Local late model drivers get shot at NASCAR royalty


HAMPTON (WAVY) — Thursday night at Langley Speedway, Late Model drivers will get their chance to go head-to-head with NASCAR royalty.

It’s the Denny Hamlin Short Track Challenge which benefits Hamlin’s foundation that helps children with cystic fibrosis.

Hamlin, along with his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch, will get behind the wheel of Late Model car for a 200 lap main event, competing against weekend warriors.

“These guys race these cars each and every week,” Hamlin said. “They race this track every week and it’s tough to compete with that.”

Hamlin won his first race at Langley. Busch will be making his Langley debut.

“What’s interesting about our sport is you race against top talent at some of these local track,” Busch said. “They just never get seen, they never get the opportunity, they just miss the boat. My dad was one of those guys.”

Greg Edwards is a Langley veteran and has won five track titles.

“The Denny Hamlin race should bring in a lot of great talent,” Edwards said. “There’s also a ton of great talent here any week. Winning that race would be big, but honestly, winning any race is big to me.”

C.E. Falk from Norfolk won the Short Track Showdown 8 years ago and has two Langley titles. What he does not have is any intention of being bossed around at his home track.

“They all think it’s a golf tournament, a pro-am or whatever,” Falk said. “But when our helmets strap on, it’s game on for sure. A lot of guys feel like they could be there, and we’re going to try and prove it.”


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