A mere half position separates first from second in the 2023 Virginia Triple Crown points standings as the final race in the prestigious series of Late Model Stock Car races looms this Saturday night with the ValleyStar Credit Union 300 at Martinsville Speedway.
This year marks the 10th season of the Virginia Late Model Triple Crown, featuring three famed short tracks in Langley Speedway, South Boston Speedway and Martinsville Speedway. The driver with the best average finish across the three races takes home the $7,000 payout for the Triple Crown. Second place earns $2,000 and third receives $1,000.
Meanwhile, the ValleyStar Credit Union 300 will have the largest purse in the race’s history, with $125,000 to be distributed across the field of drivers. A number of local businesses in the Martinsville-Henry County region chipped in to raise the pot this year, including Hitachi Energy, Danville Toyota, The Lester Group, MaxPro and B99.
That additional prize money will be distributed for finishing positions sixth on through the rest of the field.
Brendan “Butterbean” Queen, who took the win in the second race of the series at Langley Speedway on July 22, has a 1.5 average finish through the opening two races after finishing second at South Boston Speedway on July 1. Bobby McCarty, who won the opening race at South Boston and finished third at Langley, has an average finish of 2.0 to sit in second in the standings.
“We couldn’t have scripted a better lead-in to the finale of the Virginia Triple Crown with a pair of drivers so closely matched at the top of the standings,” said Martinsville Speedway President Clay Campbell. “With a Grandfather clock, the richest payout that NASCAR’s biggest Late Model Stock Car race has ever seen, and the Triple Crown on the line, fans are sure to see fireworks on Saturday night with all that these drivers have to race for.”
Trevor Ward (third at South Boston, seventh at Langley) is third with an average finish of 5.0, Brandon Pierce (ninth at South Boston, fourth at Langley) is fourth at 6.5 for an average finish, and Logan Clark (seventh at South Boston, 10th at Langley) rounds out the top five hopefuls with an average finish of 8.5.
Carson Kvapil, Landon Huffman, Carter Langley, Kade Brown, Kaden Honeycutt, Kyle Dudley, and previous ValleyStar Credit Union 300 race winners Mike Looney and Landon Pembleton are all also expected to be key contenders.
Friday, Sept. 22, features practice and qualifying for the current field of 87 entries, beginning at 2:00 p.m. Then the ValleyStar Credit Union 300, the nation’s biggest, richest and most prestigious NASCAR Late Model Stock Car race and the Virginia Triple Crown finale, will return for an evening of intense competition on Saturday, Sept. 23 at 7:00 p.m.
Prior to this weekend’s action, fans will have the opportunity to drive 8-10 laps in their personal vehicles around Martinsville’s historic half-mile for a donation of $25. All proceeds will support the local Martinsville-Henry County YMCA.
Tickets to the ValleyStar Credit Union 300 are available for purchase via phone at 877-RACE-TIX or online at martinsvillespeedway.com.