Race Weekend Central

Short Track Weekly: A Look At the Orange Krush 200 Field

For the first time in 12 years, NASCAR star Ward Burton will climb inside a race car and compete at Orange County Speedway in tonight’s Rogers Heating & Cooling Orange Krush 200 Invitational.

The race is to benefit the 62-year-old’s wildlife conservation organization, The Ward Burton Wildlife Foundation, founded in 1996 while Burton was still competing. He credits another driver – his son Jeb Burton – for getting him back into a race car.

While Burton is the headliner in the field at the North Carolina short track, he’s far from the only driver of note in the field. The invitational-only event features other recognizable names from NASCAR’s top divisions and the Late Model ranks.

Here are a few of the key drivers to follow in this evening’s event.

Ward Burton

Ward Burton had a successful career in the NASCAR Cup Series from 1994 through 2007, with five wins in 375 starts – most notably the 2002 Daytona 500. Before his victory in the Great American Race, Burton also prevailed in the 2001 Southern 500 at Darlington Speedway. He finished a career-best ninth in the Cup standings in 1999.

Burton also has a NASCAR national series win at Orange County. He led 259 of 300 laps to win a 1993 race at the track in what is now the Xfinity Series. It was the second of four Burton wins at the Xfinity level.

Jeremy Mayfield

Jeremy Mayfield is another recognizable name from the NASCAR Cup ranks. But the Kentuckian has largely flown under the radar since his controversial departure from the sport in 2009.

Rumors and various legal troubles have kept him away from the spotlight, though Mayfield has done some local racing over the years. He has also opened up on his NASCAR exit, particularly in an appearance on Dirty Mo Media’s “Dale Jr. Download” podcast.

Mayfield has five wins in his Cup career, the most notable coming in 2000 when he became one of the few drivers to move Dale Earnhardt Sr. to win a race at Pocono Raceway.

“He’s got me plenty of times, that’s the one time I got him,” Mayfield said at the time. “He can’t say a word.”

Jeb Burton

Jeb Burton is the son of Ward and a driver in the Xfinity Series. He is who his father credits for pushing him to race again and participate in this race.

Jeb Burton has found victory lane twice in the Xfinity Series, with both wins coming at Talladega Superspeedway in 2021 and 2023. He also earned a 2013 win in the Craftsman Truck Series at Texas Motor Speedway.

Before reaching the top levels of NASCAR, Jeb started at his historic hometown track, South Boston Speedway. He later raced at Orange County and other short tracks before rising to NASCAR. Those grassroots beginnings are similar to his father Ward and uncle, former NASCAR Cup Series driver and current NBC broadcaster Jeff Burton.

Barry Beggarly

Followers of grassroots racing are in for a treat, with the 1993 National Champion of what is now the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series in the field.

Beggarly narrowly won the 1993 title in a close battle with Dennis Setzer. The pair were tied in points at the end of the season. Beggarly took the title on a tiebreaker, with one more second-place finish than Setzer.

Beggarly returns to his roots with familiar faces from his early and veteran days. He competed against Ward and Jeb during their formative years across different eras in Virginia and North Carolina, making the return to Orange County a true full-circle moment.

Timothy Peters & Peyton Sellers

South Boston, Virginia, is respected in the racing community due to its famous short track and the Burton family. Just up the road lies another Virginia city that isn’t discussed much but has its own place in racing history – Danville.

The hometown of Wendell Scott, the first Black driver to win a NASCAR National Series race, is also responsible for the upbringing of Timothy Peters and Peyton Sellers.

Peters is most notable for his lengthy stint in the Craftsman Truck Series, where he raced from 2005-2021. During his time in that series, the Virginian won eleven times and finished a career-best second to James Buescher in the 2012 championship.

Sellers is a multiple-time track champion at South Boston and won the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series in 2005 and 2021. He never caught the right breaks at NASCAR’s higher divisions, but made some limited starts in Xfinity and Trucks. Sellers also competed in the 2022 Superstar Racing Experience event at South Boston as a local star.

This is only a few of the drivers competing in the event. Other notable names include Landon Huffman, Deac McCaskill, Chase Burrow, Kade Brown, and Kaden Honeycutt.

You can see the full entry list at the link below.


The event will be streamed via pay-per-view ($34.99) on Racing America at 6 p.m. ET.

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