Speedway Digest Staff
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Persistent rain showers creating saturated grounds at Volusia Speedway Park have forced World of Outlaws, DIRTcar and track officials to cancel Friday’s event at the speedway. It will not be made up.
Those who purchased a ticket in advance to Friday’s event at Volusia will receive a face-value credit to their MyDirtTickets.com
You have the option to exchange your Friday only ticket for a Saturday only ticket and your Friday only pit pass for a Saturday only pit pass at the Speedway gate on Saturday.
If you purchased a three-day pit pass, Friday only pit pass, or a Friday only ticket, you’ll need to mail your wrist band or ticket back to the office at 7575 West Winds Blvd. Concord, NC 28027. You must include all wrist bands and/or tickets and a return mailing address.
Fans can look forward to the Sunshine Nationals finale at Volusia Saturday, Jan. 16, starting at 5pm(ET), featuring the World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Models, DIRTcar Late Models, 602 Late Models and Florida Late Models. There will be big money on the line with Super Late Models running for $10,000-to-win and Florida Late Model's going for $3,000-to-win.
World of Outlaws PR
April 2021 marks the start of the 64th Season of Asphalt Racing at the historic Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway (NFS). America’s Favorite Short Track is set to host over a dozen nights of racing from April through the end of October. Not only will fans experience the exciting Saturday night Nashville Local Racing programs on the quarter mile and five-eighths mile ovals, but a riveting lineup of nationally recognized tours and headline events shape the most compelling schedule in recent time.
One hundred seventeen years since the first auto race, held on dirt in 1904 at The Fairgrounds Nashville, the 64th Season of Asphalt Racing will officially begin with Opening Night on April 17, 2021. A full 8-in-1 program is scheduled featuring every Nashville Local Racing division: Pro Late Models, Super Trucks, Limited Late Models, Street Stocks, Pure Stocks, Front Runners, Legends Cars and Bandoleros. The Opening Night finale is a 100 lap Pro Late Model feature on the five-eighths mile high banks. Two-Time NFS Late Model Track Champion, Cole Williams, claimed the win on Opening Night last season.
The first National Racing Event of the year takes place on Saturday, May 8th when the ARCA Menards Series East comes to town for the Music City 200. Christan Eckes, Zane Smith, Chad Finley, Grant Enfinger and David Green are among those who have collected a Nashville ARCA guitar in victory lane. Late Models will also be featured in the program with the North/South Super Late Model Challenge 100, a multi-sanctioned race with the ARCA/CRA Super Series, Southern Super Series and CARS Super Late Model Tour. The JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Pro Late Models will also have a 100-lap feature event, counting towards Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway Track Championship and ‘JEGS Tour’ points.
Memorial Day Weekend features an inaugural visit from the Victory Custom Trailers CRA Junior Late Model Series on Saturday, May 29th. The youth-centered late model series will battle bumper-to-bumper on the tight quarter-mile oval. CRA Junior Late Models will be joined by the Baby Grand Series and an array of Nashville Local Racing quarter-mile divisions. The Pro Late Models (100 laps) and Super Trucks will also be in action on the five-eighths mile.
On Saturday, June 12th, NFS welcomes the Modifieds of Mayhem Tour for the first time since May 7, 2016. On that date it was 2016 Modifieds of Mayhem Champion Jeff Letson winning the 50 lap event. The High horsepower, ground pounding, open wheeled beasts will showcase a different style race car for the fans of Nashville. Historically, Nashville had been the site of a Modified North/South Shootout, pitting the best modified drivers from the south against the best of the “North”. The Midwest Modified Tour and the Mayhem Tour look forward to bringing that back in 2021. The Super Trucks and all six quarter-mile divisions will also be on hand.
The first double header weekend of the season unfolds on Friday and Saturday, July 16th and 17th for one of Nashville’s most anticipated new races. Tony Stewart and Ray Evernham’s new Superstar Racing Experience (SRX) crowns their inaugural season champion at NFS on Saturday night, in prime time. The Series’ entry list includes motorsports icons, Bill Elliott, Bobby Labonte, Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan, Paul Tracy, Willy T. Ribbs, Mark Webber and Tony Stewart. Complimenting the exciting night is the 9th Running of the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Masters of the Pros 150. Over 40 Pro Late Models entered this race a season ago. On Friday night, July 16th, the local racing stars of Nashville, Limited Late Models, Street Stocks, Pure Stocks, Front Runners, Legends Cars and Bandoleros will race a special Friday evening quarter-mile program.
During the Music City Grand Prix Weekend, open wheel stars come to town with the King of the Wings Sprint Car Series – set to make their Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway debut on Saturday, August 7th. The Series, founded by former IndyCar Series driver, Davey Hamilton, brings the fastest cars to ever race wheel-to-wheel at the historic Fairgrounds oval with daring drivers reaching speeds in excess of 150 mph. Open wheel Midget cars and Pro Late Models are also on the card for this thrilling evening. All three classes competing will race heat races and feature events.
The fall season at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway opens with racing during the famed September fair at The Fairgrounds Nashville. Tentatively scheduled for Friday, September 17th, Pro Late Models, Limited Late Models, Pure Stocks, Legends, Bandoleros and Baby Grands will be in action. On Saturday, September 18th fans can expect Pro Late Models again, Super Trucks, Street Stocks, Front Runners and a second night for Legends and Bandoleros.
A Super Truck Champion will be crowned on Saturday, October 9th following their title race. Pro Late Models and all six quarter-mile divisions will be in action for the penultimate race of the year.
The Speedway’s crown jewel event, the 37th Running of the All American 400 Race Weekend, begins with Championship Friday on October 29th. Nashville Local Racing quarter mile division championships are headlined by a 50 lap Limited Late Model feature event. Last year’s race and championship came down to the final corner of the final lap. When the smoke cleared, Johnathon Dishman resulted as the race winner and track champion. Street Stocks, Pure Stocks, Front Runners, Legends Cars and Bandoleros will also be racing.
October 30th is All American Saturday featuring Super and Pro Late Model qualifying for the All American 400. The VanHoy Oil CRA Street Stock Series and Vores Compact Touring Series will have main events along with All American 400 Last Chance Late Model Qualifying Races.
Sunday, October 31st is the Nashville Pro Late Model Track Championship race, co-sanctioned by the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour. While Stephan Nasse was the race winner last year, Dylan Fetcho clinched the Nashville Track Championship by just 7 points over Cole Williams. The All American 400 Super Late Model race will again be sanctioned by the ARCA/CRA Super Series, Southern Super Series, CARS Super Late Model Tour and ARCA Midwest Tour. Casey Roderick outlasted Derek Thorn and Carson Hocevar to claim his first covenant All American 400 guitar, in 2020.
Tickets for these exciting events will go on sale soon. Competitor information and registrations will be ready in the coming weeks. To learn more about Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway – America’s Favorite Short Track, visit nashvillefairgroundsspeedway.
Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway 2021 Schedule
Schedule is tentative and subject to change.
Saturday, April 10th – Open Practice & Media Day
Saturday, April 17th – 64th Season of Asphalt Racing Opening Night (PLM 100, ST, LLM, SS, PS, FR, LG, BAN)
Saturday, May 8th – ARCA Menards Series East Music City 200 & North/South Late Model Challenge (SLM 100, PLM 100)
Saturday, May 29th – CRA Junior Late Model Series (PLM 100, ST, LLM, PS, LG, BAN, CRA Jr LMS, Baby Grand Series)
Saturday, June 12th – Modifieds of Mayhem Tour (MOD, ST, LLM, SS, PS, FR, LG, BAN)
Friday, July 16th – Local Racing (LLM, SS, PS, FR, LG, BAN)
Saturday, July 17th – SRX Championship & JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Masters of the Pros 150
Saturday, August 7th – King of the Wing Sprint Cars, Midgets & Pro Late Models
Friday, September 17th – Fair Race Night #1 (PLM 50, LLM, PS, LG, BAN, Baby Grand Series)
Saturday, September 18th – Fair Race Night #2 (PLM 50, ST, SS, FR, LG, BAN)
Saturday, October 9th – Super Truck Championship (PLM 100, ST, LLM, SS, PS, FR, LG, BAN)
Friday, October 29th – All American Championship Friday (LLM, SS, PS, FR, LG, BAN)
Saturday, October 30th – All American Saturday (SLM, PLM, CRA Street Stocks, Vores Compact Touring Series)
Sunday, October 31st – All American 400 (Super Late Models & Pro Late Models)
Nashville Fairground PR
“NASCAR is excited to welcome international recording star Pitbull into the NASCAR family, as he joins Trackhouse Racing and an incredibly talented driver in Daniel Suárez. Pitbull is an iconic talent in the music industry and has tremendous passion for NASCAR racing. We look forward to working with him to further engage diverse audiences and introduce new fans to our great sport.” – NASCAR
Trackhouse Racing is going worldwide.
GRAMMY® Award-winning global superstar Pitbull has become a co-owner of Trackhouse Racing. Ready to change the game, he and founder/co-owner Justin Marks plan to amplify the sport’s influence around the world. Taking the first step, Trackhouse Racing makes its much-anticipated debut in the No. 99 Chevrolet Camaro at the Daytona 500 on Feb. 14 with Daniel Suarez behind the wheel. The Monterrey, Mexico native notably stands out as “the only foreign-born national series champion in NASCAR history.”
“I’ve been a fan of the NASCAR story since the movie ‘Days of Thunder,’” said Armando Christian Perez (Pitbull). “As soon as I met Justin, Ty Norris (team president) and Daniel, we were on the same page. They welcomed me aboard, and now we’re going to show the world NASCAR is not only a sport but it’s a culture. This is an amazing way to celebrate my 40th birthday, so Get Ready! Dale! (Dah-lay)”
Perez has already asserted himself as an engine for evolution. Not only will he serve as an active partner on the Trackhouse executive team, Perez serves as a brand and philanthropic ambassador. Together, Marks and Perez will foster the launch of a racing-themed STEM curriculum within the SLAM! (Sports Leadership Arts and Management) inner-city charter schools -- which Pitbull helped establish seven years ago.
“From day one of creating Trackhouse Racing, I wanted our team to be a platform for purpose, to transcend the sport and positively impact all races on and off the track,” said Marks.
“I am proud that in just a few months we are here announcing a partnership with one of the most influential and recognized artists in the world. Within the first 10 minutes of our first meeting, it was clear Armando and I share a vision and passion for impacting the lives of the underrepresented. We are creating and compelling a movement of positivity and possibility, using the platform and excitement of sports and music. Through NASCAR and our partnership with Pitbull, we are going to have the attention of a global demographic that is ready to be inspired into action for themselves, their families and their future.”
In addition to his role with Trackhouse and numerous other ventures, Pitbull will be attending the Daytona 500 on Feb. 14.
Watch the video welcoming Pitbull to Trackhouse on Twitter: @TeamTrackhouse.
British NASCAR driver Alex Sedgwick to return to the US to kick off 2021 at the ARCA Menards Series Daytona test.
The final round of the ARCA Menards Series West at Phoenix Raceway in November saw British driver Alex Sedgwick from Southam, Warwickshire make his debut in America. After a successful first race weekend in the U.S., Alex focused all his attention on returning to the series in 2021. Now Alex is back to the U.S. to take part in the ARCA Menards Series test on January 15 & 16 at the Daytona International Speedway.
Last year, Alex attended the Daytona 500 as a guest of NASCAR and promised himself he would come back one day to race at the 2.5-mile superspeedway to achieve his dream of racing in NASCAR in the U.S. Having completed two seasons in the NASCAR Euro Series, where Alex raced alongside NASCAR Cup Champion Bobby Labonte, his goal has always been to make the next step in the NASCAR ladder and move “stateside”.
Since the Phoenix race, Alex has been working hard to pull together plans for 2021. Now with the support of NBA 2K 21, the first step has been achieved. Alex will drive the #94 NBA 2K 21 themed car in the test, and it will be the first time he will drive on the legendary Daytona International Speedway.
Alex was racing the Daytona track earlier this week on the iRacing platform, a platform Alex knows well from running his on-line racing series through his company Vertex. Alex received the call from his manager Ryan Johnston on Monday evening in the U.K. who told him to get ready, he may need to fly to the U.S. in a few days to test in Daytona. “It all happened rather quickly,” said Alex. “One minute I’m racing Daytona on iRacing, and before I know it, I’m boarding a plane at London’s Heathrow Airport heading to America to test on the real track.”
Alex’s trip to the U.S. was an eventful one. Leaving London, Alex was 30 minutes into his flight when the Captain came over the loudspeaker saying they had to turn around because there were technical problems with the plane. Once they were in sight of the airport, they informed the passengers not to be alarmed, but there would be fire trucks and other first responders that would follow the airplane down the runway once they landed and to their gate. Once on the ground, the Captain informed the passengers they had lost power in one of their two engines on the British Airways 787-9. Alex had to wait a few more hours to get out on another plane heading to Miami.
“Coming back to Daytona to drive is a dream come true. Watching the Daytona 500 race with my father last year, we both agreed one day I would come back to race at the superspeedway. Now this dream is one step nearer with the test. A big thank you to NBA 2K 21 and Visual Concepts for giving me this opportunity, and I am sure the start of a great partnership together,” said Alex.
Greg Thomas, President and Co-Founder of Visual Concepts, the creator of NBA 2K 21 said, “We are excited to support Alex in his rise to NASCAR and we are happy to be part of his journey.” Ryan Johnston of InterPhase Entertainment who manages Alex said, “We are pleased to bring NBA 2K 21 on as a partner with Visual Concepts. This weekend in Daytona will set the stage for Alex moving forward in his racing career. We are focused on having Alex compete in as many ARCA Menards Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series races in 2021 so Alex can move to the NASCAR Xfinity Series in 2022.”
After Alex finishes the test, he will drive back to Miami on Monday to board a plane back to London with his fingers crossed, hoping to come back to race at the very same track on February 13th in the ARCA Menards Series season opener, just before the NASCAR Xfinity Series race, and the day before the Daytona 500.
The Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) announced today that the Reese’s brand will join the ARCA Menards Series family of corporate partners.
“We are excited to partner with an iconic brand like Reese’s,” said Jeff Abbott, promotions manager for Menards. “The ARCA Menards Series has developed a strong following through the years and the addition of the Reese’s Brand will help take us to the next level. We’re excited about the 2021 season and the addition of Reese’s is another example of how the ARCA Menards Series has grown into such a great, grass roots part of the racing world.”
The Reese’s brand will become the official candy sponsor of the ARCA Menards Series, and joins Procter & Gamble, Sioux Chief and Richmond Water Heaters as primary, major supplier sponsors of the Menards Vendor Program in ARCA. The announcement came during the annual ARCA Open Test at Daytona International Speedway on January 15.
“We’re thrilled to have the Reese’s brand join our partnership program,” commented Mark Gundrum VP Business Development and Corporate Partnerships. “We welcome the Reese’s brand to our family of sponsors with open arms.”
The sponsorship is driven by a B2B relationship with ARCA Series title sponsor Menards. In addition to enhanced presence for the Reese’s Brand in the nearly 350 Menards Retail Locations, the partnership will include broadcast support for ARCA Menards Series races on FS1, NBCSN and MavTV, as well as MRN.
“The Reese’s team is excited to part of the ARCA Menards Series,” said Allen Dark, Senior Brand Manager of the Reese’s Team. “We look forward to partnering with Menards and the rest of the great lineup of sponsors.”
Additional details about the sponsorship program will be announced in the coming weeks.
Nick Sanchez will begin his fourth consecutive season with Rev Racing and the NASCAR Drive for Diversity Driver Development Program. Sanchez will race full-time in the ARCA Menards Series, driving the No. 6 UTI/NTI Max Siegel Inc. Chevrolet. Sanchez advances series after a successful rookie season in the ARCA Menards East Series where he finished third in overall point standings.
Sanchez will open his rookie season traveling to Daytona International Speedway for preseason testing at the world-famous 2.5-mile oval in Daytona Beach, Fla. The two-day ARCA Menards Series event takes place January 15-16. Drivers in attendance will test their skill and equipment in preparation for the season opener at Daytona International Speedway on February 13. The Lucas Oil 200 Driven by General Tire will at 1:30 p.m. ET on FS1.
“I could not be more excited to take this next step in my career,” Sanchez said. “The guys have worked extremely hard to prepare the No. 6 UTI/NTI Max Siegel Inc. Chevrolet for the 2021 season. We will continue to focus on growth and build on the momentum we have continued to see over the last several years.”
In 2019, Sanchez made his series debut in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, earning two top 10s and a pole in just three races. Sanchez also earned his first two victories in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series at Langley Speedway and Myrtle Beach Speedway that year. The NASCAR Drive for Diversity Youth Development Program alum competed in 2017 and 2018 at the Bojangles’ Summer Shootout at Charlotte Motor Speedway. In his 2018 Legend car season with Rev Racing, Sanchez earned five podium finishes, six top 5s and one win in the Pro Series class.
The 2021 Rev Racing roster and NASCAR Drive for Diversity Driver Development Program class will be officially announced in early February.
Rev Racing PR
The last time Kyle Bronson and Michael Page went head-to-head in DIRTcar Pro Late Model action at Volusia Speedway Park, Bronson got the upper-hand in a furious battle for the inaugural DIRTcar Sunshine Nationals finale victory. On Thursday night, it was Page’s turn to shine.
Page, of Douglasville, GA, led all 25 laps en route to his first victory in the event, snapping Bronson’s three-race win streak that be built in last year by sweeping the weekend and winning all three Pro Late Model Features and clinching the overall event championship.
A big move at the drop of the opening green flag really set Page out front quickly and gave him the advantage he needed over his competition. After redrawing sixth upon winning his Heat Race earlier in the evening, Page came out of Turn 4 considerably lower than the two cars in front of him on the original start and zoomed into third-place, full-bore into Turn 1. By the time he entered Turn 3, Page was the race leader.
The +5-spot differential in one lap made for quite an exciting sequence of passes, showing off the alive-and-well strength of a new power plant under the hood of 2003 MasterSbilt Race Cars chassis that Page used in his runner-up finish in this event last year.
“It’s a new motor, a Matt Bishop racing engine, a local guy around where we live, and that thing ran better than anything I’ve ever drove Crate-wise. And for an old MasterSbilt, that thing will get around the racetrack as good as anything,” Page told DIRTVision pit reporter Ruben Mireles in Victory Lane.
Beyond a few restarts in the second half of the race, not much else gave Page a serious challenge for the top spot. Bronson, however, was stopped just a bit short of his quest to continue his winning streak.
After winning the World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series Feature just one hour before, Bronson hopped into his Pro Late Model and went from the pole but did not look as strong as he did with the Outlaws.
Bronson had faded back to sixth at one point but was able to rebound on the late restarts and lock up a fourth-place finish.
One of the race’s biggest highlights outside of the Page-Bronson storylines was the climb of young Tennessean Mack McCarter. He and his #51 came all the way from 19th to finish second in the Feature. McCarter had passed 15 cars in 10 laps and made the most of his time in the podium, even making up a little distance on leader Page in the closing circuits.
But there just was no catching Page and his #18x. His start was just too great, and the car was just too stable for any worthy challengers.
“I just tried to do something; to go where they couldn’t,” Page said. “The car just took off immediately. Sometimes doing whatever they don’t do is the right thing to do, but sometimes it’ll kick you in the butt. But it worked out tonight.”
Magic Man Mark Whitener crossed the stripe in third after a solid run inside the top-six the entire distance. Driving for Dale Mosley Racing this weekend, he really had a handle on his Pro Late Model ride, setting a new personal-best finish in the event.
The Sunshine Nationals action continues Friday night with more Pro Late Model, World of Outlaws, 602 Late Model and Florida Late Model action from Volusia Speedway Park on night #2 of the DIRTcar Sunshine Nationals. Catch all the action live on DIRTVision!
Feature (25 Laps) 1. 18X-Michael Page ; 2. 51-Mack McCarter ; 3. 385-Mark Whitener ; 4. 40B-Kyle Bronson ; 5. 23-Cory Hedgecock ; 6. 66-Jake Knowles ; 7. 14JR-John Baker ; 8. 66K-Dylan Knowles ; 9. 10-Joseph Joiner ; 10. 6-Clay Harris ; 11. 14M-Trey Mills ; 12. 97-Cody Overton ; 13. 121-Pearson Lee ; 14. O1-Jason Welshan ; 15. 92-Joseph Brown ; 16. 87A-Walker Arthur ; 17. 30-Todd Cooney ; 18. 7A-Corey Almond ; 19. 66JK-Jody Knowles ; 20. 5-John Collins ; 21. 40-Joel Callahan ; 22. 55-Matt Long ; 23. 69X-Carder Miller ; 24. OO-Richie Stephens ; 25. 2-Trynt Llyod ; 26. OO7-Dusty Sparkman  Hard Charger: 51-Mack McCarter[+17]
DIRTcar Series PR
Christopher Bell passed Spencer Bayston for the lead on lap 11 and went on to win the 30-lap John Christner Trucking Qualifying Night, with fellow Toyota driver Buddy Kofoid finishing second as each advanced to Saturday’s A Main feature at the 35th annual Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals. Toyota-powered drivers have now won each of the four A Main qualifying events this week.
The victory marked Bell’s sixth consecutive qualifying night feature win and his seventh in the last eight years. The feature win culminated a night that saw Bell win his heat and qualifying races before the A Main.
It was another Toyota driver who went to the lead early with Spencer Bayston taking the top spot as Bell was in heavy traffic through the first few laps after starting from the fourth position. Bell would then move through the field, overtaking Brady Bacon for second and then closing on Bayston. Getting past Bayston would prove to be easier than taking the lead, though, as Bell passed him for the lead twice only to see a yellow flag come out after each, relegating the field back to the last full lap. The third time proved to be a charm, though, as Bell took the lead on the restart and was never headed.
“I’m really happy with what we have,” said Bell, who also won the VIROC Invitational race on Tuesday. “We’ve been really fast every time we’ve hit the track. I’m excited to see what we can do on Saturday. That was probably the best our iRacing Toyota has been in terms of maneuverability. Being able to stick the bottom and be really good and then move up and make runs on the top. Chad Boat has done an awesome job.”
As Bell took command upfront, Kofoid was charging through the field from the seventh starting position. He would pass Bacon for third on lap 12 and then use a lap 14 restart to overtake Bayston for second. He was able to keep pace with Bell the rest of the way, but was unable to close the gap as the leaders maneuvered through heavy traffic. With the second-place finish, the Penngrove, Calif.-native, has advanced to Saturday’s A Main for the second time in two Chili Bowl runs.
“We were a little cautious early and just started picking off cars one-by-one,” said Kofoid, who was the national leader in midget wins in 2020 with 10. “We still have some things we need to work on, but we were able to stay with Christopher down the stretch and if you can do that, third place probably isn’t going to be able to gain much. Some of the lappers made me a little nervous at the end, but we were able to roll the bottom to get past and that pretty much sealed the deal. I can’t thank these Keith Kunz Motorsports guys enough for giving me a really fast Mobil 1 Toyota. I’m really proud to be where I am, locked into the A Main and to be able to put all of our focus on the feature.”
Bayston would finish fourth, with Joe B. Miller placing fifth to give Toyota four of the top-five finishers on the night. Kaylee Bryson also advanced to the A Main, finishing 11th. She will begin Saturday’s event from the C Main – becoming just the sixth woman to advance as far as the ‘C’, with an opportunity to become the first woman ever to advance to the Chili Bowl A Main.
This year’s Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals features more than 310 entries - each fighting for one of the 24 openings in Saturday night’s “A Main” feature event. Qualifying wraps up Friday night with 10 Toyota drivers yet to qualify. To date, Toyota-powered drivers have captured seven of the eight A Main berths for finishing in the top two on their qualifying night.