JOE CHANDLER Special to the Register & Bee
SOUTH BOSTON — Layne Riggs is in an enviable position heading into the Davenport Energy Night on Saturday, the kickoff event to South Boston Speedway’s month-long 65th anniversary celebration.
However, it’s something he says he would rather not think about.
Heading into South Boston Speedway’s last event three weeks ago, Riggs held a slim single-digit lead over Jacob Borst, of Elon, North Carolina, and two-time NASCAR national champion and six-time South Boston Speedway champion Peyton Sellers, of Danville, in the chase for the South Boston Speedway NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series Late Model Stock Car Division points standings.
Entering the twin 65-lap NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series Late Model Stock Car Division races that will headline Saturday night’s six-race program, Riggs holds a 19-point edge over Borst and a 21-point lead over Sellers.
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The big shift in the championship resulted when Riggs swept the two races on July 16 and an unfortunate circumstance for Borst and Sellers in the second race in which both were involved in an accident. Both returned to action, many laps down, with Sellers being credited with a 10th-place finish and Borst being credited with an 11th-place finish.
Now, Riggs, who swept the twin races July 16 and has nine wins in his 13 starts at the .4-mile oval thus far, has a more comfortable margin to work with as the season winds down to three nights of racing and a total of five races remaining in the track’s points season.
“It [the track championship points chase] is something I personally don’t want to think about,” Riggs remarked after sweeping the twin races July 16.
“I just want to drive the car, win every race I’m a part of, and bring the car home in one piece. I can’t get ahead of myself or think I have anything in the bag. Anything can happen at any time. The switch can flip so quickly in points. We’ve just got to keep chipping away at it, and keep getting better every race.”
A big piece of the puzzle, Riggs noted, is continuing to improve each week
“These boys keep getting better and faster every race. It’s not like I’ve had the same car here every race. We have to keep improving just to keep up with everybody else.”
The month of August is a big one at South Boston Speedway as track officials focus on celebrating the track’s 65th anniversary, starting with Saturday night’s Davenport Energy Night event.
In addition to the twin 65-lap NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series Late Model Stock Car Division races that will headline Saturday night’s action, fans will see a 50-lap race for the Budweiser Limited Sportsman Division, a 25-lap race for the Southside Disposal Pure Stock Division, and a 20-lap race for the Virginia State Police HEAT Hornets Division.
Fans will get to take a step back in time and get a glimpse of racing history as members of the Southern Ground Pounders Vintage Racing Club, driving vintage Modified and Late Model Sportsman cars, compete in a 25-lap race.
Kyle Barnes, of Draper, holds a 28-point lead over Jason Myers, of Hurt, in the Budweiser Limited Sportsman Division points standings. Scott Phillips, of Halifax, holds a 10-point edge over Johnny Layne, of Halifax, and a 17-point lead over Jimmy Wade, of Halifax, in the Southside Disposal Pure Stock Division championship chase. Jason DeCarlo, of Chase City, leads Steven Layne, of Nathalie, by six points and former division champion Kevin Currin, of Chase City, by nine points in the Virginia State Police HEAT Hornets Division title race.
Three races remain in the track’s 2022 points season for those three racing divisions.
The Davenport Energy Night event schedule has practice starting at 3:30 pm, grandstand gates opening at 5:30 pm, qualifying starting at 6 pm and the first race of the night getting the green flag at 7 pm
Learn more online at www.southbostonspeedway.com.
Chandler is the director of public relations for South Boston Speedway.