SOUTH BOSTON - When Nathan Crews took the checkered flag to win the 30-lap Budweiser Pure Stock Division race at South Boston Speedway on September 4 not only did he clinch the division championship for the second season in a row, he amassed some memorable marks in the process.
The Long Island, Virginia resident capped the 2021 points season at “America’s Hometown Track” with 11 wins in 13 starts and having won 10 of a possible 11 pole awards for being the fastest qualifier.
Dating back to the 2019 season, Crews won 20 of 26 starts over the two-season span and won 17 of a possible 22 poles. Going from the end of the 2019 season and continuing through the first half of the 2021 season Crews racked up nine consecutive wins in the division. There was no racing at South Boston Speedway in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While Crews secured his second straight Budweiser Pure Stock Division championship, he scored the third straight division championship for his family-owned race team. His close friend, Daniel Shelton of Hurt, Virginia drove a car fielded by the Crews family to the 2018 South Boston Speedway Budweiser Pure Stock Division title and won the division’s Rookie of the Year award.
Crews’ list of accomplishments does not stop there. He is also a second-generation champion. His father, Bruce Crews, won the South Boston Speedway Limited Sportsman Division championship in 1995.
“Winning this championship is really special,” Crews said. “For my dad (Bruce Crews) to win a championship here in 1995 and for me to win another championship this year means the world to us.”
Crews points out that winning a championship at South Boston Speedway is a special accomplishment.
“To be a champion and looking at the list of past South Boston Speedway champions, it’s an honor to be among them,” Crews remarked. “It’s a great feat to achieve because it’s something that not many people have done. It’s very difficult, and that’s why South Boston Speedway is considered one of the toughest, if not the toughest, racetrack in the United States.
“Winning a championship here does not come very easy,” continued Crews. “You have to put in the work. You can’t just be good or be lucky. It takes a lot of determination because you will go through some adversity at some point during the year.”
Crews’ outstanding 2021 season record of 11 wins in 13 starts winning 10 of a possible 11 pole awards for being the fastest qualifier is a mark that is likely to be a division record. Those are marks he had no idea he and his team could accomplish.
“Words can’t explain it,” Crews said with a smile. “I knew we would have a pretty good shot at the championship this year, but I never dreamed we would be better than we were in 2019 when we had nine wins and seven poles. I didn’t think anything could top that. I started the season hoping we could win a few races and maybe get a couple of poles, and here we are with 11 wins and having won all but one pole this season.
“I’m just very fortunate to be here where we are,” added Crews. “Our record will probably be remembered for a long time.”
Crews credits his team for making this season’s Budweiser Pure Stock Division championship and the outstanding marks he set this season possible.
“If it wasn’t for the team we have we definitely wouldn’t have accomplished as much as we did,” Crews said. “We have a really dedicated team. Everybody on the team wants to do this. They all put in a lot of hours. They all work very hard, and we’re all headed in the same direction and working toward the same goal. That makes a world of difference.”
South Boston Speedway’s final event of the 2021 season will be a big one as the CARS Tour will make a stop at “America’s Hometown Track” on Saturday night, October 16.
The CARS Tour series championships will be decided that night with a 125-lap Late Model Stock Car division race and a 125-lap Super Late Model division race.
Grandstand gates will open at 4 p.m. Qualifying starts at 4:45 p.m., an on-track Fan Fest driver autograph session will begin at 5:45 p.m. and the first race will get the green flag at 7 p.m.
Advance tickets are priced at $15 each and are available through Friday night, October 15, on the South Boston Speedway website. Also, advance tickets may be purchased at the South Boston Speedway office until 5 p.m. on Friday. October 15.
Tickets purchased at the gate and online on race day are priced at $20 each. Children ages 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.