Aaron's 250: Clay Rogers posts victory in USAR Hooters ProCup Series race Saturday night at South Boston Speedway
SOUTH BOSTON, VA. — South Boston Speedway hosted the season-opening event for the USAR Hooters ProCup Series Northern Division competitors Saturday night.
It may have been the first Northern Division event of the season, however, Clay Rogers of Mooresville, N.C., the lone Southern Division competitor in the 32-car field, stole the show in the Aaron's 250 presented by Lance Kelly Designs.
"I didn't want to make anyone mad," Rogers joked after collecting the win. "But, hey, I'm working on percentages."
Rogers led early in the race and, more importantly, he led late in the race and he was the frontrunner when the checkered flag fell. Rogers swiped the top spot from Lonnie Rush, Jr. of Mooresville, N.C. on the 157th circuit and maintained the lead position the remainder of the way.
Benny Gordon of DuBois, Pa. started from the pole position for the race and wound up collecting a runner-up finish. Woody Howard of Chesapeake, Va. started third and finished third in the race and was followed in the top five by Jeff Agnew of Copper Hill, Va. in the fourth slot and Eric Sartin of Kermit, West Va. in fifth place.
"Benny [Gordon] and I have a friendly rivalry," Rogers said, adding that Gordon was one of the main reasons that he opted to compete in the Aaron's 250. The appearance by Rogers at South Boston was his first since the 2002 season.
"I've always liked this race track," Rogers said. "The track has widened out and it makes it real fun to race here now. It is neat to be able to race at a track with multiple grooves."
Rogers took the lead position from Gordon on the first circuit and held it until Gordon regained the spot on lap 35.
Four circuits later, Rogers surged back past Gordon and kept the lead until he and a host of other lead-lap cars pitted on lap 104 during the seventh of 14 caution periods for the night.
When the yellow flag flew for the ninth time on lap 133, Rogers had moved into the top five. He was up to fourth place eight laps later when the evening's 10th caution flag flew, setting the stage for him to climb into position to swipe the lead on lap 157.
Shelby Howard of Greenwood, Ind. began the event in the 23rd starting position and roared through the field to gain a sixth-place run. L.W. Miller of Mooresville, N.C. secured a seventh-place run for the evening after beginning from the 28th spot in the field, and was followed in the top 10 by Gary St. Amant of Delaware, Ohio in eighth place. Corbett started the race in the 29th position, while Miller began from the 28th spot.
Richard Landreth of Pine Hall, N.C. was ninth for the race, while Eric Corbett of Clearspring, Md. Rounded out the top 10 competitors.