Last night closed out the points race at the new Hilltop Speedway, and what a season it has been. Congrats must first go out to the folks that took a dream and turned it into what has become the most talked about race track in the area. (People were even talking about it at Pittsburgh Speedway this weekend, and it was all good.) Not only did they manage to turn a mess into a race track in a short time, but they ran it all season in a way that kept the stands and pits full. They treated racers and fans like they deserve to be treated and it shows every week. Hats off to everybody that helped to put this season together for Hilltop, including all staff, racers and fans! On a related note, our thoughts and prayers are with the Jeff Norris family. It's truly sad when tragedy hits such great people. We're all here for you if there's anything we can do for you.
Next in line for congrats is Fred Snyder for picking up the Pure Stock Championship. Some may think it was easy picking for a veteran like Fred, but he had his share of trouble this year. From being taken out by Mr. Magoo (and others) a few times, to mechanical problems, nothing would keep him down. Even being pursued by "Mr. Consistent" each week wasn't enough to keep him from becoming a second generation Champion at Hilltop Speedway. Fred is a guy that everybody likes to race with, and pure class all the way. Way to go Fred!
Congrats must also go out to "Mr. Consistent", Denny Shear, and Jeff Facemire for putting together a great season. Denny not only picked up his career first feature win, but he missed the Championship by only 66 points to a guy with much more experience. Jeff spent the first half of his rookie season struggling with mechanical problems, and trying to get a handle on the car itself. By mid season, the improvement was obvious though. Not only did he manage to keep the car pointed the right way most nights, he was able to run with some pretty stout competition by the end of the season. While he's been able to run with Denny a few times and even sneak by him before, last night those two put on one hell of a show. Watching those guys swapping postions several times with Paul Holmes in the mix, shows that Jeff might just have this shit figured out. By no means are his struggles completely over, but he's sure as hell come a long way in one season. Congrats to both Jeff and Denny for not only putting on a great show all season, but for finding sucess along the way. Now let's see what ya got for next year!
We can't leave out Rory Reed when passing out the congrats either. Talk about a guy that's had his ups and downs this year! Some how he still managed to put together some great runs and finish 3rd in the points at Hilltop, and 5th at WCS. Not bad for what most would consider an underfunded race team. That shows what kind of determination this guy has. That's a true RACER!!
As mentioned earlier, I made the trip to Pittsburgh for their big show this weekend. Well, half of their big show anyway. The second half has been rescheduled for Oct. 8th. This was my first trip there and I was told that it was a fast track. Fast doesn't fully describe it! DAMN!!! I'm not sure about some decisions made by management, but the track itself seems like one hell of a facility. I certainly plan to make a return trip or two in the future.
This weekend is the 11th annual Dirt Blowout at Lakeville Speedway. This is always a show you don't want to miss, and I expect the same this year. Not only is there plenty of great racing action, but there's plenty of fun too. It's just a great racing/party atmosphere all weekend. BE THERE!!