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7th Annual $5,000 Robert Pursley Memorial Race set for Tuesday
Gaffney, South Carolina - July 3rd is always big race & firework night at Cherokee Speedway, but this year's race is a little extra special as it will carry the 7th Annual Robert Pursley Memorial Race billing under the sanction of the BEAST Series. Fans around the Carolinas flock to this Memorial race each year to pay tribute to the Pursley family who has contributed so much to local racing. "The difference this year will be the reason for this race and the increased purse money. We are already at $5,000 to win and looking at several enhancements to the purse. I will say you can expect it to grow up to race week" stated BEAST Series Director Timmy Mcabee.
The additional purse money comes in from family and friends that The Pursley's have met and built relationships throughout their racing journey. There are always those "private" donations also. "After working with John & Johnny and everyone involved over the past few seasons, I am always honored when they ask me to help put this deal together." This race means more than just loud engines and fast cars to The Pursley Family. It is a time of remembrance for their HERO. The man the community knew as "POP" is celebrated by the gathering of people who all have the love of racing in common. "We will announce the official purse in the coming weeks, and with John you just never know what kind of cards he is holding." Mcabee went on to say. In the last two years alone, this race has paid out over $43,000 in total purse (combined).
Robert "Pop" Pursley, the father of John Pursley/grandfather of Johnny Pursley Jr. was a fixture atop the grandstand anytime John and Jr. were racing. He was a devoted family man that was well liked in the community. 'Pop' was a friend to many of John and Johnny's competitors, and a few of their heated rivals too. Many say he never met a stranger at the race track, and it's only fitting this race carries on his legacy."He was my hero," said son John Pursley. Jeff Smith, son of Dirt Hall of Fame Freddy Smith, added "It was an honor to win the first Robert Pursley Memorial. I've known John for years and his dad was a lot like my grandfather as far as being friendly to everyone and well respected at the tracks."
Announcer and long time promoter Duane Goins reflects on Mr. Robert 'Pop' Pursley, "I'd see Mr. Pursley come in right before hot laps, with that blue shirt and those red suspenders. I'd go into part of my act, saying the family section is over here, drinking section over there, and all with red suspenders need to sit waayyyy down there on the end behind the light pole! He'd just keep walking, slowly throwing up that hand. He knew it was all an act and he was part of the show. Before the night was over, I'd take time to go and shake that hand. He was a true 'fan in the stands'. I miss those race nights, and I miss Mr. 'Pops' Pursley. I'm very sure a lot more folks do also, he was a great one."
Past winners of the Pursley Memorial Race include Jeff Smith, Furman Parton, Chris 'Smokey' Madden, Chad Paxton, Casey Roberts and last year's winner Ross Bailes.
Cherokee Speedway is conveniently located off of I-85 exit 96 in Gaffney, SC. Physical Address is 153 Speedway Drive in Gaffney, SC 29341. Track phone is (864) 489-1969. More info can be found online at www.cherokeespeedwaysc.com and visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cherokeespeedway for the most up to date Speedway information.
For information on "THE BEAST SERIES" please visit us online at www.racethebeast.com and follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BEASTRacingSeries. For more Series information please contact Timmy Mcabee (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 864-761-6039 or Clint Elkins (email@example.com) at 980-429-0398.
BEAST 2012 Points Standings after 3 Races: 1) Johnny Pursley, 2) Ross Bailes, 3) Casey Roberts, 4) Ricky Weeks, 5) John Pursley, 6) Mike Gault, 7) Jeff Smith, 8) John Henderson, 9) Dennis Franklin, 10) Tim Allen, 11) Scott Shirey, 12) Bob Robertson, 13) Brent Dixon, 14) Jay Sessoms, 15) Chris Ferguson
The BEAST 2012 Schedule
The BEAST Series sponsors include: PPM Products, VP Racing Fuels, Hoosier Tires, American Race Tires, Big A's Custom Graphics, SRI-Supplies, Steel & Stock Car Aluminum Inc., Velocita & Thomas Clarke Performance