Super Late Models

Jeremy Doss journeys from California to qualify fifth in Snowball Derby

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A native of Upper Lake California, Jeremy Doss, 21, grew up racing Outlaw Carts and now races Legends and late models. He hauled his late model all the way from California 2,500 miles to Pensacola, Florida to race the Snowball Derby. Doss aspires to compete in the upper-echelons of stock car racing and knew that at the Derby, he could race alongside competitors who would challenge him at top levels.

In the first practice of the Snowball Derby on Thursday, Doss topped the leaderboard with a fastest lap time of 16.704. That time ultimately wouldn’t hold after Mason Mingus turned a 16.616 in practice two and then Bubba Pollard ran the fastest lap of the day in third practice with a 16.552.

“First practice out, top of the board and we got a handle on the car,” said Doss. “We’re happy.”

Two years ago, the team didn’t even make the Snowball Derby, failing to qualify for the show.

“It feels good because we’re already faster than we were last time,” he said.

In qualifying on Friday, Doss rose to the top again, qualifying fifth overall with a 16.411 lap time, even better than in practice.

As he waited for his car to go through Ricky Brooks’ post-qualifying tech process, he was smiling ear-to-ear.

“We ended up changing a rear-end unit before qualifying and I wasn’t really sure what I was going to have.”

And what they got was p5.

“I am just super stoked to be sitting where I’m at in the Derby, two years ago we didn’t make it and here we are,” he said.

The Derby means so much to him because of its star power.

“It’s the biggest race in the country and I feel that if you want to be the best, you have to beat the best, you’ve got guys like Bubba Pollard, Kyle Busch, the best guys in racing are here and you want to go head to head, and if you beat them, that’s saying something,” said Doss.

Doss plans to continue running the Southwest Tour and hopes to win a championship there on tracks like Tucson, Madera and the Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

“We definitely hope to go back there and get a few wins,” he said.

As for the Derby, he plans to come back in 2018.

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About Cassie Fambro

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Fambro is a news reporter in North Carolina and assists in coverage with Short Track Scene whenever possible.

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