Ogle wins 4th straight at Cleveland's SAS event
By Richard AllenTennesseeRacer.com
CLEVELAND, Tenn. (Sept. 15) — After settling for a number of runner-up finishes during the first half of the season, Billy Ogle, Jr. isn’t having any troubles finding his way to victory lane during the second half of the year. The Knoxville, Tenn., driver raced to his fourth consecutive victory Saturday night at Cleveland Speedway, holding off a hard-charging Ray Cook for a $3,500 victory in the third-mile oval’s Southern All Star Series event. | Video
Ogle, the reigning series champion, earned his second series victory of the season in topping Cook and Derek Ellis of Chatsworth, Ga., at the finish. Riley Hickman of Ooltewah, Tenn., was fourth with Skip Arp of Georgetown, Tenn., rounding out the race’s top five finishers.
Starting from the pole, Ogle outdueled Cook of Brasstown, N.C., with a bold move to the high side entering turn one on the race’s opening lap.
Ogle then took control in the early laps while Cook fell back to fourth. Ellis and Mark Douglas of Knoxville, Tenn., initially gave chase to Ogle but were unable to match the leader’s torrid pace.
However, the resolute Cook quickly stormed back into contention, grabbing third from Douglas on lap three then taking second from Ellis on the fifth circuit.
In short order, Cook closed to the rear spoiler of Ogle’s car but his charge was interrupted on lap eight when a caution flag waved for two unrelated accidents that occurred at the same time. Series points leader Randy Weaver of Crossville, Tenn., and Brett Miller of Greenville, Tenn., banged off of one another as they each tried to avoid another car in turn four while hometown driver Lamar Scoggins and Brian Hickman of Soddy Daisy, Tenn., came together on the back straightaway.
Miller was forced to retire from the event but Weaver continued after multiple stops to receive repairs during the caution period. The cars of Scoggins and Hickman were heavily damaged and would be unable to continue. The two drivers were uninjured but did pause to exchange some heated words before heading to the pit area.
Once the race resumed, so did the battle for the lead as Cook drew near to Ogle on multiple occasions only to lose ground shortly after. But a lap-31 yellow flag allowed Cook another chance to make his move for the top spot.
Ogle got away briefly after the green flag again came out but Cook reeled him back in. Finally on the last lap, Cook was able to pull briefly alongside out of turn two. But Ogle used the high line to power away on the backstretch and drive on to the win.
Notes: Ogle’s Blount Motorsports No. 201 is a Rocket Chassis with a Custom Race Engine sponsored by Massey Electric, Stowers Cat, Cherokee Millwright and Mechanical, GEO Services, Blount Excavating as well as Grady and King Construction. … The victory is Ogle’s fifth overall of the season. He scored his first win on May 25, while the other four have come consecutively since Aug. 11. … All five of Ogle’s victories were earned at east Tennessee dirt tracks. … He previous SAS victory came at Cleveland on Aug. 18. … The Southern All Star Series returns to action Sept. 22 with a $5,000-to-win event at Smoky Mountain Speedway in Maryville, Tenn.
Grant Adcox Memorial: (1) Billy Ogle Jr., (2) Ray Cook, (3) Derek Ellis, (4) Riley Hickman, (5) Skip Arp, (6) Greg Martin, (7) Mike Weeks, (8) Randy Weaver, (9) Mark Douglas, (10) Shane Tankersley, (11) Greg Burrows, (12) Josh Henry, (13) Shan Smith, (14) Skip Freeman, (15) Jackson Hale, (16) David Gamble, (17) Kayne Hickman, (18) Brett Miller, (19) Lamar Scoggins, (20) Brian Hickman, (21) Jason Welshan. Fast qualifier (among 22 cars): Ogle, 13.36 seconds. Consolation race winners: Weeks, Henry.