Las Vegas Motor Speedway
$5,000 Las Vegas event will cap DIRTcar season
By Kevin KovacDIRTcar Racing
A groundbreaking 2009 season for the DIRTcar Racing Western Region will close with a flourish on Nov. 20-21 at the Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Late Model and modified racers from up-and-down the West Coast and locales beyond will converge on the state-of-the-art half-mile oval for the inaugural Silver State DIRTcar Championships, a two-day extravaganza of speed with a unique twist.
The weekend's featured attraction will be topless racing for the Late Models, highlighted by the 50-lap, $5,000-to-win Silver State Championship on Nov. 21. It will mark the first time in the history of Las Vegas that Super Late Models will compete without fiberglass roofs, allowing fans a clear view of the drivers wrestling their 800-horsepower machines.
“Las Vegas Motor Speedway is pleased to welcome the DIRTcar Late Models and modifieds for the Silver State DIRTcar Championships,” said LVMS vice president of racing operations Chris Blair, who manages The Dirt Track. “We're especially excited about the first-ever topless Late Model race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Late Models have produced some excellent shows here over the years — with four- and five-wide racing — and taking off the roofs is going to step up the level of excitement even more.
“We're looking forward to working with DIRTcar Racing and Chris Morgan (DIRTcar Racing Western Region director) to make the Silver State DIRTcar Championships a great season-ending event for The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.”
Morgan is thrilled to have LVMS serve as the site of a grand finale for racers in the DIRTcar Racing Western Region, which saw significant growth during the 2009 campaign. Super Late Model series under the DIRTcar banner this season included the Western Allstars, Northwest I-5 Late Model Tour and Southwest DIRTcar Racing Association (SWDRA), and both Super Late Model and modified competitors had a shot at national and regional recognition as part of the UMP divisional programs.
“We appreciate the opportunity to work with Las Vegas Motor Speedway to offer the West Coast's fans and race teams a major event to cap the 2009 season,” said DIRTcar Racing's Morgan. “The Silver State DIRTcar Championships represent a huge opportunity for our Western Region Late Model and Modified racers to perform at one of the country's top dirt tracks and begin a new end-of-the-year tradition for DIRTcar Racing.
“We're excited about building signature events for the West Coast's fans and racers, and there's no doubt that a weekend at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway has the potential to grow into a can't-miss show on the DIRTcar Racing calendar.”
Two full nights of racing will comprise the Silver State DIRTcar Championships, beginning on Fri., Nov. 20, with complete preliminary programs for both divisions. The top-four finishers in both of Friday night's feature events ($1,000-to-win for Late Models, $400-to-win for Modifieds) will transfer directly to Saturday night's dashes, which will determine starting spots in Saturday's main events.
Action on Saturday will include a slate of qualifying events leading up to the 50-lap Silver State DIRTcar Championship for the Super Late Models, which pays $500 to start, and the 40-lap, $2,500-to-win UMP DIRTcar Modified Western Shootout.
Several drivers will likely pull double-duty and enter both Late Model and modified events, including Western Allstars DIRTcar Late Model Series points leader Bobby Hogge IV of Salinas, Calif. The 32-year-old standout has been entering dirt Late Model and Modified specials at LVMS for a decade and is anxious to end his successful season with a trip to the well-known facility.
“It's definitely a racetrack that can hold an event like no other,” said Hogge, who is looking for his first career victory at LVMS. “I'm looking forward to going there and having a chance to race with guys from the Northwest and Southwest (DIRTcar tours) and some guys from out east as well. It's going to be a fun weekend.”