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DIRTcar Summer Nationals Starts This Month For UMP Late Models PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 16 June 2011

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The Hunted: Feger Begins Quest For Second Straight DIRTcar Summer Nationals Title
"The Hell Tour" Invades Attica on Friday, July 15th

ImageBy Kevin Kovac

(Concord, NC)
Jason Feger will admit it: he’s not ready for the start of the DIRTcar Summer Nationals.

But don’t take that to mean the Bloomington, Ill., star is anything less than confident about beginning his pursuit of a second consecutive title on the aptly-named dirt Late Model ‘Hell Tour,’ which kicks off on Thursday night (June 16) at Kankakee County Speedway. He’s just stating a fact.

“You can never be ready for the Summer Nationals,” Feger bottom-lined with a smile. “It’s the toughest deal in dirt Late Model racing. You just go with the flow and try to be as prepared as you can.”

A grueling month of competition is on tap for Feger, 33, and his fellow DIRTcar Summer Nationals travelers, who face events at 25 tracks in nine Midwestern states during the 32-day period from June 16 through the series finale on July 16 at Oakshade Raceway in Wauseon, Ohio. The drivers will battle for a share of $167,000 in first-place cash and the $25,000 champion’s portion of the tour points fund.

All eyes will certainly be focused on Feger, the hip hard-charger who last year ended the three-year Summer Nationals championship reign of Carpentersville, Ill.’s Dennis Erb Jr. The ‘Highside Hustler’ heads out on the road for the ’11 tour as the driver to beat.

“It’s definitely gonna feel different,” Feger said of his new-found status. “I guess everybody will be gunning for me now. Instead of being the hunter, I’ll be the hunted.”

It’s a challenge that Feger accepts, however. He doesn’t anticipate any letdown from his team, any complacency after finally reaching the mountaintop of the biggest test of man and machine in the dirt Late Model division.

Image“We usually do pretty good at staying motivated,” said Feger, who has two Bob Pierce-built cars and four Rhyne engines at his disposal for the Summer Nationals grind. “Everything’s been going pretty good for us lately, so we’re looking forward to it.”

Feger enters the Summer Nationals with a healthy dose of momentum, notwithstanding his disappointing trip to Ohio’s Eldora Speedway for last weekend’s DIRTcar UMP-sanctioned Dream XVII. He failed to qualify for the $100,000-to-win A-Main following a heat-race incident – his only truly disappointing outing over the past month.

After finishing second in a World of Outlaws Late Model Series A-Main on April 29 at Hartford (Mich.) Motor Speedway, Feger clicked off three wins and just one finish outside the top five (a seventh) in his next 10 DIRTcar UMP starts. Eight of those races came in the two weeks between May 20 and June 4, a busy stretch that gave him a taste of the virtually non-stop Summer Nationals schedule.

“We’ve been racing a lot here lately and it’s been hot too,” said Feger. “We’ve been getting a good warmup for the Summer Nationals. It’s gotten us back to reality about what we’re gonna be facing here for the next month.”

Not that Feger needs much reminding about how difficult the Summer Nationals can be. He has been through the whirlwind enough in recent years to understand what it takes to be successful.

“If you’re running good, it makes it a lot easier on you mentally,” said Feger, who owns five career Summer Nationals feature wins. “Winning can fix a lot of problems. If you’re running bad and tearing stuff up, that’s when you start getting frustrated and the guys get frustrated. If you can consistently get good runs, it helps keep you mentally fresh.

“The physical aspect is the hardest part – how the series can be so tiring. When you have to drive so far between races, you don’t even have a chance to stop, eat a good meal or relax for just a little bit. It’s hurry up, load up, drive down the road, grab some fast-food somewhere, and get to the track so you can fix the car in 100-degree heat – you get no time to recharge your batteries.

“They definitely don’t call it the ‘Hell Tour’ for nothing,” he concluded.

Feger won just two A-Mains en route to his ’10 Summer Nationals crown, but he recorded seven runner-up finishes. He’s hoping to turn those seconds into victories this time around.

“If you can win some races, that’s when you’re making your money,” said Feger. “We’d definitely like to improve and win a few more races this year and work toward the championship that way.

“It would be real nice to win 10 or more races like Shannon (Babb) and other guys did when they won championships, but the competition is really tough. I think it would be hard for anybody to win that many races again. Not only does everything have to go your way to win a race, but you have to deal with guys like (Billy) Moyer (the alltime winningest driver in Summer Nationals competition) and (Don) O’Neal popping in fresh and running awfully good against us and everywhere we go you have some locals who know their tracks real well.”

Feger’s prime rivals for the Summer Nationals title figure to once again be former series champs Erb and Moweaqua, Ill.’s Babb, but there’s a host of other drivers jockeying for position in the spotlight. DIRTcar UMP national points Ryan Unzicker of El Paso, Ill., is among the core group of racers planning to follow the entire ‘Hell Tour,’ along with up-and-coming teenager Brandon Sheppard of New Berlin, Ill., Jack Sullivan of Greenbrier, Ark., Scott James of Greendale, Ind., Randy Korte of Highland, Ill., Billy Moyer Jr. of Batesville, Ark., Donny Walden of Towanda, Ill., and Jim Moon of Zionsville, Ind.

Other drivers expected to enter numerous Summer Nationals events – and perhaps follow the entire trail, depending on performance – include Brian Shirley of Chatham, Ill., Will Vaught of Crane, Mo., Kevin Weaver of Gibson City, Ill., Kent Robinson of Bloomington, Ind., Mike Spatola of Manhattan, Ill., Rodney Melvin of Benton, Ill., Bobby Pierce of Oakwood, Ill., Jeep VanWormer of Pinconning, Mich., Ronny Lee Hollingsworth of Gulport, Ala., Brandon Thirlby of Traverse City, Mich., and Gary Christian of Broken Bow, Okla.

“I think the 2011 DIRTcar Summer Nationals is going to be as competitive as ever,” said DIRTcar UMP director Sam Driggers. “We have a great group of drivers ready to go out on the road and bring fans across the Midwest a real action-packed month of racing.”

Teams that make it through the entire month will travel over 4,500 miles between the tracks on the series, which boasts 17 races paying $5,000 to win, seven events offering a $10,000 top prize and a tour-best $12,000-to-win event on July 1 at Paducah (Ky.) International Raceway.

Driggers said the ‘Hell Tour’ will include a handful of new wrinkles this season, including two-lap group qualifying at each stop; electronic transponder scoring every night for the first time; and four provisional starting spots at each race (two Summer Nationals points provisionals, one 2010 DIRTcar UMP national points provisional and one track/ local provisional).

For more information on the DIRTcar UMP Summer Nationals, visit www.thehelltour.com and www.DirtCar.com.

2011 DIRTcar Summer Nationals Schedule
(Date-Day-Track-Location-Win $)

June 16-Thurs.-Kankakee County Speedway/Kankakee, Ill.-$5,000
June 17-Fri.-Cedar Lake Speedway/New Richmond, Wis.-$5,000
June 18-Sat.-Cedar Lake Speedway/New Richmond, Wis.-$10,000
June 19- Sun.-DAY OFF
June 20-Mon.-LaSalle Speedway/LaSalle, Ill.-PPD/Moved to 7/13
June 21-Tues.-Spoon River Speedway/Canton, Ill.-PPD/Moved to 7/14

June 22-Wed.-Highland Speedway/Highland, Ill.-$5,000
June 23-Thurs.-Fayette County Speedway/Brownstown, Ill.-$5,000
June 24-Fri.-Tri-City Speedway/Pontoon Beach, Ill.-$10,000
June 25-Sat.-Fairbury American Legion Speedway/Fairbury, Ill.-$10,000
June 26-Sun.-I-96 Speedway/Lake Odessa, Mich.-$5,000
June 27-Mon.-DAY OFF
June 28-Tues.-Lincoln Park Speedway/Putnamville, Ind.-$5,000
June 29-Wed.-Belle Clair Speedway/Belleville, Ill.-$5,000
June 30-Thurs.-Clay Hill Motorsports Park/Atwood, Tenn.-$5,000
July 1-Fri.-Paducah International Raceway/Paducah, Ky.-$12,000
July 2-Sat.-I-55 Raceway/Pevely, Mo.-$10,000
July 3-Sun.-Lincoln Speedway/Lincoln, Ill.-$5,000
July 4-Mon.-34 Raceway/Burlington, Iowa-$5,000
July 5-Tues.-DAY OFF
July 6-Wed.-Peoria Speedway/Peoria, Ill.-$5,000
July 7-Thurs.-Macon Speedway/Macon, Ill.-$5,000
July 8-Fri.-Farmer City Raceway/Farmer City, Ill.-$10,000
July 9-Sat.-Clarksville Speedway/Clarksville, Tenn.-$10,000
July 10-Sun.-Tri-State Speedway/Haubstadt, Ind.-$5,000
July 11-Mon.-OPEN DATE
July 12-Tues.-Brownstown Speedway/Brownstown, Ind.-$5,000
July 13-Wed.-LaSalle Speedway/LaSalle, Ill.-$5,000
July 14-Thurs.-Spoon River Speedway/Canton, Ill.-$5,000
July 15-Fri.-Attica Raceway Park/Attica, Ohio-$5,000
July 16-Sat.-Oakshade Raceway/Wauseon, Ohio-$10,000

The DIRTcar Summer Nationals is brought to fans by many important sponsors and partners, including Hoosier Racing Tires, ASI Racewear, Comp Cams, Intercomp Racing, JE Pistons, QuarterMaster, Superflow, Wix_Filters, Wrisco Aluminum, the University of Northwestern Ohio, R2C Performance, VP Racing Fuels, Racing Electronics, ButlerBuilt, MSD Ignition, Chizmark Larson Insurance, Vicci Apparel and Ohlins Shocks.


Sponsors Add Major Value to DIRTcar Summer Nationals Hell Tour & Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals

ImageBy Chris Dolack

(Concord, NC)
The DIRTcar Summer Nationals Hell Tour and the DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals kick off Thursday night at Kankakee County Speedway, beginning one of the richest and most grueling months of racing in motorsports.

In addition to more than half a million dollars in nightly race purses over the course of the events that run from June 16 to July 16 throughout the Midwest, 16 sponsors have combined to add $100,000 in cash and contingency awards to the DIRTcar Summer Nationals Hell Tour and another $40,000 in cash and contingency awards to the DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals.

"We know how challenging it is to compete on the Hell Tour and the Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals," said World Racing Group CMO Ben Geisler. "We've worked hard to bring in partners like Summit Racing Equipment to reward competitors for surviving night after night during what is no doubt the hardest month of competition in racing."

To learn more about the DIRTcar Summer Nationals Hell Tour, plus the awards available to competitors, click www.TheHellTour.com. For more on DIRTcar Racing, click www.DIRTcar.com.

ImageAt every DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals event, the Top 20 finishers will be rewarded. For a complete list of the nightly prizes on the DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals tour, click the Awards section at www.ModifiedNationals.com.

2011 DIRTcar Summer Nationals 'Hell Tour' Contingency Awards

DIRTcar Racing: Mandatory for all competitors

Hoosier: Mandatory for all competitors

UNOH: Mandatory for all competitors

VP Racing Fuels: Mandatory for all competitors (unless competitor's decal is displayed)

• VP "Heat #1" Award: $50 Cash Award to the winner of Heat #1 at each event

Quarter Master: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $100 Certificate to 1st place finisher
• $50 Certificate to 5th place finisher
• $25 Certificate to 15th place finisher

Wrisco: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• Three (3) sheets of aluminum to race winner only

Comp Cams: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $50 Cash Award to 10th place finisher
• $50 Certificate to 1st place finisher

JE Pistons: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $50 Cash Award to 1st place finisher
• Product Certificate for a Set of Rings to the 11th place finisher
• Product Certificate for a Set of Rings to the 21st place finisher

Superflow: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $50 Cash Award to 7th place finisher

Beyea Headers: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $40 Cash Award to 12th place finisher

WIX: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $50 Cash Award to 13th place finisher

Ohlins : Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $50 Cash Award to the Fast Qualifier

ASI Racewear: Mandatory for all Tow-Money Teams (unless competitor's decal is displayed), Optional for all other competitors.  

• $50 Cash Award to 5th place finisher
• 25 FREE t-shirts with every 144 ordered by any driver who competes in a Summer Nationals event

R2C Performance:

• Optional decal; Mandatory for contingency award eligibility
• $100 cash to feature winner if equipped with R2C Filter AND if decal is displayed
• $100 product certificate to feature winner if only decal is displayed or next highest with the decal

Chizmark and Larson Insurance:

• No Decal
• When Chizmark and Larson representative is in attendance a $100 cash award will be given to the "Hard Luck" driver of the race - will be announced at driver's meetings

Fusion Graphics:

• No Decal
• $1,000 cash, plus $250 certificate to the "Fusion Graphics Passing Point Champion"
• Points will be awarded each night to every driver based on total number of positions improved in each race including Heat Races, B-Mains and A-Mains


2011 DIRTcar Summer Nationals 'Hell Tour' Point Fund

Point Fund Contributors: Hoosier, UNOH, Racing Electronics, Intercomp, Special Olympics, Vicci, GM Performance Parts, RacingJunk.com


2011 DIRTcar Summer Nationals 'Hell Tour' Year-End Awards

Butler Built
• Custom Seat to Rookie of the Year

Beyea Headers
• $500 Product certificate to Champion
• $300 Product certificate to 2nd place
• $100 Product certificate to 3rd place

Dyer's Rods
• Set of Rods

The DIRTcar Summer Nationals is brought to fans by many important sponsors and partners including Hoosier Racing Tires, GM Performance Parts, ASI Racewear, Comp Cams, Intercomp Racing, JE Pistons, QuarterMaster, Superflow, Wix Filters, Wrisco Aluminum, the University of Northwestern Ohio, R2C Performance, VP Racing Fuels, Racing Electronics, ButlerBuilt, MSD Ignition, Chizmark Larson Insurance, Vicci Apparel, Beyea Custom Headers, Fusion Graphics & Sign Company, Dyer's Rods, and Ohlins Shocks.

The DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals is brought to fans by several sponsors and partners including Summit Racing Equipment, Hoosier Racing Tires, GM Performance Parts, University of Northwestern Ohio, Aero Race Wheels, ASI Racewear, Auto Meter, Bell Helmets, Beyea Custom Headers, Bilstein Shocks, Fast Shafts, Fusion Graphics & Sign Company, Intercomp, Racing Electronics, Vicci, Chizmark Larson Insurance, KSE Racing Products, MSD Ignition, QA1 Motorsports, Quarter Master, R2C Performance Intake Systems, RacingJunk.com, Willy's Carburetor & Dyno Shop, VP Racing Fuels.   

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 22 June 2011 )
 
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