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July 29, 2010  at 9:45:26
Submitted by David Smith Jr.
Tidbits Update for July 29, 2010

 Check This Out This tidbits update is brougth too you by Western Flyer Sport Mods out of OKC. Owned and maintained by former pro stock driver Jeff Jackson and all around good guy Curtis Allen, Western Flyer builds one of the top-notch sport mods in the area. BUT, they are not limited to just building sport mods, they also build bodies, chassis repair and custom sheet metal work. For anything and everything modifieds or sport mods, give Western Flyer a call and tell them you saw their ad on tidbits.

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I can't thank Michael and his Thriller Productions for all his help with 95% of the banners on this website and the track ads as well. I think he is wondering what he got himself into on our agreement but tidbits couldn't be successful without his help and I mean that. But not only does Michael and his Thriller Productions excel in graphic work but top notch photos and videos as well from the top dirt track races across the state. Click on his ad to see his website and view all things that Thriller Productions can do. When you inquire his business, let him know you saw the ad here on tidbits.

Since my pc knocked me offline last week losing all that I had type, let us see if I can remember what typed but first, with the most recent travels.

Last Friday night it was up Hwy 81 to I-80 in Nebraska and on to Lincoln (Eagle), Nebraska and Eagle Raceway for the first appearance in two years for the O'Reilly/NCRA late model division. Twenty-seven drivers from four states were on hand to do battle for one of the most entertaining tracks around. I had attended Eagle Raceway back in the late 80's when I would cover the All-Star Circuit of Champions/NCRA outlaw sprint "Thunder Through the Plains" week-long tour and the track never disappointed when it came to sprint car shows. With the humidity as bad in Nebraska as it was here in Oklahoma, it was good to get to sit and do my stuff in the suite, being waited on by a lovely looking young lady all night long. The track and officials were very friendly and courteous and all seemed happy with the late model turnout. Kyle Berck, aboard the Dorothy Lynch Salad Dressing owned #14 lazer chassis, took the lead with around four laps to go to take the victory from his eleventh starting position. "Those forty laps pretty well did me in," said Kyle later in the pit area where fifty laps was discussed but forty was decided upon. Whether it is sprint cars or late models, make sure you put down Eagle Raceway as one of your next new tracks.

From there is was through the city of Lincoln and a stop at a Villiage Inn for one of their awesome chicken skillets before finding a Best Western next to the airport. A good nights sleep and to wake up with cloudy skies and 60 degrees was a bonus as I made my two and a half our drive down Hwy 75 to Thunder Hill Speedway in Mayetta, Kansas - which is just ten miles north of Topeka. While being sent up there to announce the late models and ended up not doing a danged thing (long story that will just get me fired up if I talk about it here) but did keep enough notes for the story. One mile to the west, two miles to the south found rain all around the track with a prelude of things to come later in the evening. 

This weekend had Terry Phillips and Jeremy Payne on hand as well as E.T - Eric Turner. Turner had the better of the three in finishes both nights while both Phillips and Payne seemed to struggle to find their groove. The Eagle Raceway was Phillips first ever appearance while he has had several at Thunder Hill.

The track was taken over by the racing Conkwrights out of Salina, both drivers Mike and Dave along with sister Pam and other members of the Conkwright family. A work in progress, Thunder Hill Speedway, a big three-eighths HIGH banked oval that produced several great but aweful dusty All-Star/NCRA outlaw sprint shows in the late 90's, finds enough for four wide racing on this surface. A fifteen minute intermission found the NCR late models, which were due up last, hurried along with showers approaching and fast. Kelly Boen, who is looking for his fifth series late model championship, made slight contact with fellow front row starter Phillips and blew by the rest of the field at the start and dominated the race. It was scheduled for 25 laps but on a lap twenty-three caution saw the skies open up calling the event a complete show. The win was Boens 50th career with NCRA, which leads in the series late model division but is third all time in NCRA victories to Gary "Dream Weaver" Wright (76) and Garry Lee "Quick Draw" Maier (65).     

After the races in Mayetta, Kansas it was stop number 15 at a different HOOTERS in Topeka to settle down the nerves and ready for the five hours home. It was a 5:45 AM get home time and enough to do both the previous nights stories, to bed at 7:45 AM and up at 11:30 AM to prepare myself for the trip to Enid Speedway Park and the tracks Summer Nationals - promoted by Checkered Flag Promotions CEO Ed Beckley. Now Ed is no stranger to promoted as, if I recall correctly, he was the promoter back in 1985 when I ventured up to Dodge City at one of the old Fairgrounds sprint car shows. I know it was 1985 as Greg Wooley took a night off the WoO sprint car tour to do battle at Dodges Fairground Speedway. 

Ed is also a showman, having done alot of motorcycle jump acts with his then wife, Linda, who would ride on the back of his motorcylce during his many jumps. Ed always has been and probably always will be a "promotor" who is hands on in all things associated with a race track.

Forty-one sport mods (NCRA southern mods), four late models, 24 modifieds about 12 purse stocks and lost count on the other division made up the near 124 cars that filled the Enid Speedway Park pit area for the tracks Summer Nationals and what some are saying the biggest crowd in the stands in a long, long time made the opener a huge success.

You already read my NCRA story where Todd Decker picked up his second victory of the season. It was good to see Brill Motor Speedway regulars Mark Robinson, Vickie Cummings and Tommy Morgan make the trip to compete with officially finishing a very strong second.

It was not a good night for Randy Timms as he was looking strong in his heat race before the motor blew and then in the modified feature finale, was just waiting for the checkered flag to fall while dominating the feature, only to have the motor in his modified expire as well.

Joe Duvall of Chelsa, who finished fifth at Outlaw Motor Speedway on Friday night and third at Thunderbird Speedway in Muskogee on Saturday night during weekly competition, had a strong run from starting mid-pack, used the top side of the track to finish third.

Congratulations to third generation driver Brendon Gemmill has he won the twenty lap feature finale with, I believe NCRA modified south points leader Mickey Lassiter coming home a strong second in a new wrap design by tidbits advertiser M&M Graphics.

It was good to see all the Gemmill shirts in the stands at Enid again. Heck, it was good to see a great crowd at Enid again.       

The NCRA southern mods, along with all other divisions you saw at Enid this past Sunday night, will be back in action once again on Sunday night, August 15, during the tracks "Salute to the Enid Speedway Legends." Keep tuned to the message board on this website for more information as my official press release concerning this addition can also be found there and on the NCRA website

A light rain fell when all heat races were nearly completed but persistance by Beckley and the other racers to keep the track ironed in seemed to had really helped the track stay racey all night. Kudos to all for not giving up, getting the show in and making it happen.

There was alot of information that I had last week when I updated and lost everything from my trip to Dodge City Raceway Park for the NCRA sprint car show. It saw J.D Johnson become the sixth different feature winner in as many races on the 2010 race season. It was also where I became the "unofficial" official for the sprint car series as competition director Rod Becken was promoting his RPM Speedway two day fair races. With the help from Ashley Johnson (JD's Miranda Lambert look-alike wife) and Kattie (soon to be Jeremy) Campbell who done the sign in, passing points and wrote out the checks following the races.

Was great to see Steve and son Whit make the trip from OKC for their first appearance at Dodge City Raceway Park where Steve was mightly impressed with the facility. Whit competed at Outlaw Motor Speedway on Friday night for OCRS (finished fourth) before changing power plants and making the trip up from OKC to Dodge where he finished 12th. Ran into them all at the Hutch's C Store on the West end of Woodward.

Garry Lee Maier and Trevor Grossenbacher had one of the scariest, ugliest crashes I had seen in quite some time. Trevor made contact with a slower car on the front stretch and started to flip. Garry Lee, who was flying, came out of four, had nowhere to go and plowed into Trevor causing both drivers to flip and scatter parts all across the front stretch. Tonya Maier (Garry Lees wife) informs he and his car owners (famed Ochs Brothers #1x) makes sure Garry Lee is buckled in tight everytime he straps in and his HANS device really saved him.

It was ugly.   

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This coming Friday night there is a $1000 to win mini stock event at Outlaw Motor Speedway. Creek County and Brill Motor Speedway rules are allowed but you must bring that tracks rule book for the mini stock division.

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Starting tonight, there is a three day Super Stock Shootout paying $5000 to win and $500 to start on Saturday night at Tri-State Speedway in Pocola.

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I will remind you next week when I update but don't forget that the NCRA southern modifieds make a trip to the fairgrounds half mile oval at Thunderbird Speedway in Muskogee. Several NCRA regulars have made the haul to Thunderbird Speedway for their weekly events and really enjoy it.

Back from their very successfull "on track" shows in the Great Northwest, the Lucas Oil ASCS sprint car series presented by K&N will make their first ever appearance at L.A. Speedway in La Monte, Missouri tomorrow (Friday) night. From there I figure half the field will gear up for next weekends Knoxville 360 Nationals while the others will head to the quarter mile oval at Springfield Speedway in Missouri for ASCS Sooner region action.

As many of you know, Wayne Johnson was seriously injured in a sprint car wreck that darn near caused him to lose his foot - all thanks to a busted driveline. I owe Wayne a million as he was there when I lost my job after seven years. I had met Wayne through Fred and Jo Threatt, car owners of the #29 ASCS sprinter back in 2000 when Wayne drove for them and I did a short stint doing their PR. Wayne and I got to be friends and when I couldn't find a job to save my life, contacted Doug Bragg, who is regional director for all the O'Reilly Auto Parts Stores. He then hooked me up to the warehouse here in Oklahoma City where I am fixing to have been employeed by them for eight years coming up in October. Wayne also drove me to Lawton one evening for their winter nationals and assited me on other times. He was there to help me and I consider a great friend. So, with him now heading back home to Knoxville, people have set up a place for you to send donations. They are to be as the following: 

Wayne's account is at US Bank. It is listed as the "Wayne Johnson Donation Account". The other option is to send donations to mother-in-law Barb Berkenpas who is the administrator of the account. Checks should be made out to the Wayne Johnson Donation Account. Mail them to: Barb Berkenpas, Administrator; Wayne Johnson Donation Account; 5418 240th Street, Ashton, IA 51232. Call Barb with any questions at: 712-724-6104 or email [email protected]. You can go to any US Bank in the country and as long as you have the correct name of the account you should be able to donate at any branch. The account is set up in Sibley, Iowa and the folks in Pella, Iowa are aware of it as well. I called one of the Seattle branches and they have the information so all branches in the country should have it.

I hope you all will contribute to help Wayne in his time of need.

Quick fact, many may not remember that Wayne won a modified weekly show at Fairgrounds Speedway a couple of years ago driving one of his brothers modifieds. May have been 2005 or something.

Ironically, Wayne was replaced by Travis Rilat in the Fred and Jo Threatt #29 where Travis still competes for to this day, up until he was severely burned the night after Wayne's terrible accident. Winged or non-winged, Travis was a racer and his presence and workings on the mic will be missed. Got to know Travis as well when I worked for ASCS from 1998- mid-2002 where Travis also competed. Please keep Travis in your thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery.

Also don't forget that OCRS will see double duty this weekend as they head to "The Hummer," Humboldt Speedway in Humboldt, Kansas on Friday night before heading to Mid-America Speedway in South Coffeyville, Oklahoma on Saturday night! 

That is about all the damage for this tidbits update. Don't forget that Outlaw Motor Speedway and Wild West Speedway (Clinton) continue their Friday night weekly racing divisions while Brill Motor Speedway, Oklahoma Sports Park, Creek County Speedway, Elk Citys I-40 Speedway and Lake Country Speedway all continue their weekly Saturday night shows. All with success that is. I mentioned those tracks as they all have track ads here on tidbits.

Lake Country Speedway is now being run by Shane (p'nut" Moss and track owner Virgil Page and by all accounts things are going well. The modifieds are now "open" which has helped car counts.

My plans for this weekend are the following: Friday night is still undecided as we speak as I am trying to figure out where to go. On Saturday night it is back up the Northwest Passage to Dodge City and Dodge City Raceway Park for the NCRA/CLMA late model event. From there it is on to 81 Speedway in Park City, Kansas for a Sunday night showdown between the two late model divisions. Remember, all general admission tickets at 81 Speedway is $9.00.

But to top it all off, once I clock out at work around 11 AM it is VACATION TIME BABY! Right now I am looking at going to Thursday and/or Friday nights 360 Nationals preliminary at Knoxville.

Thank you all for your support of this tidbits website as for the past 12 years, this is the most hits I have ever received. Often imitated, tried to better it but never duplicated, and I thank all of you for your support.

PLEASE remember the message board and tidbits itself is just not limited to OKC but all tracks throughout the state of Oklahoma. This is YOUR website as you made it what it is today. If you have tidbits you would like to share but don't wanna post, email me the information and I will add it next time I update the front page.

Take care, be safe and as always "watch out for the other guy!!!"
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