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Drivers continue their dominance at Thursday Thunder

R.S. Senter, left, and his crew chief, Paul Kelly, celebrate in victory lane after the Oakwood native won for the fourth time this season. (Staff Photo: Derrick Mahone)

R.S. Senter, left, and his crew chief, Paul Kelly, celebrate in victory lane after the Oakwood native won for the fourth time this season. (Staff Photo: Derrick Mahone)

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Paul Kelly, left, talks with Bill Plemons Jr. in the garage after the Masters division feature race, which was won by Plemons. (Staff Photo: Derrick Mahone)

HAMPTON — It would have been easy for Bill Plemons Jr. to use the excuse that he started in the back position for the Masters division featured race at Thursday Thunder.

The Locust Grove native wasn’t looking for excuses as he slipped to the front of the pack in the latter stages of Thursday’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway to take the checkered flag for his second straight division win.

After emerging with the win to give him the points lead, Plemons had a message for the crowd in the grandstands.

“This just shows you can’t ever give up,” he said over the P.A. system. “I was in the back, but I got the win.”

In the last four days, Plemons has three wins in four starts at the grassroots racing series.

A caution-filled race in the Estes Services Masters division saw Bill Plemons Jr. take the checkered flag as he took advantage of a late race caution that pushed the front runners to the rear of the field.

“We’ve been running awful good,” said Plemons Jr. “We’ve been setting the car up really good, it’s been awesome.”

Skip Nichols of Albany started fifth before making his way to the front of the field on the eighth lap of the race. Nichols held the lead until he got tangled with McDonough’s Scott Moseley on lap 13, which allowed Plemons Jr. to move to the front of the field on the restart where he held on for the win as the race ended with a green-white-checkered finish.

“I was patient,” Plemons said. “They over battled each other out there. I just sat back and waited for the right moment to make my move.”

R.S. Senter continued his dominance in the Semi-Pro division with his fourth win of the season. The Oakwood native got tied up with Will Martin of Douglasville on lap 12 in turn two but was able to race his way to the front over the final eight laps for the win.

“The car is running really good,” Senter said. “We have some improvements to make, but I’m definitely pleased at the way we are driving. With each win comes more confidence. As I move up to the Pro division, I know I have some things to work on to get better.”

Woodrow Mullis is also on a hot streak at the track. The Hoboken native has won 13 consecutive Young Lions feature races at Atlanta Motor Speedway including a clean sweep of the seven-race Winter Flurry series.

Mullis started third but made a first-lap pass of Zach Leonhardi of Cartersville and then slipped past pole sitter Blake Gaither of Nashville to move to the front of the field and held on for the win.

“I’m going to try my best to sweep the season,” said Mullis. “Zach (Leonhardi) is making really good progress but hopefully he won’t be able to catch me before the end of the season.”

Chandler Smith won his 16th straight race at Atlanta Motor Speedway as he looks toward a national championship next weekend at the track.

Bandolero drivers from across the country will converge on Atlanta Motor Speedway June 27-28 for the 17th Annual zMAX Micro-Lubricant Bandolero Nationals. The event will conclude three days of Legends and Bandolero racing on the quarter-mile “Thunder Ring” at Atlanta Motor Speedway over a four day stretch.

“I’m very excited about the Nationals,” Smith said. “It is great that it’s on our home track.”