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Martinsville, Va. (Oct. 9, 2011) – Martinsville Speedway is known for exciting short-track, bumping-and-banging action and Sunday’s finish in the Virginia Is For Lovers Racing 300 was no different.
On the first lap of the green-white-checkered finish, second-place Lee Pulliam used contact with leader Matt McCall as they went into Turn 3 to make the pass and held to pick up the win.
"This is breathtaking and the biggest win of my career," Pulliam said. "I can't think of a bigger stage to be on and get it (win). This is our Daytona 500."
Pulliam, who finished third in the final NASCAR Whelen All-American Series national point standings, made the pass after running in the top five during the entire race. The 23-year-old Semora, N.C. driver, who won the pole for last year's Late Model race at Martinsville, collected his first grandfather clock -- the traditional trophy for race winners at Martinsville.
“He got into me going into Turn 1 on the final restart and I just paid him back going into Turn 3,” Pulliam said of the finish.
Brandon Butler took advantage of the action up front to finish second and Stacy Puryear finished third. Dexter Canipe Jr. rebounded from an earlier spin to come home fourth. McCall was able to save his car and collect a fifth-place showing.
McCall visited the post-race stage to have a few words with Pulliam.
“I went up to him and told him I will see him around,” McCall said. “I have got too much going for me on my other career in racing but I will remember this and I will see him again.”
Davin Scites finished sixth and Greg Edwards seventh. Jeb Burton finished an impressive eighth, followed by Coleman Pressley and Mike Darne.
Philip Morris, the 2011 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series National Champion and defending race winner, battled mechanical issues all day after winning the pole in Saturday's qualifying and finished a disappointing 22.
Lee Pulliam takes the checkered flag to win Sunday's Virginia Is For Lovers 300 at Martinsville Speedway. Jared Tilson/Getty Images for NASCAR