Mother nature gave us another break last week. We still got to go to New Egypt for the 3rd Tony Stewart event though. They have a very nice track down there, very fast, and they did a nice job prepping it. Tony and Dave were running about 2 hours late, so things kinda got shuffled around a little bit. We were decent in the heat race but definitely needed to improve. We made some changes and let it rip for the feature. Dave took off on the outside and started passing some cars. Tony was searching on the top and the bottom, but wasn't as fast as Dave. Towards the middle of the race Dave had moved up near the top 10 and Tony was just behind. Both were as far up as you could get, and it finally bit Dave. I don't know whether he hit another car or the wall but ended up breaking a spindle. Not long after that, Tony got stuck into the frontstretch wall courtesy of Jimmy Chester, who was showing his displeasure of Tony grabbing an outside restart spot. It was still a good show though.
Saturday night was the last points race. We really didn't have a shot at catching Art, and honestly the points were the last thing on my mind. I started 8th in the heat race and quickly started moving towards the front. The track was a little tricky, but the changes we made to the car this week were just about perfect. I ended up going to the point by the 4th lap and took the win. A couple of minor changes for the feature and we were off, starting 12th. Art was right in front of us in 10th. I grabbed about 4 spots in the first turn on the original start and we ran a couple of laps before the first caution came out. I got a couple more spots on the restart, and passed a few more cars before the next caution. Art was making some serious time in front of me, but a few laps later I was chasing him for the lead. I thought I would have my chance when the caution came out on lap 9, but they ended up making us start single file. About 3 or 4 laps later I found a line that was working pretty good for me, I was making up a car length or so each lap. A couple more laps I figured I had a shot at him, but on lap 13 the caution came out again. I went back to work, but my tires had pretty much given up by that point. Artie took the win, I was second and Roy came from 24th to finish 3rd. The end of year report card has us 2nd in points, out best year ever.
I know, I know. Finally. Let's see if I can remember all of this, I'm getting old ya know. Much to my surprise Howie and the boys had the track loaded with calcium this week. Made for a pretty fast race track (just ask Andy Bachetti). We were nearly as fast on the watch as we were in the beginning of the year. I started the heat last and slowly worked my way to third, narrowly avoiding a car ricocheting off the 4th turn wall in the process. We were very very tight, so we tried a few things to loosen the car up in hot laps, but I didn't like how it made the car feel. Sooooo...we went and changed about 10 other things instead for the feature. Once again we got the car pretty damn close as it turns out. I started 15th again and the race turned into a caution fest right off the bat. Three yellows before lap 1. Of course, we were going to single file restarts, this time by lap 3, which was just fine with me. I got up to about 9th before things started tough somewhere around lap 8 or 9. There were some really fast cars up front and it took me the rest of the race to work my way into 5th. All things considered, not bad. Of course the highlight of the week had to be going out to Sharon Speedway in the magic bus for the Tony Stewart race. Went out Weds. evening, spent all day at Dave Blaney's beautiful facility on Thursday. What an awesome track and the boys packed the place, standing room only. It was a great race with Dave finishing 2nd and Tony finishing 4th. Had an awesome time, met some neat people (even a biology teacher!), it was all good. We'll see if we can do it again this Thursday down at New Egypt.
Hey, what do ya know. A problem free trip to the track on Saturday. We tried a couple of new parts this week, trying to get just a little more performance. We were good in warmups, which was good news since we started last in the heat race. The car was just about perfect, I was able to go high or low and worked my way up towards the front. We started the feature in 14th and passed a bunch of cars in the first few laps. We had a couple of cautions and before you know it, they were starting us single file, well before halfway again. I found myself in 5th behind Roy and Bobbie, and spent the rest of the race trying to find a way past. Sound familiar? A little frustrating, but awesome racing, wheel to wheel.
Well this Saturday started out with a twist. I was on my way up 787 when I hit a pot hole and ripped a wheel off the trailer, hub spindle and all, and seriously bent the axle/hub of another. I took the remaining wheel and tire off the opposite side I was able to limp to the track in time to hit warmups. We left the car the same this week to start off and it was pretty good. I rolled off last in the heat race and got caught up in a jingle a couple of laps in when Lorne spun in front of me. I had some tin rubbing somewhere, but stayed out and worked my way up to 3rd for the finish. Jimmy and I made a couple of small adjustments for the feature and we let it rip. I started 15th and was making some serious time on the bottom. The first few laps went by pretty quickly, and there were some serious battles going on. I kept playing tag with Roy and Frankie, but by lap 5 I was in 5th. In the next few laps I made my way up to second behind Don Miller. And for 10 laps I tried everything I had to get past him, but he was fast and didn't make a single mistake. So we ended up with a 2nd place finish for our efforts.