BROWNSTOWN, IN (January 26, 2014)- Wow what a race tonight at VLR! Tonight's 50 lap A Main at Brownstown was certainly exciting one that featured many DTR2 legends fighting with some not-so experienced racers tonight in one of the most exciting races in VLR history.
The Rushville Rocket Doug Payne (DP_22P) of Rushville, NY made his first VLR A Main in only his second attempt and started on the pole of the feature thanks to VLR's reverse average finish format for this season.
The young 16 year-old driver raced out to a lead quickly from the start as the drivers mixed it up in his mirror for second. However, nerves seemed to get the best of the rookie driver on lap six when his four car length lead disappeared heading into turn one on the flat quarter-miler. The slip up quickly dropped Payne to fourth after the three cars of Boomer, Howard Weaver (VLR_0), and Dirk Daniels (Doit 10) rocketed past and began a spirited battle for the top spot.
By lap 10 the running order was Daniels, Boomer, Weaver, Payne, Brian Williams (BLS_BW43), point leader Austen Semmelmann (BLS_18), Thomas Walter (WFO_Ranger), Josh Weems (VLR_JW), and Ryan Guererri (51g) of Geneva, New York.
On lap 25, halfway through the race, the picture up front had changed dramatically, however. In just 15 laps, Cross Plains, IN driver Gage Clark had stormed from 7th to first utilizing the surprisingly fast high groove. Brownstown is just an hour west of the young gun, and the always fast driver was looking for his series leading third win of the season.
Weaver had taken over 2nd at this point, with Boomer hot on his heels. Early leader Dirk Daniels hopped the cushion and fell to ninth. 14 year-old Guererri was certainly turning some heads after starting last and moving from 10th to 4th in fifteen circuits around the short track.
Meanwhile, the race for the lead remained hot for the entire race with Clark, Weaver, and Boomer giving the fans a treat to some of the most exhilarating racing in DTR2. Clark and Weaver ran side-by-side for the last 25 laps with Boomer right on their bumper waiting for a slip up.
On the last lap, Weaver drove in hard in turn three and came out of the corner in a dead heat with Clark. It wasn't meant to be, though, as Clark edged Weaver at the line for his third win of the season! The finish was the second straight side by side finish at VLR. Boomer had a career best third place finish, and was followed by point leader Semmelmann in fourth after he made a last corner pass on Guererri. Guererri brought home a very impressive top 5, however.
Payne, Daniels, Williams, Walter, and Weems rounded out the finishers. Next week VLR heads to the southeast for some red clay racing at the famous Cherokee Speedway in the Groundhog Day 60! Cya there!
Top 10/Starting Pos./Location:
1. (6th) Gage Clark (VLR_Gage) Cross Plains, IN
2. (4th) Howard Weaver (VLR_Shock) Crossville, TN
3. (5th) Boomer West Virginia
4. (8th) Austen Semmelmann (BLS_18) Brookfield, WI
5. (10th) Ryan Guererri (51G) Geneva, NY
6. (1st) Doug Payne (DP_22P) Rushville, NY
7. (3rd) Dirk Daniels (Doit 10) Fort Worth, TX
8. (7th) Brian Williams (BLS_BW43) Sparta, MI
9. (2nd) Thomas Walter (WFO_39) Erie, PA
10. (9th) Josh Weems (VLR_JW) West Point, MS
KNOXVILLE, IA (December 10, 2013)- Fourteen racers showed up at the historic Knoxville Speedway for a day race at the legendary half-mile dirt track. The track was in great shape and nice and slick for the field of dirt late models.
Prerace BSing was done and it was finally showtime. Heat 1 was a BW breakaway after leaving Gage and B2 (Licmer) to fight for second. Hoots and DeadBolt were battling it out for 4th with IR_Twin right behind, Rick had electrical issues and had to pull off track early. BW, B2, and Gage were able to secure the transfer sports to the A main after the first heat race.
Heat 2 hit the track and it was ON hot and heavy. BLS_Jason was leading with Mav sitting right behind, but behind Slammer and Duster where hooked up and rolling to the front, the duo caught Mav and where able to work past him for the final 2 transfer positions, Shock and Last Place had a slow start but where closing in as time ran out and had to move to the B. J-Mac Had tire issue and hit the wall and limped home. The top 3 transfers were Jason, Slammer, and Duster who failed weight inspection and was moved to the B.
B main saw more great racing action with Hoots setting the pace early but a 0 car of VLR_Shock was making his way thru the pack after starting fifth and would pass Hoots coming to the white flag and go on to win the B main. Mav ran a safe race with a 3rd place finish, but he was not happy about it and threw his wheel at his crew chief for giving him such a terrible car which broke his wheel into pieces and he did not have a back up and was forced to miss the A. DeadBolt and LastPlace where holding on to the final transfer spots with J-Mac and his repair crew were making a change that just came up a little short. IR_Twin had carburetor problems but still finished strong. Duster ran out of gas leaving him asking the question how the hell do you run out of gas on a 15 lap race, rumor has it he fire his crew cheif and hired Mav's. IFRT_Rick finished last in the B after suffering alectrickul problems.
The Main event was up and did not disappoint. After the Mav tantrum, the only person left in the pits was Rick (lesson to all stick around and you might make the A) so he would start in the back of the A where yet again electrical issues plagued the veteran driver. Rick said he will never hire Shock to the wiring on his car again.
The first 12 laps were action packed with Shock making big moves to get to 3rd after coming from the B Main, but as BW and Slammer were battling for first, Slammers motor went up into a ball of fire as the engine blew and he slid to the inside wall and out of the event. After the restart at lap 28 it was on. BW and Shock where throwing hay-makers at each other for the lead as Gage and B2 were in very close tow. LastPlace and Hoots where having a go at it for 5th with multiple passes back and forth with DeadBolt right in the mix as well.
Jason choose the wrong gear and faded as the race went along and was quoted after the race as saying it was his worst Knoxville finish ever. Later when his hauler left a set of gears were left behind. As the race drew close to the finish business picked up even more for BW and Shock as Gage and B2 slowly faded a little.
Shock was holding the lead in the last corner when BW got a big bite off the corner. The Sparta, Michigan driver was only able to make it to Shocks door though before the momentum carried Shock around the top of the track and to the finish line in first place. In victory lane as Colt 45 was being sprayed everywhere as Shock yelled "THIS WAS FOR ROCKY TOP! GO VOLS! ORSO IS A BITCH!"
Post Race Comments:
BW: I had a plan to pass him at the end just couldn't get the bite I need to finish it.
Gage: I think I'm grounded because I missed my curfew. I was supposed to be in bed at 8 :(
B2: I need to hurry up and get home to get back on the VLR website and make sure I didn't miss anything. Good race all.
Last Place: What is this 5th place BS, don't you know what my name is?
With this race in the history books the NO Shift league has been a good damn series with lots of close racing and 4 different race winners in 4 races. Thank you all for coming.
SPRINGFIELD, ILL. (December 9, 2013) - It's been a long six months since the roar of the VLR Dirt Late Model's zoomed around dirt tracks all across the country. The summer heat has now turned to snowy days and cold weather, but that's not enough to slow down some of the best sim racers in the world.
VLR opens the 12 race Winter Blast schedule with their first visit to the mile-long Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield, Illinois. The super fast track has been called the Daytona of dirt racing and is a perfect track to open up the 21st season of Victory Lane Racing. Drivers will have to find a good drafting partner if they want to survive the fifty lap contest and be up front at the end.
Passing and exciting racing should be on the menu this season with an all new race format announced a few months ago. Beginning this season, A Main's will lineup based on a drivers reverse average finish for that season at VLR. For example, if a driver has an average finish of 22.7, and that's the lowest of any other driver in the A Main, then that person will start first. On the other side, if a driver has an average finish of 2.5 and that's the highest of the other drivers in the A Main, that driver will start last and have to work their way through the field.
This format will make for much more passing and overall excitement at VLR this year and should make for a very tight point race as well. Many drivers have already expressed excitement over the format and the possibility of seeing some new faces in victory lane.
One driver who is on board with the idea is Pennsylvania driver JFR_lastplace. As you could guess from his name, lastplace had the lowest average finish of drivers who finished in the top 10 in points at VLR this past season. The chunky middle-aged driver had a fast car in many of the races last season, but the extra weight from his rotund frame often slowed him down as races wore on. With the new format, however, LP expects to be able to block enough cars to improve on his career best 6th place finish at VLR.
"All it takes is some quick twitches of the wheel to cause a hell of a wreck behind me and pave the way for my first VLR win. I always envisioned doing that, but I never got to start high enough in the field to see it come to fruition. With VLR's new format, though, I think I can block and drive just recklessly enough to pick up a win," stated JFR_LP.
One driver who LP would undoubtedly be seeing in his mirror a few times this season is defending champion BLS_18, who is on a seven race win streak at VLR. The Brookfield, Wisconsin native is ready to defend his title and keep the wins rolling despite likely having to start near the rear of the field in most races this season.
"Nobody can stop me, I'm still the best. I have a sexy black girlfriend, and I'm just loving life right now. Even with the new format, I still don't see anybody beating me, because like I said, I'm the best, and the rest of you are losers," said BLS_18.
VLR_Shock, who only lost the championship by three points, is one driver who may be able to slow down BLS_18. Shock will likely have to come from the rear in a lot of races this season as well, but the Crossville, Tennessee driver has shown that he can pass cars easily in the past, even if it meant slamming into the side of them to do so.
"The new format is awesome to me, because I like to pass cars. And it's a proven fact that BLS_18 can't pass cars, so I like my chances even more. You can look it up, Wheel has never won a race when he's started lower than third. I read it on Wikipedia or somewhere. This season is gonna be hard on him and I expect him to give up by the fourth race and say how unfair the format is or something. He will be lucky to finish higher than 8th in points this year."
Another driver who is expected to contend for race wins is VLR_McGee, who is looking for his first win at VLR since season 15. The pride of Spartanburg, South Carolina recorded a season-high fourth place finish last season at Thunderbird. Other driver's looking to make a mark with the new format include BLS_Kevin, XCR_Gage, DS5, and many more.
Plenty of new faces are expected to make appearances at VLR this year, with this season likely to be the most exciting yet at VLR, thanks to the new format and new drivers moving up the ranks. Come on out for what is sure to be another great season! The Winter Blast series schedule begins this Sunday December 15th at 8:30 PM eastern with qualifying at the Illinois State Fairgrounds. Bring your jackets and blankets cause it's gonna be a cold one for sure!