Saturday evening will be a learning experience for 2018 Solid Rock Carriers CARS Super Late Model Tour champion Jared Fryar, who is scheduled to take part in his first Late Model event at Carteret County Speedway.
Fryar is determined to contend for the victory in Carteret County’s first event of the 2020 season, but he also wants to learn as much about the 0.375-mile oval as he can to be mentally prepared for other races at flat tracks in the near future.
“I’ve never been to Carteret before, but I also haven’t run at a flat track shaped like that either,” Fryar said. “I’m trying to get ready for the Hampton Heat and the CARS Tour races at both Langley and Carteret County.”
The 2019 CARS SLM Tour season was a near identical match to his championship run the previous year, as he recorded the same amount of Top 5s and Top 10s with four and seven respectively, but ended up finishing second in the standings 42 points behind Matt Craig.
During the season-ending AutosByNelson.com 250 at South Boston Speedway, Fryar returned to CARS LMSC Tour competition after a two-year absence by piloting Jimmy Mooring’s #17 Solid Rock Carriers / Asphalt Services Chevrolet to a 14th place finish two laps off the pace.
Fryar and Mooring teamed up for the full 2020 CARS LMSC Tour campaign as part of the series’ Touring 12 program, with Fryar driving a rebranded #14 Sterling Building Group paint scheme that closely resembled the colors he used while driving for Brandin Wrisley on the SLM Tour.
After finishing 13th in the season-opener at Southern National Motorsports Park, Fryar returned for the COVID-19 break by running inside the Top 10 all evening before finishing third in a photo finish with Ryan Millington and Layne Riggs in the Race at Ace 125. He followed that run up with a fourth-place showing at Hickory Motor Speedway.
Fryar now sits third in the CARS LMSC Tour standings behind Corey Heim and points leader Layne Riggs, but with several more diverse events on the schedule that include the flat tracks of Langley and Carteret County, Fryar knew he needed more information on how to race those facilities if he wanted to stay in contention for the title.
“Langley and Carteret are pretty similar to each other,” Fryar said. “I’ve been told that Carteret is a one-groove track and that it’s very difficult to get around, so we’ll see what happens on Saturday.”
Along with navigating the tight corners at Carteret, Fryar will have to contest with a small, but talented group of regulars at the track that include Tim Allensworth, Paul Williamson and 2018 Late Model track champion Brandon Clements.
Fryar is optimistic that he can carry over the momentum from his two consecutive Top 5 CARS LMSC Tour finishes and run strong on Saturday, but he intends to put a good portion of his focus into qualifying with minimal opportunities to pass cleanly at Carteret County.
“I’d definitely like to try and qualify inside the Top 3 and contend for the win, which is all we can ask for,” Fryar said. “We’re going to focus on getting a good qualifying lap, which is something that I’ve personally struggled with, and then we’re going to do what we can to be there at the end.”
The 75-lap Late Model feature will be the final event of the evening at Carteret County on Saturday, with the on-track action set to begin at 6:30 p.m.