William Thomas wins Ice Bowl at Talladega with dramatic last lap pass.

William Thomas completes a last lap pass on Eric Cooley to win at Talladega. - Matt Weaver

The Ice Bowl is a popular dirt Super Late Model race held the first Sunday of December on the third-mile Talladega Short Track across from the Superspeedway in Lincoln, Ala.

TALLADEGA, Ala. -- The 23rd Annual Ice Bowl at Talladega Short Track has quickly earned a reputation for being one of the most exciting winter dirt Late Model events in the country and lived up to expectations on Sunday afternoon across the street from Talladega Superspeedway.

An overnight shower left the one-third mile dirt track soggy but not a mess, providing perfect track conditions for a two-team classic with William Thomas completing a last lap pass over a dominant Eric Cooley.

Cooley and Thomas started the 50-lap feature from the front row and quickly separated themselves from the rest of the field. Not even lap traffic was enough to allow third-place Lavon Sparks to close the gap.

The leaders ran nose-to-tail until Cooley's was spun out on lap 39 by a lap car driven by Tim Roszell. Cooley spent two laps trying to work his way around Roszell and was pinched off turn four and turned at the start finish line. Southern All Stars officials justly placed Cooley back in front for the restart.

Cooley maintained a steady distance between himself and a relentlessly pursuing Thomas over the final 11 laps but slipped off Turn 2 on the final circuit. Thomas stuck a nose under Cooley off Turn 4 and drove away at the finish line

"The track was pretty much one lane in the feature, we were just riding behind Cooley and we weren't going to get by him unless he made a mistake and he made a mistake," Thomas said. "He pushed there all the way up on the last lap and gave us the opening and we took it. It was just a great win."

Rounding out the top ten were Billy Ogle Jr., defending winner Ray Cook, Skip Freeman, Chris Jones and Roszell.

The frantic final lap of the race can be viewed below and a photo album can be accessed here. NASCAR Sprint Cup pioneer Red Farmer, who made his Grand National debut in 1953, competed in the Crate Late Model portion of the event. He is 81-years-old and still active.


ICE BOWL SUPER LATE MODEL RESULTS

  1. William Thomas
  2. Eric Cooley
  3. Ross Martin
  4. Lavon Sparks
  5. Todd Morrow
  6. Billy Ogle
  7. Ray Cook
  8. Skip Freeman
  9. Chris Jones
  10. Tim Roszell
  11. Bret Holmes
  12. David Brannon
  13. Tom Maddox
  14. Andy Picklesimer
  15. Tommy Bailey
  16. Brian Smith
  17. Ryan King
  18. Joe Armistead
  19. Mark Mears
  20. Jason Wilson
  21. Randall Walker
  22. Mark Haddon
  23. Neil Baggett
  24. Tony Morris
  25. Jason Hiett

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