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Re: [TrackChasers] 2012 TrackChaser Report #85--Union County Speedway, IN

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  • Bruce Eckel
    Congrads to Mike on reaching the 100 new track plateau for the season. A very lofty accomplishment. Bruce ... From: RTRYFBAR@AOL.COM To:
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 6, 2012
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      Congrads to Mike on reaching the 100 new track plateau for the season. A very lofty accomplishment.


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: RTRYFBAR@...
      To: TrackChasers@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 1:41 PM
      Subject: [TrackChasers] 2012 TrackChaser Report #85--Union County Speedway, IN


      After a successful Indiana double on Saturday, Mike and I mulled whether or not we should head for home Sunday morning and beat the impending hurricane, or go racing. We went racing.

      The trip was originally only planned for one Saturday race, but after deciding to officially add the Indiana tracks to my Hit List, I assembled a tally of over 50 tracks in the state that I had yet to visit. I was surprised to see how many tracks were running last weekend, it being so late in the season. The one race trip grew to two possibilities, and then three. Not bad for the last weekend in October without missing any work and is a testament to the power of advance planning.

      Our Sunday race was at the Union County Speedway in Liberty. The 3/8th mile dirt oval was hosting "Twin 100" lap features for Pure Stocks and for Hornets. Racing was supposed to begin at 1:00. We arrived around noon. Admission was $10.

      The facility is very nice, with lots of concrete and aluminum bleachers built into the hill. Spectators enter from the top like at Big Diamond. The track itself is of nice shape and size. It looked like good clay, but it was hard to tell with it being a day show. Besides the main track, there is also a separate go kart track on the grounds, but it does not look like they have been using it at all this year. Roger and Rick tell me that they also had an off-road course for truck racing behind and alongside the turn one and two area of the main oval.

      It was a cold day and there were very few fans on hand. I would estimate fewer than 50. There were 13 Pure Stocks for their race, and about a dozen of the Hornets. There were only two races, the 100 lap features for each class. The cars were lined up by the luck of the draw. Even though there was only a couple of dozen cars there and only two races, they still started almost an hour late. We didn't eat anything at the track, but Mike reported the chili looked great.

      For the races, caution laps counted and they tried very hard not to use the yellow flag. I thought the starter did a good job. At the halfway mark, they took a 15 minute break. The rules said they could pull into the infield and work on their cars during the break, but I guess that changed as they headed to the pits to do their work. The track was dusty for the first bit, but after the loose stuff was blown off, it wasn't bad at all. The Pure Stock race was the first of the two to run, and was won by Jimmy Focht.

      Both Mike and I enjoyed the race. Mike commented that they were running the cars as hard as they could possibly be run. Before the race started, he said he would wait for me in the car, where he was going to go once he got cold or bored. Neither happened. I commented that it reminded me of a central PA Late Model race from the early 1970's. The Purse Stocks looked like the Late Models from that time, and back then they had more day races on dirt and also more long distance races.

      Although we really enjoyed the racing in the first feature, we left before the second race. It was an 11 hour drive home for me, we both had work the next morning, and the biggest storm in history was coming. I rolled into the house at 12:24 a.m. and beat the storm. I have not left the house since, as school was closed for three days due to the storm damage. Mike went to work Monday morning but they closed at noon and sent him home, and he has not been back since as they still do not have power at his workplace. A strange week.

      Before last week, I was a little reluctant to officially add all the Indiana tracks to my Hit List,, as I am hoping to concentrate more on the Kentucky and Tennessee tracks next year and could easily get distracted by Indiana, one of my favorite states. But Mike told me if I stick with him, we can go all the tracks in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana during the next few years, and Michigan to boot. He may be right. For the most part, all of Indiana and much of Michigan is closer for me than the states of South Carolina and Georgia, already picked pretty clean when it comes to seeing new race tracks. Someday I hope to get to 100 tracks in Indiana and join Roger and Ed. Norm also said this summer that he is also going to try to get to 100 tracks in that state. We will see what happens.

      Special congratulations to the Mike Knappenberger, Man of Steel for reaching 100 new tracks in a season for the third time. It is something that I have never done. I was pleased to play a large part in his 100 tracks. We went to 21 of his new 2012 tracks together, over 20%. And we met up at 16 others. Always a good trip with "Steel at the Wheel".

      No new tracks for us this weekend. Mike is heading to Charlotte for all three days of the World Finals, while Pam and I are staying close to home for football, but home to get a local November race in the books sometime during the weekend as well. If we can ever get out of the house, that is.

      Guy & Pam Smith 2012 Summary

      2012 New Tracks--Guy 56 / Pam 47
      2012 Event-- Guy 81 / Pam 48
      2012 Total Tracks-- Guy 85 / Pam 51
      2012 Additional Non TC Tracks--Guy 6 / Pam NA

      Lifetime Total Tracks--Guy 1,474 / Pam 834

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