Austin Thaxton gets the trophy after a wild race at South Boston Speedway on July 28, 2018. South Boston Speedway Photo

Austin Thaxton found himself in the right place at the right time and came away with his first win of the season in Saturday night’s Aqua Pros 100 NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model Stock Car Division race at South Boston Speedway.

In earning his first victory of the season at the .4-mile oval, Thaxton became the fourth different driver to visit Victory Lane at South Boston Speedway this season. The win equaled the one win Thaxton earned last season at “America’s Hometown Track.”

The Clarksville, Virginia resident pulled away from his challengers after the final restart with eight laps to go and was never seriously challenged in the closing laps.

Thomas Scott of Efland, North Carolina finished second, .668-second behind Thaxton, with Danny Willis Jr. of South Boston, Virginia, defending track champion Peyton Sellers of Danville, Virginia and Raymond Pittman III of Amelia, Virginia rounding out the top five finishers.

The lead proved not to be the best place to be for much of the race. Track and NASCAR National Point Leader Philip Morris and Sellers tangled on lap 40 while battling for the lead. Morris spun again on lap 62 while battling Mike Jones of South Boston, Virginia for the top spot.

Jones, who was returning to action with a new car after having had his car destroyed in a violent crash and subsequent fire in a June 16 race at South Boston Speedway, led on four different occasions. His bid for his first Late Model Stock Car Division win ended in a crash with Jason Barnes of Stony Creek, Virginia as they were battling for the lead with 13 laps to go.

Scott inherited the lead, only to lose it to Thaxton on the final restart.

The race was a highly competitive one with seven lead changes among five different drivers.

1 12 Austin Thaxton
2 TS8 Thomas Scott
3 23 Danny Willis, Jr.
4 26 Peyton Sellers
5 50 Raymond Pittman
6 22 Eric Winslow
7 75 Quincy Adkins
8 19 Cameron Bowen
9 38 Mark Keesee, Jr
10 64 Charles Barnes
11 39 Mike Jones
12 28 Jason Barnes
13 1 Philip Morris
14 3 Nathan Crews
15 BA22 Bruce Mayo