FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mike Marlar Sweeps Southern Nationals Bonus Series Weekend with Rome Speedway Payday
By Michael Despain
ROME, GA – August 20, 2017 – The Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Bonus Series would visit Rome Speedway in Rome, GA on Sunday evening for an event that postponed due to rain during the 2017 Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Series tour and Mike Marlar of Winfield, Tenn. would sweep the activities for the weekend with the series and claim the victory and a $5,300 payday.
The win by Marlar would be his second of the weekend with the series and would come aboard the Ronnie Delk owned Delk Equipment/RS Trading Company/Midwest Sheet Metal/Sunoco Race Fuels sponsored #157 Rocket Chassis, Cornett Race Engines powered machine.
The start of the event would see Michael Page jump to the initial race lead, with Dale McDowell, Brandon Overton, Donald McIntosh, and Mike Marlar giving chase by lap two. Page would open up a nice advantage in the early going of the event, while Marlar would work past McIntosh for the fourth position on lap five. Shanon Buckingham would close in on McIntosh for the fifth position and after a lap and a half, side-by-side battle, Buckingham would gain the fifth position on lap eight. Douglas would maintain a comfortable advantage out front as he entered slower traffic on lap ten. Lap twelve would see Overton take the second position on lap twelve over McDowell and Marlar would go to the third spot past McDowell on the same circuit. The first caution of the event waved on lap fourteen as Luther Jenkins would slow in turn four. The restart would see Buckingham roll past McDowell for the fourth position, while Overton would pressure Page for the top spot and on lap sixteen would scoot past Page and take the top spot. Marlar would close in on Page and would grab the second position on lap nineteen, with Casey Roberts taking the fifth position from McDowell on the same lap. Marlar would set his sights on Overton at this point and the pair would duel side-by-side for the lead on lap twenty-three before Marlar would claim the race lead on lap twenty-four. Marlar would immediately have to start working slower traffic and Page would briefly work past Overton for the second position on lap twenty-six, but a caution wave to negate the pass as Riley Hickman would slow on the track in turn four.
The restart would see Marlar motor away from Overton, while Buckingham would challenge Page for the third position at this point and Buckingham would claim the third spot on lap twenty-eight. Marlar would continue to build a comfortable lead as he began to catch the rear of the field by lap thirty-four, but would get clear track again as the caution would wave on lap thirty-five as Ronnie Johnson would slow in turn two with a flat tire. The restart would see Marlar take off immediately, while Buckingham would work past Overton for the runner-up. As Marlar continued to pull away once again, McDowell and Roberts would close in on Page and work past him as the duo would take the fourth and fifth positions on lap forty-one just as the caution would wave for Page as he would slow in turn three with a flat right-rear tire. On what would be the final restart, Marlar would again drive away, while Overton would get back around Buckingham for the second position, while McDowell would work back by Roberts for the fourth position. Marlar would maintain a comfortable lead during the waning laps of the event and would work some slower traffic over the final three laps to score the victory, with Overton and Buckingham claiming the remainder of the podium positions in second and third. McDowell would finish fourth, with Roberts completing the top five with a fifth place effort. The remainder of the top ten finishers would be McIntosh, Ross Bailes, Jason Croft, Austin Smith, and Page.
The Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Bonus Series presented by Sunoco Race Fuel and Tennessee RV next event will be Sunday September 3 at Tazewell Speedway in Tazewell, TN for the Buddy Rogers Memorial event, paying $4,400 to win. This event will be co-sanctioned with the Schaeffer’s Oil Iron-Man Championship Late Model Series.
Further information on the Spring Nationals, Southern Nationals, and Southern Nationals Bonus Series can be obtained by calling Promoter Ray Cook at (828) 360-5353 or Series P.R. Coordinator Chris Tilley at (606) 219-1723 or by visiting the official website located at www.SouthernNationalsSeries.com.
Official Summary of Results
Feature Results for Schaeffer’s Oil Southern Nationals Bonus Series at Rome Speedway in Rome, GA on August 20, 2017
1. Mike Marlar-Winfield, Tenn.
2. Brandon Overton-Evans, Ga.
3. Shanon Buckingham-Morristown, Tenn.
4. Dale McDowell-Chickamauga, Ga.
5. Casey Roberts-Toccoa, Ga.
6. Donald McIntosh-Dawsonville, Ga.
7. Ross Bailes-Clover, S.C.
8. Jason Croft-Woodstock, Ga.
9. Austin Smith-Rome, Ga.
10. Michael Page-Douglasville, Ga.
11. Ray Cook-Brasstown, N.C.
12. Jake Knowles-Rome, Ga.
13. Ashton Winger-Senoia, Ga.
14. Ronnie Johnson-Chattanooga, Tenn.
15. J.T. Seawright-Fort Payne, Ala.
16. Joey Coulter-Concord, N.C.
17. Dalton Polston-Lithia Springs, Ga.
18. Will Roland-Jasper, Ga.
19. Dale Thurman-Cartersville, Ga.
20. Riley Hickman-Ooltewah, Tenn.
21. Brandon Kinzer-Lexington, Ky.
22. Luther Jenkins-Waleska, Ga.
23. Brad Skinner-Spring Hill, Tenn.
Time of Race: 27 minutes, 22 seconds
Margin of Victory: 02.062 seconds
Yellow Flags: 4 (lap 14, 26, 35, 41)
Red Flags: None
Lap Leaders: Michael Page (1-15), Brandon Overton (16-23), Mike Marlar (24-53)
Overall Top Qualifier: Dale McDowell (Group B) 14.430 seconds
Keyser Manufacturing 11th Place Award: Ray Cook
Highest Finishing CT525 Engine ($200): Dalton Polston
Highest Finishing Steel/SPEC Engine ($200): None
Provisional Starters: Brandon Kinzer, Jake Knowles
Heat One Finish (10 laps/top 4 transfer)- Brandon Overton, Austin Smith, Ronnie Johnson, Will Roland, Brandon Kinzer, Ahnna Parkhurst, Blake Spencer (DNS-Zach Leonhardi)
Heat Two Finish (10 laps/top 4 transfer)- Shanon Buckingham, Ross Bailes, Dalton Polston, Luther Jenkins, Ryan Crane, D.J. Hayes, Bo Eaton
Heat Three Finish (10 laps/top 4 transfer)- Jason Croft, Ray Cook, Ashton Winger, Dale Thurman, Johnny Cloer, Gary McPherson, Granger Howell
Heat Four Finish (10 laps/top 4 transfer)- Casey Roberts, Joey Coulter, Riley Hickman, J.T. Seawright, Jake Knowles, Brad Skinner, Buster Goss
Current Series Points (after August 20)
10- Jason Welshan-554
3- Brandon Overton-744
4- Jamie Oliver-680
5- Mike Marlar-594
6- Joey Standridge-593
7- Dale McDowell-584
8- Michael Page-560
8- Shanon Buckingham-560