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Posts Tagged ‘world of outlaws late models’

PPV’s Plus Some Silver Dollar Nationals Thoughts

April 27, 2018 1 comment

There are two Lucas Oil Dirt Late Models shows on PPV this weekend. The Busch 50 from Tri-City Speedway in Granite City, Illinois is on Lucas Oil Racing TV tonight at 6:30 p.m. Central Time and is available to yearly subscribers only. Tomorrow night, www.DirtonDirt.com will be showing the St. Louis U-Pick A Part 100 from Macon Speedway in Macon, Illinois. Modified action on the 1/5th mile track will also be shown. Check out the DOD website for details.

I-80 Speedway promoter Joe Kosiski might think I will be knocking the $90 3 day Silver Dollar National reserved ticket package, apparently the only way to guarantee getting the same reserved seats each night. I am not going to. It is a steep price, but it is the price we have to pay to see one of dirt late model racing’s crown jewel events. So, Matt and I will pay-and hope admission prices won’t go up in the future as $90 is plenty for this retiree.

I would ask several things of Joe, though. First, when Lucas Oil announcer James Essex interviews you on the Saturday night of the Silver Dollar Nationals, DON’T announce an increase in the winner’s share of the purse. 53 is a number long associated with the Kosiski family, so $53,000 for a winner’s share of the purse seems appropriate. Plus, unless the winner’s share is increased to $100,000, I doubt any addition would draw a single car more.

$53,000 should remain the winner’s share every year the track hosts the Silver Dollar Nationals. I would like to see the lower half of the purse beefed up, BUT only if a major sponsor could be found to allow the increase-not coming out of the wallets of fans.

The other thing I would ask is to make sure everyone in the grandstand area has a reserved seat. It angers me a lot when people without reserved seats sit in the grandstand. Last year I watched a redneck foursome move three times when people who had the seats arrived. A sign in front of the grandstands saying “Reserved seats only,” is not going to keep anyone without reserved seats from walking up the grandstand steps. I am not sure how many people actually notice the sign, and those who do tend to ignore it.

What is needed? When we go to the Prairie Dirt Classic at Fairbury American Legion Speedway in Illinois, I get a pit pass-the pits are near our back stretch parking spot and I don’t have to walk across the track to get to them. Like every other track, those in the pits at FALS wear a wristband. In this case, it is a plastic wristband and I do not take it off for two days. How about doing the same at the SDN and having people at the bottom of the stairs checking for the wristbands? Perhaps this sounds petty, but someone who paid for reserved seats should NOT have to ask someone who didn’t to move. Yeah, this does irritate the hell out of me.

I am not sure if egos involved would ever allow this, but it would be great if somehow the Silver Dollar Nationals could be co-sanctioned. No, I don’t mean my MLRA and the Lucas Oil Dirt Late Model Series, I mean with Lucas Oil and the World of Outlaws. The WoO Wild West Tour finishes up about the same time as the SDN. Seldom do WoO drivers venture outside their series, but a co-sanctioned event would certainly bring them to Nebraska. I realize I am being greedy wanting all of the best drivers racing in the Cornhusker State, but it would turn a top ten event into a top five show.

Thanks for stopping by.

 

 

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A Knoxville Wrap, Plus For Your Viewing Pleasure

September 19, 2017 Leave a comment

Before calling it a wrap on the 2017 Knoxville Nationals, I would like to make a not so bold prediction for 2018. Josh Richards will finally add a Knoxville victory to his impressive resume. I would say the track owes him one, but in reality it owes him more than one. Richards led much of Saturday’s 100 lapper only to be passed by Mike Marlar on lap 92 and tire trouble ended his night a few laps earlier. Last year Richards was running second and ran out of fuel, and the West Virginia driver does have four runner-up finishes at Knoxville. Yeah, snake bit, Heartbreak Hotel, or any other cliché for a tough loss you want to add.

The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series heads to Brownstown Speedway in Indiana for two shows this weekend. Richards continues to lead the series point standings, followed by Tim McCreadie and Scott Bloomquist.

The World of Outlaws late models have a three night swing through the nation’s heartland. On Friday night the outlaws will be at Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City. On Saturday they venture into Oklahoma for a $10,000 to win show at Salina Highbanks Speedway. They finish the weekend with a Sunday night race at 81 Speedway near Wichita, Kansas. Brandon Sheppard holds a commanding lead in the series point battle, with Chris Madden and Shane Clanton trailing.

Lucas Oil Racing TV will show all three nights of the Jesse Hockett/Daniel McMillin Memorial from Wheatland Missouri, starting on Thursday. The Lucas Oil ASCS Sprint Cars and the WAR Sprint Cars will be featured. Speed Shift TV has multiple events this weekend, starting with 410 Sprints from Susquehanna Speedway on Thursday then going to Williams Grove Speedway on Friday and Lincoln Speedway on Saturday for more winged wonder racing.

If sprint cars aren’t your thing, Speed Shift TV will also show the IMCA Septemberfest from Beatrice Speedway on Friday and Saturday. What will I be watching? Some of the sprints and some of the IMCA action, especially the IMCA stock cars.

Although the 2017 season is coming to an end, Speed Shift TV still has 27 nights of racing on its schedule. Lucas Oil Racing TV has 10 live events scheduled through November. And www.DirtonDirt.com will be showing 11 nights of late models, including the season ending indoor Gateway Nationals in December. Yes, TROTD Speedway will be open for business no matter how cold the Nebraska weather may be.

Thanks for stopping by.

 

 

 

Prairie Dirt Classic-Nothing Like It

July 31, 2017 1 comment

After riding in the Illinois 491 yesterday-the distance between our hotel in Bloomington and home, my mind rebelled at the thought of posting a blog. Instead I took a well-deserved nap.

I am not one who would tell someone he isn’t a race fan because he has never been to Daytona or Charlotte, Knoxville or Eldora. If you are reading this blog you are a race fan no matter where you have or have not been. BUT, since you are a race fan you do yourself an injustice if you never make a pilgrimage to the Prairie Dirt Classic at Fairbury American Legion Speedway in Fairbury, Illinois.

Perhaps the Meyer family endorsement means little to you, but we made the trek last year, returned this year, and on the way home yesterday Matt and I started planning our trip for 2018. AND, I believe for the first time-I can’t remember for sure if I bought a Final Sunset t-shirt, I bought a race event t-shirt. Yes, I did. And I’ll be wearing it in the future. The 28th Annual Prairie Dirt Classic. That is a very big statement from me.

In the best possible context, the PDC at FALS is insane, utter chaos, extreme motorsports, total excitement, and there is nothing else like it in dirt track racing. Heck, make it all of racing.

Start with a staff-mostly volunteers-that want to make fans happy. Add concessions that are reasonably priced. And a midway selling more souvenirs than anyone could possibly want. Throw in a well-prepared track and some great racing and you will see a sight rarely seen at any race track these days-signs reading “SOLD OUT.” I almost forgot-“Welcome Race Fans” signs on nearly every business in town.

Year after year people make the trip to central Illinois from all over the U.S. For three blocks-on both sides of the street, and outside of turns 1 and 2 and the back stretch are hundreds of campers and RV’s. There is a line waiting when campgrounds open, and the 300 available spots are gone long before any racer fires an engine. And golf carts-there are more golf carts driving around the track AND on city streets than you will find at any golf course in the country.

I need to add something to my endorsement. Our seats are 7 rows up on the backstretch grandstands where cars enter turn three. I was hit by mud clods during hot laps on both Saturday and Sunday. That is not a complaint-the last time I remember getting hit with mud at a race track was at Sunset Speedway and you know how I feel about that place.

Our seats not only give us a perfect view of turns 3 and 4, but also a great view of the entire backstretch. I have always defined good racing as side by side racing, but when 29 cars are racing around a 1/4th mile oval that is automatic. How about three wide for second place? Even better, how about three wide for first place? Or the first six cars in a pack so tight that barely a tick of your watch passes as the cars do? That is the PDC at FALS. A fan has to really concentrate to figure out just who is leading the race with cars all over the place.

OK, before I continue on with this love song, I did have one problem this weekend. No, thank you Lord, there were no B-mods on hand. But there were 72 UMP Modifieds signed in. And, my friend Big Show would be thrilled by this-71 of the Modifieds time trialed. That was 40 minutes of my life wasted. I am of the belief that NO support class should ever time trial. Actually I am not a big fan of the feature class time trialing, but that is an argument for another time.

Since UMP does not race in Nebraska I have no clue if time trials for Modifieds running the Summer Nationals is standard procedure. To me, it doesn’t matter if it is. If I-80 Speedway can get the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series to change its format for the Silver Dollar Nationals, FALS can get UMP to agree to no time trials. If they won’t agree, well, “hasta la vista baby.” Don’t let the pit gate hit you on the butt on the way out. The track could do unsanctioned Modifieds as a support class. Make the race open to drivers that have ran a weekly show at FALS at least twice in the season. Pay $3,000 to win and there would easily be 50 Modifieds in the pits.

Yes I do know that UMP and the WoO are owned by the same people. The WoO is NOT going to pull out of the PDC if the track says n Modified time trials. The WoO needs the PDC more than the PDC needs the WoO. The WoO has few crown jewel events, and if they pulled out, the Lucas Oil series would be there in the blink of an eye.

And, change the race order both nights. On Friday, run two of the Modified qualifiers first, then run all the Late Model qualifiers, and end the night with the final two Modified qualifiers. On Saturday, run the 40 lap Modified feature after the 100 laps Late Model feature. People are not coming to Fairbury from all over the country to watch Modifieds race. They want to see the Late Models. I am guessing no more than 10% of the crowd is there because of Modifieds-hey, they do have family and friends so 10% sounds about right. After the final Last Chance Race for Late Models ended, the backstretch grandstands almost emptied before the start of the Modified feature and stayed that way until the Late Models returned.

Kyle Bronson, Scott Bloomquist, and Shannon Babb finished 3rd-4th-5th in the Silver Dollar Nationals feature. Not one of them made the PDC feature in Friday night qualifiers. Neither did Billy Moyer, Don O’Neal, or Earl Pearson. Bronson, Bloomquist, Babb, and Moyer did not qualify in the Last Chance Races either. Amazing.

If you subscribe to www.DirtonDirt.com, you can go to the website and watch a 20 minute video of the 100 lap feature. It will be 20 minutes well spent if you do. So, I’ll skip a race recap and go right to my Random Thoughts:  

-I thought my friend Big Show was a PDC no show, but the track announcer kept on talking about “fat heads” in the backstretch grandstands. Made me wonder if he made it after all.

-Matt keeps telling me that Chris Simpson is the good brother and that Chad is bad. Well, the good brother put on a great show. Late in the race he was second and trying to pass Brandon Sheppard for the lead. He faded some at the end, but still ended up with a 7th place finish.

-I was the first person to write about Devin Moran, in an article for Dirt Late Model magazine some years ago. I think many more people will be writing about the son of Million Dollar Man Donnie Moran. The young Moran set fast time and won his qualifier on Friday, and ended up 3rd in the 100 lapper. Two thumbs up for the WoO Rookie of the Year contender.

-Ryan Unzicker is a solid Late Model driver from El Paso-the El Paso down the road from Fairbury, not the one in Texas. Unzicker vied for the lead early, faded, and then came back strong to finish second in the feature.

-Brandon Sheppard has my vote for driver of the year. Well, he would if I had a vote. Winning the PDC isn’t easy, though the Rocket house car pilot made it look that way. What a week B-Shepp had. From 32nd to 2nd at the Silver Dollar Nationals (that is what garnered my DOY vote), a WoO win at Fayette County Speedway in Illinois on Wednesday, a PDC qualifier win on Friday, and the big win on Saturday. Rocket Shepp has seven WoO feature wins, earlier this summer won five straight UMP Summernationals features, and his earning in the eight days through Saturday amounted to nearly $65,000. His season earning on the WoO circuit are $159,950. Not quite the year Jonathan Davenport had a few years ago, but still a super one.

-I like the farming done by the track prep crew at various times during both Friday and Saturday. Yes, it does at to the length of the show, but it also leads to incredibly competitive racing as well.

-I would like to thank a number of people for a very enjoyable weekend. First and foremost, my son Matt. All I had to do was show up, get in the car to ride, and he did all the rest. I appreciate all he did and his patience with me too. My g.d. left knee is going to be replaced sometime in the next six months, but right now I am terribly afraid it is going to lead me to a fall and far more damage than I need. He really did do so much for me this weekend and I can’t tell him enough how much I appreciate him and all he did.

-I would also like to thank Michael Rigsby for his hospitality. Michael is a class act and yes, he does a fantastic job with www.DirtonDirt.com. Matt counts Michael as a good racing friend, and loves to talk racing with Michael and the rest of the Rigsby Mafia at events like this.

-I would also like to thank Barry Rigsby for two outstanding pork chop sandwiches. Last time I had pork chops sandwiches at a race track was year’s ago at Fairmont Speedway in Minnesota. Those were good, Barry’s were great.

-I would also like to thank Matt Curl, FALS race director and promoter. First for the amazing job he does with this event, but also for the media pit pass. I don’t avail myself of this type of pass often, but then again I don’t do 1700 word blogs very often either. So thank you Matt. I know my Sprint Car fans will disagree and say the best two straight weeks of dirt track racing are the Knoxville 360 and 410 Nationals. Sorry, I think the best two straight weeks of dirt track racing are the Silver Dollar Nationals and the Prairie Dirt Classic.

Tomorrow I am going to post comments from a few people who wrote me about the Silver Dollar Nationals. I am also going to talk about the quality of fields in what I consider to be the top five Late Model events of the year.

For now, once again, if you are a Late Model fan you owe it to yourself to make at least one pilgrimage to FALS for the Prairie Dirt Classic. And yes, it is almost a religious experience. And yes tickets are incredibly difficult to come by, so plan early and watch for when they go on sale. There is nothing like the PDC.

Thanks for stopping by.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lots Of Puzzle Pieces

December 11, 2016 Leave a comment

Bits and pieces you probably already know:

-Dale Earnhardt Jr. has been cleared by doctors to return to the 88 car, and will be back in the saddle for the Daytona 500 in February. I am not sure who is happier, Earnhardt, NASCAR or the Junior Nation.

-In a related story, not sure how or why, Earnhardt Jr. and Amy Reimann are getting married on New Year’s Eve. In order to keep away 47,000 uninvited guests, the location was not disclosed.

-Monster Energy is the 2017 sponsor of what has been known as the NASCAR Sprint Cup series. No word yet on what the series name will be, but I am pretty sure it will NOT be the NASCAR Monster Energy Rest of the Dirt Cup series. No, I have never tried a Monster Energy drink, but there are many days I feel like I good use more energy.

-LATE MODEL RACING LIVE on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, from the Gateway Dome in St. Louis. Also on the card will be Modifieds. If you can’t make it to St. Louis, catch all the action on www.DirtonDirt.com PPV. Coverage starts at about 2:30 p.m. each day, which is somewhat irritating for those of us who work, but there aren’t exactly a lot of other events to watch this coming weekend.

-The St. Louis track will be approximately 1/5th mile, or about the size of the Macon, Illinois oval. If you have ever watched racing from Macon, you know there is going to be action everywhere on the track.

-It took 140 truckloads of dirt to build the indoor track. Tri-City promoter Kevin Gundaker is in charge of track prep and I am sure will do a great job. I do wonder about the noise and the fumes, not unlike the Chili Bowl in Tulsa.

-Josh Richards switching form the Rocket house car is good news for area fans. Richards will now be following the Lucas Oil Series which will visit I-80 Speedway in May for a one night show, and again in July for the Silver Dollar Nationals. Brandon Sheppard will be running the Rocket house car in the WoO series.

-Richards, Bloomquist, Lanigan, O’Neal, Pearson, Owens, Davenport, and McCreadie. I wonder how many national tour champions those eight drivers have won. All of them will be running the Lucas Oil series. Past Knoxville National winner Jared Landers and past Dream winner Dennis Erb Jr. are also planning on being tour regulars in 2017.

-There is no WoO late model race scheduled against the Silver Dollar Nationals this year. The UMP Summernationals ends a week before the SDN. Will a $53,000 to win purse draw some WoO or UMP drivers to Nebraska in July?

-More good news for Midwest racing fans, especially those who think open wheel racing is the cream of motorsports. USAC sprint cars-you know, the ones that don’t look like stubby airplanes-will be heading to Nebraska and Iowa on June 2nd and June 3rd. The action on Friday June 2nd will be at I-80 Speedway, while the June 3rd racing is at Knoxville. Two thumbs up to I-80 promoter Joe Kosiski for making this happen.

-Still more good news for open wheel fans is that the USAC midgets will also make a stop in the Cornhusker State on their journey to the Belleville Nationals. The Jefferson County Speedway in Fairbury will once again play host to size challenged USAC hot rods, this time on Tuesday, August 1st.

-I do like the WoO coming out with random drug tests. Other sports have these tests and I see this as a commitment to safety. Reaction from WoO sprint car drivers was positive.

Enough already. I think I will watch some archived event on Lucas Oil Racing TV. Thanks for stopping by.

 

 

 

 

Prairie Dirt Classic Wrap Up-I Think

August 2, 2016 Leave a comment

More tidbits and random thoughts from the Prairie Dirt Classic:

-Steve Casebolt led the early portion of the race, and honestly was destroying the reputation of the PDC. To say he was dominant would be an understatement. Before a caution came out he was ahead of the second place car by over a straightaway. On lap 40 though his race car expired in a puff of steam. That was bad for Casebolt, but good for everyone who wanted to see a close race.

-Richards took over first place after Casebolt broke, but never built a comfortable lead. The battle for second was a good one between Tim McCreadie, Don O’Neal, Shane Clanton, and Dennis Erb Jr. At one time or another each of those drivers managed to move into the runner-up spot, and the battle for position produced many laps of three wide racing. Good stuff for someone like me who defines racing as a side by side battle.

-Josh Richards is a heady driver. Midway through the 100 lap feature he moved into the line of Bobby Pierce, frustrating the young driver from Illinois, which in turn caused Pierce to try something different and hit the 3rd turn wall. Later when Dennis Erb Jr. was catching Richards, the 1 car moved into Erb’s line as well.

-Two tow trucks were needed to remove Pierce’s damaged machine.

-Matt said someone should produce a t-shirt showing a photo of Scott Bloomquist on a milk carton. The missing from World Group sanctioned events while suspended Bloomquist won $10,000 at a Southern Nationals race at Tazewell Speedway in Tennessee.

-If not for the suspension, Bloomquist, Jimmy Owens, and Brandon Sheppard would have been in Fairbury for the PDC. That would have put 20 of the top 25 DOD drivers in Central Illinois. Would the race have been better if the trio was present? It was plenty competitive anyway, so I can’t say it would have been. The locals might not have fared so well if these 3 drivers of the Eldora 5 had raced.

-Yes, I was cheering for Erb. I am not anti-Richards, but I always want drivers who I wrote about in Dirt Late Model magazine to do well. Erb started 16th and ended 2nd, a testament to how racy this place is. I might have cheered a little more for Richards if he had come to the Silver Dollar Nationals as invited.

-I told Matt I would love to charter a bus to take about 40 Nebraska fans to this race. Years ago-when they were really bad-I did something similar as a project for the North Bend Jaycees, chartering a bus to a Kansas Chiefs football game against the San Diego Chargers. Trouble is, I don’t think I could come up with 40 tickets to the race, even if I could sell that many packages. Some of my friends are as crazy as the Illinoisans (Ill-annoys, or Illi-noise) and the rest would love these raucous fans.

-In his first race since a concussion injury several weeks ago, Steve Francis finished a solid 13th. Hopefully the remainder of the 2016 season will be much better for the Kentucky driver. Yes, I do like Francis.

-Despite damage from the Pierce wreck, Shane Clanton finished 3rd.

-In addition to Erb, movers in the race included Eric Wells (24th to 9th), Rick Eckert (17th to 6th), and Pierce (22nd to 2nd before his wreck).

-Matt heard it first. On the way to the track on Saturday, I predicted Richards would win the race. Matt thought Shannon Babb would win. Babb finished 5th.

-Late models click off laps in the upper 12 second to 13 second range at FALS. My eyes don’t move that fast, so obviously my mind doesn’t either.

-As a card carrying member of the Sunset mafia, the legendary Sunset Speedway will always be my favorite track, but FALS has moved into 2nd spot. Yes, I do think the racing at FALS is better than at Knoxville. The last 20-30 laps at Knoxville are wasted. They darn sure are not wasted at FALS.

A wrap up. Maybe. 3,000 words describing this place should be about enough. FALS was everything I love about auto racing, still love after decades. Yes, there were a few things I wasn’t overwhelmed with, but most tracks I want to spend thousands of words complaining about and just a few praising-the total opposite of FALS. My intent is to visit FALS every Prairie Dirt Classic I am able to. I gotta get a t-shirt yet anyway.

Thanks for stopping by.

P.S. Thanks to TMC for the following link about Ray Guss Jr.

http://www.qconline.com/sports/guss-calling-it-a-career-after/article_16a3cdc2-16de-5de9-aad7-1e3653538d79.html

I will always remember Guss from the days of the NASCAR Busch All-Star Tour. Guss, Gary Webb, Denny and Dave Eckrich, and Joe and Steve Kosiski made the tour a top notch regional series. Eastern Iowa has changed from being a NASCAR hotbed to an IMCA stronghold Guss has done well in the Deery Brothers Summer Series as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prairie Dirt Classic-Part One

July 31, 2016 Leave a comment

Before I begin talking about Matt and Ron’s Excellent Adventure, I need to thank a number of people. First and foremost would be my son Matt. It was his idea to go to the Prairie Dirt Classic at Fairbury American Legion Speedway in Illinois and though I was hot/cold/indifferent about the idea he convinced me to go. And he did all the detail work too-making hotel reservations, planning travel routes, and even finding the perfect parking spot at the track. I have always been proud of my son, but all he did this weekend made for an almost perfect trip-and he had no control over the Modified races at FALS. Thank you Matt.

Next, I want to thank Michael Rigsby. Yes, thee Michael Rigsby of the famous dirt late model site www.DirtonDirt.com. The tickets he gave us were fantastic, and I appreciated the tail gate food and drink as well. I know Matt appreciates Michael’s friendship and I appreciate Michael’s friendship with him as well.

I am tired. We left the track at 12:30 a.m. and drove back to Davenport, Iowa, a 2 ½ hour journey. All the way back to the Quad Cities I was thinking we made a bad decision not staying closer to Fairbury. However, when we left for home this morning, we were that much closer, so even with less than 5 hours of sleep we did make a good decision.

This is definitely going to be at least a two part blog. A short post now and then a nap in a comfortable bed awaits me. There is too much to write about for just one post. Almost everyone who reads The Rest of the Dirt is a serious, hard core dirt late model fan. And if you are a serious, hard core dirt late model fan, at least once in your life you have to make a pilgrimage to the Prairie Dirt Classic at Fairbury American Legion Speedway in Central Illinois.

It is everything I love about auto racing. It is an old fairgrounds track-the front stretch grandstands are well over 100 years old, the atmosphere is electric (so that is a cliché, I can’t think of a better way to describe it), and the racing. Oh my god, the racing. Over and over and over I was doing my imitation of James Essex, saying “Are you kidding me?” OK, I am not quite as polite as James, but what I said was close to his trademark line.

You simply have to see it in person to believe it. Two wide, three wide, even four wide racing, lap after lap after lap. Unreal. I thought Michael and the DOD boys may have been a little bit homer when they named the Prairie Dirt Classic the race of the year for 2013, 2014, and 2015. I now know better. I don’t know if DOD will name this year’s race the best of 2016, but the two nights of racing at FALS was the best I have seen in person in years.

Our seats were along the back stretch, just before the cars entered turn three and right about where the cars left the track for the pits. FALS is a quarter mile black dirt oval and you can see all the racing from any seat in the house. The cars almost fly through the turns and Eric Wells on Friday and Bobby Pierce on Saturday did try to fly. Wells made a valiant attempt at leaping over the scoreboard between turns 1 and 2, and Pierce tried to knock down wall in turn 3. The action happens so fast it is almost impossible to absorb all that is happening, and no it is not because my mind is slowing down.

Take I-80 Speedway and turn the intensity dial from moderate to extremely high, and then throw in a few bottles labeled ‘insanity,’ and you have FALS. At least you have the fans at FALS. They are passionate to the point of fanaticism. And I offer that as a compliment. However, I was surrounded by Fat Heads on Friday.

Yes, Fat Heads. Not auditors working for the Nebraska Department of Revenue, blown up head shots of drivers. Some were photos of favorite drivers. Others were not of favorites. The person sitting next to me had one of Bobby Pierce, with the caption “Overrated.” Love it. They yell and cheer for their favorites-99% of their favorites are FALS weekly drivers, and yell and salute the drivers they do not like-I can’t repeat the yells, and those salutes are often a middle finger extended. And yeah, I even liked that. Perhaps I am turning redneck in my old age. I wish Nebraska fans had as much passion.

And I wish Nebraska late model drivers could compete with tour drivers as well as the Fairbury locals did. Kolby Vanderbergh set fast time in Group A qualifying, and veteran Kevin Weaver set fast time in Group B. Vanderbergh won his heat as did Mike Spatola and Dereck Chandler. Nebraska drives can’t put that on their resumes. Few qualify for the Silver Dollar Nationals feature through the heat races. Not many make it through a B-feature either. Track and SLMR provisionals seem to be the way locals make the SDN field. So that is why Matt and I drive 500 miles to watch a race on a Friday night, instead of 50 to a local track.

OK, not everything at the Prairie Dirt Classic came up smelling rosy. Just like I wrote about modifieds at the Silver Dollar Nationals, I am going to right about modifieds at the PDC. Not with the same anger, but with some annoyance. Oh, and speaking of anger, modifieds, and the SDN, I talked briefly at the DOD hangout with Ben Shelton, and asked him why he participated in the criminal act of out of the car interviews of USMTS drivers racing in a dash. It was not Ben’s idea, he was supposed to interview only two of the drivers, but someone with a lot of USMTS power “urged” that all ten of the drivers be interviewed. I believe most of you can figure out who that was.

In an irritate Ron card game, out of car interviews of drivers in a dash (SDN) trumps two modified non-qualifier scrambles (PDC), but just barely. I’ll write about PDC modified scrambles and more tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by.

P.S. Forgot this Michael. Thanks also for having a place at FALS where Matt and I could meet Tim Christman, Series Director of the World of Outlaws late models and Matt Long, Senior Director of Business Development at Charlotte Motor Speedway. And I liked Matt’s thinking, both Matt Long and Matt Meyer of limiting the number of mods at specials like the PDC, by making the support class an invitation only event.

 

 

Yes, I’m Back

February 23, 2016 1 comment

Yeah, check out this link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pAgnJDJN4VA

 

If you are reading this, you are certainly a loyal reader, more loyal than I deserve. I have an entire catalog of reasons why I have not been writing, some are pretty good excuses, but all are just that-excuses. I need to get my act together and get writing.

First, I am back to being semi-retired and looking for work again. What I thought was going to be a permanent position wasn’t exactly as described by the employment agency and was not the fit I thought it was going to be. Oh well, I keep applying and sooner or later someone is going to get a helluva bargain when they hire me.

Racing? NO, Sunday’s Daytona 500 was not the greatest Daytona 500 ever. How about Pearson vs Petty? Cale vs. the Allison brothers? Dale Earnhardt finally winning the 500? You could even include Darrell Waltrip’s visit to Victory Lane at Daytona. They are calling it the closest ever, but what about the first Daytona 500 when Lee Petty was declared the winner over Iowan Johnny Beauchamp?

It was a good race though. I am not a Denny Hamlin fan-I would much rather Martin Truex Jr., Kevin Harvick, or even Matt Kenseth would have won, but Hamlin’s race winning move was a good one. The Joe Gibb’s Racing Toyota’s were strong all day and it will be interesting to see how that plays out now that the “real” NASCAR season is about to start. The usual Hendrick suspects-Johnson and Earnhardt Jr.-weren’t bad, and Harvick came on strong at the end. It broke my heart that Brad Keselowski only finished 20th. No it didn’t actually. And, Roush Fenway Racing started off the 2016 season where it finished in 2015-middle of the pack and back. Ricky Stenhouse Jr., new leader of The Three Stooges finished 22nd, Trevor Bayne managed a 28th place finish, and Greg “Baffled” Biffle was 34th-my math says that was an average 28th place finish. Too bad.

Surprisingly, I did not watch any of the Georgia/Florida Speed Weeks late model shows. The two national tours ran 15 events, and the big winners were Josh Richards with six checkered flags, and Jonathan Davenport with four. Shane Clanton won two WoO features, Rick Eckert won a single WoO feature, while Scott Bloomquist and Mason Zeigler each won a Lucas Oil show.  No surprise, Richards leads the WoO points by 74 over Eckert, and Davenport is 90 points ahead of Brandon Sheppard in the Lucas Oil standings.

The WoO series is off until the Illini 100 in late March, while the Lucas Oil series gets back on track March 18th-19th at Atomic Speedway in Ohio and Brownstown Speedway in Indiana.

You won’t be seeing my www.DirtonDirt.com Top 25 ballot this season because I no longer have a top 25 ballot. Apparently compiling the ballots of voters such as me was too much work because the DOD Top 25 will now just be a product of DOD regulars. If I did have a vote, my leaders would be:

1-Richards

2-Davenport

3-Clanton

4-Bloomquist

5-Eckert

Yeah, that was real tough.

I have had a fun last week. I have a cold that has lingered forever, and my lower back is so far out of whack I am walking like an old man. To save a few of you the effort, yes, I know I am an old man. I have been walking like a really, really old man, getting a nice shot with every step I take. And I get a jolt every time I cough, which has been often. The icing on the cake of this medical maelstrom was discovering I had a fractured wisdom tooth which had become infected and had to be extracted. And was yesterday.

Now getting a wisdom tooth pulled is no fun. But there are worse things:

-watching Fremont girls JV basketball. How can girls in 9th-10th-11th grade know so little about the game? Especially when the Fremont girls’ varsity team has a shot at winning the state tournament. Like watch them in practice?

-watching wrestling. Other than trying to hurt someone, I don’t get the sport. And, it is the only high school sport in Nebraska that gets two different championships.

-being poor like me and watching the Gem Shopping Network. Jane and Amanda love it though. I am trying to figure out where all the people with $20,000 for a ring are hiding out.

-listening to Marco Rubio.  Here is a link to his campaign video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CzzZkkiJMv8

-trusting Ted Cruz, the Joe McCarthy of the 21st century. Donald Trump was right in calling him the biggest liar.

-shoveling snow.

-listening to a Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Interview.

-driving west on Dodge Street in Omaha at 5:30 p.m. any week day.

-having knee replacement surgery. Not me, Jane. Unlike the governor of Nebraska, we found a good orthopedist in the Cornhusker State, Dr. Randall Neumann of Orthowest in Omaha, and her surgery will be at Nebraska Orthopedic Hospital not in Chicago like Pistol Pete’s. And everyone we have talked with says Neumann is the best. Geez, maybe the bald-headed wunderkind of billionaire Joe Ricketts didn’t have the resources to find who we did.

One thing I will enjoy is lots of basketball this week. Tonight, the Fremont girls in district tournament action. Tomorrow the Midland University men in the GPAC conference tournament. Thursday, the Fremont girls again in the district tournament championship. And Saturday and Monday the Fremont boys in district tournament games. Then next week it is the girls’ state tournament with Fremont winning three games, and the following week the boys’ state tournament with Fremont making it to the semi-finals. Pinnacle Bank Arena, here we come.

No promises, but I will try to write again soon. And thank you for your loyalty in continuing to stop by.

 

 

 

 

 

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