Lakeside Speedway had great racing with 84 cars in attendance. I-35 Speedway had 107 cars in the pits. The car counts continue to increase at these two race tracks, while more and more racers are getting their cars completed and arriving at the tracks. This is producing some of the greatest racing these two tracks have seen over the last few years. The competition is simply the best in the Midwest.
Let’s give credit where credit is due, both tracks are exceptionally prepared each week led by owner Mike Johnson. Mike Knight helps at Lakeside and Gene Stigall at I-35 but the finishing touch is always Mr. Johnson with his box blade. When Mike Johnson is not working the track he is putting in the hours, cleaning, sweeping, painting, mowing, repairing. Each week there is a list made of items which require attention from the coffee pot not working, to lights in the men’s pit bathroom not working, to the flashing light under the flagman, to hot water tanks needing cleaned, to toilets that leak, and to other leaks that appear. Maintaining one facility is a chore, maintaining two tracks is simply a man who loves our sport, not to mention all the race cars he fields on the tracks. So when you see Mike tell him thank you it goes a long way to appreciate all he and Kyle have brought to our sport and our racing facilities.
Other behind the scenes activities include our racetrack ministers. Tim Gifford and Robbie Skipper do a great job as track chaplains. There will be an upcoming article on the Robbie Skipper as he is part of the MRO – Motor Racing Outreach Association. For families, for drivers, for fans, for officials, for all involved in our sport we are so thankful for men willing to serve in these roles. Thank you Tim and Robbie.
Can you believe we are ten weeks into the race season? Time really does fly when we are having fun. Coming to either track is simply fun, whether we are there to compete, watch, or work, this sport brings out the fun. But we have to be careful because at the ten week mark the newness of the season has worn off and sometimes competitors start nit picking each other, the officials, just everything when in reality we get to enjoy this sport. Remember always we do this for fun and we do this as a racing family.
Weather continues to affect our intermission activities. At both tracks we were planning three legged race events with drivers and crews. This always fun event had to be scrubbed because weather in the area put both tracks into a somewhat hurry up mode. While it is nice to hurry the program it does cause for occasional mistakes which have to be corrected in short order, but just know both track crews are prepared to pick up the pace when necessary.
Numbers are beginning to be an issue. Every driver has his or her favorite number so tracks have bent over backwards to allow drivers their favorite numbers but add a letter. The problem is here recently we have had an influx of the number 7, 3, or 52. The scorers need letters large enough to see. So while watching the races tonight see if you can differentiate the numbers. The scorers do their best but understand if someone else has the same number it is in your best interest to ensure the letter stands out. NASCAR does not allow duplicate numbers.
Vintage cars were at Lakeside and I-35 Speedway last weekend. Non wing sprints were at I35 Speedway. This week Lakeside gets two nights of racing with the World of Outlaw Sprint Cars and the Stock Cars racing on Saturday evening. Think track prep is tough with two tracks, try doing it two nights in a row, along with cleaning the facility from one night to the next. That is this week’s track challenge. Enjoy the races.
It was also great seeing Ron Hartford and Mark and Susan Silvey at the races.