Wytheville, VA ~ Are you excited??? If not, Check Your Pulse! We’re just 22 days away from the official kick of the 2009 season for Late Model racing in this region.

March 14th … it’s circled on your calendar as that’s the date that will bring us all back to live and relieve us of our cabin fever. On March 14th South Boston Speedway in South Boston, VA, Greenville Pickens Speedway in Greenville, SC, the PASS South Series at Dillon Motor Speedway in Dillon, SC and the UARA-STARS Series at Hickory Motor Speedway in Hickory, NC will all open their season. So that’s racing in east and west South Carolina, western North Carolina and southwestern Virginia … so no matter where you’re at there’s a race for you.

Big news in this region for Late Model Truck racers is that the Pro All Star Series(PASS) will also sanction a series for the “truckers” this season beginning at a very Late Model Truck friendly Dillon Motor Speedway on March 14th. Late Model Trucks have seen a lot of ups and downs over the last few years, but in the coastal region of South Carolina where Dillon is located has been a hot bed for the trucks and will be a great kick off for the series. We’ll have our very own Corey Latham on hand to get photos and of course he’ll bring you an in-depth look into the PASS Series’ opening event.

The PASS South Super Late Model Series and now the Late Model Truck Series will be a huge event on March 14th for the coastal region fans, but what about fans on the other side of the state? Marty Ward, who won the 2008 track championship at Greenville Pickens Speedway will be back this season to defend the title, but not behind the wheel of the same car as his car owner from the 2008 season sold out late last season. Ward will have his hands full with 2007 track champion, David Roberts and third place points finisher last season, Kenneth Headen among others. Greenville Pickens is going to have an exciting season in 2009 and hopefully we’ll have some extra coverage from there this season.

Race fans in southwestern Virginia are going to be treated to the season opening event at an always exciting South Boston Speedway and this might be the biggest race of the weekend. Many entries are expected to enter this race including two-time NASCAR National Champion, Philip Morris along with Frank Deiny, Jr., who will be competing in 30+ races this season in Late Model Stock Cars. Of course we’ll have some of the top contenders from last season such as track champion, Wayne Ramsey, second place points finisher Justin Johnson, who will be driving the car that Ramsey drove to the championship last season. Deac McCaskill, Dude Gibbs, Jonathan Bailey, CE Falk and Dustin Storm are among the top contenders from the 2008 season that are expected to return to South Boston Speedway for the season opening event.

Of course Kim and I will be hitting the season opening event for the UARA-STARS Series and you know that means we’ll have wall to wall coverage of the event with Stories, Photos and of course Videos! The UARA-STARS season opener has just gotten a little bit bigger with the recent announcement by the series requiring anyone else outside the top 20 in points for 2008 or anyone not donating a car to be used for the “Legends Race” will have to attempt the race at Hickory to be eligible for the Bristol Motor Speedway event. This is an effort likely to try and limit the number of entries for the Bristol event due to the tight schedule with the race being staged on the same weekend as a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event.

The 2009 season for the UARA is going to be huge with the addition of the Bristol companion race and the ARCA companion race at Rockingham and many drivers will be looking to get off to a good start at Hickory. Defending series champion, Jake Crum is expected to skip the Hickory race to get ready for the Bristol event, but many of the top 20 drivers from last season will be back and ready to go at Hickory including; 2008 Rookie of the Year, Darrell Wallace, Jr., Brandon McReynolds, Jamie Yelton, Roger Lee Newton and Scott Turlington among others. Many of the drivers not competing full time with the series this season will likely hit the Hickory event to be eligible for Bristol.

RACE22.com will have an in-depth preview of the UARA-STARS Series Season kick-off as well as deeper look into the South Boston, Greenville Pickens and PASS South Series season openers as the next 22 days go by and we prepare for the event. RACE22.com will have exclusive in-depth coverage of all four events by our many friends and supporters and RACE22.com is always looking for more great writers, photographers, videographers and basically anyone with an opinion to share on Late Model Stock Car racing. Contact us for more information if you’re interested.