Fan Notes from Attica Raceway Park All Stars

Monday, April 5, 2021
Attica Raceway ParkAttica Raceway Park (Tom Myers) 4/3/2021 – The first point races for the 2021 ASCOC season were scheduled for Friday and Saturday here at Attica Raceway Park. The Friday race was cancelled because of cold temperatures but the $6,000 to win Saturday finale of the Core and Main Spring Nationals was completed thanks to an earlier starting time and slightly warmer temperatures. Thank you Attica Raceway Park, for a job well done! It ended up being a fun day at the races and the day’s action certainly gave us a tantalizing preview of the very competitive All Star season ahead of us.

I arrived at the track around 2:30 and the pits were full of cars. The skies were sunny but the temperatures were hovering in the mid 50’s and there was a stiff breeze blowing from the southwest. Thankfully that breeze was blowing from behind the stands and keeping the dust out of our faces. The track was well watered but because of the cool temps and constant wind, the track didn’t hold the moisture and it turned dry and slick….even after the track crew watered it a second time before the heat races.

I went back to the pits to nose around and take pictures before things would get busy. Saw the new 18 car that Cole Macedo is driving this year. The wrenches are being turned by the Linder brothers and it looks like they are running the same stuff they did with the 11n Neumeister car they had so much success with for a good many years. I also like Cap Henry’s new colors and sponsor’s paint scheme. I noticed that they were operating out of a fancy trailer with the 83 Aaron Call and Janet Holbrook markings all over it. I learned a little later than Henry had just announced he was following the All Stars full time, and then that new hauler made sense. So that makes 12 full time racers and from top to bottom they are all capable of winning on a given night.

I got to talk with Zeb Wise a little. I told him that after he separated from the 11 car last year I thought for sure he would have been back in the midgets. He said that when he left the11 car, he had nothing set up, no plans. He told me that he likes the midget racing but that he really likes the winged sprint cars. He said this current deal materialized and he was really happy to be back with the All Stars. I told him that he would win some races this year and that it was cool to have him back in a winged sprint car. He then went out and led the feature until being passed by Peck on lap 26 or so, and ended up finishing 2nd for the evening. That’s a good start for Zeb and a big confidence booster.
Brent MarksBrent Marks I also talked with Brent Marks briefly. I told him to take it easy on everyone because I think he has a good chance of winning a lot of races this year. He said that the competition will be fierce and that it will be a battle because of all the good drivers and cars. We talked about the many dry slick tracks that the All Stars run on. Brent acknowledged that this would be an adjustment because many of the WoO tracks he is used to running on tend to stay tackier.

I saw Christopher Bell in the pits and I thought that was cool. He was talking with Cale Conley in Conley’s trailer. I thought about what I might say to Christopher if I would see him later on. Something like, “Hi Christopher, it’s cool to see you here in the pits today. Good luck racing Nascar this year, so far you’ve been doing pretty good and hopefully you can be a factor in the chase. I’m rooting for you and Larson to do well.” He would say thank you and then I would try and get him to laugh be saying he should have pulled the wing back more at Bristol and maybe he wouldn’t have spun out?…….Hopefully he would laugh and there wouldn’t be an awkward moment there. I don’t know Mr. Bell, but I hope he would have a sense of humor. Maybe he would laugh, but maybe it would be too soon to joke with him about that? What do you think? Anyway, I didn’t see him again all evening so that conversation didn’t transpire.

The All Stars were timing everyone straight up, instead of timing in heat race groups. They will do this when there are 30 cars or less and just 3 heats. The top 12 timers will invert in their heats. The top 6 in each heat will transfer to the A main and the heat race winner and fastest timer who transfers will go to the dash redraw. In addition, the two fastest qualifiers, if they transfer, will also go to the dash redraw. There was to be only one dash this evening, with 8 cars. If there are more than 30 cars, they will go to 4 heats and will time against their heat race groups.

Everyone was saying that the first guys out would be the fastest timers because the track was quickly drying. Well, some of the mid group timers did well. Foos and Eliason were some of the early timers and they were at the top for a while, then Peck timed pretty good. Then Michaels had a good time and Balog was decent. Then Schurenburg went fast and we were at the halfway point. Then Madsen and Mintz topped everyone. Madsen ended up timing quickest with Mintz 2nd quick. Wise and Wolfe and Marks were some of the later timers and they ended up near the top of the speed chart. The top 10 timers were Madsen, Mintz, Wise, Wolfe, Peck, Foos, Schurenburg, Andrews, Courtney and Marks. Marks was the 27th out of 30 cars to time.
Cory Eliason (26), Ian Madsen (11), Hunter Schuerenberg (55) and Lucas Wolfe (07)Cory Eliason (26), Ian Madsen (11), Hunter Schuerenberg (55) and Lucas Wolfe (07) The track crew then watered and reworked the track. It looked good until the first heat started. The most traction was down around the bottom. Going up top just lost you track position except at the exit of turn 2 sometimes. There was a small cushion in 1 and 2 and that helped but not very often. The heats turned into a follow the leader affair pretty much, as the cold and windy conditions just dried the track out.

In the first heat, Balog, who started 5th, got caught up with Peterson and Zablocki in a tangle in turn 3 and 4. All 3 restarted from the tail and Bill struggled after that, finishing last in this heat. Schurenburg won followed by Marks, Madsen, Wolfe, Jacobs and Macedo. The 2nd heat finish was Eliason at the front followed by Mintz in 2nd, who moved up from 4th, Peck in 3rd, who, with Mintz, made nifty moves around Andrews, Andrews 4th, followed by Philo and Spithaler.

The 3rd heat was eventful in that at the first try to start it, Foos clipped the infield tire in turn 4, spinning out while everyone avoided hitting him. On the ensuing restart, Brubaker spins it in turn 2. On the 3rd restart, Reinhardt hits the tire at the turn 4 exit and ends up on his side and at the same time Brubaker hits a tire in turn one and spins. That’s how low everyone was driving, just trying to get traction. The heat finally got started after this and the finish was Conley, Wise, Griffith, Courtney, Henry and Brubaker. Tyler Courtney had 2nd locked up. But on the last lap he went high in turn 3 and 4 and then over the bank and off. He was able to get back on the racing surface and finish 4th.

The B main finish was pole sitter Foos finishing first followed by John Ivy, Byron Reed, Balog, who started 2nd, Peterson and T.J. Michael. The racers are really struggling with traction and no one is really trying the top with much success.
Justin Peck won the All Star event Saturday at AtticaJustin Peck won the All Star event Saturday at Attica The dash finish was pole sitter Eliason in first, followed by 4th starting Wise, 2nd starting Peck, Madsen, Schurenburg who started 8th, Conley, Mintz and last was 3rd starting Wolfe, who couldn’t hold his starting position.

So that makes the front row of the feature Eliason and Wise, followed by Peck and Madsen, Schurenburg and Conley, Mintz and Wolfe.

The 40 lap feature was ready to start at 7:35 p.m. which was really good since the sun was starting to go down and it was still windy. The race was a good one as Eliason grabbed the early lead with Wise in tow. It was follow the leader down low pretty much, except a few brave racers would try it up against the dusty cushion in turn 1. Some would get momentum from it but then loose traction as they exited turn 2. On lap 5 Macedo exits the track in turn 3 and goes to the work area. He then returns. The running order was Eliason, Wise, Madsen, Peck, Schurenburg, Mintz, Conley, Marks, Andrews, Courtney and Wolfe, who was falling back. On the restart it was really dusty and Henry spins it in turn 3. Macedo exits with a sputtering engine. On the lap 6 restart Wise creeps past Eliason and then Wise starts to extend his lead. Peck then gets by Eliason on lap 14 for 2nd and on lap 16 Wolfe spins in turn 2. On the restart Wise gets out to a lead and extends it. Wise stays down low and as the leaders enter traffic, Peck blasts around the top in 1 and 2 to inch closer to Wise. Around lap 26, Peck, who got up to Wise’s bumper for a few laps, finally inches by for the lead. Wise stays close, even blasting around the top himself in turns 1 and 2, but can’t get the lead back as Peck takes the win.

The top 10 finish was Peck, Wise, Schurenburg, Marks, Eliason, Mintz, Courtney, Madsen, Andrews and Foos. I have to say that Peck is on fire and he has confidence. He looks like a veteran in victory lane. He’s the real deal. He really impressed me with his driving. Wise drove well too. Wise looks like he will be in the hunt as well as Eliason, Schurenburg, Marks and Courtney. Henry and Wolfe and Balog will regroup and make some noise too.

Thank you Attica Raceway Park and Thank you All Star Circuit of Champions. See you at the next race!