Modifieds Off to a Slow Start in 2016 South Boston
South Boston, VA – Last Saturday was South Boston Speedway’s opening race of the season. The NASCAR Whelen All-American Series late models had an incredible turn out, fielding 31 cars at qualifying including a handful of drivers from Langley Speedway and even one from Southside Speedway.
The modifieds had a smaller lineup though. Six cars decided to travel out for the opener making the field the smallest of the divisions racing which included limited late models, pure stock, and the hornets. By the time qualifying came around one driver [Robbie Babb] didn’t even take time and had to start at the rear. Once the race was underway the cars started dropping until the field was down to two cars. At lap 42 the race was ended prematurely as Jimmy Humblet easily out paced the second place car who had spun out multiple times in practice earlier in the day, you could even hear that Jimmy wasn’t all the way into the throttle.
Last season these modifieds averaged almost 12 cars in every race. The series is only ran at South Boston, Langley Speedway, and Southside Speedway. With the new Dominion Speedway also picking up the series this season which could hurt the size of fields, but Langley had 18 show up for their finale last year including a couple newcomers. These cars are different from most of the conventional mod series that run at Bowman Gray Stadium, NASCAR touring series, and the new PASS modified series. They run on a small tire – just eight inches wide, and have a lot of power, making throttle control a key factor.
From a motorsports fan view and the modifieds being my favorite cars to watch, I hope this is just an early season hiccup and the cars will pick up this weekend for the SoBo’s second race weekend of the year including twin 25 lap modified races. So if you are free this Saturday make the trip out there, enjoy a bologna burger, and watch some good racing!