnight. You have to race them clean week-after-week and I think I’ve done that.”

Racing is a total family affair for the Pickrel clan. His dad Mark is his crew chief and chief mechanic. His brother Josiah also helps out, and his mom makes sure Jordan gets anywhere he needs to go, since he doesn’t have a driver’s license.

“It’s me, my dad, my brother and my mom. My dad and I work on it week-in and week-out,” said Pickrel, who is sponsored by Sellers Racing Inc., Jimmy’s Famous Hotdogs and Abercrombie and Richards Machine Shop. “My brother helps out and my mom takes me to help find sponsors.”

Racing returns to South Boston Speedway on Saturday, Aug. 27, with the 7 p.m. running of the “Italian Delight Family Restaurant Presents Frutopia Not Just Frozen Yogurt” NASCAR Late Model 100 racing program.

A 100-lap race for the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model Stock Car Division competitors will headline the five-race card. Also on the night’s schedule are a 50-lap Limited Sportsman Division race, a 30-lap race for the Budweiser Pure Stock Division, a 15-lap race for the Budweiser Hornets Division and a 25-lap race for the regional touring Southern Ground Pounders series.

Grandstand gates open at 5:30 p.m., qualifying starts at 6 p.m. and the first race gets the green flag at 7 p.m.

Adult General Admission tickets are $10 each, with youth ages 7-12 admitted for $5 and kids ages six and under being admitted free with a paid adult.

Media Contacts:
Mike Smith
Relevant Public Relations



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