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Pure champion: Ringgold's Peyton Sellers reflects on stellar season

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Sellers

South Boston Speedway NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series Late Model Stock Car Division Champion Peyton Sellers (26) leads the field of cars into the first turn on a restart during one of this season’s NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series events at South Boston Speedway. Sellers won his sixth career South Boston Speedway NASCAR Late Model Stock Car Division title in 2021. The 2021 title was Sellers’ fourth straight South Boston Speedway championship, giving him the track record for the most consecutive titles.

Peyton Sellers achieved just about everything a driver could achieve in 2021.

The Ringgold resident won the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series national championship, the NASCAR Southeast Region title, the Virginia state championship and two track championships including the South Boston Speedway NASCAR Late Model Stock Car Division title.

Winning the South Boston Speedway NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series Late Model Stock Car Division championship was the first box Sellers checked off during his stellar season.

“Winning the South Boston Speedway championship is a feather in our cap this year,” Sellers remarked. “It’s a breath of fresh air. We’ve got a lot of family up in the stands here at South Boston Speedway every week. This is our home track. To be able to win a championship in front of our home crowd is something every kid dreams of being able to do.”

Sellers won his sixth career South Boston Speedway NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series Late Model Stock Car Division championship and a record fourth straight NASCAR track championship at “America’s Hometown Track.”

Seven-time South Boston Speedway champion David Blankenship, of Moseley, won two championships in a row on two different occasions. Justin Johnson, of Durham, North Carolina, and Matt Bowling of Ridgeway each won two consecutive titles.

“To be able to win four championships in a row here is something I am very proud of, something my family is very proud of,” Sellers said. “It takes so much to show up here for four years in a row, race and compete at the level that we have to compete at. We spend a lot of time in our shop, we spend a lot of time away from our family. It takes a lot of dedication. For us to be able to continuously do this is very demanding.”

Sellers had an outstanding 2021 season at South Boston Speedway, scoring nine victories in his 17 starts. He posted 12 top-five finishes and never finished outside of the top 10. In addition, Sellers led a season-high 545 laps and won one pole award. His nine victories this season ran his career win total at South Boston Speedway to 42, putting him in third place on the track’s all-time career Late Model Stock Car Division win list.

Sellers doesn’t take those accomplishments lightly.

Sellers

NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series National Champion Peyton Sellers of Ringgold, Virginia, won his sixth career South Boston Speedway NASCAR Late Model Stock Car Division title in 2021, setting a track record with four consecutive South Boston Speedway NASCAR Late Model Stock Car Division titles. Sellers earned nine victories in his 17 starts at South Boston Speedway this season.

“It’s hard to win at South Boston Speedway,” Sellers pointed out. “South Boston draws a competitive field of cars. When you’ve won at South Boston Speedway you’ve got something you can hang your hat on and be proud of, especially this year with the track’s two-tire rule. We saw more winners this year than we probably have in years past.”

This season’s NASCAR national championship, Sellers’ second career NASCAR national championship, was fueled with 21 wins among his 38 starts. His first national title came in 2005, the season in which he won his first career South Boston Speedway NASCAR Late Model Stock Car Division championship. He was 21 years old then.

Sellers said he relishes this year’s national title as much as his first title in 2005.

“When I won my first national championship, I was kind of the young man on the block,” Sellers explained. “I truly understood what I was doing at that point. I knew how hard national championships were to come by and how special it was being the youngest national champion at the time. Now, 16 years later, I look back and this year’s championship is very special to me.

“National championships are just as hard to come by,” he continued. “They’re just as important and they’re just as neat to win. There’s been a lot of good drivers that have come through this series and to put name up there with those guys means a lot.”

Sellers has twice proven that racing at South Boston Speedway is a viable path toward competing for and winning a national championship.

“South Boston Speedway has done an excellent job of putting a lot of fans in the stands the last couple of years it has held races,” Sellers pointed out. “Attendance has been good. It is easier to sell sponsorships when you race in front of big crowds. That allows us to attract more cars. When you’ve got a national champion coming out of South Boston Speedway that draws people. When you’ve got South Boston Speedway doing what it does on its end to get out and promote this racing, it’s a draw with people.

“Everything is a snowball effect,” continued Sellers. “A good crowd draws more of a crowd,” continued Sellers.

“As a driver and team owner I am able to sell more sponsorships because there are more people in the grandstand. The more people in the grandstands, the more sponsorship dollars are coming in and there are more competitors showing up at the back gate.

“Everything helps everything else,” added Sellers. “There is a formula that South Boston Speedway has created. They’ve got a good culture there. They have a good history behind it. The success is lining up. It’s proving that with more people in the stands and more cars on the track. South Boston Speedway has done its part to grow that, and that’s why we enjoy coming to South Boston Speedway.”

Next event

South Boston Speedway will host its final event of the 2021 season, featuring a visit by the CARS Tour to “America’s Hometown Track.”

The CARS Tour’s 2021 season championships will be decided in the AutosByNelson.com 250 Presented by Bojangles on Saturday night, October 16.

Two big races will be featured that night, a 125-lap Late Model Stock Car division race and a 125-lap Super Late Model division race.

Grandstand gates will open at 4 p.m. Qualifying starts at 4:45 p.m., an on-track Fan Fest driver autograph session will begin at 5:45 p.m. and the first race will get the green flag at 7 p.m.

Advance tickets are priced at $15 each and are available through Oct. 15 on the South Boston Speedway website, www.southbostonspeedway.com. Also, advance tickets may be purchased at the South Boston Speedway office until 5 p.m. Oct. 15.

Tickets purchased at the gate and online on race day are priced at $20 each. Children ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Chandler is the director of public relations for South Boston Speedway.

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