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The Fortune Hunter's Big Bucks Series Kicked off at Memphis International Raceway Last Weekend

Thursday, May 19, 2016
The Fortune Hunter's Big Bucks Series kicked off at Memphis International Raceway (MIR) last weekend for race number one of three. Not only did six different winners land in the winner's circle, the weekend was highlighted by great racing and a great time.

On Friday, driver's battled it out for $5,000 to win. The semi-finals saw Stacy Tritch of Paragould, Arkansas; Brad Taylor of Bullard, Texas; TJ Tracey of Millington, Tennessee and Ronald Bowers of Drummonds, Tennessee all vying for the win. Two red lights would make the determination on the finals - taking Tritch to pair up against Tracey in the finals after red light reaction times on both Taylor and Bowers.   Tritch would take the win with a .008 reaction time running a 4.58 with an 8 on a 4.58 dial in to Tracey's .028 reaction time running a 6.22 on a 6.18 dial in.

Friday night with more daylight to burn, a special gambler's race was added to the mix. AJ Ashe of Gulfport, Mississippi would take the win over Blaine Shamblin of Texarkana, Texas.  Shamblin had the better reaction time with a .002 to Ashe's .010 but would give it back on the top end. The win had Ashe looking to continue the winning ways into the weekend.

The following day a lower car count changed the structure of the payout and reduced racer entry fees. Racers paid a lower daily and weekend fee and competed to win $5,000 instead of $10,000 on Saturday. The semi-finals saw AJ Ashe; Jeff Bobo of Walnut, Mississippi and Brad Barclay of Henderson, Tennessee battle it out. With Barclay having the buy into the finals, it would come down to Bobo or Ashe advancing into the finals with him. Ashe took the semi-final win with a .009 reaction time running a 5.70 with a 7 on a 5.70 dial in to Bobo's .014 reaction time running a 4.749 on a 4.73 dial in.

The final round in eliminations saw Ashe and Barclay paired and it would be won at the tree. Barclay was a little too quick with a -.002 reaction time handing the win to Ashe.

Also featured on Saturday was the 6.0 and 7.0 index classes. First up would be the 6.0 class with Luke Clay of Black Rock, Arkansas taking the win over Max Moore of Jonesboro, Arkansas. Moore had the better light with Clay running 6.012 to Moore's 6.033. In 7.0 it would be Alamo, Tennessee native Woody Privett in the finals with David Smith of Batesville, Mississippi. It was won at the tree as Privette was .002 red to Smith's .008 reaction time. Privett ran it out and had a 7.003 to Smith's 7.019.

It was time to put the hard core racing aside and have a little fun during the night with the Fortune Hunter's Big Bucks Series pit party, featuring food and beverage along with the Dart's Carts $500 to win golf cart race. Fifty-four drivers tried their luck during the Dart's Carts golf cart race and the outcome would be the youngest entry taking the win. Drew "Mann" Tracey was the man of the night taking the win in the finals over Cody Graham of Millington, Tennessee.

It was down to the final day of the Fortune Hunter's Big Bucks Series and racers were ready to get it going and take on another $5,000 to win at Memphis International Raceway. The day also featured the 7.0 Index Class.

In 7.0, Saturday's winner, David Smith, was looking for a repeat, but Mike Rogers of Clarendon, Arkansas had another plan by taking round one from Smith and advance to round 2. The semi-finals had two from Mississippi and two from Arkansas, setting it up for a Mississippi - Arkansas final.   Racer Tracy Smith of Brandon, Mississippi went up against Jimmy Smith of Batesvilles, Mississippi in the semi-finals. The number one qualifier of the day, Tracy Smith, took the win with a better reaction time and overall package waiting to see who he would meet in the finals. The second semi-final round saw Eddie Scott of Stuttgart, Arkansas paired against Mike Rogers who took out the Saturday champion. Scott took the win after Rogers was too quick at the tree with a .015 red.  The final pairing of Scott and Smith would see Scott take it at the tree with a .048 reaction time running a 7.035 to Smith's .056 reaction time running a 7.133.

With the $5,000 to win, Derrick Hubbard was poised to make a run for it after securing a car at midnight on Saturday. He wasn't the only one looking to finish strong on the weekend, there were 57 other racers with the same goal.   Hubbard would take the win light each round putting Hubbard, Tim Slone of Columbia, Tennessee and Michael Hall of Olive Branch, Mississippi in the semi-finals.   With Hall having the buy into the finals, Hubbard and Slone paired to see who would face Hall. Slone with a three thousand package was unbeatable, .001 on the tree running a 4.68 with a 2 on a 4.68. Hubbard finished strong with a semi-final appearance with a .038 reaction time running a 5.08 on a 5.07 dial in.

It was down to the final two drivers, Hall who took advantage of a buy back in round one to give himself another opportunity and Slone who turned the win light on round after round. The race was won on the tree as Slone was too quick and the win was Hall's to enjoy.

"It was a great weekend of racing, and we can't thank the racers and families enough for taking part in the first of a three race series, the Fortune Hunter's Big Bucks Series," said Dominic Blasco, director of operations for MIR. Blasco continued, "This is a new series for MIR in 2016 and we are committed to this series and will be making a few changes to ensure the success moving forward".

Other winners over the weekend were Brett Sescer, Dr. Brittany Ezell and Derrick Hubbard taking home the Contingency Connection racer awards for the best reaction time in round three each day. Along with top qualifier in 6.0, Max Moore on Saturday and Tracy Smith in 7.0 on Sunday. Congratulations to all of these award winners as well.

The next Fortune Hunter's Big Bucks Series featuring Super Pro / Box along with 6.0 and 7.0 will be June 17-19, 2016 with the series wrapping up on August 26-28, 2016 during the World Series of Drag Racing presented by Sunoco and the Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau.

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