From Bill W, IBRacn Photo
September 28, 2010 – At times this season, it seemed Victory Lane was the furthest thing from a possibility for sprint car driver Billy Alley. The Lincoln, Nebraska driver has raced a limited schedule and has faced more than his share of mechanical hardships. Last Friday night, that all ended as he recorded his fifth career win over a 29-car ASCS-Midwest field at I-80 Speedway near Greenwood, Nebraska.
After drawing inside row two for his heat race, Billy surged to the front for the win. That put him in a redraw for the feature that saw him starting beside Clint Garner. “I was able to get a good jump on the start into the lead, but that one was called back,” says Billy. “Garner got a better one the second time, and he took the lead. I was trying to run the bottom like an idiot, and the top was the fast place to be.”
Billy was running in second, until Jack Dover made him sit up in the seat a bit. “Dover put a wild move on me, and that got my attention a little bit,” he says. “First, he kind of drove off from me, but as the race went on, I got faster and faster. The car was really good.”
Billy settled into a familiar groove on the banked 3/8 mile oval. “I found the racetrack there,” he says. “Everyone was running the top of one and two. In three and four, it was pretty rough. No one could run around the cushion like I could. The Eagle was working good.”
A blanket could be thrown over the lead trio, and a yellow flag halted a good race, but started another. “We were ready to go into a three-way grudge match, and the caution came out,” says Billy. “Dover had got Garner right before that on the bottom of three and four. On the restart, Garner gave Dover a huge slider.”
That’s when Billy made his big move into the lead on lap 16 of the 25-lapper. “I was able to work by Dover and then slid in front of Garner for the lead,” he says. “We diced it for a while. It was just a fun race. At the same time, it was nerve-wracking. We’ve had some bad stuff happen to us this year, and I was afraid it was going to happen again. It didn’t, and we were the car to beat.”
The win marked the tenth straight year that Billy has graced Victory Lane. A string of strong finishes the last few weeks had foreshadowed it. Despite the strong run, the race Friday may have ended the race season for the team, though they will weigh their options too. If so, it was a good way to end it. “Once you win one, the rest come a little easier,” says Billy. “It’s too bad the season is about over for us. Our finishes lately have been really good, and that’s a positive heading into next year.”
On the Web
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Billy Alley Gear!
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Vintage Ric Flair Clip of the Week!
Racing needs the promotion and showmanship of the “Nature Boy”! Where did WOOO come from?
Down the Alley
Dave Rogers asks: How much information or equipment do you share with your brother-in-law, Ryan Roberts?
Billy answers: He knows he can come to me for help, but he’s pretty set in his ways too. He pretty much has his ducks in a row, so there is not much borrowing. We share information, like gear and stuff. We get along pretty well. He had some bad luck at the end of the year, but it was good to have him helping us on Friday.
Got a question for Billy? Send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we may answer it in this section! Put “? for Billy” in your subject line.
Billy’s four other wins at I-80 Speedway came in 2002 (#22), 2005 (Mark Burch #1m), 2006 (#1m) and 2009 (#22). The win in 2002 was the Lawrence Ideus Memorial worth $2100. Jake Peters was second, ahead of Jason Danley, Mike Boston and Bruce Divis.
“Tornado Alley” is an up close look at the past, present and future of 2006 Knoxville Raceway track champion, Billy Alley. To receive “Tornado Alley”, send an e-mail to email@example.com with “Alley” in the subject line.
Billy would like to thank Buss Excavating, Bolz Farms, Schmit Automotive, Aeroquip Performance Products, K&N Filters, Arrow Ambulance Remounts, Stepping Stone Genetics, Awesome Racewear, Hoosier Tire, McLain Motorsports, The Buckles Brothers, F&K Rod Ends, “High Roller” the Pig Farmer, Harris Decals, Central Body Shop, Design & Fabrication Solutions, Kadavy Fabrication and Speedway Motors.