Monthly Archives: December 2016

Ep. 01 Welcome to The Short Track Report

Short Track Report Album Art

 

 

Show Notes

Ep. 01: Welcome to The Short Track Report

1) Intro: Special thanks to @ericdoesvoices

2) Welcome to the show (this section will be labled Catching up after first episode)
– What the podcast will be about.
– How often we will podcast.
– General show format: Catching up, Topic of the show, Where to next.
– Disclaimers on status in the “business”

3) Host Introductions: Who we are.

4) Discussion Topic(s)
– 2017 CARS Tour Schedule
– Short Track Nationals
– Snowball Derby

5) Where to next:
– How to reach out to us
+ Email: shorttrackreport@theweeklyracer.com

– Next Episode Topic: NASCAR Touring Series Schedules

Southern National’s Mason Diaz Scores Top 10 Finish in First Appearance at Five Flags Speedway

diaz1Pensacola, FL – For years now Five Flags Speedway has been the destination for racers from all over the country in the month of December. The Snowball Derby is a race that really needs no introduction at all. Some of the biggest names in short track racing and NASCAR have competed. This year saw an entry from one of the Mid-Atlantic’s very own – Mr. Mason Diaz.

Diaz, just 16 years of age from Manassas, Virginia, has spent most of his racing career in an INEX Legend car running at Southern National Motorsports Park in Kenly, North Carolina while making the transition to stock car racing with the help of Late Model veteran Mike Darne. Coming off of a successful weekend at the 2016 Thanksgiving Classic winning a unique Legends Cup race and finishing third in the main event, Diaz packed his race bag up and headed south to attempt to enter his very first Snowflake 100.

“We knew we were fast enough,” Diaz commented about practice earlier in the week. “Couple practices towards the end we were top ten; it was just a matter of making it into the race.”

With the Snowflake being an impound race Diaz and his crew were not allowed to touch the cars after they went through technical inspection which set them up for the nerve-wracking qualifying session. Going into Saturday the team figured times would be close to 16.8, when cars started clocking in times down in the sixes, Diaz knew he just had to hit his marks and drive his line.

“I knew the car was fast enough it was just a matter of if I could put the lap down,” Diaz said. “The first lap I ran a 16.84 which put us in the race alone and the second lap was a 16.82 so we knew we were good.”

A new track in a new state running with drivers you are not familiar with can be tough. When it came down to race day Diaz just took things one position at a time working his way to the front and staying out of trouble.

“It was pretty much all a new experience for me,” Diaz said. “My thing was just making the race. During the race, I just wanted to keep the car in one piece and finish the race. I don’t think I was ready for a top ten finish myself.”

diaz2Diaz started the race off strong passing cars right from the start. Running the inside lane around Five Flags Speedway along with a few cautions flags throughout the night allowed for Diaz to pick his way through the field one at a time. Spending most of the event running mid pack late race cautions, along with some smooth driving, is what Diaz attests to helping him with the top ten finish.

“I followed behind some of the guys that run down there regularly,” Diaz said about his finish. “Augie Grill, who went on to win the race actually started behind me, so I followed him a lot throughout the race and just learned everything I could.”

Keeping the nose clean and running behind some of the veterans on the race clearly paid off for the young Virginia who gets to take home a top ten finish in one of the biggest Pro Late Model races in the country. Things did not come easy for Diaz who told us there was a rather large learning curve when it came to the lines around Five Flags, it was certainly something he had never experienced before.

“I have never run a track with a swooping front stretch in a big car,” Diaz commented for one. “Also turns one and two can kill you! Three and four are important too but the lines you run there are just so important in the first two turns. Mike Darne Racing gave me a great car this weekend and turn three and four was such a dominant corner for me in my book and is where I made most of my passes.”

Diaz also went on to comment how the racing surface mimicked Myrtle Beach Speedway – a track he has yet to compete on in any form of racing – when it comes to the tire wear. He went on to explain tire management was something similar to Hickory Motor Speedway and how important it was to keep the right rear tire on the car to take you to the end.

After traveling almost a thousand miles, entering a race where you know there is a potential to not make it in on time, in one of the largest stages of his young career we ask Mason, pretty much knowing the answer already, what this finish meant to him and his career moving forward.

“This is a huge confidence booster,” said Diaz. “Most people say it’s harder to make the Snowflake than it is the Derby with these cars being so close and a lot of drivers running both. It’s just huge for me especially with the top nine cars were ones that run there locally and have been running for years.”

The Snowflake 100 puts a cap on Mason Diaz’s 2016 campaign and the top ten finish was like the cherry on top for Mason Diaz Racing. The guys will have a few short months to prepare things for next season, which already looks to be a busy one for the guys.

“We are going to run speed weeks down at New Symrna this February,” Mason told The Weekly Racer. “We are going to run Late Model Stocks for most of the year and go for Rookie of the Year in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series in both North Carolina and Virginia for sure. Maybe see how things go in South Carolina depending on how many rookies run and maybe even for the entire nation, just all depends on how things go. We are also going to shoot for state titles in Virginia and North Carolina as well.”

To follow Mason through his journey in 2017 head over to his Facebook page, Mason Diaz Racing, and give them a like.

Bristol Motor Speedway Announces Inaugural US Nationals of Short Track Racing

012815-nascar-sprint-cup-series-irwin-tools-night-race-bristol-mm-pi-vadapt-664-high-66BRISTOL, Tenn. – The world’s best Late Model racers will descend upon the World’s Fastest Half-Mile in 2017 when Bristol Motor Speedway, The Last Great Colosseum and one of the most famous short tracks in the world, hosts the Inaugural U.S. Nationals of Short Track Racing, May 19-21.

 

The signature event will be sanctioned by five different sanctioning bodies and for the first time in stock car racing history, will bring together six top categories of racing to compete on the same track in one spectacular weekend of action. Champion Racing Association powered by JEGS (CRA), who took the lead sanction body role in developing this event, will be co-sanctioning the Super Late Model race with their ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS along with The CARS Super Late Model Tour (CARS) and the Southern Super Series (SSS).  CRA will also oversee the action for the crate late model event with their JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour presented by Chevrolet and the Street Stocks, while the CARS officials will oversee the Late Model Stock portion of the event with their CARS Late Model Stock Tour.  The compacts will be organized and overseen by the Vore’s Compact Touring Series while the Modified portion of the weekend will be sanctioned by International Championship Auto Racing (ICAR) Top Speed Modified Tour.  The U. S. Nationals of Short Track Racing is being presented by Vore’s Welding & Steel.

 

“Bristol Motor Speedway is proud to announce today that in 2017 it will host the biggest and what promises to be the most exciting event in short track stock car racing history,” said Jerry Caldwell, executive vice president and general manager of Bristol Motor Speedway. “We’re looking forward to fans joining us following the NASCAR All-Star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. It will surely be an event you won’t want to miss.”

 

These powerful and exciting cars thundering around the high banks of Bristol Motor Speedway are guaranteed to produce some thrilling action. At Bristol we have a long history of putting on events that are considered the biggest and the best, and we feel this race weekend has great potential to achieve that status in the world of short track stock car racing.”

 

The premier event at BMS will join the likes of some of short track racing’s most revered events, including the prestigious Snowball Derby in Florida, Indiana’s famed Winchester 400 and Nashville’s All-American 400.

 

“This event is a dream come true for everyone involved with short track racing,” noted CRA Founder/President R. J. Scott.  “Immediately, it becomes an historic and nationally significant event, which everyone will want to be a part of.  There are a few great trophies that everyone wants to have in racing, and you can add the trophy from the U.S. Nationals of Short Track Racing to that list.  Three of the most respected words in racing are…Bristol…Motor…Speedway.”

 

Scott went on to add, “A couple of key people in helping make all this happen are Steve Vore for taking on the role of presenting sponsor and Norm Partin of Nashville for his key role in helping to build this event through his long standing relationship with Bristol Motor Speedway.”

 

“It is thrilling that Vore’s Compact Touring Series racers, along with five other great stock car divisions will get the chance to make history with the U.S. Nationals of Short Track Racing presented by Vore’s Welding & Steel at Bristol Motor Speedway,” commented Steve Vore, owner of the Vore’s Welding & Steel and the Vore’s Compact Touring Series.

 

For the modifieds, ICAR/Top Speed Modified Series owner Dave Muzillo noted, “I’m looking forward to bringing these types of modifieds that race all around the country, together at one race track, and watch them battle it out for the title at this historic event…it will be exciting!”

 

Multiple NASCAR Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Truck series drivers are expected to compete in this major event at BMS. Several past winners of similar high profile Super Late Model events include Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, Erik Jones, John Hunter Nemechek and William Byron.

 

“This is an epic announcement for short track fans, drivers, teams, and sponsors,” said Chris Ragle, CARS Tour Series director. “This will be the marquee event of asphalt short track racing next year, period. Obviously races like the Snowball Derby, Winchester 400, and Martinsville 300 for Late Model Stocks are crown jewel events, but nothing can compare to competing and putting on an event at Bristol Motor Speedway.”

 

The six categories of racing to be featured at the U.S. Nationals of Short Track Racing presented by Vore’s Welding & Steel are:

 

Super Late Models – The premier division of asphalt short track racing cars in the United States. These cars typically feature 600-plus horsepower engines under the hood of a custom built chassis weighing around 2,750 pounds.

Pro Late Models – These racecars are similar to those in Super Late Model but they all must utilize a specific factory crate engine. The crate engines are built by the participating auto manufacturers, including General Motors and Ford.

Late Model Stocks – These machines evolved in the Carolinas and are raced primarily at weekly asphalt tracks located throughout the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States. These cars weigh approximately 3,100 pounds and their engines pump out about 400 horsepower.

Street Stocks – This entry category is a popular developmental opportunity for those who aspire to gain experience and become future stars of the Late Model Stock scene. The cars in this division must be 1960-2016 models of rear wheel drive street cars that must remain stock appearing and equipped with eight cylinder engines weighing in the neighborhood of 3200 pounds.

ICAR / Florida-Type Modifieds – This open wheel style of racing originated on the short track paved ovals of Indiana and is now featured at race tracks throughout the country.  The fender-less machines are powered by V8 engines with a minimum weight of 2,600 pounds.

Compacts – This exciting class showcases four and six-cylinder, front wheel drive compact cars. These smaller wheelbase race cars are popular because the class is predominantly made up of the compact cars seen on the streets today.

 

The weekend schedule will feature practice sessions for all six classes on Friday, May 19.  On Saturday the 20th, practice for all six classes will resume with qualifying for all divisions. Two qualifying races for Super Late Model and main events for Compacts, Modifieds and Street Stocks will be the featured racing on Saturday evening. On Sunday the 21st, the three main classes will get warm up laps starting at 11 a.m. Final qualifying for Super Late Models will be held at 1 p.m. The 100-lap main events for Super Late Models, Pro Late Models and Late Model Stocks will begin at 2 p.m.

 

“I think with today’s announcement it goes to show when you are unified and are willing to work together great things can be accomplished,” said Jack McNelly, CARS Tour Series owner. “This event took a lot of work and cooperation from all parties to make this event a reality. I don’t know a short track racer who doesn’t aspire to race at Bristol one day. It’s the most iconic short track in North America, if not the world, and come May racers from across the country are going to get that opportunity.”

 

Southern Super Series and Five Flags Speedway owner Tim Bryant summed up the excitement and thoughts looking forward, “It has truly been exciting to see that all of this is finally going to take place, and it will surely create a buzz in the short track industry.  We’ve still got a lot of work to do and details to finalize, but it was time to let the world know to put May 19th to 21st on their calendars for this MUST SEE short track event. We are thrilled to be a part of it and look forward to working with everyone.”

 

BMS will provide details on tickets, camping and general information at a later date. Be sure to check back regularly at bristolmotorspeedway.com for updates.

 

Racers should follow the websites of the appropriate sanctioning bodies for more news and information when those items are finalized and released this winter.

 

-Bristol Motor Speedway Press Release.

NASCAR Announces Multi-Year Partnership with Monster Energy for Premier Series Entitlement

monster-nascarBrand Becomes Official Energy Drink of NASCAR, NASCAR All-Star Race Title Sponsor

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 1, 2016) — NASCAR and Monster Energy announced today a multi-year agreement for the premier series entitlement as well as the prestigious annual NASCAR All-Star Race. Monster Energy, which will begin its tenure as naming rights partner on Jan. 1, 2017, will become only the third company to serve as the entitlement sponsor in NASCAR premier series history, following RJ Reynolds and Sprint/Nextel.

As part of the agreement, the brand also becomes the Official Energy Drink of NASCAR.

“Monster Energy is a brand built on excitement and enthusiasm, qualities that align with NASCAR,” said Brian France, NASCAR Chairman and CEO. “This sponsorship position is the most unique in all of sports and entertainment, and we are thrilled to have a partner that will help us further elevate the series. Today’s announcement is the culmination of a thorough search, one that resulted in the right partner at this important time in our sport’s history.”

NASCAR premier series races long have been a bucket-list destination for sports fans throughout the country, and starting next season, Monster Energy will elevate the event experience to an even higher level.  As part of the agreement, Monster Energy will engage with fans in creative, innovative ways at all race tracks where the premier series will race.

“Monster Energy has an established and versatile history in motorsports, and we’re thrilled to take this historic next step,” said Rodney Sacks, Monster Beverage Chairman and CEO. “We feel strongly that our brand is a perfect fit for this sport and its star athletes. We look forward to interacting with the millions of passionate NASCAR fans week-in, week out.”

 

About NASCAR

The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, Inc. (NASCAR) is the sanctioning body for the No. 1 form of motorsports in the United States. NASCAR consists of three national series (NASCAR’s premier series, NASCAR XFINITY Series™, and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series™), four regional series, one local grassroots series and three international series. The International Motor Sports Association™ (IMSA®) governs the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship™, the premier U.S. sports car series. Based in Daytona Beach, Fla., with offices in eight cities across North America, NASCAR sanctions more than 1,200 races in more than 30 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico and Europe. For more information visit www.NASCAR.com and www.IMSA.com, and follow NASCAR on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat (‘NASCAR’). For race tickets, visit www.NASCAR.com/tickets.

 

About Monster Beverage Corporation

Based in Corona, California, Monster Beverage Corporation is a holding company and conducts no operating business except through its consolidated subsidiaries.  The Company’s subsidiaries develop and market energy drinks, including Monster Energy® energy drinks, Monster Energy Extra Strength Nitrous Technology® energy drinks, Java Monster® non-carbonated coffee + energy drinks, Monster Rehab® non-carbonated energy drinks with electrolytes, Muscle Monster® Energy Shakes, Übermonster® energy drinks, NOS® energy drinks, Full Throttle® energy drinks, Burn® energy drinks, Samurai® energy drinks, Relentless® energy drinks, Mother® energy drinks, Power Play® energy drinks, BU® energy drinks, Nalu® energy drinks, BPM® energy drinks, Gladiator® energy drinks, and Ultra® energy drinks.  The Company’s subsidiaries also develop and market MutantTM Super Soda.  For more information, visitwww.monsterbevcorp.com.

 

Contact:                                                                                                                             

David Higdon

NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications

(704) 390-3802

dhigdon@nascar.com

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