Speedway Digest Staff

Speedway Digest Staff

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NASCAR weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (NHMS) proved to be successful for local nonprofits with the dedication of both the New Hampshire Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities (SCCNH) and the many volunteer groups who helped fundraise more than $127,000 during the July 17-18 Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 event.

SCCNH, the official charity of NHMS, hosted four events over the course of the week, including traditional favorites Laps for Charity and the Wicked Good Live Auction, and two new opportunities, Sign the Track Wall Banner and the 50/50 Raffle sponsored by PPG. These events helped SCCNH raise more than $100,000 for local children’s charities and groups.

 

“I am blown away at the sheer generosity of New England race fans,” said Danielle Cyr, director for SCCNH and director of marketing for NHMS. “I cannot wait to add these funds to the money we’ve already raised this year and will distribute as grants this December.”

 

Each December, SCCNH distributes grants to local nonprofit organizations in the region. In 2019, 51 grants were distributed totaling $55,375, and since its inception in 2009, NHMS and SCCNH have distributed more than $1.8 million supporting more than 808,000 children across New England.

 

Teams of motivated fundraising groups, many of which are from New Hampshire or New England, also help NHMS over the course of NASCAR weekend. From grandstand cleaning to landscaping to parking and concession stands, these volunteers help make the speedway look its best from green flag to checkered flag. In return, these groups are paid as a way to fundraise toward the nonprofit organization they represent. This year, 20 volunteer groups raised nearly $28,000 during race weekend to help their chosen nonprofits.

 

Upcoming events for SCCNH include:

For more information, please contact New Hampshire Chapter Director Danielle Cyr at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Follow Us:

Keep track of all of the New Hampshire Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities events on the charity website and by following on Facebook (@SCC.NH), Twitter (@SCCNHMS) and Instagram (@SCCNHMS). To donate directly to SCCNH, please visit SpeedwayCharities.org/Donate/#NewHampshire.

 

NHMS PR

The third Ventura Raceway stop of 2021 awaits the Western Midget Racing presented by Masters Design and Construction series, serving as the 13th round of the championship. The stock production-powered Midgets are competing in more than 20 events this season with the best 12 finishes counting towards the title.

Brentwood’s Blake Bower and Fresno’s David Prickett have split the Ventura rounds thus far, each with an 18-car field in attendance. Arizona’s Cory Brown has finished fourth in both Ventura features this year while 2019 Ventura WMR champion Randi Pankratz has a best finish of third at her home race track. Las Vegas’ Kyle Hawse has earned a best finish of seventh at Ventura while Santa Paula’s Megan Moorhead has scored one of her eight top-fives this year at the dirt track situated next to the Pacific Ocean.

Prickett leads the championship chase but Bower enjoys the best per-race average through his nine starts. They have combined for nine victories through the 12 races of the season, with wins for Brown, Darren Brent of Lakeside, and French Camp’s Sage Bordenave as well.

Saturday’s action will be televised live on FloRacing.com or tickets can be secured at the gate. The Western Midget Racing series then rolls onto Ocean Speedway on July 30 and Petaluma Speedway on July 31 as well.

For more information on Western Midget Racing, visit them at www.WesternMidgetRacing.com or follow them on Facebook!

Western Midget Racing is presented by: Masters Design and Construction, Rockwell Security, Rams Racing, Hoosier Racing Tire, Extreme Mufflers, and FTK.

WMR PR

Three straight.
 
That’s the mission for Gus Dean and DLP Motorsports as they filed a last-minute entry to compete in Saturday night’s Carolina Pro Late Model Series event at Dillon (S.C.) Motor Speedway. 
 
Dean, a native of Bluffton, S.C. has transitioned well to the tour winning in his last two Carolina Pro Late Model Series starts in the Prelude to Darlington Raceway at Florence (S.C.) Speedway in May and most recently at Franklin County (Va.) Speedway earlier this month.
 
With the confidence of his DLP Motorsports team, Dean is confident about his chances to bring home another trophy in the 100-lap showdown Saturday night.
 
“I’m having a blast right now in the Carolina Pro Late Model Series,” said Dean. “The series is great itself with a lot of great people. The competition is also stout but the guys at DLP Motorsports are bringing me fantastic race cars capable of leading a lot of laps and winning.
 
“Our goals haven’t changed. We’re just going to run our pace and hope the result is the same as our last two starts.”
 
Like Franklin County, Dean is no stranger to Dillon (S.C.) Motor Speedway.
 
During his competition in the X-1R Pro Cup Series (now CARS Tour), Dean, who recently got engaged to his fiancé Briar Foran competed in two events where he carried two top-five finishes including a track series best of second in 2012.
 
The following year, he finished a competitive fifth after starting sixth driving both races for his family-owned Dean Racing team.
 
While it’s been a while since Dean has visited or competed at the 4/10-mile oval, he is confident that his track knowledge will be an advantage.
 
“Dillon is a unique race track, but it seems to fit my driving style,” added Dean. “The track is somewhat egg-shaped with Turns 3 and 4 much different than Turns 1 and 2. With that being said, you have to be able to get into a solid rhythm to continue at a good pace.
 
“Buggy” and all the DLP Motorsports are very comfortable with knowing what I need in a race car, and I think we’ll have a good setup that we can start with and roll from there.
 
“As I have said before, we’ve certainly have had many blessings in racing, but nothing feels better than capturing that checkered flag and climbing out of the car celebrating. Winning again is our priority on Saturday night, but it is going to be a stacked field, so we will stay humbled and focus and hope it all works out again.”
 
While Dean, 26, still plans to have a presence in NASCAR this season, his Dean Racing team is also working hard to keep him behind the seat of Late Models too.
 
“We have a lot going on right now behind the scenes and I look forward to making some announcements soon,” Dean continued. “Racing is everything to me and we are working hard to make sure that when I get on the track this summer, fall and we even have started working on 2022 already. Anything I climb into will give me the opportunity to showcase my ability and challenge for that checkered flag.”
David “Buggy” Pletcher, owner of DLP Motorsports is thrilled to have the popular driver back on board this weekend.
 
“There isn’t another driver I would want behind the wheel of our race car than Gus Dean,” Pletcher said. “Gus is a wheelman and isn’t afraid to make moves to get to the front and stay there. He has shown that a lot this year.
 
“I believe he has turned a lot of heads in this series in a very short amount of time and definitely earned the respect of his competitors. When they see Gus at the track, they know he’s going to be a threat.  
 
“I’m again excited about the car we are bringing him and feel like we have a shot to continuing our winning ways on Saturday night.”
 
Dean is a two-time winner in the ARCA Menards Series with victories at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway and Elko (Minn.) Speedway, respectively.
 
Practice begins for the Carolina Pro Late Model Series on Sat., July 24, 2021, at 1:30 p.m., with qualifying set for 4:30 p.m. and racing beginning at 6:00 p.m.
 
For more on Gus Dean, please visit GusDean.com, like him on Facebook (Gus Dean Racing) and follow him on Twitter (@GusDean).
 
For more on MASHONIT Apparel Co., please visit MashOnIt.com, like them on Facebook (MashOnIt Apparel Co.,), follow them on Instagram (MashOnIt_Clothing) and follow them on Twitter (@MashOnIt Apparel Co.).
 
Gus Dean PR

 

Two of American’s favorite past-times, county fairs and short track racing, are coming back together at Orange County Fair Speedway on Thursday, July 29. The Super DIRTcar Series Big Block Modifieds will invade downstate New York for the Battle of the Midway 100 as a part of the 181st Orange Country Fair. 

Superstar and Hall of Fame driver Brett “The Jet” Hearn plans to strap into his black #20 Big Block to take on the stars and cars of the Super DIRTcar Series once again at the track he promotes. He’s set to go full bore for the $10,000 grand prize and a guaranteed starting position in the Billy Whittaker Cars 200 at NAPA Super DIRT Week XLIX. 

“When DIRTcar comes in and runs the event, it frees me up to be able to join the fun,” said Orange County Fair Speedway promoter Brett Hearn. “The fair race has always been special. It’s fun to race with all the sights and sounds of the fair in the background.”

Hearn has been busy promoting Hoosier Racing Tire Weekly Championship DIRTcar Big Block Modifieds at Orange County along with a wide range of other exciting events at Orange County so he hasn’t been behind the wheel as much as he would like. 

But that doesn’t mean “The Jet” plans on flying straight and level. Hearn has 14 Super DIRTcar Series Feature wins at Orange County Fair Speedway, including three in a row between 2012-2014. No other driver has been able to touch his records at the century-old Middletown race track.

“The fair has been there for 181 years and the speedway has been here for over 100 years,” he said. “There have been thousands of races on this track. It doesn’t get any more historic and important to Big Block Modified racing than this. It’s a staple of Orange County to have the fair and the race here. They go hand in hand.”

Hearn loves the amplified atmosphere of a fairground race and he’s ready to “drop the hammer.”

“I am not big into rides believe it or not! Hearn laughed. “I love slamming the hammer down to ring the bell. The games are always fun. This year we have some really awesome free concerts featuring tribute bands on a brand new stage too. There’s plenty to do for all ages.”

Although his induction into the Northeast Dirt Hall of Fame has been a foregone conclusion for many years, Hearn is excited about the honor and is pleased to see a new crop of drivers taking his place in the box scores. 

“There’s been a huge turnover in drivers that are following the Series,” Hearn noted. “It’s a natural progression. I am not traveling the Series. My racing schedule is sporadic so it can make it tough to compete against the guys that run all week. But it’s nice to see the young guys making a name for themselves on the series and I am sure we will have a lot of cars down there. The car count for the Series has been really healthy (with 40 or more cars at every Series event).”

Tickets and information for the Battle on the Midway 100 are available at OrangeCountyFairSpeedway.net. Anyone with a ticket to the event will gain free admission to the fair whether purchased online or at the gate. 

If you can’t make it to the track, you can watch all of the action live on DIRTVision with the annual Platinum FAST PASS or monthly FAST PASS subscription.

Super DIRTcar Series PR

2021 continues to be a very advancing season in the career of Stephanie Moyer. After winning the 2020 Evergreen Raceway Factory Stock championship the 23-yeat old from Sheppton then raced in a Late Model, tested at Daytona International Speedway where she was approved a license to compete in ARCA and from there has run in the ARCA Menard’s East Series for Andy Hillenburg currently sitting in the top-10 in points. Most recently Moyer competed at Pocono Raceway in the ARCA Series General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200.

            A graduate of the University of Northwestern Ohio in the Automotive Technology program, Moyer’s next racing endeavor will be in an asphalt Modified on Saturday evening, July 31 at Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway which will be Race #4 of the John Blewett Inc., Mahoning Valley Speedway Hall of Fames Series Lorin Arthofer Sr. Tribute.

            Joe Polny of Mountain Top and Clarence Hamersley of Hunlock Creek have offered Moyer the opportunity to drive their Kriger Construction/Richard Mellow Electrical Contractors/Wheels Bar and Grill No. 8. It will be here first time wheeling a Modified stock car.

            “2021 is a blessing so far being that my dreams are coming true. This year is nothing but seat time and opportunities for me. Clarence Hamersley and Joe Polny are giving me a ride of a lifetime and if it weren’t for them this wouldn’t be happening. Joe has always stuck around to help me grow as a driver and he knows how well I adapt to cars,” said Moyer.

            “I feel super confident on making my tour Modified debut at Mahoning Valley too. I have raced there once but never in an open wheel car. Being that I can pick things up really quickly I feel I will be fine.”

Prior to this year Moyer spent that past eight seasons racing at her home track Evergreen Raceway in St. Johns and finally realized a lifelong goal in winning the Factory Stock class title. In doing so joined her late brother, Mike Moyer Jr., as the only brother and sister duo to win championships there. M. Moyer was the 2009 Factory Stock titlist and remarkably his sister won with the same car.

After graduating college she got the chance to work for Mason Mitchell, the 2014 ARCA champion as a mechanic and pit road team member. As for her driving opportunities she has gained a fair amount of headlines this season.

            This year continues to be a huge learning experience for Moyer and given her keen sense of adaptability from the variety of tracks she has thus far been to, Mahoning – although a tough little bullring to tackle – should be a quick study in getting around for her.

            “I know what a tough track Mahoning is and there are so many good drivers there. We’re definitely planning on getting in early practice and as I said I am confident with the ride I have that we can succeed and hold our own,” said Moyer. 

            The Lorin Arthofer Sr. Tribute will be a 71-lap feature for the Modifieds. Also on the card that evening will be Street Stocks, Hobby Stocks, Pro 4s and Futures/Rookie Hobby Stocks.

Adult admission is $20. There is a $2 discount for active military, students and seniors 65+. Must have valid ID. Children 10 & under are free. Grandstands open at 5:00 pm and racing begins at 7:00 pm.

Please log onto the official track website www.mahoningvalley-speedway.com, Facebook at Mahoning Valley Speedway or Twitter @MahoningSpeed for updated info and news. Mahoning Valley Speedway located on PA route 443 just a few miles west of Lehighton.

MVS PR

Saturday, July 24 Jesse returns to his short track racing roots by competing in the prestigious $25,000 to win Summer Showdown presented by Tire Pros at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe WA. Jesse will be driving the #78 Trevor Christiani car.
 
Jesse is no stranger to short-track racing as he earned rookie of the year honors in the K & N Pro Series in 2103. Jesse last raced late models in 2017 for Shigi Hattori, also in the K & N Series. On returning to short track racing and the partnership with Christiani, Jesse said "Our partnership with Trevor and his race team began earlier this year. We had worked through the logistics of running these races and the next step was discussing it with the team owners on leasing equipment. Trevor was very helpful and I immediately felt he was driven to put a competitive car on the track. It will be great to run back-to-back races with him and his team to build some chemistry and dialogue when it comes to driving these cars. They are something I have never been in before so the learning curve will have to be expedited."
 
While Jesse has never raced in his family's home state of Washington, the Littles are no strangers to Evergreen Speedway. Both Jesse's dad, Chad Little, and Grandpa have raced at Evergreen Speedway. Chad had a lot of success at Evergreen Speedway, winning two of the long 500 lap races, and finishing 2nd in the Winston West Series. Chad will also be serving as Grand Marshall for the race this weekend.
 
"Being back in the short track racing scene is so much fun," Jesse said. "I grew up in this atmosphere and it certainly reminds me of my love for this sport. The history that my family has at these race tracks is beyond rich. My Grandpa and Dad both have trophies on the shelf from these tracks and I can only imagine how sweet it would be to put one up next to theirs. We have so many family and friends in the area that will be attending the races that usually don't get to see me race so there is a lot of joy in that."
 
Evergreen Speedway promoter Doug Hobbs has generously offered to donate $1 for each grandstand ticket sold to Shriners Hospitals for Children so that Shriners can continue to provide the #MostAmazingCareAnywhere.
 
Jesse Little Racing PR

Macon Speedway will have plenty of different entertainment options going on this coming Saturday, July 24. Six divisions will be racing on Weddle Performance Engines 1st Responder Night with the Sportsman Topless 40 and Ed Cain Trucking Hornet Challenge at the top of the list of specials. Spectator drags will be held at intermission and the night will be run in memory of Chris Oberheim.

One of the two special races on the night will be the Weddle Performance Engines Sportsman Topless 40. The class will run the annual race without the roof for extra laps and payout. Jim Farley, III leads the standings by six over Scott Landers while Rick Roedel is within striking distance in third. Roy Magee and Brandon Dick complete the top five in standings.

The second of Saturday’s special events will be the Ed Cain Trucking Hornet Challenge. The race will pay $500 to win and $50 to start, which is about five times the amount the division normally races for. It will be the first of two big races for the Hornets this weekend as they will race part two of the Ed Cain Trucking Hornet Challenge on Sunday at Lincoln. At Macon, Allan Harris, of Chatham, IL leads the points by 56 over Billy Mason.

The Colby Sheppard led Decatur Building Trades Pro Late Model division, Guy Taylor led BillingsleyRewards.com Modified class, Kyle Helmick led DIRTcar Pro Mod division, and Guy Taylor led Archers Alley Street Stock classes will also be in action.

Any first responders who attend will receive free grandstand admission to the race if they are able to show ID proof. Chris Oberheim, the Champaign officer who lost his life in the line of duty, will also be honored with the racing run in his memory. Rounding out the festivities will be the Spectator Drags at intermission.

Pit gates open at 4:00, grandstands at 5:00, hotlaps start at 6:00, and racing will begin at 7:00 PM. Grandstand admission is $15 while kids 11 and under are free

Macon Speedway PR

 

NASCAR Driver, Spencer Boyd today announced a game-changing partnership with technology disruptor, DevTeamSix.  Specialists in blockchain, dApp, user experience production and the creator of CreamPYE, DevTeamSix is thrilled to introduce MiniDOGE, the world’s first auto-boost, hyper deflationary coin.
 
“I didn’t know much about crypto-currency until I had a conversation with DevTeamSix,” remarked Spencer Boyd.  “They were able to explain it in a way I could understand and make me feel comfortable with their platform.  We have a lot of big plans together and today’s announcement is only the beginning!”
 
At the heart of what MiniDOGE represents is charity.  They strive to build a best-in-class community with active members who are part of the evolution of MiniDOGE.  With their first donation of $100,000 to Hope for Paws in June, they are looking to inspire people to join the movement and help donate to animal shelters worldwide. Together we can help animals find their way back to their original home or find a new safe family to love them.
 
Community Manager for DevTeamSix, Nereus Noshirwani, spoke about the partnership with Spencer Boyd Racing, “Spencer’s attention to business is what caught our eye.  He is a go-getter and expects great things in the future, as do we.  Our goal is to help take Spencer to the moon while saving animals on our way.”
 
The partnership will be kicked off with some primary sponsorship races in 2021, but further details will be unveiled in the days and weeks to come with a series of exciting announcements.

Spencer Boyd Racing PR

Sometimes, a really good car, some quick reflexes and a pinch of good fortune is the recipe for victory.

 

Bobby Pierce had all three of these Thursday night in the Week #6 kickoff at Springfield Raceway, scoring his ninth DIRTcar Summer Nationals Feature win of the season in convincing fashion by leading 27 of 40 laps to collect the $5,000 check over Ashton Winger and local favorite Scott Crigler.

 

His 36th career Hell Tour victory officially pushed him past four-time champion Brian Shirley into sole position of fourth place on the all-time wins list, setting him three behind 2004 champion Don O’Neal and 64 behind all-time leaders Billy Moyer and Shannon Babb.

 

Pierce trailed the opening circuits of the Feature to polesitter Tony Jackson Jr. before cracking the whip as they approached the rear of the field. As Jackson was moving through the first wave of heavy traffic, his left-rear tire gave way and shredded, bringing out the caution and handing the lead over to Pierce.

 

While the two did make contact after the tire had blown, Pierce was quick to saw at the wheel and escape with only a scrape on the right-side.

 

From there, it become Pierce’s race to lose. But even with a 115-point advantage in the standings, the three-time champion still wasn’t at ease at the head of the field. Right on his bumper for the restart was a hungry group of competitors just waiting to pounce on a slip-up, including one of his biggest recent rivals – Ashton Winger.

 

“Ashton was really fast, and he’s been fast the last few races – he’s got something figured out,” Pierce, of Oakwood, IL said in Victory Lane. “I was like, man, I’ve just gotta keep the 12 car behind me so we can stay in position to win this thing.”

 

Winger, of Hampton, GA, came into Week #6 riding the momentum of two-straight victories to close out Week #5, besting Pierce both times, and was hungry for a three-peat. He restarted in fifth and advanced one position before the next restart two laps later.

 

Winger hammered the throttle out of Turn 4 and quickly made the charge for Tanner English and Scott Crigler in front of him. He took the low groove into Turns 1-2 on Lap 18 and got a two-for-one special, passing both drivers by sliding up at the exit of Turn 2.

 

Winger chased Pierce down until the next restart on Lap 22, where he got his best chance at the lead, sliding underneath Pierce for the lead at one point before falling back.

 

Winger closed the gap in the final laps and got another opportunity to swipe the lead as they approached traffic again before a restart with five-to-go. Pierce had a big pack of traffic in front of him, slowing him down enough to allow Winger to catch up. But by that time, Pierce had already sorted his way through the pack, and the yellow was thrown again.

 

“The lapped traffic was a bit of a handful,” Pierce said. “That last lap was a little scary.”

 

Pierce dropped the hammer on the restart and cruised to his 36th career Summer Nationals victory with Winger and Crigler behind him, while Joe Godsey and Tim Lance completed the top-five.

 

UP NEXT

 

The Summer Nationals next heads back to Tri-City Speedway in Pontoon Beach, IL, on Friday, July 23, for the second visit of the season, entitled the Russ Wallace Memorial. Catch all the action live on DIRTVision presented by Drydene.

 

ABBREVIATED RESULTS (view full results)

 

Feature (40 Laps) 1. 32-Bobby Pierce[2]; 2. 12-Ashton Winger[5]; 3. 12C-Scott Crigler[3]; 4. 14G-Joe Godsey[6]; 5. 48-Tim Lance[9]; 6. 36- Logan Martin[11]; 7. 74-Mitch McGrath[19]; 8. 86-Kyle Beard[17]; 9. 2-Allen Murray[7]; 10. 93-Mason Oberkramer[10]; 11. 50-Kaeden Cornell[14]; 12. 81E-Tanner English[4]; 13. 0-Dewayne Kiefer[13]; 14. 36D-Mark Daye[18]; 15. 78S-Steve Stultz[15]; 16. 38-Thomas Hunziker[21]; 17. 14R-Jeff Roth[22]; 18. 118-Mike Fenton[20]; 19. 49-Justin Wells[12]; 20. 56- Tony Jackson Jr[1]; 21. 75-Terry Phillips[8]; 22. 66-Hayden Ross[16]

 

DIRTcar Series PR

After claiming the 2020 World of Outlaws Morton Building Late Model Rookie of the Year title, Ashton Winger went on a Hell tour before joining the DIRTcar Summer Nationals Late Model “Hell Tour.”

His ride evaporated on him in December, leaving him and his family to scrape together what they could to attempt a return in 2021. In the first two months of the World of Outlaws season at Volusia Speedway Park, he lost two engines and only got to run one of four events during DIRTcar Nationals, resulting in a 27th-place finish.

The poor fortunes made backing up his Rookie of the Year run unfeasible. However, a chance at a full-time run on the DIRTcar Summer Nationals tour – a 30-race schedule compact in a three-month period – materialized in the following months. And since joining this “Hell Tour,” Winger has collected three wins, placed himself third in overall points and, most importantly, found himself smiling again.

“The main thing that I’ve learned a ton is just keep having fun,” Winger said. “This stuff is so stressful and for me, this is how I make a living. Staying having fun is hard. But I find we typically run way better and I sleep way better when I’m having fun.

“It’s been fun. It’s been awesome. I didn’t get a full shot at the Outlaws (with COVID canceling a quarter of the season), so it wasn’t the full experience. But this is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Whether you’re mad or whether you win, whatever, you have to forget about it. Tomorrow is a new day. And frankly, at the end of the day, no one really cares. You know what I’m saying?”

There were still lessons for the World of Outlaws winner to learn at the beginning of the tour. It wasn’t until they found time to adjust the car, rather than repairing it, that he started to find himself in the top-five.

“Honestly, it’s me not driving it into the fence and stuff like that,” Winger said. “There are little things happening. It’s a combination of stuff. Like at Circle City (Raceway), I felt like there was an opportunity for me to run second when Tanner (English) and Spencer (Hughes) got side by side. But I don’t know, I would’ve had to have done something pretty dumb to get to them. I felt like I could run to them, but I couldn’t really pass them. That’s when people start to do dumb stuff.

“I just rode and fell back to sixth. But the body isn’t beat off this thing and we’re on to tomorrow. We’re not spending all day fixing things. We can solve the problem and keep getting better… I feel like I’ve gotten better behind the seat. But the main thing is I’ve gotten better at not tearing stuff up. I can name three or four instances in the first week when I did tear some stuff up. I probably would’ve been alright if I didn’t (make the move I did). There’s not a big difference between sixth and eighth. It just took me a minute.”

Along with honing his driving skills, he admitted it took time for his team, consisting of his dad, cousin and himself, to find chemistry.

“It’s finally starting to get good,” Winger said. “I’m not going to lie; it was rough in the beginning. We’ve really been playing catch-up all year. This Summer Nationals thing is the first time we’ve been prepared. And I don’t think we’re as prepared as we need to be, but we’re as prepared as we can be. So, we decided to come do this deal and you find what you need along the way. It is getting better. We’re all getting along. We’re all meshing. We’re all family.

“What a lot of people take for granted is, unless something comes up, I’m probably not going home until Sept. 1. We’ve been living in this truck since June. That truck can only hold so much air. I told someone on the off days it’s good because we can all kind of get away from each other a little bit.  Anybody in racing knows what I’m talking about.”

The merging of those elements has resulted in more top-five finishes, his first Summer Nationals wins at Knox County Fair Raceway – holding off currently points leader Bobby Pierce for the victory – and two straight wins at Thunderbird Raceway and Oakshade Raceway.

He’s now third in points – 228 points behind Pierce – with 11 races remaining.

“Probably would help a little bit if the #32 car (of Pierce) would slow down a little bit,” Winger said with a chuckle.

To keep pace with Pierce and continue his winning streak, Winger said qualifying well is the key to both. Easy passes don’t exist on the Summer Nationals tour with the level of competition it produces, he added. If you don’t position yourself to start upfront, it’s likely you won’t make it there by the end of the Feature.

The furthest back a winner has started this season is sixth at Fairbury for Shannon Babb. Overall, the average starting position for a winner this season in the first 19 races is second. For Winger’s three wins he started second, first and third, respectively.

“Like you hear all the time, catching guys and passing them is two different things,” Winger said. “It is way different with this. You’re racing the racetrack and you’re racing the guys, air, everything. And we’re just past halfway in this deal and you don’t want to make any enemies. Everybody is so close. Like my dad always says, it’s way easier to pass in the pits than it is on the racetrack. It’s just Qualifying. It’s rare for a guy to start on the pole and run fifth. But it is more rare for a guy to start ninth and win. That’s really the main thing.”

No matter how the Summer Nationals tour ends for him, he’s already accomplished what he needed to in his path to rebuilding a career with the World of Outlaws. He’s learned what it takes to run a grueling schedule. He’s learned what it takes to run for a points title against stiff competition. He’s learned how to beat that competition. But most importantly, he’s learned how to have fun again.

The DIRTcar Summer Nationals Late Model tour continues for its sixth week of racing on Thursday, July 22, at Springfield Raceway, followed by Tri-City Speedway (July 23), Clarksville Speedway (July 24) and Richmond Raceway (July 25). CLICK HERE for the full schedule.

If you can’t make it to the track, you can watch all of the Summer Nationals action live on DIRTVision with the annual PLATINUM FAST PASS.

DIRTcar Series PR

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