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Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2016

James conquers M.A.R.S.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

POPLAR BLUFF -- Sikeston resident Billy James dominated the Stacker 2 M.A.R.S. Late Model Series 40-lap feature event Saturday night at Poplar Bluff Speedway picking up the checkered flag and the $3,000 check after leading all 40-laps of the feature event.

Driving the number 5jr James & Robinson Racing, Robinson Racing Engine powered Rocket Chassis, James took command of the feature on the first lap after starting on the pole. The driver of the 5jr earned the right to start on the pole after winning his heat race and earning the most passing points for the night.

At the drop of the green flag James quickly began to battle with former M.A.R.S. Series Champion Bill Frye. James quickly took command of the event on the first circuit and Frye soon spun on the initial lap while battling for position. Frye was later caught up in another wreck and retired from the event.

After the first caution James held off a charge from Wendall Wallace as the green flag replaced the yellow and soon entered lapped traffic, quickly disposing of the back markers to extend his advantage on the field.

James would deal with seven more caution flag periods which would tighten the field up throughout the event and would extend into an hour and thirty minute affair.

In the final stages of the race, Jeff Floyd began to put heavy pressure on the leader. Floyd's effort would be all for nothing as his car would stop on the track on lap 37 with mechanical problems, bringing out yet another caution. Without Floyd in tow James was able to lead the final three circuits without challenge to take what was probably the biggest win of his career.

An excited James noted in victory lane, "This (win) has been a long time coming. I'm so excited I can't even talk."

The win for James was his first career M.A.R.S. feature win and marked the 13th feature event win on the year for his team.

James raced with the Mid-America Racing Series in the series first year of operation, gunning for the Rookie-of-Year title in 2000. Since then James has raced around the Midwest independently winning track championships in the Late Model divisions at Malden Speedway and Poplar Bluff Speedway, while also competing at speedways throughout the area.

The Stacker 2 M.A.R.S. is a regional touring Late Model Series that is owned by D.I.R.T. Motorsports, which also owns the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series and World of Outlaws Late Model Series. National renowned drivers such as Terry Phillips, Bill Frye, Wendell Wallace and Jeff Floyd compete in the regional touring series which stage races in Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee and Missouri.

The James & Robinson Racing entry is sponsored by Robinson Racing Engines, Bill James Excavating, Martindale Chevrolet, Barkley Transmission and Oz Hay Enterprises.