Earl Pearson Jr. claimed his first Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (LOLMDS) win of the season on Friday night at Florence Speedway in Union, Kentucky.
In the closest finish in Series history, Pearson drove the Lucas Oil #1 P&W Sales/ Drive4Etch.com/ Clements Racing Engine/ Black Diamond Chassis House Car across the finish line just .002 seconds ahead of track regular, Josh Rice.
“He [Rice] was up there on the cushion and when you are out there in the lead you don’t know where to go,” Pearson said in Victory Lane. “We found a line through the middle of the racetrack. He [Rice] did a heck of a job and drove the wheels off that car tonight. He’s a good kid, I love racing with him. He drives everybody clean and I respect the heck out of him,” said the 4-time Series champion.
Drawing 33 cars for the General Tire Summer Sizzler Nationals, Pearson Jr. followed up the fastest time in his qualifying group with a 10-lap heat race victory. Starting the feature in second, Earl faded back to fifth early but began closing in on the leaders just past the halfway point.
Tracking down race-leader Josh Rice amid lapped-traffic in the final 10 circuits, Pearson Jr. slide around Rice in the final corner and held off his charge at the line to capture the $12,000 victory. Zack Dohm, Kyle Bronson, and Trevor Landrum rounded out the Top-5 finishers.
“All the guys back home watching on TV and all my family and friends, my son Trey, I’m sure they’re jumping up and down because we ain’t had a lot to cheer for this year or even late last year,” Pearson added. “We’ll take it here tonight and hopefully we can keep it going.”
Saturday night’s General Tire Summer Sizzler Nationals finale at Florence Speedway fell victim to Mother Nature.
On Monday night, the LOLMDS tour took the team to 300 Raceway in Farley, Iowa. With 27 entrants on hand for the Truck Country 50, Pearson locked his spot into the $10,000-to-win A-Main via a sixth-place finish in his heat race. Starting 16th on the grid, Pearson fell to a 19th place finish in the 50-lapper.
This weekend (July 17-19) Earl Pearson Jr. and the Black Diamond Chassis team are primed for a LOLMDS tripleheader. The action kicks off on Friday night at Tri-City Speedway in Granite City, Ill. before shifting to Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland, Mo. for a doubleheader on Saturday and Sunday.
For complete events results, or to learn more about upcoming events, please visit www.LucasDirt.com. For the latest information Black Diamond Racecars and Earl Pearson Jr., please visit www.RaceBlackDiamond.com.