This racer found a unique...
This racer found a unique way to cool his Ford Nine-Inch Rearend for the abuse Bristol produces.
Huddleston failed the post-race inspection for not having the required ignition module setting, which limited the cars to 5,500 rpm. His was set at 7,500 rpm, well over the limits the rule book called for.
Huddleston was disqualified and Williamson moved up to Second. North Carolina driver Jason Leatherwood was credited with Third, followed by Kentucky driver Mike Velotta, and Indiana driver Beau Hendrich to round out the Top Five. Of the 52 starters, 36 racers took the checkered flag to finish the rain-shortened event at Lap 77.
"This is awesome, to lead flag-to-flag here at Bristol," says winner Kempf. "I have a great crew who came and helped me with this car today. I work a 10-hour shift then come home and work on this car. I have been living on about four hours a sleep a day for the last two weeks to get down here. Now it has all paid off. I came out of Turn 4 one time, cars were going everywhere, and I just picked a spot and went through, just clipping my front fender. The banking here is a lot like the tracks back home, but a whole lot smoother. Some guys said it was a little rough, but come to Salem and race. I run through holes four inches deep up there."
"I had a really good car," states Second Place finisher Williamson. "My car was fast, I was just trying to stay out of the wrecks. I couldn't be more pleased to debut at Bristol like this. If I could drive into the turn like I wanted, it would have been a little better. That was the only place guys were gaining on me; I could pull them coming off the corner. At the break, we took a little crossweight out of it to try to get in the corners better. It would have been close, but Kempf was the class of the field today. Winchester Speedway and Salem experience helped to come here. This is the same driving-style track; it is a smooth Winchester and Salem Turn 3 and 4. This track has a real grip. When you can flat-foot a car on 8-inch Hoosier Comanches in the center of the turn it's unreal. If you've never run here you're missing a real experience, I'm telling you that," finishes Williamson.
Following the event, both Kimmel and the Bristol management were pleased, even though Mother Nature didn't exactly cooperate. "I think it went really well. All in all, I am tickled with the performance," states Kimmel. "The weather was horrendous, but everyone seems happy. I have had a lot of feedback from racers and they all seem very happy with the effort and outcome. Not really any complaints, maybe just a little about a rule or two here and there, but everyone is happy and said they would go back."
Meyhem ensues on the high...
Meyhem ensues on the high banks of Bristol. In all, 12 cars were collected in this wreck.
Kimmel had praise for his competitors, too. "The guys proved once again they can flat race. They raced real hard all the way around the track and it was an honor to be there. We've got another one at Kentucky in May of this year and one in January 2009 at Rockingham."
Kimmel and his racers weren't the only ones elated with the results; Bristol management is excited as well. "BMS President and General Manager Jeff Byrd, after witnessing this event, has said several times that he doesn't want to see anything else at Bristol but Street Stock cars," says Bristol's Wayne Estes. "I think he was saying it in jest, but all of us who saw the race absolutely loved it. We loved it so much we have asked Frank about another date later this year. We'd love to finish what we started in April. As much as we all wanted to see the last 75 laps of racing, I have heard from many, many fans who said they certainly got their money's worth."
The thought of a return trip to Bristol's high banks for the Street Stocks has everyone excited. "I can say with 95 percent certainty that we will run another Frank Kimmel Street Stock Spectacular next year, if not before," continues Estes. "I would like to see us run a little later in the year. If we can work out a date where these guys can run a night race, that would be our choice. This is what race fans want to see."