Archive for January, 2017

A Few Questions Answered

January 16, 2017 2 comments

From Mike Pierson: “I was hoping to get your read on the ‘major’ announcements out of JMS, between the sanctioning and the track reconfig they seem to be trying to re-invent that track. Anyone willing to try something gets my approval. Also one of your favorite NASCAR drivers big announcement, tell us what you think Ron!”

Since I didn’t go into work because of the ice storm, I will answer Mike.

About JMS shortening the layout-I think that is a good thing. I have witnessed some really hard wrecks at that track, and anything that can slow the cars down even a little should be welcomed by the drivers.

I am indifferent about the exit being moved from the back stretch to between turns 1 and 2. I don’t think cars can slow enough to turn into the exit after the checkered flag, so it is still going to mean another lap around the oval, though not having to go through the infield might speed things up a little.

The NeSmith crate lates, well that is an NCRA thing. I have never been an NCRA fan, so I am not sure what to make of this change. With Lexington Raceway also switching to NeSmith it does give Central Nebraska drivers an opportunity to run for a National Championship by racing at Salina Speedway in Kansas on Friday’s, at JMS on Saturday nights, and in Lexington to end the weekend. The NeSmith Weekly National Champion gets $10,000 for his efforts, and 10 drivers get national point fund money.

The NeSmith season runs 27 weeks, from late March through September. A driver’s 14 best finishes count for points. Car count does influence points-8 or more cars get full points, less than 8 cars do not. The first tie breaker to determine final point standings is the number of wins in races with 8 or more cars. The second tie breaker is the number of 2nd place finishes in races with 8 or more cars. I would think that both JMS and Lexington would have fields of 8 or more cars.

I do hope this will work for both tracks.

I assume that Mike is wanting to know what I think of Carl Edwards retiring. I would say that Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s concussions played a part in his decision. Even with all the improvements in safety, it is still a risky business. Edwards is in good health, I would say he is financially secure, perhaps he will have announcing opportunities similar to Jeff Gordon, he has had a successful career, and the time demands for Cup drivers are insane and very hard on families. Add it all up, and I would call this a good decision.

I saw an article on Edwards stating that he has had a Hall of Fame career. That is likely the case. Though he never won a Cup championship, he did have six Top Ten point finishes, won 28 races, and led thousands of laps. He did have a Nextel-now XFINITY-Series championship. I have never been a big fan of Edwards, but I certainly can see him in the Hall of Fame someday.

I don’t see him “retiring” and then racing 70+ times in a season like Tony Stewart is scheduled to do in 2017. While no schedule has been published yet, Stewart will race sprint cars, a TQ Midget, and late models. I suspect he will race often at tracks he owns-like Eldora, and in the All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Car Series which he also owns. I wonder if someone like Joe Kosiski could talk Stewart into appearing at the Silver Dollar Nationals this summer. The expense might be greater than the return, but it would be fun watching Stewart race against Bloomquist, Richards, Davenport, etal.

And if you watched the Chili Bowl on Saturday, that was Stewart on a tractor doing track prep work.

Did I answer you OK, Mike? Thanks to Mike-and you-for stopping by.







Categories: Uncategorized

Late Models, Midgets, And PPV’s

January 15, 2017 1 comment

When Craig Kelley chastises me for not blogging, it has been far too long since my last post. Normally I would be writing about the late model racing in Arizona, but a certain young Illinois driver with a famous father has won three of the four features there. Let’s just say that my feelings about Bobby Pierce are not unlike those of the Fairbury American Legion Speedway back stretch denizens. I would not shout obscenities at him as he roared by, but I would likely think them. I would not wave one finger greetings either, and I would not make up nasty signs about him, but I would not get upset if he broke either.

Pierce has put himself in position for major bonus money. With Saturday’s rainouts creating a Sunday double header, Pierce needs just one win to collect a $50,000 bonus from Keyser Manufacturing. Win both features today would double his bonus money to a whopping $100,000. With his other wins and a 3rd place finish in a race won by Billy Moyer-the 59 year old retired Billy Moyer-plus point fund money, Pierce would leave Arizona with $135,000. That is like 2015 Jonathan Davenport money. And if he decides to stop in Las Cruces, New Mexico on his way home, he could pick up another $20,000 next weekend at Southern New Mexico Speedway. Wow.

You can still purchase PPV’s for the two Phoenix races today, and for just $39.99 you can get all three of the New Mexico races. It beats worrying about the ice storm headed our way.

Congratulations to Andrew Kosiski. First, for deciding to make the trip to Arizona to compete against top flight competition. The trip wasn’t about winning or even top ten finishes for the 3rd generation driver, it has been about getting better. Kosiski did not qualify for either of the opening week features, but he did make the Wednesday and Friday features this week. Two thumbs up for Joe’s son.

Like I mentioned about, the only driver to keep Bobby Pierce out of victory lane has been Billy Moyer. 59 year old Billy Moyer. He is “retired,” sort of, meaning he will limit his racing to events he enjoys. Moyer finished 2nd at last year’s Silver Dollar Nationals. He does have local connections plus family in the Des Moines area. It might be worth the effort for I-80 promoters to work with Moyer’s Nebraska connection to get him to the 2017 SDN.

If you don’t subscribe to Lucas Oil Racing TV, now might be the time to do so. The site will be showing two nights of the Super Bowl of racing from Golden Isles Speedway in Brunswick, Georgia and six nights of the Winternationals from East Bay Raceway Park in Tampa. They will follow those shows with one last Lucas Oil late model show, this from Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Florida. That is nine nights of the best late model racing-that alone would make the subscription worthwhile. A year’s subscription cost just $59.99-and there are many more live racing shows scheduled throughout the year (11 more Lucas Oil late model shows plus plenty of ASCS sprint car action), and there is much more than just the live shows too. However, if you are cheap-and I am thinking of one person-you can buy a month’s subscription for just $6.99. Nine nights of Lucas Oil late models for just $6.99. That is one helluva deal.

Last night I watched the Chili Bowl on Lucas Oil Racing TV. I can see why the event is so popular with fans. Action, action, and more action. The Lucas Oil show was only 2-C features, 2-B features, and the A main, and started at 7:30 p.m., but the racing had been going on all day, starting with O features. Amazing.

The names of drivers running C and B features and not making the A main is mind blowing. Kyle Larson, Justin Allgaier, and Brady Bacon did not make it out of the C features. Dave Darland, Sammy Swindell, Wayne Johnson, Joey Saldana, Donny Schatz-yes THEE Donny Schatz, Chad Boat, Jac Haudenschild, and Tim McCreadie were not among the 12 drivers to advance from the B features. Tell me how many promoters would not love to have those drivers in a race at their track.

Christopher Bell won the A feature, with Daryn Pittman finishing second. And NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. won a B feature and finished 16th in the A. Ha, the Roush Fenway Racing driver has a future in open wheeled racing if the NASCAR Monster Cup series does not pan out for him.

Keep warm-and hope the weather forecasts are wrong-a quarter to a half inch of ice is not funny. If I can’t make it to work, my employer has made arrangements to load work software on my computer to enable me to work on payroll. That is truly telecommuting, unlike one individual who considers telecommuting to be staying home, watching Bonanza reruns on METV, and occasionally checking in with the office.

Thanks for stopping by.