Buckeroo Springfield report

ARCA raced the famous Springfield mile dirt track on August 19. We drove to Springfield the night before. We had planned on bringing a special dirt car that we have been building in the shop for a year. We could not get it done however, with...

ARCA raced the famous Springfield mile dirt track on August 19. We drove to Springfield the night before. We had planned on bringing a special dirt car that we have been building in the shop for a year. We could not get it done however, with the schedule being so tight, we were lucky to pull the motor out of the Speedway car and get it in the short track car.

The garage opened at 6:30. This is one of the races where you arrive in the early morning, practice at 9:00, qualifying at 11:00 and race at 1:00.

We still had a little work to do on the car. I do not like to go out early in the practice on a dirt track. You end up having to clean out a bunch of mud before qualifying and you end up making changes to the car when the track is not ready. We got ready to go out at the last half hour, then somebody wrecked on the track. We got on the track with ten minutes left and got only a handfull of laps. The car seemed Ok.

I drew the third spot in the qualifying order. This seemed to good, the track was in good shape. The car seemed tight getting off the corners. We qualifyed 11th. By far my best dirt qualifying attempt. I made some changes to the car (mistake) after the qualifying round.

Well then the sun came out and the support race (dirt limited late models) had a feature race. By race time the track had turned to a hard, dry slick affair that my changes were not going to support. At the start of the race my car was junk. The car was bad loose and I could not maintain any corner speed. The field spread out and Kimmel was on a tear again. He lapped me by lap 17, where a caution, then a red flag came out for the Dean Roper incident.

Dean suffered a massive heart attack. His car came off the fourth corner then went along the inside wall until it hit the exit of pit road. We were then under a red flag and the cars were parked in the 3rd turn.

After the race resumed, we came in for our pit stop and changed everything back to the way it was for qualifying......then went a bunch more in the same direction. I ran out of people to do things on the pit stop......but the crew got it all done. We added fuel, removed a front spring rubber, cleaned the grills, raised the track bar, added wedge in the left rear, and adjusted air pressure in the right rear. The crew even cleaned the window.

After a couple more cautions and a few more adjustments the car came around.

What a difference.....I could drive the car. We then began getting our spots back and did not loose another lap until late in the race. We finished 11th. Pretty good run for us. The dirt has not been one of our strong points. We used to come in and qualify around 30th and finished there too.

Long drive home that night and then to prepare for Berlin the following weekend.

After a week of getting the car ready for Berlin on the 25th in Grand Rapids, MI. The race was rained out. We got in a short practice session that showed us that the car was too tight on older tires. Problem is now we have to pull the motor out of the short track car and put it in the speedway car for the Chicago race.

The next race report will be from the Chicagoland race.

Mike Buckley
ARCA #28
arcamike@aol.com
http://www.goddessfiona.com/buckleyracing

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Series ARCA
Drivers Mike Buckley