Speedway Digest Staff
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DGR Crosley 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.
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 Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Super DIRTcar Series 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
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