By. T.J. Buffenbarger, Bob Buffenbarger Photo
Wyoming, MI – With several banquets taking place over the past week the 2010 season is winding down. With only a handful of west coast races left, trade shows, and indoor racing people are already looking forward to 2011. The staff at TJSlideways.com is among those that are preparing for next year and have been scouring the State for the latest in Open Wheel News. This is what we found….
• The 2010 Engine Pro ASCS Sprints on Dirt presented by ARP banquet was held last Saturday for the first time at Firekeepers Casino near Battle Creek, Michigan. Report was attendance was up at the new venue and even with the Friday date most in attendance enjoyed the change. Dinner included what might have been the best slice of cake yours truly has ever tasted. Bravo to everyone that helped put the event together and the courteous staff at Firekeepers for a wonderful experience.
• “Downtown,” Davey Brown reports his performance last season in Tracy Rice’s machinery has earned him a full time ride for 2011 with the team following the ASCS SOD tour. Rice told Brown to obtain his passport because they plan on competing in every event in 2011. In 2010 Brown came off the sidelines mid-season to nearly win the Short Track Challenge and posted multiple top-five runs.
• The Auto Value Super Sprints also held their banquet this past weekend with Kevin Feeney picking up championship honors. For the T&T Promotions team that Feeney drives for it was their fifth AVSS championship in a row, capping off a championship season that saw crew chief Butch Dowker inducted into the Michigan Motorsports Hall of Fame.
• Spartan Speedway has their sprint car rules and purse posted for their semi-weekly Friday sprint car program. The purse has increased to $750 to win and $250 to start with heat races paying the top four positions. The Spartan Sprint cars will also take part in the 2011 Harvest event in September with a $1,000 to win special event. Other than that its business as usual for the second year of Spartan Speedway Sprint Cars.
• Jim Fisher informs us that Butler Motor Speedway also held their season ending awards banquet honoring sprint car track champion Ken Mackey and rookie of the year Mike Burns. Tentatively opening day at Butler is set for April 30th with the first full program on May 7th. Currently the Michigan Traditional Sprints are scheduled to return on July 16th with other sanctioned events scheduled to be announced at a later date.
• While most Michigan racers are either preparing for next year or a run indoors Taylor Ferns is headed west to compete in the USAC Ford Focus Midget Car Series. Look for Ferns to compete in several events leading into the Turkey Night Grand Prix.
• There was a lot of discussion about the Biobase.us sprint car team branching out into dirt competition to accompany their already strong asphalt program for 2011. Jason Blonde along with teammate Andrew Hagen is slated to compete in several ASCS SOD events while not chasing the Must-See Racing XTreme Sprint Car Series.
In closing I would like to announce that I will not be returning as the announcer of the Engine Pro ASCS Sprints on Dirt presented by ARP for 2011. Instead I plan on focusing my entire racing attention on TJSlideways.com and the Open Wheel Spectacular web casts. I’ll still be at several ASCS SOD events during the 2011 season, but will have some more freedom to choose my schedule and take our new webcast to events like the Kings Royal, Indiana Sprintweek, and other big events similar to what we did in Canada this season with our morning shows from large events.
The announcing experience with the ASCS SOD series has been awesome and you could not choose a better group of people to work with and I cannot thank everyone with the series enough for the opportunity to develop my announcing skills. The ASCS SOD series deserves someone though that can devote their full attention the job, and with the site I cannot do so. That being said I’m sure a worthy replacement will be found and we’re looking forward to bigger and better things with the Open Wheel Spectacular in 2011.