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‘Palace of Speed’ equalizes field for Georgia drivers

Austin+Hill%2C+driver+of+No.02++Young%E2%80%99s+Building+Systems%2FRandco+Chevrolet%2C+races+near+the+front+of+the+pack+early+in+the+Fr8Auctions+250.+At+Talladega%2C+restrictor+plates+are+added+to+the+engines+to+level+the+playing+field%2C+which+allows+smaller+teams+to+have+a+chance+to+win+the+race.+%E2%80%9CSince+everyone%E2%80%99s+drafting%2C+everyone%E2%80%99s+running+restrictor+plates%2C+it+equalizes+the+field%2C+and+it%E2%80%99s+really+anybody%E2%80%99s+race%2C%E2%80%9D+Hill+said.
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‘Palace of Speed’ equalizes field for Georgia drivers

Austin Hill, driver of No.02  Young’s Building Systems/Randco Chevrolet, races near the front of the pack early in the Fr8Auctions 250. At Talladega, restrictor plates are added to the engines to level the playing field, which allows smaller teams to have a chance to win the race. “Since everyone’s drafting, everyone’s running restrictor plates, it equalizes the field, and it’s really anybody’s race,” Hill said.

Austin Hill, driver of No.02 Young’s Building Systems/Randco Chevrolet, races near the front of the pack early in the Fr8Auctions 250. At Talladega, restrictor plates are added to the engines to level the playing field, which allows smaller teams to have a chance to win the race. “Since everyone’s drafting, everyone’s running restrictor plates, it equalizes the field, and it’s really anybody’s race,” Hill said.

Shelby Foster

Austin Hill, driver of No.02 Young’s Building Systems/Randco Chevrolet, races near the front of the pack early in the Fr8Auctions 250. At Talladega, restrictor plates are added to the engines to level the playing field, which allows smaller teams to have a chance to win the race. “Since everyone’s drafting, everyone’s running restrictor plates, it equalizes the field, and it’s really anybody’s race,” Hill said.

Shelby Foster

Shelby Foster

Austin Hill, driver of No.02 Young’s Building Systems/Randco Chevrolet, races near the front of the pack early in the Fr8Auctions 250. At Talladega, restrictor plates are added to the engines to level the playing field, which allows smaller teams to have a chance to win the race. “Since everyone’s drafting, everyone’s running restrictor plates, it equalizes the field, and it’s really anybody’s race,” Hill said.

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The ‘Palace of Speed’ that is Talladega Superspeedway gives small teams the opportunity to show what they can do. Three Georgia drivers know this best.

Katie Linkner
Truck No. 49 is being pulled into the garage. Wendell Chavous, driver of No. 49 SobrietyNation Chevrolet, placed fifth in the Fr8Auctions 250 although he remained in the middle of the pack for the majority of the race. “The draft makes a big factor here,” Chavous said. “It helps us suck up [to drivers from a bigger team].”

Wendell Chavous, driver of No. 49 SobrietyNation Chevrolet, placed fifth, Austin Hill, driver of No.02  Young’s Building Systems/Randco Chevrolet, placed 10th, and Korbin Forrister, driver

of the No. 7 TruClear Toyota, placed 15th in today’s Fr8Auctions 250 at Talladega Superspeedway.

Hill started the race in the back of the pack after unapproved adjustments, but worked his way to the front to lead eight laps and finish Stage 2 in sixth place. However, a penalty pushed him to the tail-end of the lead lap trucks and he never fully recovered. Forrister was running up front in the lead pack until a last-lap crash relegated him to 15th.

“[Coming to superspeedways] kind of levels out the field,” Forrister said. “In the draft, everyone’s about equal.”

Restrictor plates are put in place to limit the speed of the car. This causes the teams to run in packs, since they are all running a similar speed. Pack racing allows for a team who may not be able to afford the high-end products to find a win.

Katie Linkner
Korbin Forrister, driver of the No. 7 TruClear Toyota, sits behind the wheel of his truck in the garages. Forrister raced up front with the lead pack, but finished 15th after a last-lap crash.

Today’s performance by Chavous demonstrates the benevolence of Talladega toward lesser-funded teams.

“This is a big deal for our team. We’re a small, under-funded team,” Chavous said. “Races like this and Daytona places we can really capitalize on, give us an equal opportunity as everybody else.”

The 2018 season began at Daytona where all three Georgia drivers avoided major wrecks and were still running at the checkered flag. Hill placed 11th, Chavous finished 12th, and Forrister came home 16th in that race.

“You know there’s gonna be a big [wreck] somewhere throughout the day,” Hill said. “As long as we can keep our nose clean, not get any damage on the truck, we should have a shot at [winning].”

None of the Georgia drivers have been able to win a race in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, but if less horsepower and pack racing are any indication, a win could be well on its way.

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