|Source: Spartanburg Herald-Journal via Google News Archive|
With the race well past half-way, Petty found his well-known groove. He took the lead from Baker at lap 256 and led the next 79 laps. With about 65 laps to go, Dale Inman made the call to bring the 43 to pit road for his final stop. The track was greasy, right side tires were wearing, and the Petty Enterprises felt it was time to get the STP Dodge Charger its last pair of shoes for the remaining stretch.
The #12 Coke Chevelle returned to the track a full lap down to Petty. With four fresh tires and eighteen fewer laps on them, Allison was able to pull away from the 43. Yet, Petty was easily in control with 48 laps to go.
Allison's four stickers, however, continued to pay dividends. With each passing lap, Allison was passing more cars and making up time on the 43. Along the way, the Maurice Petty built Hemi lost a cylinder. King was running on seven cylinders and worn out left side tires, but he still had a sizable lead on Bobby.
After only a handful of laps after his stop, Allison was able to unlap himself. He then had to repeat the cycle to catch Petty again and compete for the win. As Petty took the white flag, Allison was right on his bumper - shades of how the 1972 Wilkes 400 last lap began between the two.
As the pair rumbled down the back straightaway, Allison was finally able to pass Petty for the lead. With worn out tires and an inability to lay the pedal to his Mopar, Petty had no choice but to see Bobby pull away. At the stripe, Allison was almost 2 seconds ahead of Petty.
|Source: Spartanburg Herald via Google News Archive|