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The History of the Pensacola-Mobile Late Model Doubleheader

The first doubleheader touring series weekend between the Gulf Coast short tracks took place in 1983, and the tradition has grown ever since.

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One can argue that the Stock Car racing roots came out of North Georgia or Western North Carolina where Moonshine was king. As the evolution of racing grew after the Second World War, the bragging rights got bigger and so did the purses.

NASCAR was formed and the aggressive schedule began all across the United States. It was not uncommon for races to happen night after night in a caravan of drivers chasing points and money circled the southeast and east regions. In 1964 Richard Petty made 61 starts with several nights coming three at a time as track promoters lobbied to get a piece of the action.

The mindset got adopted to the Deep South and tracks like Five Flags Speedway (FL) and Mobile International Speedway (AL) found themselves as unofficial partners in racing and working to gain the big series' attention. This weekend, the ASA Southern Super Series will continue a tradition that started some 41 years back by the All Pro Series.

From a regional Touring Series standpoint, the All-Pro Series looks to have had the first Stock Car double in 1983. Rusty Wallace won at Five Flags on Friday night over Jody Ridley and then he beat Rat Lane at Mobile the next night across the bay and the double dip was born.

All Pro hosted the double again in 1985 where Rusty Wallace won at Mobile, but it was Freddie Fryar who took the win at Five Flags.

In 1986 there were two doubleheader races run and Wallace split the first one and swept the second. This all while running for the NASCAR Cup Series Rookie of the Year honors. Wallace won three times in eight starts that season.

All Pro hosted eight doubleheader races with Jody Ridley sweeping in 1988. When NASCAR purchased All Pro they kept the trend going and Ridley won both 200-lap races in 1991. Bobby Gill won both in 1994 in July which had to be a hot weekend at both venues.

When NASCAR pulled out the tracks were left to handle the shows on their own. The Snowball Derby Challenge events and the Miller Lite Series came together and we can find 13 instances where a doubleheader took place. We are sure there are more.

In 2009 the Gulf Coast Championship Series was formed and 18 times the weekend events were held at both tracks. Bubba Pollard swept a pair of weekends and a youngster named Chase Elliott did the same. Jeff Choquette won the final one before the birth of the Southern Super Series.

It's been run 11 times under the Southern Super Series banner with Daniel Hemric and Bubba Pollard each winning a whole weekend. Pollard did it again in July of 2015 to mark five total sweeps on the Gulf Coast.

Each race this year will pay $10,000 to win and if a driver can do the double, then it will be worth $25,000 thanks to Family Funeral and Cremation.

-ASA Southern Super Series Release
-Racing America Photo

Gulf Coast Weekend Sweeps

Bubba Pollard 5
Jody Ridley 2
Rusty Wallace 2
Charlie Bradberry
Jeff Choquette
Daniel Hemric
Chase Elliott
Bobby Gill

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