Gas City Speedway 05/17/2019 (Local show) and Lawrenceburg Speedway 05/18/2019 (BOSS):
What a fun start to the season! We have started the year off with a 12th, 5th, 10th, 7th, and 10th place finishes. The car has had alot of speed and we are truly having fun. This was our first trip to Gas City Speedway in eight years. I forgot how dark the dirt truly is! 30 cars showed up on a slightly rainy Friday night.
We lucked out into the heat race without a Gas City feature winner in it and were able to start and finish in the first place position. The track was super tacky after a rain shower came through in hotlaps. The car had a ton of speed and we were ready to run the feature.
We pulled the "7" pill out of the bag which unfortunately puts us behind a lot of the fast guys. I spent the first 5 laps battling with Dave Darland and Clinton Boyles, hoping to keep with them as they drove through the field. Clinton was able to keep moving forward while Dave and I slowly picked off two slower cars. I tried high and low to get around Dave but the juiced up Gas City Speedway made it kind of narrow. While arguable faster than Dave Darland, Tyler Hewitt, and Shane Cottle, we finished the race in 7th place and on their butts.
As my saying goes, happy but not satisfied.
At Lawrenceburg, the weather was HOT and it was obvious that a lot of cars were going to show up. 37 cars piled in and it always amazes me how many cars follow the BOSS series.
We drew a tough heat but luckily the Burg let us qualify with the top 4 inverting in each heat race. You can find the times here (West Hold Timing). Qualifying P2 in our group and P2 overall, we were happy with how the night was shaking out.
Starting P3 in the heat race behind Aaron Farney and Scotty Weir, we knew we were in for a battle. Unfortunately for Aaron, his car broke on the 4th lap and he retired from the racing putting us in P2 on the restart. I battled with previous feature winner Nick Bilbee for a few laps until he finally got me coming to the white flag. Finishing P3 in the heat race and allowing us to start P10 in the main event.
When 37 cars roll in to your home track, starting 10th and not having to run a B-main is a win in itself. I got a HECK of a start and jumped up to the 6th position by lap two. There was a wreck where Joss Moffat and Matt Westfall got together that created a red flag. Unfortunately the track dried up a lot during this red/yellow flag as the cars were pushed back off. I tightened the car up to compensate but it truly changed the dynamic of the track. After making a mistake on the restart I settled in 10th place and rode there for the rest of the race. We were equally as fast as the 5th-6th place cars but were never fast enough to go and pass them. Nick Bilbee was on another level and won the race.
Look for us at Twin Cities Raceway Park on 05/25/2019.
Lawrenceburg Speedway 04/06/2019 – Local Sprint Show:
This was our first race of the year and after 5 months and 3 weeks off, we were ready to start the season. Indiana winters are so long that you almost have to relearn how to race each spring.
Hot laps was great and the track was dry. We were in group #1 with a pill draw of 20. We weren't quite sure where that would put us so we just focused on the track. Overall we were the quickest car in practice but the track was wearing quickly.
Starting 5th in the 1st heat race, the race was on. The track was MUCH drier than anticipated and we quickly realized we were not tight enough. The line was around the bottom and it was going to be difficult to pass many cars. After spending about half the race in 4th place, Shawn Westerfeld passed me and we brought it home in 5th. We're used to Lawrenceburg where you run around the top hammer down. This definitely was not it. Finishing 5th would put us starting 13th in the main event.
Since Dave Rudisell was nervous about the soft spots (He added 3,000 yards of clay this off-season), he continued the trend of keeping the track dry for the night. Which unfortunately is not our strongest suit. Starting 13th in the main, we went to work. At the halfway point I was working under friend and fellow driver Garrett Abrams when he changed his line to running the bottom. This change slowed me down a little and allowed Michael Fishchesser to inch around me on the outside. Thinking that maybe that line was taking rubber, I followed him. I found that this was NOT the case and it allowed Isaac Chapple underneath me, falling back to 12th.
We finished the night with a 12th place finish which is not great, but when considering it was our first night back out, we'll take it. The car is in great shape and we're ready to go again. Hopefully we can get back to our cushion running ways next week at Lawrenceburg Speedway on 04/13/2019.
Lincoln Park Speedway 06/23/2018 – Local Sprint Show:
Video can be found here – (Lincoln Park Speedway 06/23/2018)
Holy Cow! 49 cars showed up this week as every other track in the area rained out. We strive for top ten finishes and it will be a struggle just to make the show.
Hot laps went well and the car was a rocket. I pulled a nice wheelie and Bubba’s pics on Facebook got a couple cool pictures of it.
We drew a 69 out of 70 pills meaning we would be starting last in our heat race. Six heat races and the top two transferred. Three B-mains and the top three transferred.
Starting 8th in the 5th heat race, the race was on. Quickly after lap one I had gained two positions. Stalking Travis Berryhill, I squared up to pass for fourth and I hit the infield tire off of turn four. (Watch the video, it’s kind of funny!) Creating a debris caution, I was able to catch back up with the field. I started to pass Travis when we made contact off of turn four. I slid up a little and the video shows him coming down a little. We met Right Rear tire to Left Rear tire. Unfortunately ending his night as it ripped the drive train right out of his car. That yellow flag put me ready to battle for third place. On lap six I passed for third place and brought it home third.
Unforunately, third in the heat race didn’t put me in the main event. Starting P2 in the B-main, I was able to lead every lap and bring home the checkers. It was a long B-main with lots of yellows. So many that we used 10 gallons of fuel in a twelve lap race.
The first place B-main finish put us starting P14 in the main event. We were fast right off the bat passing three cars in the first three laps. After battling with Jeff Bland and Jadon Rodgers, I fell back a position as I was being held up. I should have gone back to the line I was running in the B-main but I never managed to do it. We brought the car home in one piece finishing 14th. It felt like a top 10 with so many cars at the track.
We were very happy with the car’s responsiveness and I was given kudos by the whole team on my continued aggressiveness throughout the night.
Look for us back at Lincoln Park Speedway on 06/30/2018.
Lawrenceburg Speedway 06/16/2018 – Local Sprint Show:
Video can be found here – (Lawrenceburg Speedway 06/16/2018)
Surprisingly, only 16 cars signed in this week.
In Hot laps, we were fast. Overall we were second quick to previous track champion Shawn Westerfeld.
Starting P3 in our Heat race, we knew we had to take advantage of this excellent starting position. Our heat race had recent Lawrenceburg Speedway winner Garrett Abrams, Shawn Westerfeld, and Michael Fischesser. The track was fast through the middle and Garrett, and I took advantage of it. We both were able to pull away from the field and finish in the top two. Guaranteeing us a spot to redraw for the top four positions.
Starting P4 in the main event, we threw for the fence on the car set up. Unfortunately, the track did not dry out near as much as we expected. After battling for a few laps, I found that my left rear tire would carry getting into the corner and the car did not feel right. After dropping a few positions, I decided I needed to stop and figure out if something was broke on the car. I thought for sure that something was. After restarting 15th, I was able to work my way back to a 9th place finish. We couldn’t find anything wrong with the car and believe that we just had the car too tight. It was tighter than we had ever had it at Lawrenceburg Speedway. Finishing 9th wasn’t what we wanted, but we sure did learn something out of it.
As long as the rain stays away, we’ll be at Lincoln Park Speedway this Saturday 06/23/2018.
Twin Cities Raceway Park 06/09/2018 – Local Sprint Show:
Video can be found here – (Twin Cities Raceway Park Video)
16 cars signed in to the races where the rain was taking most tracks out of contention. It threatened to rain the WHOLE day and we’re fortunate to even get the show in. The track was much drier than expected and Tim Keithly was apologetic about it. He had put a lot of work into the track.
In Hot laps, we were fast. Continuing to keep pace with Drew Abel, we knew we were another threat to win. My GPS running watch had me at a top speed of 85 MPH.
Qualifying was peculiar as the timing light said we qualified a 16.98. Both the In-Car Video and my wife’s video from the grandstands show we were approximately a 15.7. We’re not sure where the discrepancy was, but we think that maybe we should’ve been a 15.98? We’re not sure, but we will be monitoring the situation closely. Qualifying P12.
Starting P6 in our Heat race on a one-groove track around the top was going to be a challenge. After battling with Jake Scott for a few laps, I caught a break and passed him after he hit the wall off of turn 4. Was able to finish P4.
Starting P8 in the main event, we knew were up for a challenge. We tightened the car quite a bit, but the plan was to run the cushion still. For the first five laps, Moffat and Applegate threw a slider every corner. I felt stuck watching and needed to get by. Twin Cities does double-file restarts, and after a lap seven yellow, we were thrust back into action. Justin Owen collided with Applegate after a racing incident where we initially though Owen threw a bad slider. After watching the video, Applegate came down quite a bit, and it turned into a racing deal. Applegate flipped multiple times, and I collided with him trying to avoid the wreck. It mangled our nose piece, but the officials motioned that I would be getting my spot back. I tightened up the car with my in-car adjusters and continued. Taking advantage of these double-file restarts, I found myself up into third place. Logan Hupp had a right rear tire going down, and we believe that propelled him to the win. He was able to run the middle of the track like no one else there. He quickly climbed from 5th to the lead after a few cautions broke his way. We finished the race P4 and can’t be more excited with how the start of the season is playing out. We just need to keep improving.
As long as the rain stays away, we’ll be at Lawrenceburg Speedway this Saturday 06/16/2018.
Lawrenceburg Speedway 06/02/2018 – Midget Week:
Video can be found here – (Lawrenceburg Speedway Video)
30 cars signed in to the races on this wonderfully warm afternoon at Lawrenceburg Speedway. The USAC midgets were still in town, and they always make the track different at Lawrenceburg. Midgets carry momentum differently and always make the cushion feel different than usual.
In Hot laps, we were QUICK TIME and second overall to Brady Bacon. For our first time back at the Burg, it was great to feel the speed. My GPS running watch had me at a top speed of 105 MPH.
Our Heat Race was STACKED. Three past champions in Jordan Kinser, Joss Moffat, and Shawn Westerfeld all started in front of me. All while also having Stevie Sussex and Issac Chapple. You could run anywhere in turns three and four but turns one and two were all about the cushion. The top four transferred to the main event, and I was in a heated battle with Issac for Fourth. After a mistake by me, Issac kept fourth and transferred on to the main. I finished 5th and was slated to start third in the B-Main.
In the B-main, I started third and quickly found my way in second behind Logan Seavy. Logan is a Hot Shoe and showed it in the Briscoe #5. We quickly found ourselves in lapped traffic when Logan’s motor lets loose and the yellow comes out. After getting a pretty good restart, I took off in the lead. With two to go, Clinton Boyles passes me, and we transfer to the main event finishing P2.
The Main Event created another hurdle as the midgets had dried the track out. It was a dusty first few laps and I got into a good battle with Kody Swanson and West Coast USAC veteran Charles Davis Jr. Quickly Kevin Thomas came around to start lapping cars and we fell, victim. The car was fast, just not as fast as those top USAC guys. Video review shows I was missing my line and not hitting the cushion like I should’ve been. The track took rubber and destroyed both rear tires. We finished P18.
The car is in good condition and we’ll be back in action 06/09/2018 at Twin Cities Raceway Park.
Lincoln Park Speedway 05/31/2018 – Midget Week:
Video can be found here – (Lincoln Park Speedway Video)
33 cars signed in to the races on a rainy Thursday afternoon at Lincoln Park Speedway. The USAC midgets were in town, and we’re not used to playing second fiddle. Mom drew us an 18 out of 70 pills so we knew we would start near the front.
Hot laps went well, and the car reacted as we would expect it to. Starting P3 in heat four created a challenge. USAC/CRA winning driver RJ Johnson was on the front row and USAC champion Brady Bacon was starting 5th. Usually, the cushion is the fastest way around the track, and that was what we set up for. After a few laps, I had fallen to fifth battling with Shelby VanGilder for the last transfer position. I had a run on her twice, and she changed her line from running the bottom to running the middle. The second time she did it, 6th place running Rob Caho was able to slide by us both and into the last transfer position. Finishing P5 and a little disheartened, we were off to the B-main.
It was do or die and only the top two cars transferred to the main event. Starting P2 in the B-main next to T-Mez, I beat him into one, and the goal was to run around the bottom. After leading for a few laps, T-Mez found a way around the top and started pulling away. I was loose off of turn 4 and trying to find a better line. A mid-race yellow let me re-evaluate my line, and I found something. By holding the car real tight around the bottom in turns three and four, I was able to take the lead back for a couple of laps. I made a small mistake in corners three and four, and T-Mez got back around. Finishing P2, we were in the main event.
Starting P20 in the main event, we knew it was going to be a challenge. We tightened the car up a lot hoping to run around the bottom or middle of the track. Unfortunately, T-Mez parked the car up on the cushion on lap 5, and it created a chain reaction. Nate Mcmillan swerved to avoid, and Tony DiMattia collided, and I had nowhere to go but climb Tony. Braking the left front radius rod and bending the drag link. Ending our night in P19.
It's unfortunate, but the car handled well. On to the next one. The damage to the car was not too severe and shouldn’t cost too much to buy the replacement parts.
Look for us at Lawrenceburg Speedway this Saturday 06/02/2018.
Lincoln Park Speedway 05/19/2018:
Video can be found here - Lincoln Park Speedway 05/19/2018
35 cars signed in to the races this week at Lincoln Park Speedway. Our original plan was to run with the Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series at Lawrenceburg Speedway, but after extensive rain, they canceled. Luckily for us, Lincoln Park Speedway was the only track to get the races in. Early in the night, Keith Rooney of Keith Rooney DDS brought his son and a couple of friends to enjoy the night with us. We were very excited to have them out after they spent the whole morning at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
We made a suspension change this week to help the car rotate in the middle of the corner when the track is heavy. It was evident that the car handled better in hot laps, although the track was also much drier than that of the previous two times there. We presume this dry track was because of the looming rain in the area.
Starting 5th in the third heat race, the officials put Joe Stornetta to the back (I hear for not listening to the officials on the raceceiver?). This allowed me to line up third. I had a decent start and found myself going into turn one in third and all over Nate McMillan. The bottom of turn three was tacky, and I used it to pass Nate. Knowing the cushion was where I needed to be, I quickly changed my line in hopes of catching Stevie Sussex. I had a pretty consistent six laps where I slowly was gaining on the leader. On the last lap, I missed the cushion in turn two and that allowed a charging Joe Stornetta to catch and pass me into turn three. Had I not missed the cushion in turn two, I would've kept my four car length lead over third place. Finishing the heat race P3, I was in the show.
In the main event, the track was similar to what we had in the week prior and we decided to run the cushion again. Finishing P3 in our heat race landed us a 13th place starting position in the main. We set the car up similar to the way we had the week prior and were not disappointed. Slowly but surely I was able to pass cars while running the cushion. Brandon Mattox flipped on lap two (he was OK), and both T-Mez and AJ Hopkins wrecked on the restart. With a little luck, I was up to 9th. I started passing cars, and the race would go green to checker. I was once up to 5th or 6th, but points leader AJ Hopkins and T-Mez were able to charge back through the field to finish in front of me. Those two guys sure know how to rip around LPS, and I tried to learn from them as they went by, copying their line. All in all, we're pretty happy with our 8th place finish and look forward to continuing on the success we've started the year with.
We will be at Richmond Raceway in Richmond, Kentucky next week with the Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series. Come on out and join us.
Lincoln Park Speedway 05/12/2018:
Video can be found here - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ws_d23rqwFw
22 cars signed in to the races this week at Lincoln Park. There were six different tracks racing, and we wondered how many cars would make the trek. After starting the year with a damaged motor, we had no expectations on the night except roll the car back into the trailer.
Hot laps did not seem to go well as the track was very heavy. Our car tended to push midway through the corner, and our thought pattern is that we did not have enough stagger. Next time at LPS we plan to start with an extra two inches of stagger. It's a confidence booster when the car runs well in hot laps.
Angi drew pill 38 out of 70 which started us fifth in the second heat race. We loosened the car a little from hot laps hoping it would take care of the pushy condition we found in hot laps. After the opening lap, I fell to sixth place as I struggled to find my way around the white 1H car. During this time the cushion was the place to be, and I was running the bottom. After taking a few laps to get around the 1H car, I set my sight on Shelby VanGilder. Still running the bottom, I was able to pass her and move to 4th. Heat races are only eight laps, and I was not able to catch and pass third place running Brady Ottinger in time. Finishing P4.
With three heat races, finishing 4th put us starting 11th in the main event. Chris Phillips was able to get around me on the first lap and running 12th I focused on remembering how to run the LPS cushion. Within a few laps, I was able to pass Brady Ottinger and Lee Underwood to move up into 10th. After spending the next ten laps sometimes hitting it right, sometimes making mistakes, we had a red flag where I was able to regroup. I had caught 8th place Josh Cunningham and 9th place Chris Phillips but had not found an opportunity to pass them. During the red flag, I assessed my line and formulated a way to get faster. Another quick red on lap 15 allowed me to confirm my plans to pass 8th and 9th place. By running the cushion in turns one and two, I was able to pass Chris Phillips and the bottom in turns three and four I was able to pass Josh Cunningham. By going back to the cushion, I was able to set my sight on 7th place running Nate McMillan. Within a few laps, I caught and passed him running the bottom in turns three and four. 6th place running Tim Creech had over a straightaway on me and catching him before the finish was going to be tough. He seemed to be struggling in turns three and four, and I thought that would be my chance if I could get there. Unfortunately, the race ended before I could get to him but we were satisfied with our 7th place finish. The car ran great, and the crew chief had the car hooked up.
Look for us next weekend (05/19/2018) at Lawrenceburg Speedway running with the Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series. Last year we ran very well with this series, and we hope to continue that.
Have a great day!