Story By: BEN SHELTON / ROCKET1 RACING – SHINNSTON, WV – Hudson O’Neal picked up his second win of the young season during the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (LOLMDS) opener at Golden Isles Speedway on Thursday evening.
After briefly surrendering the lead during the race’s mid-stages O’Neal rebounded to collect $10,000 for his triumph aboard the Valvoline / Seubert Calf Ranches No. 1 Rocket1 Racing / Ace Metal Works / XR1 Rocket Chassis / Durham Racing Engine Super Late Model.
“The top was just blowing a lot of crumbs across it. If you didn’t get set enough, you would lose the front end halfway through the corner. Jonathan (Davenport) got back by me and did the exact same thing and let me get back by him. Things just worked out in our favor, and I thought that one mistake I made it was going to be it, but fortunately he made a little bobble over there in two and got us back in it,” O’Neal noted in Victory Lane on Thursday night.
“The restarts actually calmed me down a little bit. I was nervous whenever we got to lapped traffic, because I didn’t know where to go. Whenever the cautions come out it actually gave me a little bit of a clean racetrack again for a few laps. My race car was awesome all night long, and I can’t thank my team enough for all the hard work they do to give me such a great car every night.”
Defending Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (LOLMDS) champion Hudson O’Neal returned to the driver’s seat of the Rocket1 Racing No. 1 Super Late Model on Thursday for the series opener at Golden Isles Speedway (Waynesville, Ga.).
Drawing 51 LOLMDS entries for night one of the General Tire Super Bowl of Racing, O’Neal claimed the Allstar Performance Fast Time Award with a blistering 15.166-second lap in time trials before placing first in his heat. Wresting the lead back from Jonathan Davenport on lap 23 of the feature after leading laps 1-21, Hudson led the remainder of the 40-lapper to secure his second win of 2024 and the first of his career at the Georgia oval.
He pocketed a $10,000 payday ahead of Jonathan Davenport, Brandon Overton, Ricky Thornton Jr., and Brandon Sheppard.
With Friday’s weather falling to persistent rain, Hudson raced into Saturday’s $25,000-to-win Super Bowl of Racing finale with a second-place finish in his heat race. Charging from the eighth row in the 50-lapper, O’Neal ran as high as third on laps 39-46 before fading in the waning laps to finish eighth.
With two LOLMDS events completed, O’Neal is in a three-way tied for the lead with Ricky Thornton Jr. and Jonathan Davenport.
Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (LOLMDS) Speedweeks action continues on Tuesday and Wednesday at Ocala (Fla.) Speedway with a pair of $10,000-to-win events.