Berry Closes Season with Thanksgiving Classic Triumph at Southern National

Photo Courtesy of Will Bellamy/Racing America

Ron Lemasters | 11/29/2021

All Things Automotive iRacing Josh Berry Late Model News

On Sunday, the 31-year-old Tennessean added the 150-lap Thanksgiving Classic at Southern National Motorsports Park to his ledger.

Track Specs: Southern National Motorsports Park, .400-mile oval/150-lap feature

Berry's finish: 1st      

 

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Nov. 29, 2021) -- Josh Berry has had a heck of a decade in Late Model racing, winning most of the major events for the discipline. Those include the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series national championship, the ValleyStar Credit Union 300 at Martinsville, the Myrtle Beach 400, the Old North State Nationals and the Throwback 276.

On Sunday, the 31-year-old Tennessean added the 150-lap Thanksgiving Classic at Southern National Motorsports Park to his ledger, banking $9,000 and earning his 91st victory for JR Motorsports in the familiar No. 8 All Things Automotive/iRacing Chevrolet.

Berry won the pole on Saturday night and led the field to the green flag on Sunday, though he gave up the lead in the early going. Settling into the top five, Berry saved tires and finished the 50-lap first segment in fourth place. Having saved some rubber, Berry elected not to take the two tires he had lying in the pits and returned to the track in fourth for the start of the second segment.

Berry needed just five laps to retake the top spot and held it to lap 100 and the second stage break. He took his tires at that point and returned to the race in fourth position. Despite giving up the lead momentarily to Brenden Queen, Berry raced back around to assume a lead he would hold through several caution flags to the checkered, topping Queen by almost three seconds.

Behind Berry and Queen at the checkered came Doug Barnes, Connor Hall and Deac McCaskill. Andrew Grady led the second five, with Jonathan Findley, Stacy Puryear, Chris Chapman and Chase Burrow the rest of the top 10.

The season-ending victory added to a year in which he won seven of the nine starts he made while competing mostly in the NASCAR Xfinity Series for JRM. Among those victories were the $30,000-to-win Old North State Nationals at Orange County Speedway and $10,000-to-win triumphs at both Langley (Va.) Speedway and Goodyear All-American Speedway, as well as two CARS Racing Tour wins to extend his series lead in career wins.

 In 2022, Berry will be a full-time driver in the NXS, which means his Late Model schedule will be limited. Carson Kvapil will take over the No. 8 Late Model in 2022 for the full season.

Josh Berry, driver No. 8 All Things Automotive/iRacing Chevrolet team

"We raced at SNMP a good bit last year throughout our national title run, so I felt pretty confident going back there for this race. The car was really good from when we unloaded, and we were just able to tweak on it from there. It was really cool to check off another big win for our team. Even though I haven't been able to race the Late Model quite as much this year, we had a really strong season with it and scored several big wins. What we have been able to accomplish together over the last 10 years has been truly amazing. I am so thankful for everyone who has had a part in our program over the years.  I have enjoyed every second of it, and I am really excited to see what Carson and that group can continue to accomplish."

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XFINITY Series Schedule

  • February 19 05:00 PM ET
    Beef. It's What's For Dinner. 300Daytona International Speedway
  • February 26 05:00 PM ET
    Production Alliance 300Auto Club Speedway
  • March 5 04:30 PM ET
    Alsco Uniforms 300Las Vegas Motor Speedway
  • March 12 04:30 PM ET
    NXS Race at PhoenixPhoenix Raceway
  • March 19 05:00 PM ET
    Nalley Cars 250Atlanta Motor Speedway

XFINITY Series Standings

After NXS Championship

Phoenix Raceway | 11/6/2021
RankDriverPointsBehind
1Daniel Hemric (P)40400
2Austin Cindric (P)4035-5
3Noah Gragson (P)4025-15
4AJ Allmendinger (P)4023-17
5Justin Allgaier2300-1740
6Justin Haley2244-1796
7Brandon Jones2239-1801
15Michael Annett638-3402
25Sam Mayer #338-3702