Sharon, South Carolina native Cameron Bolin will attempt to make his Solid Rock Carriers CARS LMSC Tour debut at his home track of Greenville-Pickens Speedway for the series’ most prestigious race in the Old North State Nationals.
Bolin never once believed that Old North State Nationals would ever take place at Greenville-Pickens, but he is thrilled by the opportunity to compete for the $30,000 race-winning paycheck and is looking forward to hitting the track.
“I was pretty shocked honestly,” Bolin said. “I had been wanting to make my first CARS Tour start somewhere either this year or next year, but with everything regarding the Old North State Nationals and sponsorship working out the way it did, it all just kind of fell into place for me.”
Born with a cleft lip and cleft palate, Bolin did not let that get in the way of his determination to compete in auto racing, as he got behind the wheel of his first go-kart when he was just five years old and developed his skills in that field until he transitioned into Bandoleros.
After winning an INEX Outlaws title in 2017 at the age of 12, Bolin intended to compete full-time in Greenville-Pickens’ Limited Late Model division, but an accident early in the season forced Bolin to sit on the sidelines and regroup for the following year.
Bolin currently has two Late Model victories so far at Greenville-Pickens, but he admitted that being able to pace a talented field of cars for his second win was far more special than his first, which came after the top two finishers from the event were disqualified.
Bolin said that the legacy surrounding Greenville-Pickens is one of the primary reasons why he enjoys racing at the facility, and he hopes to add his name to the extensive list of successful alumni once he begins to venture out and visit more tracks in the region.
“I love the history [at Greenville-Pickens],” Bolin said. “When you get to the braking points, you see some of the most prestigious names in motorsports on the wall like Butch Lindley, Ralph Earnhardt and David Pearson. All of those guys and so many more started their careers at Greenville-Pickens.”
With only two years of Late Model experience under his belt, Bolin anticipates the Old North State Nationals to be one of the most challenging races of his career with drivers such as Jeff Fultz, Mike Looney and 2017 CARS LMSC Tour champion Josh Berry being among the event’s early entries.
While Bolin would love to win the Old North State Nationals in front of his home crowd, he said that his focus for the weekend is to get the right set up on his #67 Late Model so that he can make the show and earn respect against the rookies and seasoned veterans of the CARS LMSC Tour.
“I really just want to make the race,” Bolin said. “It would really be humbling to be able to race against some of the greats that do this on a full-time basis, and yet here I am at 15 still trying to make a name for myself. I think we can make a pretty good go at it, but if I win this race, the party would go on until my 11th cleft lip and cleft palate surgery on Wednesday.”
Bolin considers himself fortunate to be able to compete in the Old North State Nationals and is hoping to build momentum towards what he believes will be an expanded Late Model schedule for 2021.
Photo: Kristy Smith-Palmer