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Leaders crash, Majeski wins second Snowball Derby

After a big wreck on the frontstretch wiped out several contenders with just under 25 of 300 laps remaining, then-leader Stephen Nasse and Bubba Pollard wrecked racing for the lead, which allowed Majeski to inherit the top spot with less than 10 laps to go.

After the second red-flag of the race to clear the track of debris, Majeski got a good restart with seven laps remaining and held off Gio Ruggiero – who was two laps down at one point in the race – to win the 56th annual running of the Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla.

The victory in the prestigious super late model event is the second in the past four years for Majeski, who currently competes full-time in the NASCAR Truck Series with ThorSport Racing.

The 29-year-old Wisconsin native came to NASCAR on the heels of a stellar short track career, which includes two victories in the Slinger Nationals.

“It seems like you can’t ever be fast enough to win this race,” Majeski said. “I thought we actually had the best long-run car today. We were really strong at the end of a run. I thought we were catching Nasse there when that caution came out with about 20 to go.

“It came down to a short run. We made some adjustments to the car to make it better. I still don’t know if we could have won on a short run (with Nasse). Anything can happen in the Snowball. You just have to be in the game, right?

“You have to be in the top-five when it’s ‘go time’ and anything can happen. It was a hell of race between Nasse and I. That was a hell of a good race between a lot of good race cars and drivers.”

Travis Braden ended up third, Cole Butcher fourth and Matt Craig rounded out the top-five. Nasse rallied from the late-race incident to finish sixth while Pollard was credited with a 19th-place finish.

Several top contenders – including NASCAR drivers Noah Gragson, William Byron and Erik Jones – were knocked out of the race in a big pile-up on a restart with 25 laps to go.

Gragson had differently getting his car in gear as he came to take the green flag, slowed dramatically and got turned into frontstretch wall which triggered a large wreck that brought out the first red flag of the race.

Last chance qualifier

Preston Peltier grabbed the lead with eight of 50 laps to go and held on to win the last chance qualifying race held earlier Sunday and postponed from Saturday due to rain. He, John Boles, Timothy Watson and Ryan Moore all transferred to the main event.

Carson Kvapil originally finished second in the LCQ but was disqualified in post-race inspection which moved Moore into one of the transfer positions.

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