Hatred of losing drives Brandon Overton to succeed


Brandon Overton

Brandon Overton had long been a top Dirt Late Model driver and one who was frequently considered a threat to win at any track where he showed up. But since joining forces with Wells & Sons Motorsports late in the 2019 season, his performance has reached a whole new level. As evidence of that, the Evans, GA driver has spent much of the most recent two seasons either at or near the top of the DirtonDirt.com Poll Position Top-25 rankings.

Overton took a total of 26 winner’s trophies away from dirt racing facilities in 2020 with the high point of the season coming in August when the 29-year-old driver swept the USA Nationals weekend at Wisconsin’s Cedar Lake Speedway to pocket a total of $56,000. And the No. 76 crew certainly isn’t achieving that success by so-called “cherry picking”. Six of those 26 wins came in features sanctioned by the World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series with another three triumphs being earned in Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series contests.

So far in 2021, the driver known as ‘Big Sexy’ has picked up right where he left off last season. Overton has already scored six race wins with one coming against WoO Late Models competition and another versus the Lucas Oil tour regulars. And more, he left Georgia-Florida SpeedWeeks back in February as the leader of the LOLMDS standings even though he will not run that national tour on a full-time basis this year.

In a rare disappointing weekend for this team, the Karl Kustoms Bristol Dirt Nationals did not go as well as Overton and his David Wells-owned operation would have liked. After winning his heat race and starting in the second row for the 25-lap feature on Friday, the No. 76 Longhorn Chassis fell back through the running order before dropping out and ultimately ending the night with a 20th place finish.

The highly competitive driver and his team took the blame for choosing the wrong tires for that main event.

“I don’t know,” Overton told InsideDirtRacing.com when asked why his team is so consistently good. “We’re just working hard. We were all tore up last night. We’re human and we’re going to make mistakes and we made one last night and it cost us. Instead of pouting, I think we were the first car that unloaded this morning and went to working on it to try to get it all back together. I didn’t get to come over here and practice and we just made the wrong decisions, made the wrong tire calls.”

The thought of losing a race that they felt as if they could have won is distasteful to Overton and his crew.

“But it all boils down to we can’t stand losing,” he declared. “Everybody that works with me, they hate losing. I felt bad for our car owner last night. He was telling not to worry about it and that it was all good but we were all so damn mad that we didn’t even want to talk. I think it’s pretty much the fear of losing and the disappointment you get from it makes everybody that’s with me work harder.”

Brandon Overton in the Wells & Sons Motorsports Longhorn

Overton has won so much over the past few years that he has almost become a victim of his own success. Winning just causes him to want more wins.

“You’re going to lose way more than you win so you’ve always got to keep that in mind,” he pointed out. “Boy, it tears us up especially when you get to that level where you feel like you can go just about anywhere and run decent, but then when you do get beat, it works on you a little bit. I think that’s what keeps us fast, we keep working constantly trying to figure things out. I guess it’s just the nature of the beast.”

Overton feels as if his program has developed to the point that he can be competitive on just about every type of track. While he does have one facility where he feels most at home, he believes there are other factors at play that can determine how well he or any other driver can do on any given speedway.

“I guess you could say Screven, but other than Screven, I guess you could say all of the other places can be just kind of hit or miss,” Overton said of his favorite tracks. “It ain’t really necessarily the track but more the preparation. If they give us something to race on, I feel like I can win anywhere I go. If the thing’s just one lane and rubbered up, it’s a crap shoot. You’ve got to get yourself in position and hit that redraw right, but anyplace that’s racy, I feel like when we’re on we can win on all of them.”

While Overton is appreciative of all the teams he has driven for, he believes the Wells & Sons Motorsports effort he is currently involved with is the best situation he has ever been a part of.

“Without a doubt. I’ve been with good people. I always go back to Doug and Cathy Varnadore, which was as close as I ever had to this because Doug didn’t really known anything about a race car so he didn’t tell me what to do. He didn’t know what was right or what was wrong so I kind of handled everything there. With David(Wells), he’s just been around it long enough and he’s seen how these deals go. He just opened it up and told me to go race it like it was mine. So without a doubt, this is probably the best thing I’ve done.”

Overton is expected to race in the World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series races this weekend at the Cherokee Speedway in Gaffney, SC.

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