Augie Grill Wins Alabama 200 at South Alabama Speedway by Allison Fulson
Grill Makes it Three Straight Wins in Viper Pro Late Model Series
Although Victory Lane at the South Alabama Speedway is a familiar place for Augie Grill, this weekend's Alabama 200 did not fail to present him with a challenge. But never fear, the Birmingham driver, never one to disappoint, brought his A-game.
Brandon Johnson who held the early lead and polesitter Bubba Pollard, who fell out due to transmission issues, appeared to be only momentary bugs on the windshield of Grill's #112 as he quietly made his way to the top spot.
After pitting under the mandatory competition caution on lap 75, Grill also took advantage of another caution on lap 125 to pit again. With his 50 lap fresher rubber, it was only a matter of time before he found his place at the front of the line when he took the lead away from Dothan, Alabama's Korey Ruble.
"It was pretty much our plan from the get go. We knew everybody was going to take tires at lap 75 and our plan was to wait until after everybody else pitted by at least 50 laps and luckily it worked to our advantage," Grill explained, satisfied.
Grill took the checkers followed by Ruble's 16, normally driven by Royce Johnston, Andy Pugh, Ronnie Sanders, and Brandon Odom. Little did we know, the show had only just begun.
Grill has his car on the Chassis dyno. (Allison Fulson Photos)
Ricky Brooks was awarded a racer's dream toy to add to the Room of Doom toy box when South Alabama owner and promoter John Dykes announced that the top three finishers would be set upon a rolling chassis dyno.
This show drew a crowd only slightly smaller than that for the race and as predicted, was well worth the time as second place finisher Korey Ruble was excused for exceeding the set horsepower limitations. With this new secret weapon in his arsenal Ricky Brooks, will surely be feared even more, if possible, as the seasons wind down and all eyes are set upon Pensacola, Florida in only a little over a month.
Meanwhile, with an eighth place finish, South Georgia regular David Hodges secured the Viper Series pro late model championship with Florida's Brandon Odom in second and Ronnie Sanders, in his final season, in third.
Although the Viper Series season is now at an end and there is not a single reason to travel to South Alabama in the remainder of 2008, there are 25,000 reasons to return for the 2009 Rattler in March. For more information see the South Alabama website at www.southalabamaspeedway.com.
Alabama 200 Results
South Alabama Speedway
1. Augie Grill
2. Andy Pugh
3. Ronnie Snaders
4. Brandon Odom
5. Brandon Johnson
6. David Hodges
7. Sam Smith
8. Shane Sawyer
9. Jeff Morgan
10. Phillip Anderson
11. Billy Ammons
12. Tyler Caton
13. Justin Cruise
14. Josh Braggs
15. Bubba Pollard
16. Kevin Peel
17. Chase Knox
18. Jeremy Rice
19. Danny Bagwell
DQ Korey Ruble
Augie Grill adds the Alabama 200 to his list of wins at South Alabama Speedway. He won the Rattler 250 in 2007. (Allison Fulson Photos)