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Dean opens 2001 racing season with a win

By By Janet Andrews/Special to The Star
April 1, 2001
James Dean opened the Queen City Speedway 2001 race season with a victory in the Mississippi State Championship Late Model Racing Series Saturday night.
The racing series will be held at different locations throughout the racing season. Another series race will be held at Queen City later this year.
The fans really turned out to support the track and drivers. The Rileys, owners of the track, made some changes to speed up entry to the track, help with parking and even help with exiting the speedway more quickly.
There were 22 cars running in the Late Model Division. Some were local cars while others compete in races all over the South and were there to compete in the state series, which was a 50 lap race.
There were three heat races to determine the track starting positions.
Dean known to local racing fans as the "Wild Child" won the first heat race in his No. 16 car. Jeff White, driving the No. 15 car, took the second heat race, and Scott Dedwylder of Quitman, driving the No. 33, took the third heat race.
Finally the green flag dropped and Dean started the race like a rocket as he led the first 10 laps. In the Late Model Class, the cars run so close together that it is easy for the drivers to make one bobble and get tangled up with another car. That happened several times during this race.
On lap 17, a crash involving five cars in turns three and four brought out the caution flag. This was the first of six cautions on the evening. By lap 22, the field had been narrowed to 15 cars. Even though the field had fewer cars, the margin for error remained little to none.
Dean had stiff competition from Scott Slay, Larry Murphy, Mike Boland and Dedwylder throughout the night, but in the end claimed the victory.
The top five finishers for the Late Model Class were as follows: 1) James Dean, Chunky; 2) Scott Slay, Jackson; 3) Larry Murphy, Meridian; 4) Mike Boland, Cuba, Ala., 5) Scott Dedwylder, Quitman.
The other class results from Saturday night are as follows:
– Mini Stock Class: 1) Artisy Bynyard, 2) Steve Bryant, 3) Brian Chaney.
– Pro Street: 1) Doug Todd; 2) Chris McElhenney; 3) Jeffery Walker.
– Pure Street: 1) Chad Thrash, 2) David James; 3) Paul Jacobs.
The races will take place every Saturday night.
The Grandstands open at 5 p.m., and time trials begin at 7 p.m.

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