Monday, September 16 2013 @ 03:30 PM EDT
Mooresville, NC 9/16/13- If anyone within an hour drive of Orange County Speedway didn’t know who Clay Rogers was before, they sure do now, as the veteran put on a hell of show with fellow veteran JP Morgan to kick off the X-1R Pro Cup Champion Series in style Saturday night at the Rougemont, North Carolina track. For Rogers, who was the championship leader heading into the night’s event; it was his fourth victory of the season after winning the first three races to kick off the 2013 season.
“We struggled during practice today; hell I even spun out on my own once, I can’t tell you the last time I’ve done that. But my guys kept working on it and we made some good adjustments at the halfway break that allowed us to have a good car in the second half,” stated Rogers in Edlebrock Victory Lane. “I wasn’t sure if I was going to even going to get a chance at the win tonight because the #2 car (Brady Boswell) was checked out, but luckily we got a caution to bunch us back up and make a race out of it. I got into him on that restart, which I really didn’t mean to, but it was time to go and I knew I had a pretty good piece if I could get out front.”
It was Morgan who had the advantage starting the 200 lap race from the pole position after setting fast time in MAHLE pole qualifying and then jumping out to the lead on the initial start. Morgan sailed out to the lead early on before Rogers took advantage of a lap fifty-seven restart to take over the top position. It was newcomer CJ Faison, making his first career Pro Cup start, who turned the heads of many as he made his run on Rogers for the lead position on lap ninety. Rogers #16 machine was just strong enough to hold off Faison at the event’s halfway break on lap 100 to gain five bonus points for leading at halfway.
Lap 101 brought the excitement in hurry when two time Orange County Speedway late model champion pulled out from pit road in front of the field on the restart shuffling the field. Several front runners checked up giving rookie Brady Boswell a shot at the lead which he took full advantage of. With Boswell leading the field several intense battles formed between Rich Gould and rookie Reid Wilson for fourth, as well as, Andrew Smith and Faison for sixth.