Speedway Digest Staff

Speedway Digest Staff

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Hailie Deegan, No. 4 Monster Energy Ford Fusion
 
The ARCA Menards Series is full of action this week. Coming off a short-track race last night on the high banks of Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, now the series heads north to another fast half-mile track, Winchester (Ind.) Speedway. Hailie Deegan loves short-track racing, so doing two of them in three days is a great week for her. Deegan will compete in the No. 4 Monster Energy Ford Fusion for her first start at Winchester in any series.
 
Last night she finished sixth at Bristol after fighting a very tight car early in the race. It improved after each stop for adjustments and was pretty good by the end of the race. The team is not racing the same Ford at Winchester tomorrow.
 
So far this year in 16 ARCA Menards Series starts, Deegan has earned three top-five, 14 top-10 finishes and led 85 laps. With four races to go in the season, she is still looking for her first win and is currently third in the driver point standings, 49 points out of first place and 48 points out of second.
 
The ARCA Menards Series ARCA 200 presented by Crosley Brands from Winchester Speedway will be run on Saturday, Sept. 19 at 3 p.m. ET. The race will be broadcast live on TrackPass on NBC Gold and tape delayed on MAVTV at 6 p.m. The 200-lap race will have two race breaks on, or near laps 75 and 150.
 
Deegan on Winchester: "I'm excited to race at Winchester tomorrow. I think a lot of what we learned at Bristol last night will carry over to tomorrow. The tracks are similar and the weather looks good there so we'll actually be able to practice, unlike last night with the rain. I've never raced there before, so I've watched film from there and having raced at a similar track last night will probably help me the most. It should be a fun race."
 
Taylor Gray, No. 17 Ford Performance Fusion
Taylor Gray will be making his first career start in any series at Winchester (Ind.) Speedway tomorrow in the No. 17 Ford Performance Fusion. Coming off a seventh-place finish at another fast half-mile track last night at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, Gray is ready for Winchester. He feels confident much of what he learned at Bristol last night will apply to tomorrow's race as well.
 
Gray ran well in his first start at Bristol last night, especially considering the rookie had never turned a lap there. The scheduled practice was canceled due to rain, so he spent the first part of the race getting a feel for the track and finding his marks. He finished seventh despite having a right-rear tire going down in the closing laps of the race.
 
In 13 ARCA Menards Series starts this season (including East and West starts), he has achieved seven top-five and 11 top-10 finishes. In the two races where he was not in the top 10, he finished 11th. He is 11th in points despite only running nine of the 16 races this season since the 15-year-old rookie is not eligible to compete at the larger tracks.
 
The ARCA Menards Series ARCA 200 presented by Crosley Brands from Winchester Speedway will be run on Saturday, Sept. 19 at 3 p.m. ET. The race will be broadcast live on TrackPass on NBC Gold and tape delayed on MAVTV at 6 p.m. The 200-lap race will have two race breaks on, or near laps 75 and 150.
 
Gray on Winchester: "I can't wait for the race at Winchester tomorrow. I've never been there, but that looks like a really cool track and it will be a lot of fun. We had a solid race at Bristol last night and I think a lot of what I learned there will carry over to tomorrow's race. We're racing a different Ford Fusion, but I know it will be just as good since Blake (Bainbridge, crew chief) and the DGR-Crosley guys always bring fast Fords to the track. "

DGR Crosley PR

Max McLaughlin continued his hot streak with a third-place finish at Bristol Motor Speedway on Thursday night, his best result in eight starts this season. The driver of the No. 1 Mohawk Northeast Toyota Camry earned his third-consecutive top-five finish and his best-career outing at “Thunder Valley” after leading 19 laps in the second half of the Bush’s Beans 200.
 
The starting lineup was set per the ARCA Menards Racing Series rulebook and positioned McLaughlin 20th on the starting grid. The unenviable starting position was short-lived as “Mad Max” sliced his way into the top 10 by lap nine. A flurry of three cautions slowed the pace in the event’s first 40 laps, but also allowed McLaughlin the ability to crack the top five by lap 50. He continued his run inside the top five until the first scheduled break on lap 72.
 
Crew chief Dave McCarty and the Mohawk Northeast team made slight adjustments to fine tune McLaughlin’s tight balance in the center and a loose condition on corner exit. The changes strengthened the No. 1 Toyota Camry as he was able to challenge for a podium position when a caution flew on lap 105. McCarty and company kept McLaughlin on track when the leaders pitted under the caution and allowed him to restart second on lap 120. He took full advantage of the real estate on the front row and claimed the race lead on lap 122. “Mad Max” led for 19 laps and settled into second at the final scheduled break on lap 150.
 
As other competitors gambled with alternative strategies, McLaughlin lined up fourth for what would be the race’s final restart on lap 162. He muscled his way to third and challenged for the runner-up spot before solidifying his podium position. The third-place effort was McLaughlin’s best career finish at “The Last Great Colosseum” in three appearances and continues the No. 1 team’s strong late-summer run with finishes of fourth or better in their last three starts.
 
Max McLaughlin Quote:
“We had a great run tonight with our Mohawk Northeast Camry. It was a lot of fun to run the second lane, run up front, and lead some laps tonight. This was definitely our best effort of the year and this team keeps getting better each time out this season. All the guys at HRE, Toyota, and Toyota Racing Development have put in a lot of work to improve our program over the summer and it’s really starting to show.”
 
HRE PR
Austin Hill’s second-career NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series playoff quest got off to a challenging start with a 25th-place finish on Thursday night at Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS). The driver of the No. 16 United Rentals Toyota Tundra is still afloat in playoff contention despite the mayhem at BMS and holds a two-point advantage above the cut line with two events remaining in the first round.
 
Hill started the evening from the fifth position but was quickly met with adversity as contact from the No. 52 truck sent Hill’s No. 16 United Rentals Toyota Tundra into the outside wall in Turn 1 on lap six and caused significant damage. The Gander Trucks regular season titlist caught a caution on lap nine and pitted so the HRE team could assess the harm. Hill rode out the balance of Stage 1 with right rear damage and brake issues in 28thposition on lap 55, one lap down to the leader.
 
Crew chief Scott Zipadelli and company continued to make adjustments and repairs under the stage caution to keep Hill in the mix and gain as many points as possible. By lap 100, Hill had clawed his way back into 20th and ran in the 19th position at the end of Stage 2 on lap 110. The Winston, Ga. native had been fighting a severe brake issue, a soft pedal and a tight condition on corner entry during the first half of the event but continued to battle valiantly to return to the lead lap.
 
On the lap 120 restart, Hill posed a formidable challenge for the lucky dog position to regain his lap, but the brake issue relegated Hill to two laps down. On lap 156, he was inadvertently caught in an incident that caused additional left-front damage to his Tundra. Hill managed to reach the checkered flag in 26th position but would be credited with 25th following post-race inspection. Hill and the No. 16 team will head to Las Vegas Motor Speedway, one of their most successful venues, for the second event of the Gander Trucks playoffs in a transfer position, two points above the bubble.
 
Austin Hill:
“I think we could have run in the top-10 tonight with our United Rentals Toyota Tundra, but we had a brake issue all race long. We’re not sure if it was from the damage early in the race or if we had another issue. We’ll go back and evaluate what happened and be ready to try to get a win at Las Vegas. We have a good history at Vegas so I’m ready to get there and see if we can get to victory lane.”
 
HRE PR

Sheldon Creed, No. 2 Chevy Accessories Chevrolet Silverado

START: 8th        

FINISH: 12th

POINTS: 2nd

Notes & Quotes:—

- Sheldon Creed lined up eighth for Thursday night's event and worked his way up third by the conclusion of Stage One. The team elected to stay out to during the stage break to keep track position. Creed pitted during the Lap 83 caution, but was forced to start at the tail end of the field due to a speeding penalty. The team was forced to pit again during the Lap 157 caution to fix damage to the back bumper of Creed's Silverado. Creed rebounded in the limited laps remaining in the race to finish 11th.

- Creed is currently second in the playoff standings, eight points behind the leader and 28 points above the Round of 8 cutoff line.

"This wasn't the night we wanted, that's for sure. We had some speed early on and scored some points there in the first stage, but got shuffled back in the pack a few times and had to come back through the field. My guys work every single week and we'll put tonight behind us and go to Vegas next week and go after a win there."

Zane Smith, No. 21 Chevy Accessories Chevrolet Silverado

START: 6th

FINISH: 16th        

POINTS: 3rd

Notes & Quotes:—

- Zane Smith started sixth at Bristol Motor Speedway and ran inside the top five for most of the first stage, finishing fourth in Stage One. The team elected to pit during the break for four tires and fuel. Smith was consistent during Stage Two and the team did not pit during the Stage Two break to keep their fourth place position on track.Smith was running inside the top five with 15 laps to go when the handling on his Silverado went away and he fell through the field to finish 16th.

- Smith is currently third in the playoff standings, 11 points behind the leader and 25 points above the cutoff line for the Round of 8.

"I can't give you an honest answer as to why we fell back. All of a sudden with 15 to go I just wasn't able to turn in both ends. It was really bad in one and two, with the same feeling as a right front going down. I was just waiting to knock down the fence. I couldn't turn at all and we were fading quick, I was just doing everything I could to hold them off. I appreciate Chevrolet for all they do and the whole Gallagher family. GMS has been working really hard, we ran really good tonight. It just sucks to bring home a 16th-place finish when we ran top five all night."

Brett Moffitt, No. 23 GMS Racing Chevrolet Silverado

START: 2nd

FINISH: 2nd

POINTS: 1st

Notes & Quotes:—

- Brett Moffitt started second at Bristol Motor Speedway, but took over the lead on the opening lap of the race and would hold the lead for the entire first stage, claiming his sixth stage win of the season. The team elected to pit during the stage break for four tires, fuel and a trackbar adjustment to help a tight condition. Moffitt raced within the top five for most of the next stage, finishing third in Stage Two. Moffitt regained the lead on Lap 114, but fell to second with 30 laps to go in the race and ultimately finished second.

- Moffitt led twice for 117 laps, the most laps he has led in a single race in his career. Moffitt was part of a trio of GMS Racing drivers that combined to lead every lap of the race.

- This is Moffitt's seventh consecutive top-10 finish. Thisis Moffitt's fourth second-place finish this season.

- Moffitt currently leads the playoff standings with an eight point lead over second place, 36 points above the Round of 8 cutoff line.

"Last year having fifty lap older tires probably wouldn't have been a problem, but this year they just were wearing out more. We corded the left front on the first stage. Tires got us again for sure, but we had a super fast Chevy Silverado. We need some sponsors on it, as you can see! I'm proud of everyone at GMS for bringing, not just mine, but Sam and Sheldon and Zane. We all have fast trucks in the playoffs here and that's what we need. We need to have four trucks at Phoenix racing for a championship and this is a good start for us."

Sam Mayer, No. 24 All Weather Armour Chevrolet Silverado

START: 17th

FINISH: 1st

Notes & Quotes:—

- Sam Mayer started 17th for Thursday night's Gander Trucks event and had worked his way into the top 10 early on, finishing seventh in Stage One. The team pitted during the break to take tape off the grill and go one round down on the trackbar. Mayer battled inside the top 10 during the second stage, finish fifth in Stage Two. Mayer reported he was a little free and the team pitted for tires and an air pressure adjustment during the stage two break. Mayer took the lead with 30 to go and would go on to win the race.

- This is Mayer's first career Gander Trucks win.

- Mayer becomes the second youngest winner in Gander Trucks history at the age of 17 years, 2 months, 22 days. Mayer becomes the youngest Gander Trucks winner at Bristol Motor Speedway.

- Mayer led once for 30 laps. Mayer was part of a trio of GMS Racing drivers that combined to lead every lap of the race.

- Mayer will return to the No 24 Silverado at Martinsville Speedway in October.

"Bristol dude! I love this place. This is win number three for me here. I don't what to say. I can't thank all the guys at the shop enough. They work their tails off. We fired off so good. We only made one trackbar adjustment all day. That feels so good! I knew the team was capable, everyone that was part of this 24 Armour Guard team. I knew they could do it, I just had to come here and perform. That last pit stop put us in a perfect place and we were able to drive right by all of them. That is such a good feeling. We have two more truck races this year and the momentum is awesome."

Tyler Ankrum, No. 26 LiUNA! Chevrolet Silverado

START: 7TH    

FINISH: 7TH

POINTS: 5TH

Notes & Quotes:—

- Tyler Ankrum started seventh for Thursday night's Gander Trucks race. Ankrum was quick out of the gate and finished Stage One in the second position. Ankrum inherited the lead by staying out during the first stage break. Ankrum led every single lap in Stage Two and claimed his first stage win of his Gander Trucks career. The team had a miscue under caution and pitted late, putting Ankrum back in traffic on the restart. Ankrum battled back to earn his first top-10 finish at Bristol Motor Speedway.

- This is Ankrum's eighth top-10 finish of the 2020 season.

- Ankrum led once for 53 laps. Ankrum is part of a trio of GMS Racing drivers that combined to win every lap of the race.

- Ankrum climbed to fifth in the playoff standings, 19 points above the cutoff line for the Round of 8.

"We had a really fast LiUNA Silverado tonight. I'm proud of my guys for all the work they put in. We got a lot of a stage points, but I feel like we gave the win away with that one mistake getting to pit road. We earned a lot of points and improved our standing heading into Vegas."

GMS Racing PR

JD Motorsports is excited to welcome Food City back as an associate sponsor of the JD Motorsports Chevrolet for Friday night’s Food City 300.

The supermarket retailer is Bristol Motor Speedway’s longest running sponsor and the second longest in NASCAR Motorsports. Food City will team up with Earnhardt to promote their new line of Crav’n Flavor products.

Crav’n Flavor features a wide variety of top-quality frozen meal solutions, along with a complete selection of cookies and crackers. The Crav’n Flavor line is aimed at satisfying cravings for something hearty, savory and delicious.

Throughout the years, Food City has remained a loyal partner with JD Motorsports. The supermarket retailer first teamed up with Earnhardt during the spring NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Entering this weekend’s Food City 300, Jeffrey Earnhardt sits 23rd in the driver’s points standings despite missing the first four races of the season. Never a slouch at the short tracks, Earnhardt’s best-career finish with the team came back in 2014 at Bristol and has been putting together a solid campaign for 2020. The fourth-generation driver will start Friday’s race from the 15th position, exactly where he crossed the line back in June.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday, September 18th for the running of the Food City 300. Be sure to tune in to NBCSN at 7:00 PM eastern time for live coverage from The World’s Fastest Half Mile.

To keep up with Jeffrey Earnhardt, follow along on his social media pages @JEarnhardt1 on Twitter & Instagram and JeffreyEarnhardt on Facebook. For all things JDM, follow along on our social media pages @JDMotorsports01 #TeamJDM.

JDM PR

Chris Hile has been a staple on the high banks of Fulton and Brewerton Speedways for a decade where he honed his skills before deciding to go full-time Super DIRTcar Series racing in 2020. Unfortunately, like many well-laid plans, the Series championship has been postponed until 2021. 

Hile, of Syracuse, a would-be rookie of the year candidate with a decade of experience behind the wheel of a Big Block Modified, sits poised to make the best of a turbulent 2020 racing season with a run for the money at DIRTcar OktoberFAST. 

“We were really excited for this year to go full time on the Series trail, but obviously we're all in the same boat with COVID,“ Hile said thinking back to April. 

It was decided that the Super DIRTcar Series would not go quietly into the end of 2020. DIRTcar OktoberFAST presented by DIRTVision promises six nights of the greatest Super DIRTcar Series action to be seen anywhere this year. 

Chris Hile and his team have committed to taking on the entirety of the event. The demon-red No. 5H will roll out of the hauler for all six nights of DIRTcar OktoberFAST, and here’s how it all came together.

The Track, Grandpa, and Kinsella:

Chris Hile, a 33-year-old Super DIRTcar Series Big Block Modified driver, started his life at the race track, spending each and every weekend there. The rhythm of the Central New York summer beats to the order of weekdays, Hot Laps, Feature, sleep. For many, the interruption has encouraged us to look back on our past. Hile has taken the time to remember his roots. 

“When he was young, my grandfather raced a hobby stock at Fulton and Lafayette Speedway. Later, he and my father took me to the races every week. I know I went to races in diapers so I’ve been around it since I can remember,” Hile reminisced. 

Not only did Hile have his grandfather and dad to look up to at the race track, but he also had his hero Tom Kinsella, a two-time champion of the famed Victoria 200 at Fulton Speedway. 

“I was probably about 13 when we started helping out Tom Kinsella. He was my idol growing up. If there was a race and Tommy was at it, I had his autograph at least four times. He was someone I looked up to,” said Hile, laughing. 

Hile has walked the path many have dreamt. He started as a wide-eyed Tommy Kinsella fan, he took the chance to try a DIRTcar Sportsman Modified and made his way up to become a full-fledged Super DIRTcar Series driver. It’s only a matter of time before “The Hile Driver” will inspire that next young fan to want to jump into a go-kart and go racing. 

From Sportsman to a Decade in a Big Block:

Race fans were anticipating Chris Hile’s rookie season because although he would technically be a rookie on the Series, he is also a threat to win on any given night. Hile has been behind the wheel of a race car for well over a decade. 

“In 2003, when we started dirt racing we went straight into DIRTcar Sportsman Modifieds. There wasn’t a novice class like there is today,” noted Hile. “We raced Sportsman until 2010, which was my first full year in a Big Block. This is my 10th year in a Big Block!”

In those 10 years, Hile has 250 starts in DIRTcar Big Block Modifieds at Fulton Speedway and Brewerton Speedway combined. The No. 5H finished in the top 10 in half of those races, including two Feature wins at Fulton and four at Brewerton. The impressive stats are all a nod to the consistency of his racing program. 

“We’ve always had good help from people. We try to be meticulous with stuff so when the car leaves the shop it always has a chance to win,” Hile said. “The driver is on his own though. It shows that we keep our nose clean that we try to make it to the next race. At the end of the day if you have a waffled up race car you don’t have much.”

One of the many NAPA Super DIRT Week traditions that made the move from the New York State Fairgrounds was the ”Win and You’re In” race on Saturday night before the Billy Whittaker Cars 200. Hile has the distinction of winning the first one to award a position at Oswego rather than The Mile. 

“I remember it was raining and raining, they went out and worked the track and it was the fastest Fulton surface I have ever been on. To watch the World of Outlaws out there, too, was pretty wild. I don’t remember who won the sprint car race but I know we had a good night,” Hile said with a laugh.

Super DIRTcar Series and OktoberFAST track experience

Hile has 48 starts, two top-fives, and 12 top-10s in Super DIRTcar Series competition at tracks across New York, although a few tracks will be new for him during DIRTcar OktoberFAST. 

He was surprised at the number of career starts he has on the Series, but when reflecting Hile said, “Anytime Weedsport, Rollings Wheels, Utica-Rome, Canandaigua came up on the Series schedule we’d go. It’s just crazy to think of how fast it adds up when you look at the numbers.”

Hile has Big Block starts at all the OktoberFAST tracks except Can-Am Speedway and Albany-Saratoga Speedway. 

“I have a couple wins at Can-Am in Sportsman Modifieds but never in a Big Block. I’ve never raced at Albany-Saratoga at all. I have only been there to help out on other teams.”

But learning a new track is very simple for Chris Hile: He either gets it or he doesn’t. 

“I don’t mean to sound arrogant, but as a race car driver, I look at a World of Outlaws Sprint Car driver,” said Hile. “They’ll go to a track for the first time and they are just as quick as a regular. I always say if I can’t figure it out in Hot Laps and Time Trials then I’ve got an issue behind the wheel.”

There is still some homework to be done and racers never give all of their intel away. Tweaking setups night-to-night will be key for winning teams. 

“For setups I try to think of tracks that are similar shapes and sizes. You can grab your notes for gears and things like that,” he said. “You want to know if it has a big bank or is flat. Take those main things into account and you can get pretty close from there. I can go to Fulton, Weedsport, and Albany with pretty much the same setup besides the gears.”

To see how Chris Hile and the rest of the Super DIRTcar Series fare over six races in six nights at six different tracks, be sure to watch DIRTcar OktoberFAST presented by DIRTVision October 6-11. Click here to get your Fast Pass now. 

Keep up to date on upcoming DIRTcar OktoberFAST news regarding special awards, digital fan engagement, track spotlights, and committed driver announcements by following the Super DIRTcar Series on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

Super DIRTcar Series PR

To support strict social distancing guidelines during the INDYCAR Harvest GP weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum and its corporate offices will be closed from Thursday, Oct. 1 through Sunday, Oct. 4.
 
The Museum is scheduled to reopen at 9 a.m. (ET) Monday, Oct. 5. Fans should plan another trip soon to the IMS Museum to see the stunning exhibit, “From the Vault presented by Bank of America.” When the IMS Museum reopens, the exhibit will have an all-new look thanks to a major rotation of storied race cars and automobiles on the Museum floor.
 
The exhibit “refresh” begins Wednesday, Sept. 30, however, so time is running out to see From the Vault presented by Bank of America in its current form.
 
A sampling of must-see vehicles to be part of the refreshed From the Vault presented by Bank of America include:
•The 1938 Gulf-Miller Special – the first rear-engine car to qualify for the Indianapolis 500
•The 1993 Newman-Haas Lola-Cosworth driven by Nigel Mansell
•The 1979 Norton Spirit PC-7 driven by Bobby Unser 
•1907 Italia Grand Prix car
 
The well-received tribute to the life of virtuoso Indy car team owner and entrepreneur Andy Granatelli, “Granatelli: Larger Than Life presented by O’Donovan & McCardel Wealth Management by Raymond James,” also will continue in the Museum’s North Hall and Gallery.
 
Fans Allowed at IMS for Harvest GP, Indy 8 Hour: Tickets are available for the INDYCAR Harvest GP and Intercontinental GT Challenge series’ Indianapolis 8 Hour endurance race Oct. 1-4. Seating is limited to 10,000 fans to conform with state and local public health guidelines. For tickets and event information, visit ims.com.
 
IMS PR

JD Motorsports with Gary Keller is proud to welcome 511Auction.com as a partner with the team as the NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway. Their parent company has partnered with JDM as the team’s apparel sponsor every season since 2018, and they plan to continue the relationship this weekend as a co-primary partner aboard Jeffrey Earnhardt’s No. 0 Chevrolet.

511Auction.com is a premier online auction platform to sell and purchase large items; such as Recreational Vehicles, Watercraft, Farm/Industrial Equipment and Real Estate. Earnhardt returned to full-time competition for the team in May, and despite missing the first four races of the season, he currently sits 23rd in the points standings. Through 21 starts for JDM, the North Carolina native has amassed 10 Top 20 finishes with a season-best of 12th at Texas Motor Speedway.

When the tour last raced at Bristol in June, Jeffrey took care of his equipment and was able to come home with a 15th place finish. This weekend, with points on the line and every position counting even more, Earnhardt looks to notch another Top 15 finish.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday, September 18th, for the running of the Food City 300. Be sure to tune in to NBCSN at 7:00 PM Eastern Time live coverage from The World’s Fastest Half Mile. To keep up with Jeffrey Earnhardt, follow along on his social media pages @JEarnhardt1 on Twitter & Instagram and JeffreyEarnhardt on Facebook. For all things JDM, follow along on our social media pages @JDMotorsports01. #TeamJDM

JDM PR

If you’re into racing, then you must know all about NASCAR and the way it operates. You also must be aware of all the speedways across the US with a rich history in NASCAR. In case you’re not, we’ll tell you that Auto Club Speedway is located in California — one of the states that has a close relationship with NASCAR.

The track has been home to many exciting races since 1997 when Jeff Gordon won his first race. It was also a lucky place for Jimmie Johnson, who has written down six wins here. However, NASCAR now has some other plans for Auto Club Speedway.

Namely, the speedway in question is planned to be converted to a short track, more on which you’ll find out if you keep reading!

 

Photo credit: NK Photography Photo

NASCAR Calls for More Short Tracks

If you’re in doubt about how to spend your pastime, we’ve got several suggestions for you. In case you’re into the iGaming industry, sites like comeongaming.com could be just what the doctor ordered. However, if you’re into slightly more dangerous, but at the same time exciting activity, dive into the world of racing, as there’s always something interesting happening there.

At the moment, we’re witnessing NASCAR’s transformation of Auto Club Speedway in California into a short track. This idea has been out there on the web for some time, but this season might be crucial for the realization of this plan. As we’ve come to know, NASCAR has been on its way to introduce more short track events this year.

One step NASCAR took in order to provide more short track races was moving the All-Star Race from the Charlotte Motor Speedway to the Bristol Motor Speedway. This was the first time such a thing occurred, and it was an obvious attempt to further push the idea of having more short track events.

At the moment, the Richmond Raceway, Martinsville Raceway, and Bristol are the three of NASCAR’s short tracks.

 

The Reason Behind This Transformation

The main reason for converting Auto Club Speedway into a short track is directly tied to staying competitive on the market. Also, a story has been going around about the need for the Auto Club Speedway to get revamped.

However, the redevelopment of a track such as the Auto Club Speedway is also influenced by some other factors, particularly NASCAR’s desire not to let go of the Los Angeles races. Namely, all the races that take place near the LA area are regularly visited by the majority of celebrities, either from Hollywood or the world of sports.

Speaking of sports, the LA football stadium and other sports venues in LA have been strong competitors to the throne regarding popularity, meaning that NASCAR had to do something in order to remain in the picture of spectators.

The Auto Club Speedway is about to get the 2-mile track converted into a half-mile track. The work on the conversion is planned to start after the race scheduled for 2021 and end before the start of the 2022 season. This new project is named NextGen in California, and it requires the track to be ready before introducing the Next-Gen car in 2022.

Hopefully, this will pay off in the long run, as the demand for short tracks has been on and going for quite some time, and doesn’t seem to cease in the near future.

One week after a night that produced 152 car entries, Macon Speedway is back at it this coming Saturday, September 19 with the 6th Annual KerbyStrong race. The event is run in honor of the late Kerby Damery, a former champion at the track. It also benefits the KerbyStrong Foundation, which has been helping cancer patients and raise awareness since its inception.

The headline event of the night will be the 30-lap Pro Late Model feature, paying $1,000 to the winner. Over the first four years of the event, Super Late Models were run as the main event for the KerbyStrong race. Last year, the event was switched to Pro Late Models with great success and an exciting event which saw Chris Dick claim the victory. Additional prize money has been added throughout the finishing positions.

The BillingsleyRewards DIRTcar Modifieds will be running for the $750 top prize tomorrow night. Last week, 23 drivers took the green in an exciting Modified feature that saw Tommy Sheppard claim the victory. Sheppard and Billy Knebel are racing for the championship honors, with Knebel holding the point advantage all season long. Sheppard has been on a hot streak as of late, though, closing the gap week-after-week.

Kerby Damery was also a competitor in the Sportsman division, during his successful career. For the Sportsman Saturday, they will be running for $500 to win with additional money added to the top three spots. It will mark the final event of the season at Macon for the class, which will start preparing for their Springfield Mile event on Sunday, October 4.

The DIRTcar Pro Mods, Archers Alley Street Stocks, and DIRTcar Hornets will also be in action.

Pits open at 3:00, grandstands at 5:00, driver pill draw ends at 5:50, hotlaps start at 6:00, and racing will take the green at 7:00. Grandstand admission is $15, while kids 11 and under are free.

Macon Speedway PR

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