TOPEKA, KS (June 15) - It's amazing how a victory effects a team. Dale Blaney had been chasing a Pennzoil World of Outlaws "A" Feature for a long time. Tuesday's victory at Farmer City Raceway gave the Amoco Team a confidence boost and now...
TOPEKA, KS (June 15) - It's amazing how a victory effects a team. Dale Blaney had been chasing a Pennzoil World of Outlaws "A" Feature for a long time. Tuesday's victory at Farmer City Raceway gave the Amoco Team a confidence boost and now the team wants get victory number two at this weekend's O'Reilly's Sunflower Shootout at Heartland Raceway Park.
"We thought we were close to getting one," said Blaney, the 1998 WoO Rookie-of-the-Year. "We kept running fourth or fifth which was good, but we hadn't finished in the top three all year. I talked with my brother (Car-Owner & former WoO Champion, Dave Blaney) earlier this week and he told me to make something happen. We made it happen on Tuesday and got a win, but now it's back to work. I'm really looking forward to racing on this track. My crew (DJ Lindsey and Gene Jenkins) has been doing a great job on the car so I know we'll be ready."
Blaney and his Amoco #93 have been coming on lately with five Top-Five finishes in the last six races. Blaney led every lap he was on the track on Tu esday night winning his heat, Channellock Dash and the 30-lap "A" Feature. Prior to Tuesday, Blaney had made terrific runs from the back of the pack racing from 14th to fourth at Eldora two weeks ago and coming from 17th to fifth at the inaugural Channellock Challenge at Bristol.
"We've been good the last month or so, but this will really help Dale," said Lindsey. "He needed the win so that he knows that he can flat beat them. We had yellows that helped but he had Steve Kinser right behind him and never seemed rattled at all. He just stayed right in there and ran his line and did an excellent job. I'm really proud of Dale and this entire Amoco team. We're going to keep working harder than ever now. Winning feels good, and I know all of us want to feel this again."
Blaney ranks sixth in the WoO Standings and has been consistent all season. With the Outlaws it usually takes a team a season or two to gel, but Blaney, Lindsey and Jenkins seem to be hitting on all cylinders.
"This is what it's all about," said Gene Jenkins, a long-time car-owner in Central Pennsylvania. "When I decided to come out here, we came out to win races and we finally got one. We had the car pretty nice at Farmer City, and Dale did a good job. It takes 100% to win these Outlaw races and we've been giving it a 100%. Mentally it's got to help. After you get that first win, usually the second one comes a lot easier. You still have to put in the same effort, but their going to come easier now."
Lindsey and Jenkins are working with the Outlaws full-time for the first time in their careers and have done a great job of adapting to the new tracks. Blaney has also shined at new facilities this year with a 7th at Houston Raceway Park, 5th at Lowe's Motor Speedway and last week's fifth at Bristol. The team agrees that it's a matter of communicating to one another that's been the difference.
"We just pull into a place tell each other what we think," said Blaney.
"We've all raced for quite a while and been to a number of tracks, but this week at Topeka will be a new experience. We'll just put our heads together and hope for the best."
Blaney is happy to have his first victory behind and would like nothing more than to back it up with another one this weekend, but he'll still keep the big picture in mind.
"Our goal at the beginning of the year was to win some races and finish in the Top-Five of the points," said Blaney. "We've won a race and we're banging on the door for fifth in the standings. If we can get a couple more wins and continue climbing in the standings we'll get there. The win was just one of our goals that we've accomplished, but we've got a couple more to achieve."