With our feature win this weekend, we’ve extended our streak of years with at least one feature win to 22. From our first win on July 22, 1995 to this one on August 20, 2016. Our wins aren’t piling up like they did in the glory years, but it’s nice to know we can still sneak one in every now and then. Thanks so much to so many people who have stepped in to help over the years. I’m very appreciative of the opportunities I continue to have after all of these years in the sport. While I didn’t put any pressure on myself to get a win this season, it’s nice to get one so the streak can stay alive.
After running Tim’s Super Stock in Salt Lake City on July 23, I came home motivated to get into the garage and get the modified ready for racing. Sitting for a while isn’t good on the fuel system so I went through it, did some routine maintenance and eventually got the car running. Just as I finished up the car developed a transmission leak. Upon further inspection I noticed a large hairline crack in the case of the transmission. The oil was coming out of it pretty steadily so I had no choice but to change the transmission. As I went to put in the replacement or spare transmission I noticed that the pilot bearing in the back of the motor was all buggered up. That lead to a whole new issue which meant removing the clutch and flywheel from the back of the motor. After trying to remove the bearing using all of the old school grease-packed-whack-a-bolt methods, I was not successful. So I had to order a bearing puller and it took a few days to get in. It finally arrived and I spent most of my Thursday getting everything back together. It was a little late to start the car and try things out, so I will head out there today to see what the prognosis is. Hopefully this means I can hit the dirt sooner than later. School and the Bullring both start back up soon and that will limit my chances of hitting the track.
Saturday night’s race at Rocky Mountain Raceway in Utah marked the 39th different race track that I’ve competed on during my racing endeavors. It was the 4th different track in Utah and the 3rd different pavement track I’ve competed on. Below is the list of tracks we’ve competed it over the years.
Arizona (7) : Mohave Valley Raceway, West Valley Speedway, Canyon Speedway Park, Manzanita Speedway, Central Arizona Speedway, Tucson Raceway, Yuma Speedway
California: (6): El Centro, Ventura Raceway, Victorville Raceway, Bakersfield Speedway, Merced Speedway, Pearsonville Speedway
Colorado: (3): Thunder Mountain Raceway, Alamosa Motor Speedway, I-76 Raceway
Iowa: (1): Boone Speedway
Nebraska (1): Beatrice Speedway
Nevada (15): LVMS Bullring, LVMS (1/2 dirt), LVMS (1/3 dirt), LVMS (roadcourse), Pahrump Valley Speedway, Death Valley Raceway, Tonopah Speedway, Great Basin Raceway, Centennial Speedway, Reno-Fernley Raceway, Rattlesnake Raceway, Lovelock Speedway, Winnemucca Regional Raceway, Battle Mountain Raceway, Summit Raceway
New Mexico (1): Aztec Speedway
Utah: (4): Millard County Raceway, Desert Thunder Raceway, Diamond Mountain Raceway, Rocky Mountain Raceway
Wyoming (1): Sweetwater Speedway
**I’ve also driven a car on the LVMS Super Speedway & Fontana Super Speedway but haven’t raced on them.
A few weeks ago I got a message from Tim saying that he wanted me to run his 2nd Super Stock (pavement) at Rocky Mountain Raceway in Salt Lake City, Utah on July 23. Of course I was apprehensive because it has been almost a year since I’ve driven a race car and over 15 years since I raced a car on the pavement. However, it all worked out and actually happened this weekend. What a great time too. Tim worked with Greg from the Lucas Oil Modifieds to give us some track time on Friday night and we got 3 sessions together and I took an extra one with a little different set up. My times were consistent although a little off the pace. Saturday’s qualifying had time qualify 6th and I qualified 10th out of 13. Rather than start on the pole of my heat I started scratch and finished 5th out of 6. Lined up on the pole of the main and ran 6th out of the 13 cars that started. Not too bad all things considered. The rules are a little different up there so we may have needed a little more gear in the car, but it was still a blast. The event was great with action on both the paved oval and the drag strip, an amazing firework show each night and a lot of fun within the pit, laughing, joking, and BBQing. After many different personal struggles lately, it was just what I needed. Thanks to everyone that helped make it possible.
I’m still alive! That’s a plus. With everything that’s been going on I’ve been trying to keep moving forward and hoping for the best. Decided to try and get away from the negativity and drama of the social media world and deactivated my Facebook account just about two months ago It was tough at first, but I soon realized how much time I was wasting just scrolling through the news feed every single day. Wow. There’s so much more time in the day. I had over 1600 “friends” on there and about 3 have noticed I was gone. LOL. So there’s everything you need to know about social media in a nutshell. The world forgets about you quickly these days, that’s for sure. I hope this finds everyone doing well. Take care, Dan
The dirt modified is race ready and I am just looking for a free weekend to get the car back to a track, somewhere. There are not too many free weekends coming up with work and previous commitments taking over my calendar. I’ve read where an Ironman Series is going to happen in northern Nevada this summer, which would be fun provided my team can tag along to help. Otherwise the racing will be limited to those tracks close enough to go there and back within the same day. Something has got to give so that we can get back to racing. If that doesn’t happen soon it may be in everyone’s best interest to just sell the operation and move on with life. We’ll see how things progress from here.
I’ve been pretty busy lately trying to keep up with my doctor’s appointments and with my regular responsibilities in life. My doctor basically told me that I needed to take better care of myself physically and mentally or I could start planning to say goodbye soon. It may be a surprise to some that I’ve been pretty depressed for a few years, but it’s true. My life really changed with the passing of my dad, friends moving on with their lives, and a few other friends as well as pets passing away. I kind of just pulled back from everyone and everything. Many times I was loaded up to go racing and just decided to not go. I believe I was afraid of failure and just didn’t want to deal with it. So, instead, I stayed home and guaranteed that I failed. Of course not getting out and doing things has put my physical health in jeopardy as well. Not eating well, not enough physical activity, it all takes its toll on the body. I’m hoping to move forward and find a way out of the dark hole I’ve put myself in. Certainly it will not happen quickly, but eventually I hope it will work out for the better.
It’s the time of the year where everything starts happening. Lately I’ve had school competitions on weekends, work during the week, and now the Bullring is starting back up and I’m working there as well. Two weekends ago I worked all week, was at a competition on Saturday morning and by midmorning I was back out at the Bullring working the scoring in the tower. Last week I worked my regular day, headed straight to the Bullring tower on Thursday & Friday after work and worked the Legend Sin City Nationals feature events. This coming weekend I head to the Bullring again for Friday & Saturday night, and the following weekend I will be at the NHRA drag races all weekend. Busy and tiring, but overall it should be a fun time. Fingers crossed that it turns out that way.
I recently received a box of photos from my mom and have been slowly going through them all. It is so neat to see the old photos from when my dad was getting started in racing at Craig Road Speedway. He was #36 and had quite the variety of cars back in the day. I’m in a few of the photos as a youngster. Thought it would be neat to share a few with everyone. Check ’em out.
My boss at LVMS was nice enough to hook me up with some Hot Pit Passes for the NASCAR events here in Las Vegas. So I was able to hang out in the pits, the media center, pit road, garage area, etc. Such a cool experience. Really felt what it was like to be in on the action. The noise, the hustle and bustle of the teams, it was amazing. Had a couple of instances where I ran right into a “famous” person or two. Really went into fan-geek mode for sure. After the Xfinity race on Saturday I was able to get into the actual Victory Lane and snap a few photos of Las Vegas’ own Kyle Busch as he raised the trophy for the Sam’s Town 300. On Sunday I was able to find a friend from my late teens / early 20’s who is now working on Ryan Newman’s #31 in the Sprint Cup series. He left Las Vegas as a teenager with intentions on making it onto a Cup team, he did! Overall the whole weekend was one of those moments that makes you think about how fortunate you are. I’m sure there are many people who would have given their right leg for the experience. I’m glad I was able to take it all in. So much fun.