RIDGEWAY, VA :: Every year, during the MDCU 300 at Martinsville Speedway ,the drivers, team owners, officials, track staff and fans all learn something new.  Here are a few of the things that we learned this past weekend (through my eyes of course).

We can have picture perfect weather at Martinsville.  I’ve been to this race for many, many years and I can’t ever remember having better weather than we did this past weekend.  Whatever we did right this year to deserve this, I hope we can repeat it next year to ensure another great weather day.

The cream always rises to the top.  Peyton Sellers and Lee Pulliam started on the front row, they both fell back at points and even where inverted back at halfway but when the green flag waved for the final restart, the same two drivers were on the front row.

Controversy never ends at Martinsville.  The final restart in 2013 and the final one in 2014 were much the same.  The leader didn’t get going and the outside line went.  There are several different versions of this story and drivers and fans will never agree.

Kres VanDyke’s car is indestructible.  First, he’s involved in a lap one crash during the first heat race.  His team rebuilds his car and then it’s destroyed again on the final lap of the last chance race.  His team once again rebuilds it and he not only makes the race but finishes 15th.

The National Champion isn’t just a push over.  I know all the haters hate me for bringing it up but let’s be real here.  He came, he made the race and he finished 14th.  Your hatred doesn’t change reality and the reality is that he made it on his first attempt and two-time National Champion and yesterday’s race winner Lee Pulliam missed his first two attempts.

Mike Looney still has a black cloud following him.  Even with a different team, his bad luck continues to follow him as he was running seventh late when his clutch and battery failed just before the green-white- checkered finish.

A little rust never hurts.  Philip Morris and Davin Scites proved this weekend that a little rust won’t slow them down.  Davin finished eighth while Morris cut down a tire while running tenth and was relegated to a 29th place finish.  But their lack of time on the track this season didn’t seem to hurt them.

Some people never get old.  Barry Beggarly was the winner of the first Late Model Stock Car race in the fall at Martinsville Speedway in 1985.  He was one of the 42 cars that made the field for this year’s race and I expect he’ll be in the field for next years as well.

The first time is always sweet.  Even sweeter than making your first MDCU 300 start at Martinsville Speedway has to be making it and finishing ninth with a clean car.  Kyle Dudley, known to be over aggressive, methodically made his way into the show through his heat race and then worked his way slowly to a ninth place finish.

Some can call their shots and get them right.  Myatt Snider isn’t afraid to speak.  He also isn’t afraid to back up what he says and after calling his shots in an article on Saturday night, he backed it up with a performance and a crash on the 10-lap to go restart.  Maybe it wasn’t his fault but he called it and it happened.

You still can’t win it on the first lap but you sure can lose it.  Until drivers strap on their helmets, they’re all like the rest of us.  They understand that the payoff is on the final lap.  However, Kres VanDyke and Jamey Caudill got an all too familiar reminder on the first lap of the first heat race that you can’t win it but you can lose it on lap one.

Practice speed may not transfer into race day.  Dennis Holdren must have drawn the short straw when he got his qualifying and race tires.  One of the fastest in practice on Saturday but struggled in qualifying and got caught up in that first lap crash to keep him from making the race.

Lynn Carroll hates to throw yellow flags.  Several times the call was made not to throw a caution when it should have been.  Bruce Anderson’s spin in the last chance race and Eddie Johnson being stuck in the grass in turns three and four are great examples.  I get trying to keep the show going but don’t put drivers in danger or change their destiny with officiating.

Martinsville is still the best of the big races.  Almost everyone loves to go to Martinsville Speedway and for good reason.  Clay Campbell runs the most media, driver, team and fan friendly race there is.  The staff of Martinsville Speedway is second to none and the racing product might be borderline demolition derby but it’s still the best and most exciting race of the season.

I’m sure I’ve missed many of things that we all learned this weekend but these are some of the things that stand out in my mind.