HAMPTON, Ga. (July 12, 2019) – Atlanta Motor Speedway was abuzz of activity for the O’Reilly Auto Part Friday Night Drags with drivers burning up the asphalt on the pit lane drag strip and drifting through the media center parking lot.  

While the drag racing points season reached the halfway point, drifting made its first appearance at the O’Reilly Auto Parts Friday Night Drags.

“I definitely wanted to come out and have some fun,” said Zachary Brown when asked about the addition of drifting to drags. “I just finished painting the car last week and I couldn’t wait to get it out here and see what I could do.”

With clutch kicks, countersteering, and brake drifting through the exhibition drift, drivers zig-zagged through the course with hairpin turns billowing smoke to the enjoyment of the crowd.

“The drifting here has been a great time,” said Brown. “It’s the best thing out there.”

Paul Flannigan of Forsyth agreed, “I had a blast out here tonight. Everyone seems to be happy with it and I was able to make a lot of runs and got a lot of seat time, which is a big thing to have fun as a driver. So it was lots of fun.”

While the drifting concluded, the pit lane drag strip produced its own smoke show as it reached the mid-way point of the points season.  

Behind the burnout smoke in the South River Agency New Edge Division, Bentley Bidot won for the second consecutive week as he looks to make a charge in the points standings.

“I’m just out here for fun, but now that I’ve won a couple of rounds already,” said Bidot. “I’m going to keep my points going and see if I can keep my position.”

Bidot has been fighting a broken car, but it hasn’t stopped him from finding victory lane as he knocked off Steve Shaffer of Newnan in the final.  

“I got a good light. I tree-ed him pretty good on that one,” said Bidot. “We [Shaffer and I] make about the same power. I did a good light and a good burnout and you are there.”

While Bidot is looking to get back into the points race in the South River Agency New Edge Division, Ed Blanford has a stranglehold on the Starfire Automatic Gates Division as he remains undefeated in the points season with his sixth consecutive victory. Blandford took down James Ragsdale of Hampton in the final for the fourth consecutive event.  

Other notable winners include Dale Rogers in the QuikTrip Pro Division with his first final round victory of the season as he piloted his 1981 Firebird to victory lane by outdueling Greg Fowler of Griffin and his 1964 Chevy II.  Toney Freeman of Stockbridge earned his fourth victory of the season in the SuperBike Division.

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