Between all the rain-outs, family obligations, and a shredded tire on route 30, it was about a month and a half before I finally got back to a track for some racing action. Sure I got to visit a couple during the week for some testing and bullshit sessions, but I needed my favorite coney dogs and those kickass Hilltop Fries in a bad way. Last week there was nothing short of disaster that would keep me away. Blazing temps made for some dust and a slick track, but that wasn't gonna ruin my fun. The only thing that put a damper on the night was that crybaby BITCH that rushed straight to Facebook (while sitting in the friggin stands) to complain about the dust. I was there when Buck offered to refund her money along with admission price for her candy ass boyfriend, who also rushed to Facebook to cry like a BITCH while sitting in the stands. Why am I being so harsh on these two assholes? Well, she explained very clearly to Buck and I that the internet is where people voice their opinions. So, since I don't dabble in the evil that is Facebook, here's my opinion. First, if you go to a DIRT track on a 94 degree day, you should probably expect some dust, possibly plenty of it since water simply runs off once the track has hardened. If you find the outside real world not quite as pleasant as parking your ass behind a keyboard indoors, maybe you should take up an indoor sport or stick to playing those online games. Secondly, if you find yourself unhappy with those icky outdoor conditions and want to express your displeasure, grow a pair and talk to management in person like an adult. Any business in the world would be happy to discuss your issues in person rather than get bashed from a keyboard, and you won't find a more "eager to please" owner than Buck Smitley of Hilltop Speedway. I know it's tough for this damn Facebook generation to have an actual 2 sided conversation where you're accountable for your actions and "comments", but that's what it takes to actually accomplish things in the grownup world. Give it a try sometime if ya dare. ;-) Oh, and just in case you've convinced yourself that the dust problem was only at Hilltop, I can point out some videos from another local track on the same night that look at least as bad. Go figure.
Alright, now to the racing. Last week the slick track did indeed take away some of the 3 and 4 wide action that Hilltop is known for but there was plenty of passing going on and drivers used every inch of the racing surface. In the Street Stocks, the slicker surface actually leveled the playing field a bit. The big motor guys had their hands full all night and Bob Chilcote took home the $1000 feature win while Lonas peddled that big ass motor the best he could to pick up second with Daugherty on his tail.
This week the track was in great shape and even with the scorching temps the dust was under control. This brought back the awesome side by side racing we expect on "The Hill" for sure. Dashes and heat races gave us just a hint at the battles we'd see when the features lined up. Late Models, Modifieds, and Street Stocks gave us unreal battles for the lead and throughout the fields, along with door to door finishes at the checkers. The Late Model feature will be one to remember for anybody that witnessed it. JR Gentry jumped to an early lead and kept his foot through the radiator for almost the entire race, lifting only slightly to slice his way through lapped traffic. Meanwhile there was one hell of a battle behind him trying to decide who would try to take the lead away. Markham finally secured 2nd and went to work trying to reel Gentry in. By midway he closed in tight but didn't push his luck just yet. This ol' veteran hasn't won a gazillion features by taking chances early that he didn't have to. Lapped traffic would once again play a role coming for the white flag and Markham was ready to capitalize this time and stole the win from Gentry. Gentry said later that he may have been too conservative with the lapped traffic at the end but I honestly don't think he could have played it any harder without causing a huge mess of twisted metal. As hard as that loss had to be for Jr, he put on one of the best examples of class you could ask for after the race. He climbed from his car on the front stretch to shake the hand of the man that took his win away. I'll be the first to admit that I haven't always seen that attitude from Gentry, but this was sincere and it was truly a class act. Hats off to ya JR! You might just become the man your legendary father is someday. ;-)
Coming up this Saturday June 25th will be Mid-Season Championship Night at Hilltop Speedway. The 25th would also have been my Dads 84th birthday and I know exactly where he'd expect me to be. See ya at Hilltop folks!!!