|My father and I took the 12 hour drive to Shreveport, Louisiana the Thursday before the race. From the moment we saw the track we knew we were going to be driving on a completely different surface. The track featured the purest of clay, and was kept extremely damp. Locals warned us of extreme traction, so I was happy to know I had the correct setup on the cars.
On practice day it was clear Proline Clay Primes were the tire of choice. The track was very wet, leaving your car extremely dirty and heavy. The layout featured a couple sections that gave racers trouble throughout the weekend. The back triple was a troublesome jump sending cars in odd directions depending on where you hit the jump. Later on in the race, it was clear which racers took the time to learn where to hit this jump to keep their cars safe.
Qualifying day wasn’t my strongest for the weekend. The race program was setup to take your best three out of four rounds. In Modified Stadium Truck, I was only able to start two of the four, however I did indeed TQ the two rounds I started. With two TQ’s and a last place in points, I started towards the middle of the pack in the A-Main. In both Mod 2wd Buggy, and 4wd Buggy, I had decent success in all four rounds. I took TQ in a couple of rounds, but would place up to fourth in others. After it was all said and done, I qualified second in 4wd buggy, and fourth in the 2wd buggy class.
After qualifying, we ran the heavily anticipated Dash for Cash. They decided to invert the field, putting me in the 7th spot. Before this race, dad and I decided to make changes to the car. We went with heavier diff oil (20k in the front and 10k in the rear), as well as much stiffer sway bars (1.8mm front and 1.6mm rear). The track also dried up quite a bit, so we decided to go with treaded clay tires (Clay Positrons). It was clear the changes were for the best when I took the lead around halfway into the race and kept it until the end. My car was extremely easy to drive, while having the speed to not only keep up pace with the drivers behind me, but to increase my lead ever so slightly as the race continued. A nice 0 prize was rewarded at the end, as well as a great confidence boost going into main day.
The mains could not have gone any better. We made some changes to the truck to calm the steering down (moved shock position on front A-arm out), and decided to heavily sauce the tires. The truck was glued to the track, and I won both A1 and A2 for the triple A-Main format. The story is quite similar for 2wd Buggy, as I by far had the best car on the track despite the heavy competition. The lower starting position didn’t mean much as I secured the first two out of three mains to take the class win! In 4wd buggy I didn’t have the best luck, as I had a battery dump in the first main while battling for the win. After the second race I ended up having a great run, giving me a good spot in the points going into A3. The final main went very well, and I was able to take the win, giving me the second overall position.
We definitely overall had an amazing weekend, and I couldn’t have been more happy with my success and car performance. My dad and I look forward to running this race next year.