Archive for August, 2012

USMTS Modfieds Or Nebraska Football???

August 31, 2012 Leave a comment

Former USMTS champion Jason Krohn won the feature last night at Jackson Speedway in Minnesota.  The victory was Krohn’s first in over a year, a year in which he has changed chassis makers 5 times.  His current chassis is from MB Customs-yes, Mars and Birkhofer known for their prowess behind the wheel of a late model, not a modified. If it works, why not? 


Jon Tesch finished 2nd, Ryan Ruter was 3rd, and Ryan Gustin came home 4th.  The current Casey’s Cup point standings were not available yet, but before last night’s race, Gustin was only 8 points behind Texan Rodney Sanders.  Sanders ended up 6 spots behind Gustin, so I believe Gustin is now the point leader.  Drivers only had to make a short trip from Jackson to Chateau Raceway, just north of Austin, Minnesota. 


If I lived in the Austin area, I would make all five Labor Day weekend races.  None of the tracks are more than a few hours away from the Austin home of head office of meat packing giant George A. Hormel.  Minnesotans get more great modified racing in a week than Nebraskans do in a year.  Of course, they also get the Minnesota Golden Gophers football team, so it does equal out.


Would I rather be at Deer Creek Speedway tomorrow night watching a USMTS show, or in Lincoln tomorrow afternoon watching the Huskers play?  Lincoln, but not by much. Honestly, I would not mind watching the NU game on TV in some Minnesota hotel and then head over to Deer Creek to watch some great modified action.


Mike Pierson went to US 30 Speedway last night and commented on a feature race that took much longer to complete than the others.  Of course he was talking about B Mods aka IMCA Northern Sports Mods aka Sports Mods aka 360 mods.  If you don’t have a family member or a friend racing in this class, I don’t think you can truthfully state you enjoy watching this class race.  I enjoy watching late models and A mods race.  I like watching Stock Cars and Hobby Stocks do battle on the track.  I do not like the sports mods-this class simply drives me crazy.  If this class is the future of dirt track racing, the future does not look very bright.


Thanks for stopping by.






Strange Days, Bucket List, Games, Plus Atlanta

August 29, 2012 3 comments

I woke up this morning thinking that my old record player with its attachment to play 45’s was better than any MP3.  I have no idea where that came from, unless it was the result of the Pizza Hut pepperoni pizza I had for supper last night.  I no longer have the record player, but I still have all the 45’s I ever bought-most well worn, and few with dust jackets. I don’t have the record player, but there is always YouTube, and every time I have searched for a song I have found it there.


What that has to do with racing, I do not know.  Next time you think I have strange thoughts about race events, just remember I have strange thoughts about many different things.


My Bucket List If I Win The Lottery doesn’t just include places and events I want to visit, it includes doing a Sunset Speedway book-and hopefully I will win the lottery before everyone who still remembers the track still remembers the track-and I typed it like I meant.  It costs either a substantial amount of money to self-publish such a book, or a substantial amount of time (in addition to researching, interviewing, and writing) to do an incredible number of cumbersome tasks needed to publish a book.  I don’t have the money; I don’t have the time, and know enough about the publishing tasks to know that no one in his right mind wants to do them.


Anyway, if I win the lottery, the book will become a reality, and along with the book would come a C.D. of old races that were taped, and a Sunset Speedway video game.  Yes, both are expensive to have done, but if I win the lottery, I would not care.  I would love to have a video game where it is 1999 and you could race a late model against Kyle Berck, the Kosiski’s, the Zeitners, Mark Wyman, etc.  Wouldn’t it be cool to have the races called by the voice of Stan Cisar?  I wouldn’t know how to have that happen, but heck, I don’t know how to have a video game happen either, and if one can be done for NASCAR, someone must be capable of doing it. 


A book full of old Sunset photos; an oral history as told by scores of drivers, officials, and fans that made the track all it was along with a few musing by a writer or two; a C.D. full of old races, and a video game too.  Wouldn’t that make for a nice Christmas present?  Ah well, you all need to hope I win the lottery soon.


Unless I get a wild hair and decide to go to US 30 Speedway tomorrow, it appears like no racing this holiday weekend for me.  Saturday will be Nebraska football.  Sunday is a meeting of the Henry Ross Meyer Fan Club to celebrate his first birthday, and I am President of the club, so no racing that day.  Boone for the Deery Brothers Late Model show at the IMCA Supernationals on Monday is tempting.  Driving home from Boone on Highway 30 at 3:00 a.m. is not.  Right now it is looking like Friday, September 14th for the Tiny Lund qualifying and SLMR show at Shelby County Speedway in Harlan, Iowa might be my next race.  Darn.


At least the NASCAR Sprint Cup race from Atlanta doesn’t start until 5:30 p.m. on Sunday.  Henry’s party will be over by then, so I can at least watch a race on TV.  In the past 10 years the fall-now the only-Atlanta race has had six different winners:  Kurt Busch and Kasey Kahne have won victory each, and Jeff Gordon, Carl Edwards, Jimmie Johnson, and Tony Stewart have won twice.  Who is it going to be in 2012?  Check back tomorrow for not only the rest of the dirt, but the last word in asphalt too.


Thanks for stopping by.






USMTS, I Have Been Married 42 Years, World 100, IMCA Supernationals

August 28, 2012 6 comments

After 10 days off the USMTS series gets back into action tomorrow at Fairmont, Minnesota and Thursday night at Jackson, also in the GopherState.  Promoter’s Gary Jacobsen and Jon McCorkell must be crazy.  They teamed up to offer a ticket that allows fans to get into both shows for only $25.  Promoters co-operating?  Now that is something you don’t see everyday.  Or every week.  Or every season.  I know promoters who would cut the throat of a promoter a few miles down the road, but never co-operate with him, even when it is in everyone’s best interest to do so. Two thumbs up to Gary and Jon and I hope they both have a packed grandstand.


Ryan Gustin is the cover boy on the September 2012 issue of Speedway Illustrated.  No, you can’t find it at a bookstore, you have to subscribe to the magazine.  To subscribe to the magazine, go to:  for details.


Today is my 42nd wedding anniversary.  No, I do not know how Jane has put up with me for so long.  She will watch NASCAR on TV, though she usually naps during the race, but she will not go to a dirt track.  Before we were married she went to Sunset Speedway with me often.  In the first few years we were married she would go to Sunset occasionally, but each time more reluctantly than the last.  I can’t tell you the last time she went to a race, but it could not have been after the 1975 season.  Anyway, Matt discourages me from encouraging our spouses to attend races with us, something about them wrecking the evening.


The Best Appearing Car at the World 100 will receive a $1,000 bonus.  Actually only cars with a special design for the event can win, and the prize is split between the car and the graphic designer.  I like the idea, though the special design seems to be a lot of expense to win the prize.  I have been trying to come up with an idea to replace the Fan’s Vote at the Silver Dollar Nationals and maybe a contest like this would be something to heighten fan’s interest in the event. There were many great looking cars at this year’s event. Maybe a $500 prize could be given to the best looking late model and another $500 prize to the best looking USMTS modified.  I am open to ideas on this.


There are already over 600 entrants for the IMCA Supernationals at Boone, Iowa next week, with 216 modifieds the most in any division.  25 states and several Canadian provinces are already represented. I always am on the fence about this event-some years I tell myself I really need to go, others I am less enthused, seeing 600+ race cars as too much of a good thing.  That is the side I am on this year.


If you can’t go to Boone, check out the XSAN article in the news on IMCA’s website. For $75 you can watch all the racing all six nights, or you can watch a single night of racing for $15.  With 60 races some nights, $15 seems like a reasonable fee. 


Does anyone really see all 60 races on a given Supernationals’ night?  Between concession stand lines, restroom lines, and a need for sleep as the races go into the wee hours of the morning, it seems unlikely that anyone can truthfully claim to see every lap of every race any night, let alone all 6 nights.  If there is a fan I am not sure if he deserves a trophy or to be sent somewhere for a long rest.


Thanks for stopping by.













Ride With Rusty Wallace, Plus Some MLRA

August 27, 2012 1 comment

Craig Kelley sent me the following link for a discount to the Rusty Wallace Racing Experience.  Any weekend in October you can schedule a 4 lap ride or a 12 lap you drive the car experience at Iowa Speedway, just east of Newton, Iowa off I-80.  With the coupon the ride is $64 and drive is $199.


About 10 years ago we were in Daytona and I wanted to do the Richard Petty Ride Experience, but my wife balked at the $105 for three laps cost.  With the coupon this seems like a good bargain-$16 a lap vs. $35 per lap for the Petty experience, AS LONG AS Rusty’s son Steve isn’t driving. 


Yes, Randy, I do know that if I did the ride along they would probably have to change the set up on the car because of all the additional right side weight.  And yes, I assume they would have to go to a tent maker to get a fire suit big enough to fit me.  And no, I would not be too afraid to climb into the race car.  I’ve ridden thousands of miles with your buddy Boy Genius and that would prepare me for anything short of a roll over by the professional driver.


Oh, and great directions Rstar.  Why not just tell us to go to Beatrice to park?  Actually, between BG’s big donation and having TicketMaster on speed dial we’ll get a parking permit for a lot a few blocks east of the stadium for slightly less than a ridiculous amount.  It will be great to see the Huskers back in action again. Tony Anville thinks Nebraska will play in the Rose Bowl twice this season-in September against UCLA, and on January 1st against Oregon.


The MLRA was part of the show at Missouri State Fairground Speedway in Sedalia that was cancelled after the second of two separate bad accidents.  Next up for the series is a Saturday evening show at Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland, Missouri.  On 9/15 the MLRA drivers travel to Springfield, Missouri and the series last two nights of racing are at Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City during the NASCAR weekend at Kansas Speedway on October 19th and 20th.


John Anderson holds a 310 point lead over second place Jesse Stovall.  It appears that even with bonus points and if Anderson was a no show for the last four nights of racing that Stovall could not accumulate enough points to top Anderson.  Mark Dotson is only 3 points behind Stovall, so that is certainly a point battle, and Terry Phillips could still catch Kevin Sather who is just 25 points ahead of him in 4th place.


Thanks for stopping by.




NASCAR, And Rain + Dirt = Mud

August 26, 2012 6 comments

Will Matt Kenseth ever admit to causing a wreck in a NASCAR race?  I can’t ever remember him saying “yeah, that was a really dumb move on my part, I should have had more patience.” He kept his streak intact last night, not accepting the blame that sent Tony Stewart’s car to the Bristol Motor Speedway garage for 25 laps for repairs.

Of course without Kenseth being Kenseth we would not have had Tony Stewart throwing his helmet at the 17 car.  I enjoyed that spontaneous burst of emotion far more than I do the now lame burn-outs every winning driver seems compelled to do.

While Kenseth cannot admit the truth, I admit I enjoyed watching Carl Edwards passed by car after car late in the race, then running out of gas in the closing laps to end up finishing 22nd in a race that was close to a must win for the Missouri driver.

I would be doing a good imitation of Kenseth if I said it broke my heart to see Brad Keselowski smack into a wall and end up finishing 30th. I suppose it was cheating by the Hendrick and Childress teams that caused his spin.

I was pleased to see Jeff Gordon finish near the front of the field, but he is currently in third in the wild card standings and needs a win, not a solid third place finish. For Gordon to make the 2012 Chase without a win at Atlanta or Richmond, no other wild card contenders can win either race and Kyle Busch needs to run poorly at one or both of the tracks. The odds get longer every week.

Both World of Outlaws late model races were rained out this weekend.  Neither date will be made up.  The Lucas Oil series race at Lawrenceburg Speedway in Indiana was a go, and Jimmy Owens easily claimed the $10,000 winner’s share of the purse by defeating Don O’Neal by almost a straightaway.  John Blankenship, Steve Francis, and Brian Birkhofer made up the remainder of the top five.

I am crossing my fingers but not holding my breath that the Labor Day weekend will hold more racing for me than this weekend.  Right now it is looking like my only race will be riding with Matt to the Nebraska game on Saturday and he drives like that other Matt in NASCAR.  I wonder if Highway 77 south of Fremont is open yet, and if 14th street coming into Lincoln is open. I hope so, or the conversation on the way to Lincoln is liable to sound like Jeff Gordon talking to his crew chief about Dale Earnhardt Jr. at Michigan.

Thanks for stopping by.


Late Model No-No, Lucas Oil, WoO, And I’ll Get By With A Little Help From-My Readers

August 24, 2012 1 comment

Todd Turner, one of the columnists listed the Top Five No No’s For Late Model Features.  Number one was features that start after 11:00 p.m.  That occurs far too often, and not just with late models. 


Back gate promoters have added so many classes, it seems to take forever merely to finish hot laps, let alone heats, consolations, and features.  The difference in talent level in some classes is so great it adds to the length of shows-B mods are the best example of this.  You have experienced modified drivers dropping down a class racing against drivers with far less experience and inferior equipment. Bad things happen when fast cars are mixed in with cars that have great difficulty going through corners, even difficulty keeping a car straight on a straight away. 


I think promoters need to be serious with enforcing the “lone ranger” rule-you spin on your own, you don’t restart before the yellow flag flies, you go to the pits for the rest of that race.  Anything that eliminates caution flags is good-cautions are a time consuming, boring element of racing.  Also, I understand that officials need a break during the evening, so yes a short intermission is needed.  But keep it short.  No more than 15 minutes tops-and don’t say “short intermission” and start racing a half hour or more later. 


Yes, I know I have said these things many times in many ways, and the tracks that were getting it right before still are, and the tracks

that were not getting it right still are too.  As that old song about promoters goes-“when will they ever learn, when will they ever learn?”  Well, it could have been about dirt track promoters.


35 cars took to the high banks of Volunteer Speedway at Bulls Gap, Tennessee.  This track is on my bucket list if I win the lottery, if for no other reason the name of the nearby town.  Billy Ogle crossed the finish line ahead of Scott Bloomquist in a race that saw the two drivers exchange the lead several times.  Don O’Neal was third followed by Chris Madden and Vic Hill.  The 50 lap race was caution free-wow, you don’t see that very often. The Lucas Oil series heads to Lawrenceburg, Indiana tomorrow night for a $10,000 to win show.


WoO has a busy stretch starting tomorrow night with a $10,000 to win show at Winchester Speedway in Virginia.  The series heads to Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania on Sunday, and Little Valley Speedway in New York on Wednesday, both $10,000 to win races.  On September 1st, the WoO drivers will head to the Bull Ring, Tyler County Speedway in West Virginia for a $30,000 to win event.


The SLMR late models visit Junction Motor Speedway tomorrow night and head to Shelby County Speedway the following Saturday. There are only five races left on their schedule for 2012.  The 2012 season is nearly over-the high school football season began last night, and college teams take to the field next week.  The racing is good with many big dollar specials coming up, but by the end of October you have to have Ivan Tracy money to head to Arizona or other southern states to see any racing.  That always bums me-in part because it means I am one year older and I know that I have already watched more seasons end than I will see in the future, partly because it will be at least five months before I sit in the grandstands and hear an 800 horsepower engine fire up again, and partly because it means cold weather is on the way, and I hate the cold.


Of course I have Mr. Henry Ross Meyer to pay attention to in the coming months and I can enjoy every new discovery this amazing young man makes.  There is also college football, college basketball, and the Ron Meyer Reclamation Project to keep me busy.  And knowing my son Matt, I can count on some magic to make me shake my head in wonder. I’ll get by with a little help from my family and friends-sung in a voice far worse than Ringo’s.


Thanks for stopping by.






Bristol, Minnesota, Kansas-NASCAR, USMTS, MLRA

August 23, 2012 4 comments

This weekend the NASCAR action comes takes place in the Great Smoky Mountains area of Bristol, Tennessee.  The Bristol Night Race-so famous it has to be shown in caps. This race used to be the hardest race ticket to get, and was one I would not even consider missing on TV.  The action was non-stop, fast and furious, blink and you would miss something important.  Cautions were inevitable, and drivers were ill-tempered five days before the start of the race.  It was Earnhardt and Wallace and Waltrip and it was fun to watch.


Now it is Kenseth and Keselowski, Edwards and Johnson, and even with a “new”old track it doesn’t have the same feel as the Bristol races of yore.  I’ll watch some of the race, maybe all of it.  Owner Bruton Smith had work done on the track to once again give it the flavor of the old Bristol, but Johnson beating and banging with Edwards, Kyle Busch bumping Brad Keselowski, or Greg Biffle knocking Denny Hamlin into the wall just doesn’t have the same flavor as Earnhardt spinning out Terry Labonte for a win.  That was a jumping off the couch moment, cussing or cheering depending on your favorite.  Kyle Busch knocking Jeff Gordon out of the way on turn four of lap 500 might get me off the couch cussing, but anyone else doing anything similar would probably just draw a yawn and a question wondering if a rerun of “Storage Wars” or “Cajun Pawn Stars” was on.


No, the Bristol night race just doesn’t feel the same, just is not a “can’t miss it” race.  But that is NASCAR for you.  Every change the series makes to better entertain fans seems only to provide a flavor that is always vanilla.  I don’t hate vanilla; I just want something less bland.


Who should I curse with TRODT’s choice of the week?  I’ll say Kyle Busch will win the race and nail down a wild card spot in The Chase.  He has done well at the track in the past and needs a visit to Victory Lane to keep his championship canoe from sinking.  It won’t be easy though as there are about four other drivers desperate to win one of the final three non-Chase races.


My racing schedule looks like whatever is on TV this weekend.  I am not sure what next week will hold.  Matt is making noises about Fairmont or Jackson, Minnesota, but I think he is just trying to irritate me.  I’ve been to Fairmont and like the track and like their pork chop sandwiches and would certainly go there for a USMTS race.  I have never been to Jackson, but wouldn’t mind going even though the race is next Thursday night.  I am going to call his big talk on either race or even both, but I suspect all he is doing is bluffing. Oh well.


He is also making noise about Lakeside Speedway in October for the MLRA race.  Probably just noise, but I wouldn’t mind that.  We could go to the qualifying day at Kansas Speedway and watch both the NASCAR Nationwide and Sprint Cup series practice and qualify, and then head up the road a few miles to Lakeside for the late model show.  Nebraska plays at Northwestern that weekend, so there would be no conflict about getting home late and having to get up early to go to Lincoln for a football game.  Heck that would be a great birthday present, even though my birthday is in September. 


If we don’t go to Minnesota, I am not sure when I will go racing again.  We are celebrating Mr. Henry Ross Meyer’s first birthday on Sunday, September 2nd, so I-80 Speedway that night is out.  I have been thinking of a trip to US 30 Speedway some Thursday, but I have also been getting up every morning at 5:00 a.m. to go to the Fremont Y Wellness Center to work out (I have lost 17 pounds, thank you), and that makes for a short night.  I hate to think that the Friday night of the Tiny Lund in Harlan will be my next night of racing but it may be.


Thanks for stopping by.