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Jeb Burton to pilot car for owner Jim Dean at SBS

Jeb Burton has already had some exciting opportunities in his young racing career. He will get another in Saturday’s pair of NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model Stock Car Division races at South Boston Speedway. Burton will pilot a car owned by Jim Dean, the businessman who last year backed the national championship effort of veteran driver Philip Morris, in Saturday’s twin 75-lap NASCAR Late Model Stock Car Division races at South Boston Speedway.

The team of crew members Morris worked with at Sellers Racing will work with Burton Saturday.

The car Burton will drive Saturday at South Boston Speedway will carry a new sponsorship for the young driver, the South Boston-based Common Grounds firm. According to Burton’s father, former Daytona 500 winner Ward Burton, Common Grounds will be displayed on the cars his son will drive in Late Model Stock Car Division races this season.

“It’s really exciting to be able to work with Kathy Farley and all of the people at Common Grounds,” Ward Burton said.

“I’m ecstatic about us being able to work with a local sponsor such as Common Grounds. This is a great opportunity for us. We want to work with them to help them gain some good exposure in other areas and do things to try to help them grow their business.”

In addition to Common Grounds, the car Burton will drive in Saturday’s twinbill at South Boston Speedway will carry sponsorship from Puryear Tank Lines, Gardner-Marsh Propane & Equipment Co. and South Boston Graphics.

For races that Burton will compete in at Ace Speedway with his own car, he will display Common Grounds, Puryear Tank Lines, Pacific Equipment, South Boston Graphics and K.R. Snead Trucking Co. as sponsors.

“I’m very excited and very appreciative of having this opportunity to work with Common Grounds,” Jeb Burton said.

“I’m very blessed and very thankful to be able to have the sponsors that have come on board with us this season. If it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be racing.”

Jeb Burton’s ride in Jim Dean’s car at South Boston Speedway is a one-race deal at this point. How many and which Late Model Stock Car Division races he will compete in at South Boston Speedway this season depends upon sponsorship and his schedule of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.

The younger Burton will make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut next weekend with Hillman Racing when the Truck Series rolls into Martinsville Speedway for a 250-lap event next Saturday afternoon. He is expected to run the full schedule of Truck Series for Hillman Racing.

Right now, though, Burton is focusing on Saturday’s twin 75-lap NASCAR Late Model Stock Car Division races at South Boston Speedway.

“I’m really excited to work with Jim Dean and H.C. Sellers,” said Jeb Burton.

“I’ve wanted to work with them a long time. I think it’s a good opportunity for me to see what a new car and new team can bring to the table for us. H.C. is really pumped up. He thinks I will do well and I think I’ll do well, too. Hopefully we can come away with a victory.”

The car Jeb Burton will drive Saturday is the car Morris was scheduled to drive at South Boston Speedway this season. Burton said he asked to change the car number from 26 to his own car number of 27.

“Philip has been in racing for a lot of years, has won national championships, won a lot of races, and has accomplished a lot in his career,” Jeb Burton said.

“I don’t want to be compared to Philip. I think I’m a good driver and can get the job done, but I don’t want to put that pressure on myself with the number 26 on the side, so I’m going to run my number 27.”

As far as expectations go, the younger Burton says he expects to be a contender and be among the top three this weekend.

“I’d really like to finish in the top three in both races,” Burton pointed out.

“I finished third twice in my car last year at South Boston Speedway. The Sellers have done a lot of homework. They’ve done a lot of testing at South Boston Speedway and are on top of their game there.

“I’d like to get a win, and I feel that is possible,” added the younger Burton.

“H.C. and I get along great, and I think we will have good communication. I feel communication is key. I think if I can tell H.C. what the car is doing, he can make it go fast.”