Login |
Watch LIVE at | Events | FAQ | Archives
Sponsor 1198
Sponsor 717


All Late Models. All the Time.

Your soruce for dirt late model news, photos and video

  • Join us on Twitter Join us on Facebook
Sponsor 525


Sponsor 743

Knoxville Raceway

Inconsistency follows McCreadie to Knoxville

September 28, 2013, 3:00 pm
By Todd Turner
DirtonDirt.com managing editor
Tim McCreadie heads for a fifth-place finish Friday at Knoxville. (thesportswire.net)
Tim McCreadie heads for a fifth-place finish Friday at Knoxville. (thesportswire.net)

KNOXVILLE, Iowa (Sept. 27) — The hot-and-cold cycle of running up front one night and struggling the next is wearing on Tim McCreadie, who can only hope he’s “hot” for Saturday’s $40,000-to-win finale for the 10th annual Lucas Oil Late Model Knoxville Nationals. | Complete Knoxville coverage

The 39-year-old driver from Watertown, N.Y., a successful big-block modified racer before switching to Late Models 10 seasons ago, has been on both ends of the spectrum the first two nights of action at the historic half-mile oval, virtually non-existent on Thursday, but making and impressive 21st-to-fifth run in Friday’s 25-lapper.

It reminded him of a three-day stretch in August when he celebrated his career-high $50,000 victory at Cedar Lake Speedway’s USA Nationals, then took a provisional starting spot in Independence, Iowa.

“Those are hard things for me to stomach,” McCreadie said.

At Knoxville, McCreadie struggled so much on Thursday that he unloaded his backup car Friday in case he needed to make a quick switch. But fortunately, hard work that McCreadie credited to crew members Craig “Snowman” McCrimmon and Johnny Coco in making innumerable suspension changes got his No. 39 Warrior Race Car headed in the right direction.

“All the things we’ve changed today made it at least drivable,” McCreadie said. “It just, I don’t know if it’s good enough, but if they have a yellow every 10 laps, we’re OK. We’re not good on long runs, so I don’t know how we’re going to fix that. But at least I think we’re in the show ... that’s probably the most important.”

Indeed McCreadie’s Friday performance earned him enough points for a sixth-place start in Saturday’s 100-lapper. "We need to be a lot better, but we’ll take it,” he said.

“I’m just not stuck enough. I’m stuck, but not stuck enough to drive the way I like to drive. When I get this car stuck the way I like it, it’s usually good and we’re right up front,” he said. “When I’m not stuck, I just can’t get into the corner ... when I can’t get in, I’m usually terrible. If I can get in there and drive hard and drive sideways, I’m usually in trouble. It’s a battle.”

Inconsistency has become McCreadie’s hallmark during a season where he’s fifth in World of Outlaws Late Model Series points with eight special event victories overall. He doesn’t enjoy it.

“That’s the hardest thing for me,” he said. “I’d rather run fifth and be competitive than win big races and then not make races. It just boggles your mind all day long wondering what in the hell’s going on.”

During his best seasons, minor changes seemed to keep him competitive. But in recent seasons, he struggles to find the sweet spot with his Warrior that can be finicky with setups he throws at it.

“That’s something we need to work on ... I can’t take running good and bad. I can’t do it,” he said. “I’d just go home and run my modified and be with my son and Karen, his mother. I’ve done a lot and I haven’t done everything, but it’s like I said the other day, where I feel like I fit in the pecking order of a race team — we’ve got good money, we’ve got good help — but to beat Darrell Lanigan and Josh Richards in a point title is about near impossible because their programs are so good with everything.

“I’ve come to terms that right now we’re a fourth-, fifth-place guy in the points. The next step in my mind is winning, and that’s all that matters. We can’t seem to do that on a consistent basis all the time either. That’s when it gets frustrating.”

That’s extended to his Knoxville weekend, when he considered heading home after Thursday’s performance that ended in the C-main.

The frustration grows on “nights like (Thursday) when we tried some new things but we didn’t reinvent the wheel, and we were really bad. And tonight, we put it back,” he said. “We’re better, but I don’t know if we’re good enough to win. I don’t think we are. I think we’re good enough to run seventh or fifth. So if we can get another big swing tomorrow, who knows.

“Cedar Lake all weekend? I knew I was good enough to win right from when we unloaded. I don’t have that feel with this just yet. One more day.”

Sponsor 1249
Sponsor 728
©2006-Present FloSports, Inc. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Cookie Preferences / Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information