After spending the afternoon and evening at Charlotte Motor Speedway for Bill’s truck race (they finished 5th), it was nice to be able to sleep in a bit before heading to Hickory Motor Speedway. Bill and Bobby packed up the cooler (well, let’s be honest, Kris packed up the cooler) and headed out about 10am to drive to the new track, get checked in and registered, and get ready to practice.
Once unloaded and registered, the first thing to do is to set the chain. Bobby climbed in the #6 bandolero and Zach (JWMotorsports crew) made the necessary adjustments. After climbing out of the car, Bobby placed his Race Fan stickers on the tail. Then it was time for the crew chief meeting and a track walk. The track walk helps the driver check out the track surface and banking. Since Bobby did not practice the day before (one way we’ve tried to steward sponsorship dollars well), the track walk is an important way for him to get an early feel for the track and what line might be good to drive.
After the track walk, it was time for lunch and some videos of old NASCAR Busch Series races held at Hickory. On race day, there is always a period of time when you are just waiting. During that time, Bill and Bobby chatted with the other drivers and parents and tried to stay hydrated. Then it was time for practice.
During the first practice, Bobby found a good line within 3 laps and ran a fast lap time of 20.081, 8th out of 14 cars. Between the two practices, the Southeast Super Trucks staff brought over Bobby’s 3rd place trophy from Kingsport Speedway! During the second practice (which also acted as qualifying), Bobby picked up a little speed and passed four cars in one corner, running a fast lap of 19.979 which qualified him in the 7th position. After practice, all track activity stopped out of respect for the funeral that was happening next door (a unique tradition at Hickory Motor Speedway). During that period of time, tech inspection was happening, and Bill got to stand in for the Bossman Josh Williams (who had not yet arrived after the Xfinity race) as his late model went through tech.
After the other divisions qualified, it was time to push cars onto the track, go to the drivers meeting, and attend chapel. Then it was autograph time! Bobby even had someone ask for his autograph!! The cars were pushed back into the infield and opening ceremonies began. Bobby got strapped in and was ready to race.
Bobby started his #6 bandolero in the 7th position and within 3 laps was able to take 6th place. Soon after, the second place car turned the leader and the caution came out. Bobby was lined up to restart in the 5th position. On the restart, while attempting to pass for fourth, another car jumped the restart and made a banzai move into turn one. Bobby aborted his pass attempt to avoid a wreck, which allowed the four leading cars to pull away. With four laps to go, the previous leader took over the 5th place position. While recovering from the battle for 5th, Bobby and teammate LeQuan McCoy raced side by side for the last 3 laps. At the finish line, LeQuan edged ahead by .02 seconds to take sixth. Bobby finished 7th, right where he started.
Bobby said, “racing my teammate after the restart was fun!” Bobby and LeQuan even toasted a fun race with some YooHoo! Bill and Bobby stayed to watch a few more races, then headed home for a good night of rest. Next race will be a June 18th return to Anderson Motor Speedway. If you’d like to ride with Bobby as a Race Fan, make sure to contact us!