LAGASSE JR WINS 16TH ANNUAL SHOWDOWN IN SAVANNAH
TeamSLR and driver Scott Lagasse Jr traveled to Savannah, Georgia for the 16th Annual Showdown in Savannah at Oglethorpe Speedway Park this weekend. This race attracts top Dirt Racers from around the Southeast and the Saturday night race was full of excitement. “I am really excited to see all of the fans here tonight, especially all of the Boy Scouts. We have a fast car and this should be a lot of fun,” said Scott.
Scott and the team arrived on Thursday afternoon to take part in practice with the No. 8 Bug Out Services, Fort Knox Vaults, St. Augustine Alligator Farm, Jack Wilson Chevrolet. Lagasse’s #8 was one of the fastest cars on the track. This practice allowed the team to set up the car to their liking for the next two night’s of racing action.
“I am really excited to see all of the fans here tonight, especially all of the Boy Scouts.”
- Scott Lagasse Jr.
Qualifying and the Heat races took place on Friday evening with the Annual 50-lap feature happening on Saturday. Qualifying was exciting as one car at a time went on the track for two laps to run their quickest time. Thursday night practice paid off for Lagasse as he laid down the fastest lap and earned an extra check as well as the #1 starting spot for the Heat race. In the Heat Race Lagasse was able to pull away from the field when the green flag dropped. He would win his heat race in dominating fashion. “This weekend will be our second big dirt event with this car that we named “Lightning”. The car is fast and was assembled with the help of thousands of Boy Scouts at the annual Jamboree in July as part of our STEM initiative to share Science, Technology, Engineering and Math with Scouts and youth all over the US. Racing is one big science project and I love the challenge of understanding the physics,” said Scott.
Saturday night’s weather in Savannah was perfect and the huge crowd included well over 200 Boy Scouts, leaders and parents who came to see the BSA race car with thousands of signatures all over it. With the feature moments away and the cars gathered on the front straight waiting for the driver introductions, Lagasse jumped back in his car and went back to the pits to make one last adjustment on the car. After getting a better look at the current condition of the track Lagasse chose to change the right front tire to another compound. Would this be the winning move?
Lagasse made it back to the front of the grid in time for the introductions. This race would include one more twist which is often part of a special race event and that is to randomly draw or spin to determine if the top 6 would be inverted. The result was that that only the top 2 would invert. Instead of starting on the pole position, Lagasse would start in second which is the outside position on the front row.
The cars ran several laps behind the pace car to allow the engines to get up to operating temperature and finally the green flag flew on the 50-lap feature race and Lagasse and the No. 2 car began the battle for the lead with Lagasse in second as the cars ended up single file around the really fast ½ mile race track . Early in the race the track only had one fast groove and Lagasse kept pressure on the leader but seemed to be content as they opened up a little distance from 3rd & 4th place. Now all that had to happen was for the leader to make a mistake. Lagasse waited patiently as he and the leader slid their way in and out of traffic. Finally on lap 39, with Lagasse applying more and more pressure the leader slid a little high in turn 2 with Lagasse quickly taking advantage and into the lead. The Boy Scouts made a loud cheer and the next lap the caution flag flew. “Wow, that was a long green flag run for a dirt race. I made the decision right before the race to change to a softer right front tire and I was getting worried that I was overheating it” said Lagasse. The caution laps allowed Lagasse to cool off his tires for the final 11 laps. When the green flag came back out, Lagasse and the No. 2 car battled hard for the lead with Lagasse finally in front and wasting no time separating himself from second place. The checkered flag waved in the air as Lagasse sped under it taking the victory at the Showdown in Savannah.
When Lagasse came to a stop on the front straight and stood up on the car to salute the fans the Boy Scouts started chanting “Scotty, Scotty, Scotty”. “Great Race and this is a big deal for us. I feel really fortunate to win this race for the Boy Scouts and all of the companies that made it possible for us to be here tonight. This race has a long history of special racers who have won it in the past and I am really proud of my team that work so hard with me to make this a competitive car and put us in a position to win. A special thanks to Bug Out Services, Fort Knox Gun Vaults, St. Augustine Alligator Farm and Jack Wilson Chevrolet. Without their belief in our program we would not be here,” said a happy Scott Lagasse Jr.
After the race, the track officials opened up the pit area for the fans so that they could get an up-close view of the cars and the drivers. The Boy Scouts that were in attendance had the opportunity to meet Lagasse and his crew members. While in the pits, the Scouts took pictures with Lagasse as he signed autographs for each of the Scouts. The Boy Scouts even had the opportunity to sign “Lightning.” Once all the post race celebration and tech inspection was complete, the entire team, track officials and fans gathered in the tracks trophy room to toast Scott Lagasse Jr. This included the annual tradition of removing last year’s race winner’s door from the wall and the new winner’s (Lightning) door was hung until this time next season.
Stay tuned for more racing with Scott as he will race his “Scout Built” National Late Model Dirt Series car in several more races in 2013 including Volusia Speedway Park on November 8th and 9th.
Thanks for your continued support of TeamSLR / BSA Racing.