MIDLAND, N.C. – After watching Matt Craig set a new CARS Super Late Model Tour track record in the opening round of knockout qualifying Saturday afternoon, Steve Wallace wasn’t content to settle for second.
Wallace went out on his pole run in the second and final round and did what he needed to do, posting a time of 15.734 seconds (114.402 mph) to garner the number one starting position in his No. 66 JET Tools entry.
“Man, I’m really proud of all the guys at Fury Race Cars … they’ve worked really hard and given me a great race car,” he said. “This is one of my favorite race tracks. We’ve won here in the past, and I started on the pole that day, so maybe we can do the same today. It was a good solid run and we’re just looking for more of the same.”
Wallace’s father, NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace, was equally pleased with the run.
“The car looked good out there,” the elder Wallace smiled. “I told him (Steven) that it looked loose at first in the dogleg, but he told me ‘Dad, in the race that’ll go away and it won’t look like that.’ Loose is fast sometimes!”
Craig’s lap of 15.717 seconds (114.526 mph) in round one gave his No. 54 C&C Boiler Sales team the track record for the series, but he ended up second on the grid after a slower time of 15.748 in the run for the pole.
Toyota Racing Development drivers Cole Rouse, Harrison Burton and Christian Eckes completed the top five, followed by Zane Smith, Brandon Setzer and Cole Timm among the drivers who advanced through both knockout rounds.
Tate Fogleman was the fastest driver who failed to advance out of round one, and the former PASS South champion will start ninth after a time of 15.930 seconds.
Other notables mired deep in the field include ARCA Racing Series regular Austin Theriault (11th), California’s Tyler Ankrum (12th), NASCAR Next class member Spencer Davis (13th) and dirt midget star Spencer Bayston (14th).
Nolan Pope qualified 18th after flipping his primary car in practice earlier in the day.
Qualifying results can be viewed on the next page…