War Sprints and USMTS A Modifieds made for an Outstanding Race Program, add the USRA B Mods and the E Mods and outstanding became a Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Race Program. These four classes attracted 93 racecar drivers to compete at I-35 Speedway. The competition was fierce, the racing was exciting, and you know it was great racing when the fans in the stands are leaving their seats to stand and witness the end of the race!
Speaking of the fans in the stands it was great to see so many fans and racers from the local racing community in attendance. The grandstands were full of race fans who came to witness the best of the best in racing in all four of the classes. The sad part is we were so busy behind the scenes we do not get to visit with everyone. Saw Kerry Davis and his entourage, saw that Rick Beebe was there via Facebook, but hey I did get to talk with Mike Higley and play Grandpa for a bit with their youngest. Mike was complimenting owner Kyle Johnson on how great the place always looks and how well maintained the track has been under the Johnson’s ownership.
So that leads me to my weekly THANK YOU Mother Nature for a great night of racing. When the races started the temperature had cooled from a high of 85 for the day to a starting time temperature of 78. She did provide a challenge during the week with moisture coming in late Wednesday morning make for a short day. Thursday did not dry much because of the humidity in the air but Mike Johnson was able to work the track, Tony was able to paint, and I did windows, a little mowing, a little weed spraying, and my favorite (cough, cough) weed eating. Friday was more of the same but add in wasp nest removal all in preparation for Saturday night. Also add in on Friday, Kyle Johnson took a day off from her regular work to come organize and stock the concessions.
It takes a great team to complete all the necessary behind scenes work a racetrack requires. From ordering food and stocking it, to track preparation, to maintenance, to during the races keeping the show moving, lining up race cars, making announcements in the pits, scoring, teching, officiating, preparing lineups and distributing as necessary, to race finishes, to then printing the necessary paperwork so drivers can be paid and all the necessary documents involved in that process, to keeping the various concessions stocked when they run short of items, to selling tickets, to announcing, to assisting with parking in the pits, to selling 50/50, to selling programs, to providing ambulance care, to towing, to souvenir sales, to concession prep and sales, to clean up, yep there is a lot of things that go into working at and running a racetrack. At I-35 Speedway we have one of the best teams in the business, thank you to all our workers!
Speaking of teamwork, what great teamwork for these races as the officials from WAR would take their positions in the tower during their races, to our own officials moving and assisting as needed when the series were racing to getting in place for the B Mods and E Mods, and to the USMTS officials taking their positions in the tower when it was their turn. In my years of racing I have seen series come in and just take over and everything goes through them (NASCAR). In fact I had a NASCAR official tell me this was their show and the track was theirs when they were putting on a truck race at I-70 Speedway back in the 90s. I told the young NASCAR lady official at the time that is great but we are in the process of doing a timed run for your pace truck and you have people crossing the track in front of the truck coming out of turn 4. So much for their timed run. Working with WAR and USMTS is a pleasure!
Moment of the night – the last lap last turn pass in the WAR Series Non Wing Sprint Cars – this kind of finish had the race fans standing and this kind of racing could only happen because of the great racetrack condition which provided a super smooth high and low groove!