Jerrod Hull - Speedweek a Struggle!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016
Jerrod battles with Zach Daum at Macon (Mark Funderburk Racing Photo)Jerrod battles with Zach Daum at Macon (Mark Funderburk Racing Photo) (Bill W) August 3, 2016 – Illinois Speedweek proved to be a bit of a struggle for Jerrod Hull and the Heartland Trailer Manufacturing #12 team.  Fortunately, things got better in the finale, when the Sikeston, Missouri driver notched a runner-up finish last Saturday night at Macon Speedway.  After reeling off four wins in a row earlier in the season with MOWA, it was a week of struggles.  Jerrod will take a few weeks off, while his son Jett does some racing.  The next MOWA event will be the August 27 Bill Waite Jr. Memorial at LaSalle Speedway in Illinois.

Things started a week ago on Wednesday at Peoria Speedway.  “We drew a late number, and it was a track that went away quickly,” says Jerrod.  “We timed in 22nd, and that put us in the sixth starting spot for the heat.  We had to get into the top three to lock into the feature, and we were able to do that.”

Jerrod started inside row six for the feature.  “We weren’t really good in the feature,” he says.  “We actually hung out where we were.  The car wasn’t real nice.  A couple of cars fell out in front of us and we were able to run ninth.  We didn’t know what we had going on.”

The team went to work for Thursday’s event at Quincy Raceways..  “Scott (Bonar) and Nick went to work on it,” says Jerrod.  “They changed a bunch of stuff for Quincy.  We ended up qualifying sixth.  That was o.k., but it was back to the same thing in the heat.  We started second and backed up to third.  The car just wasn’t comfortable.  We started ninth in the feature.  I didn’t know what was going on, because I couldn’t run the cushion.  I just kind of hung on, and with a couple of cars falling out, we ran seventh.”

More changes were in store before Jacksonville Speedway Friday.  “Friday, we changed steering gears and we changed the front axle,” says Jerrod.  “The front axle had some bend in it, but nothing we thought was a big deal.  We changed it for Jacksonville.  We went in there, and the car was the same.  We timed in ninth quick, and ran third in the heat.  We started ninth in the feature, and we were just kind of there.  We ended up eighth.”

Jerrod was frustrated by the team’s performance at Jacksonville.  “That’s one of my favorite places, and one of Scott’s,” he says.  “Starting ninth doesn’t usually bother me there.  I had all the confidence in the world, but after the feature, I was mad.  We changed the rear-end, did some stuff with the steering, and all the shocks and bars again.”

That seemed to do the trick for the Speedweek finale Saturday in Macon.  “We felt pretty good at Macon,” says Jerrod.  “We qualified sixth and started outside the front row of the heat race and won.  I felt really comfortable, and we were able to run the cushion really hard like we’re used to.”

Jerrod would start outside row one of the feature.  “We had a problem the first three nights of the car being tight and rolling over the right rear on the cushion,” he says.  “I feel for Scott a little bit, because he didn’t know how far we needed to go with that after those first three nights.  We were just a little loose up there.  We led for a couple of laps, and Zach Daum got going good.  He was running the cushion hard, and he was fast.  He ended up passing us and we ran second.  But the car felt good and I was comfortable again.  We finished the week on a good note.  We didn’t win, but after the three nights we had, it felt like one!”

Photo: Jerrod battles with Zach Daum at Macon (Mark Funderburk Racing Photo)
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