Late Success has Drager Looking Forward to 2019

(1/21/19)

 

Though 2018 was an up and down season for Matthew Drager, the Albany based team showed substantial progress in the last few months of the season that has given Drager plenty of optimism heading into 2019.

 

The first couple of months were rough for Drager and his team. They battled a myriad of mechanical issues that limited the amount of races that Drager was able to run, even leading to Drager racing for multiple other car owners across the May and June months.

 

In late July Drager was back into his own car after replacing the rear clip on his chassis, and the change in performance was blatantly obvious. The first night back in his new car, Drager towed up to Gray’s Harbor Speedway. It looked like Drager was well on his way to a victory before late contact with a lapped car ended his chances at the win.

 

The following week Drager would return for the Shipwreck Beads Modified Nationals, with this race truly being a sign of things to come. Drager took home a 3rd place finish in the main event, kicking off a 5 week stretch where Drager would finish in the Top 3 at 3 big shows (Shipwreck Beads Mod Nationals, Logger’s Cup at Cottage Grove, and Willamette’s Modified Nationals).

 

Drager followed those up with another strong showing at one of the state’s biggest modified races, the $5,000 to win R Charles Snyder Salute, running in the Top 10 early before fading late in the 50 lap feature. This didn’t faze Drager, as the team’s momentum carried into the final two points races at Willamette Speedway, taking finishes of 2nd and 3rd over the last two weeks. Drager’s season would end at the annual Duel in the Desert, where he had a nice showing, making one preliminary main, but just missing transferring into the big show by three spots on the final day.

 

When asked about his thoughts on 2018, Drager said “2018 was a challenging year but has us motivated for a strong 2019. It was rough in the fact that we got so tore up early and missed half of the year but when we got back in our equipment we had some really good runs and I’m optimistic for what the next year holds.”

 

Season Stats:

Starts: 15

Top 5’s: 6

Top 10’s: 8

Best Finish: 2nd (Twice)

Worst Finish: 18th

 

Willamette:

April 21st: 18th

May 26th: 10th

June 1st: 6th

June 2nd: 14th

June 16th: 5th

August 17th: 17th

August 18th (Mod Nationals) : 2nd

September 15th: 2nd

September 22nd: 3rd

 

Cottage Grove:

August 10th: 11th

August 11th (Logger’s Cup) : 3rd

 

Southern Oregon:

September 2nd (R Charles Snyder Salute) : 15th

 

Grays Harbor:

July 21st: 15th (Lead first 19 laps before contact with lapped car)

July 28th (Shipwreck Beads Mod Nationals) : 3rd

 

Las Vegas:

Day 1: DNF in heat due to debris, drove from the back to 8th in the B Main before contact ended night.

Day 2: Finished 3rd in heat, finished 2nd in B Main to transfer to A, finished 18th in feature after starting 29th  

Day 3: Started 5th in LCQ but finished 4th, 3 spots out of transfer spot

 

Matthew would like to thank all of his sponsors and supporters, including:

Drager Performance

GRT Race Cars

Stumbling J Livestock

Young Brothers Construction

Myerz Media

Ohlins by JDR

Big Sky Landscaping

Powers Transport

Aamco of Corvallis and Lebanon

Grandma
Interested in having writeups like these done for your race team throughout the 2019 season? Contact Daren Ricks of DRC Motorsports Media here on Facebook, at darenricks999@gmail.com or at (916) 229-7474 to discuss a plan that fits your team’s needs.

Daren Ricks
DRC Motorsports Media

Advertisements

Brown Wraps up Action Packed 2018

(1/2/2019)

 

With the 2018 season finished, 3rd generation Sport Mod racer Keith Brown Jr continued his outlaw style schedule, racing at 14 different tracks across his 23 starts on the year. The Pittsburg native travelled to 4 different states in 2018, collecting Top 5’s in 3 of the 4 states, while winning in both California and Oregon.

 

Brown’s two wins came over the span of 3 days in late June while following the Wild West Modified Shootout, picking up victories at both Yreka’s Siskiyou Motor Speedway and Coos Bay Speedway. The race at Yreka was a particularly exciting one, as he battled with local driver Matt Sanders for the entirety of the 20 lap feature, eventually holding off Sanders in a drag race to the finish line.

 

The Coos Bay event was interesting to say the least, as the 3 Sport Mods who made the trip up were combined with the local Sportsman Late Model class for the night. From the drop of the green flag in the heat race it quickly became apparent that Brown was easily the class of the field. Brown would lead every lap of his heat race, trophy dash, and main event for a clean sweep of the evening.

 

For Brown, the majority of his success in 2018 came when he travelled North, as all of his Top 5’s came North of the California state capitol. That isn’t saying the Brown didn’t do well running down South, however, as he picked up multiple Top 10’s at the two Bakersfield area tracks against some of the toughest local racers in the state.

 

In addition to racing all across the West Coast, Brown also made successful appearances at the two biggest Sport Mod races in the country: the IMCA Supernationals in Boone, Iowa, and the Duel in the Desert in Las Vegas. Though night one at the Supernationals was rough for Brown, he rebounded on the 2nd night with a heat race win that automatically locked him into the night’s preliminary main, with a chance to lock into the big show. Brown was running up front before a driver spun in front of him, causing him to make contact and lead to a black flag for questionable driving. The last chance qualifiers would be rained out on the final night to end Brown’s chances of making the race.

 

The Duel in the Desert was a much more successful trip for Brown. Despite having to transfer from the B Main, Brown would take home a solid 15th on the opening night. Just like Boone, Brown would win his heat race on Night 2. Brown was running in the Top 10 before he was spun from behind. Brown would spend the rest of the race charging from 30th to again finish 15th. Since he was unable to lock himself in the feature the first two nights, Brown would be forced to run a last chance qualifier to have one last shot at making the Duel. Unfortunately Brown’s weekend would come to an end early in the LCQ after contact with another driver. Brown had been running 3rd, just one spot out of the final transfer spot.

 

When asked about his opinion on the 2018 season, Brown said: “In 2018 we did a lot of testing ending the year with a really fast racecar, looking forward to a very successful 2019.”

 

Keith would like to thank all of his sponsors and supporters, including:

Steel City Motorsports

JGE Motorsports

HRT Shock Service

Engine Quest

Little J’s Burgers

Performance Bodies

89 Designs

Competition Carburetors

Tire Demon by Love Tap .

Special thanks to
My wife Amber, my dad Keith Brown Sr., Tim Barlow, Jason Jennings, Marty Burdine, Brent Curran, Brandon Baughman, Austin Brown, Conner England and Sean Wilson.

 

Season Stats:

Starts: 23

Wins: 2

Top 5’s: 4

Top 10’s: 14

Best Finish: 1st (Twice)

Worst Finish 22nd (Bakersfield)

 

Silver Dollar Speedway:

May 5th: 13th

June 8th: 3rd

July 4th: 6th

 

Marysville Raceway:

June 9th: 10th

July 3rd: 10th

 

Kern County Raceway Park:

July 13th: 10th

 

Bakersfield Speedway:

May 26th: 22nd

July 14th: 9th

 

Santa Maria Raceway:

May 26th: DNS

 

Ocean Speedway:

September 29th: 13th

 

American Valley Speedway:

May 5th: 7th

July 28th: 7th

July 29th: 10th

 

Placerville Speedway:

May 19th: 6th

 

Siskiyou Motor Speedway:

June 16th: 8th

June 22nd: 1st

 

Southern Oregon Speedway:

June 23rd: 18th

 

Coos Bay Speedway:

June 24th: 1st

 

Boone Speedway:

IMCA Super Nationals:

Heat Race Win, Running up front in qualifier before incidental contact. Last Chance races on final night rained out

 

Las Vegas Dirt Track:

Duel in the Desert:

Night 1: Transferred from B Main to finish 15th

Night 2: Won heat, running 7th before getting spun, finished 15th

Night 3: Wrecked while running in 3rd in LCQ to end weekend

 

Fernley 95A Speedway:

July 21st: 2nd
Interested in having writeups like these done for your race team throughout the 2019 season? Contact Daren Ricks of DRC Motorsports Media here on Facebook, at darenricks999@gmail.com or at (916) 229-7474 to discuss a plan that fits your team’s needs.

Daren Ricks
DRC Motorsports Media

Curran Just Misses Ringing in New Year With a Win

(1/2/2019)

 

After a highly successful rookie season in the Sport Mod class for Brent Curran, the Antioch native looks to build off an already impressive list of accomplishments heading into the 2019 season.

 

Curran and team would kick off the 2019 season on New Year’s Day at the Stockton Dirt Track, as some of the top drivers from across the state flocked to the 4/10ths mile oval to ring in the new year. A nice pill draw would set Curran up with a front row starting spot, and as soon as the green flag waved, he was gone. 2nd and 3rd place did all they could to reel Curran back in over the 8 lap heat race, but weren’t able to make any inroads, leading to an easy heat race win for Curran.

 

Curran’s pill draw luck would continue into the redraw, as Brent drew the pole position for the main event. From the drop of the green it again looked to be Brent’s race to lose. Despite a multitude of early cautions, Brent would pull away on each ensuing restart. Once the race finally settled down, Curran settled into a groove, setting the quickest lap of the race while holding a steady advantage over 2nd place runner Jason Nation.

 

As Curran closed in on lapped traffic, Nation slowly began closing in. Though Nation was starting to reel him in, Curran looked like he had a big enough advantage to hold on for the win, but that would all change in the last few laps. With just 2 laps to go, Curran caught up to the back of 2 lapped cars racing side by side. This slowed Curran enough for Nation to pull up to Curran’s bumper as they took the white flag. The two cars running side by side finally ran single file but Curran was left nowhere to go as Nation had pulled to his outside heading into turns 1 and 2. The two raced side by side as they headed down the backstretch, but Curran was still stuck behind lapped traffic, giving Nation the space needed to make a last lap pass for the win and forcing Curran to settle for 2nd in a race that he easily had the speed to win.

 

A disappointed Curran had this to say after the race: “Bitter sweet night tonight for the first race of 2019. Day started of great taking the win in the heat race. Started pole and lead the whole main till the last lap and got boxed in by a lap car. Ended up p2. I could sit here all night and think of plenty of excuses or scenarios that could’ve changed the way things turned out but bottom line is it’s racing and sometimes the cards don’t play out. Either way good start to the 2019 season and even better to spend the day with family and friends. Can’t thank the team enough for giving me a bad fast car and my sponsors for making everything possible. On to the next one.”

 

Brent would like to thank all of his 2019 Sponsors and Supporters, including:

Steadfast Constitution (Randy Cotton)
Steel City Motorsports (Keith and Amber Brown)
GRT Race Cars (Zach Wehlage)
All Flow Muffler and Auto Repair (Danny Larson and Jeffrey Erickson)
89 Design
Lunati
Interested in having writeups like these done for your race team throughout the 2019 season? Contact Daren Ricks of DRC Motorsports Media here on Facebook, at darenricks999@gmail.com or at (916) 229-7474 to discuss a plan that fits your team’s needs.

Daren Ricks
DRC Motorsports Media

Sieweke Looks to Carry Late Season Momentum Into 2019

(12/18/2018)

Despite a short season in 2018, Santa Rosa wheelman Chris Sieweke heads into 2019 with plenty of reasons for optimism. The veteran driver enjoyed a breakout performance over the last 3 months of the season, picking up 3 wins in his last 7 starts.

Looking at Sieweke’s season from a statistical perspective doesn’t do justice to just how consistent Sieweke was during 2018. While it’s true that Sieweke finished outside the Top 5 8 times across his 14 starts this year, the numbers won’t tell you that 6 of those races he didn’t finish due to either an incident, or a mechanical failure.

Most will say that a 14th place finish isn’t something to be proud of, but just making the Pat and Jim Pettit Memorial feature was a huge accomplishment for Sieweke. Sieweke was able to hold his own against 50 of the West Coast’s best Modified drivers all weekend long, an impressive feat for just about anyone.

The biggest story for Sieweke would easily be his late season success. Chris took home 3 wins at 3 separate race tracks from August to October. While the wins at Petaluma and Watsonville’s Ocean Speedway were certainly impressive, his biggest win of the season would be the Fall Brawl at Antioch Speedway. Against a full field of stout Sport Mods, Sieweke pulled off the unexpected win, easily one of the biggest of his career.

Even though he runs on a shoestring budget and doesn’t have any sponsors besides his father Mike Karinen, Sieweke managed to put together the best season of his career, and has given people plenty to talk about as we get closer to the 2019 race season. While it remains to be seen if he’ll be able to repeat this performance next year, there’s no doubt that he has firmly entrenched himself as a contender each and every night out.

Season Stats:

Starts: 16

Wins: 3 (At 3 different tracks)

Top 5’s: 8

Top 10’s: 12

Best Finish: 1st (3 Times)

Worst Finish: 14th (Pat and Jim Pettit Shootout)

Petaluma:

April 21st: 9th
May 12th: 5th
May 19th: 8th
June 16th: 9th
August 11th: 1st
September 3rd: 11th

Antioch:

May 5th: 8th
June 30th: 13th (Sport Mod)
July 21st: 4th
August 25th: 2nd (Sport Mod)
October 13th: 1st (Sport Mod)

Ocean:

September 21st: 1st
September 29th: 14th (Pat and Jim Pettit Shootout)

Orland:

June 2nd: 3rd
July 28th: 3rd

Merced:

September 22nd: 13th

Schroeder Wraps Up Superb 2018

(11/24/2018)

 

2018 was a another great year for Montevideo, Minnesota’s Rick Schroeder. The 18 year veteran put together an outstandingly consistent season, only finishing outside the Top 5 three times in his 22 starts. It’s even more impressive when you realize it took 11 starts before Schroeder slumped to a 7th place finish.

 

Instead of starting a run of poor finishes, that 7th place finish ignited a light in Schroeder. Rick would go on to claim wins in 2 of the first 3 weeks of July at Fergus Falls’ I-94 Speedway and Alexandria’s Viking Speedway. Those 2 victories would go in the books as career wins numbers 11 and 12.

 

Schroeder looked to be a contender early in the year at Viking, taking 3 runner up spots in the first 4 races. Despite finishing in the Top 4 in all but 2 races, points leader Ben Wolden was able to pull away late in the season. Schroeder would have had a better chance at running down Wolden if multiple races weren’t rained out towards the end of the season, which lead to Schroeder’s decision to forgo the final points race of the year, choosing instead to race a couple more tracks before the season ended.

 

One of the stats that stood out for Schroeder in 2018 showcased just how consistently he ran up front. In 22 starts, Schroeder finished on the podium (Top 3) 11 times. Schroeder was in contention for wins time and time again throughout the year, so it was no surprise to see him run competitively at every track he visited. If Schroeder runs at or near this level again in 2019, there’s no doubt that he’ll be in victory lane again a few times next year.

 

While he still plans on running the Limited Late Model again next season, Schroeder made a big move this offseason to acquire a Sprint Car, something he had hoped to do before he quit racing. When asked of his opinion on how 2018 went, Rick said: “I think my team and I had a pretty good 2018 race season. I am proud of the fact that we only finished outside the top 5 three times all year and only had one DNF. We are looking forward to see what 2019 brings with continuing to run the late model but also getting our feet wet with the sprint car!”

 

Rick would like to thank all of his sponsors and supporters, including:

Matt’s Motor Worx- Engine builder and Dad. He does it all from engines, trannys, rear ends the whole 9 yards.
True Precision Machining
Olson Repair
Truform Race Products
J&J Concrete and Masonry
The Hair Chateau

 

Season Stats:

Starts: 22

Wins: 2

Top 5’s: 19

Top 10’s: 22

Best Finish: 1st (Twice)

Worst Finish: 7th (3 Times)

 

I-94 Speedway:

May 25th: 3rd

June 1st: 3rd

June 8th: 2nd

June 15th: 3rd

June 22nd: 7th

July 6th: 1st

July 13th: 4th

 

Viking Speedway:

May 5th: 4th

May 12th: 2nd

May 19th: 2nd

May 26th: 2nd

May 27th: 3rd

June 16th: 4th

June 23rd: 3rd

July 7th: 7th

July 14th: 4th

July 21st: 1st

July 28th: 3rd

August 4th: 7th

 

Madison Speedway:

August 11th: 2nd

August 18th: 4th

 

Granite City Speedway:

September 9th: 5th
Interested in having writeups like these done for your race team throughout the season? Contact Daren Ricks of DRC Motorsports Media here on Facebook, at darenricks999@gmail.com or at (916) 229-7474 to discuss a plan that fits your team’s needs.

Daren Ricks
DRC Motorsports Media

Garner Claims First Antioch Track Title

(11/24/2018)

 

Following in the footsteps of his father, the Maverick Jerry Garner, 3rd generation driver Mark Garner took home his first track championship at his home track, Antioch Speedway. The Antioch native has been outspoken in recent years about his goal to win the track title in memory of his father.

 

Garner went all in on 2018, even selling his Sport Mod to put all the team’s focus on winning the Limited Late Model championship. For the 2nd consecutive season, Garner kicked off the year by winning the 2nd annual Larry Damitz Memorial. Garner’s win ensured that he is still the only winner in the history of the race. Though it would be 2 months before Garner picked up his 2nd win of the season, he stayed consistent, only finishing outside of the Top 5 once before his 2nd win in late June.

 

After Garner followed his 2nd win of the season with another 6th place finish, Garner went on a tear of consistency over the last 11 races, finishing no worse than 5th. Despite Garner’s stretch of great runs, the title picture was still up in the air. Garner, Kimo Oreta and Mike Walko were all still in the hunt as the season shifted into August.

 

As the season wound down, Walko fell out of contention, leaving Oreta and Garner to battle for the division crown. It wasn’t looking good for Garner going into the final 3 races, but Garner pulled off a miracle, taking 2 wins and 1 2nd place finish over the last 3 events to claim the championship. The title was made even more special by the fact that many of Garner’s family members were in attendance to witness the emotional victory. When asked about 2018, Garner said: “How my season went was like this: We won the Larry Damitz for the 2nd time we won both of them last year and this year. We were always in the hunt just had some bad nights like everyone has. We overcame it and keep pushing through the season.

 

Mark would like to thank all of his sponsors and supporters, including:

Central Exterminators

Rebello Racing

Motor by Chris Heihn

Studio 71 Tattoos

Delta Transmission

Yoes Racing Heads

Jay’s Mobile Welding and Fabrication

Sabrina’s Pizza

Aerial Control

Unique Breedz

Judge Me Clothing

Mac Tools

Pro Motorsports

Crew Chief badass Billy Garner

 

Garner Season Stats:

Starts: 18

Wins: 5

Top 5’s: 16

Top 10’s: 18

Best Finish: 1st (5 Times)

Worst Finish: 6th (Twice)

1st in Antioch Speedway Limited Late Model Points

 

Antioch:

April 14th: 1st

April 21st: 2nd

May 5th: 6th

May 12th: 3rd

June 2nd: 4th

June 23rd: 1st

June 30th: 6th

July 7th: 5th

July 21st: 5th

August 4th: 1st

August 11th: 3rd

August 18th: 2nd

September 8th: 4th

September 15th: 2nd

September 22nd: 3rd

October 6th: 1st

October 13th: 2nd

October 20th: 1st

 

Vegas:

5th in heat races first 2 nights

15th to 7th in B Main final night
Interested in having writeups like these done for your race team throughout the season? Contact Daren Ricks of DRC Motorsports Media here on Facebook, at darenricks999@gmail.com or at (916) 229-7474 to discuss a plan that fits your team’s needs.

Daren Ricks
DRC Motorsports Media

Cooper Takes Chico Title After Dominant Season

(11/20/2018)

 

Despite a laid back schedule this year, Yuba City’s Brian Cooper showed that he hadn’t lost a step after a nearly perfect season. When you look at Cooper’s stats this year, one big thing stands out. In the 20 races he ran this year, Cooper only finished worse than 3rd three times, all of which were races he didn’t complete due to an incident.

 

Cooper’s biggest accomplishment in 2018 had to be his domination at Chico’s Silver Dollar Speedway on his way to the Sport Mod track championship. Cooper collected 4 wins at the track, as well as 11 finishes of 3rd or better in 12 starts. Cooper firmly entrenched himself as the favorite early, with unmatchable consistency giving him a commanding points lead by early June. From there, Cooper didn’t let off the gas pedal, winning 3 of the last 6 races to clinch the track title. The title was his first at the famous Northern California track, while he has also won 1 track title at Placerville Speedway, and 3 at Marysville Raceway.

 

Though Cooper didn’t race nearly as much in 2018, he still continued to travel across the state and even into Oregon. Cooper’s lone trip to Oregon was the Roger Haudenschild Memorial at Southern Oregon Speedway in June. Cooper looked to have another Top 5 run in the bag, but a mid race wreck destroyed the radiator and ended his night. By far the biggest race Cooper attended this season was the annual Pat and Jim Pettit Shootout at Watsonville’s Ocean Speedway. After winning his heat race on Night One, Cooper was running 2nd in the main when he caught a rut in turn 2, almost flipping the car. Then on a restart with 6 to go, Cooper lost a transmission. Ending his great run. Night Two, Cooper would again win his heat race. An unfortunate redraw meant that Cooper would be starting deep in the field. Over the course of the race, Cooper scratched and clawed his way forward to claim 3rd out of the 40 plus Sport Mods that showed up to race.

 

Next season, Cooper plans to run more of a “Bounty Hunter” schedule, trying to make most if not all of the big Sport Mod races on the West Coast, as opposed to running for points. Brian had this to say on a very successful 2018: “The 2018 season went well for us. Didn’t race as many big shows as we would’ve liked to but had some great runs with the new Victory Circle Chassis. Im very happy with the car.  Now that I’ve got my Silver Dollar Speedway Championship no more points racing for me. I really enjoy the sport mod class and for the most part there’s a lot of good guys to race with. Hoping to have some fun and do some traveling with them next year.”

 

Brian would like to thank all of his sponsors, including:

Automaxx
Victory Circle Chassis
Five 1 seven designs

 

And Supporters:

David and Rena cooper

My wife Stacey Bartlett-Cooper

Crew guy and friend Michael Sevigny

My Uncle William Fielding

 

Season Stats:

Starts: 20

Wins: 4

Top 5’s: 17

Top 10’s: 17

Best Finish: 1st (4 times)

Worst Finish: 18th (Pat Pettit Night 1)

 

Chico:

March 30th: 2nd

April 20th: 1st

May 4th: 2nd

May 5th: 3rd

May 11th: 3rd

June 8th: 14th

June 15th: 1st

June 29th: 1st

July 4th: 3rd

July 13th: 2nd

August 3rd: 1st

August 24th: 3rd

 

Marysville:

March 24th: 2nd

 

Placerville:

May 19th: 3rd

 

Watsonville:

Pettit Night 1: DNF after near flip

Pettit Night 2: 3rd

 

Yreka:

May 27th: 2nd

September 23rd: 3rd

 

Medford:

June 2nd: 15th

 

Stockton:

April 14th: 2nd
Interested in having writeups like these done for your race team throughout the season? Contact Daren Ricks of DRC Motorsports Media here on Facebook, at darenricks999@gmail.com or at (916) 229-7474 to discuss a plan that fits your team’s needs.

Daren Ricks
DRC Motorsports Media