February 3, 2018 - Friday night saw BUDDY CAPTURING HIS FIRST WINTER SHOWDOWN POLE in his NICK & TRACY SIVESEND/WILSON MOTORSPORTS/VANDOORN RACING DEVELOPMENT/AXALTA/FINISHMASTERS #15 HOT ROD! AND, topping qualifying off with an impressive P2 finish in the $30k to win 2018 Spears Winter Showdown main event at Kern Country Raceway Park.
A field of 48 cars were looking to fill that same spot, including many NASCAR big guns, Kyle Busch, teammate Daniel Hemrik, Ty Majeski, Noah Gragson, and last years winner Derek Thorn. The Wilson's Motorsports team, with Butch VanDoorn crew chiefing, working hard earlier in the day replacing a few key malfunctioning mechanical components, just making it out for the first practice of two for the day. Buddy topping the qualifying board as the fourth car out to qualify, had a long wait as the remaining 48 cars hit the track in their effort to knock him off the top spot. Once qualifying was in the books it was time for celebrating, and receiving for their efforts, the BOBBY DURRETT Fast Time Award! This award was extremely special, as Bobby's brother Ray just passed, both cousins to Charlie Wilson who was out of state with family, unable to be with the team for the race weekend. "God Speed" Ray and Bobby!
Immediately after qualifying, all cars were put into impound for the night. Returning the next morning, "Race Day", to crews preparing pit road stalls for the 300 lap race at 2pm. Buddy qualifying P1, earning him the first pit stall in turn one, a huge honor, and less havoc for pit stops.
Buddy starting on the pole for the start of the race, dropping into P2 out of turn two, cruising comfortably lap after lap, saving tires and equipment. Throughout the 300 laps, including pit stops, many teams were experiencing blistering of tires, however, Buddy's cool driving style kept the #15 hot rod in the front of the field, with one exception, dropping back to P7, only to drive back up to P2 by the end. Exciting it was, with Buddy's huge fan base on their feet and cheering him on, seeing Buddy grab the hole shot from Kyle Busch on one restart. Another yellow and restart with a few laps remaining, Buddy saw himself restarting inside Kyle Busch once again on the front row, in the less desiring of the two lanes, settling into P2, battling side-by-side with teammate Daniel Hemrik for the second position. Buddy prevailing by a half a car when the checkered flag flew!
Humbling to have the support of an AWESOME Wilson's Industrial Pump crew, largest fan base, friends, and family sharing in Buddy's weekend stellar performance.
Upcoming Races: 1. Madera Speedway, March 10 - MAVTV/RPM Mortgage 100 lap 5K to win - wheeling the orange #22 hot rod for mom & dad.
2. Madera Speedway, March 24 - SPEARS Southwest Tour - wheeling the white #15 Wilson's Industrial Pumps hot rod for NICK & TRACY SIVESEND.