Campbell Carries Momentum to Knoxville There are many variables that enter into the equation when summing up what makes teams successful with the World of Outlaws. One of those is having a crew that communicates well and also gets along, over...
Campbell Carries Momentum to Knoxville
There are many variables that enter into the equation when summing up what makes teams successful with the World of Outlaws. One of those is having a crew that communicates well and also gets along, over the course of the always demanding schedule that stretches from February until early November.
Jeremy Campbell recently welcomed fellow Michigan native Nate Bevard to his crew, joining crew chief Kevin Loveys for the rest of the season, as the team continues to put all the pieces in place. After starting the season off with a couple of individuals filling the crew member role on an interim basis, Campbell and Loveys are pleased to have Bevard onboard as the World of Outlaws schedule begins to build steam in the next couple weeks. Campbell looks to build on this solid foundation that his crew has established this weekend, as he travels to the storied Knoxville Raceway for a full night of racing on Saturday, April 28.
"The crew is looking pretty good right now," said Campbell, driver of the RLM Financial Maxim. "Nate (Bevard) is an old buddy of mine. When I started out in go-karts he helped me out, and I've known him for quite a while. He really knows what he is doing."
During the Gold Rush Tour last season, Campbell implored the help of Loveys, a native of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada to serve as the team's as crew chief. The pair quickly began to gel, with Campbell earning a very solid fifth-place finish in the finale of the Harvest Classic at Calistoga (Calif.) Speedway after lining up 20th on a track that was very tough to pass on. Making the feat even more remarkable was the fact that is was Campbell's first visit to the half-mile in heart of California wine country.
"Last year Kevin got familiar with everything, and that helped prepare us for this season," explained Campbell, a native of Monroe, Michigan. "We are working very well together and our communication is great. We can communicate what the car is doing sometimes without even talking. Sometimes I will say what the car is doing, and he knows exactly what he has to do it, and that helps me a lot, because I can then just focus on my driving."
Campbell heads to Knoxville with plenty of momentum this week, after a very solid pair of races last weekend that saw him earn a spot in the dash on both nights. Last Friday at Attica Raceway Park in Ohio, he began the night by turning in the 13th fastest lap in time trials with a very tough 55 car field in attendance. He followed that up by finishing second in the first heat. In the dash, he came home in the seventh, to earn that same starting spot in the 40-lap A-Feature.
On Saturday night at Tri-State (Ind.) Speedway, he stopped the clocks 10th in time trials, and was second in the second heat to earn a spot in the dash, where he finished eighth. He quickly gained two spots on the opening lap of the 40-lap A-Feature. He then got around polesitter Danny Lasoski on the 13th lap to take the fifth spot, en route to a season-best finish of fourth.
"We just brought Nate on board and I don't know if he is our good luck charm or what," quipped Campbell. "Our luck is changing and hopefully we can keep that going. We need to keep getting Top-Fives and then we can try to get a win out here."
Last June, Campbell turned in a solid run at Knoxville. He began the night by turning in the 14th quickest lap in time trials, with a stout 46-car field on hand. He came up one spot short in his heat race of transferring into the A-Feature, but raced his way into the A-Feature through the B-Main. In the A-Feature he climbed up to the 13th spot, and was turning very consistent lap times. He was looking forward to competing at Knoxville again on the following night, but Mother Nature interrupted that. He has always enjoyed racing on the ultra-fast half-mile, with its long sweeping turns.
"At Knoxville, one of the main items is making sure your motor is fueled right, and to have a good motor to run," commented Campbell. "You have to run as hard as you can there. It is a wide-open track, because if you lift once you will go backwards. You just have to stay strong and keeping pushing the entire night."
With one of the strongest fields in the history of the series assembled this season, Campbell knows the important of being consistent and fast every time he takes to the track, whether that is for hot laps, time trials, a heat race, the dash, or the A-Feature event. The experience he received last season and the confidence he gained are beginning to pay off this year, as the teams finds their rhythm.
"With the number of cars out here this year, you can't miss a beat anymore," he explained. "If you mess up a little, you will go to the back. You have to always be on your game and trying to move forward. Right now you have to qualify well. If you don't qualify well, you are going to start in the back and have to work your way up. That has kind of been our problem early this year. Our qualifying has not been great, and I have been starting toward the back. I have been able to pass a lot of cars and make the shows, but you want to start up front, so you are racing with the leaders and battling for wins."
A big advantage that Campbell has this season is that he visited most of the tracks on the schedule last year during his rookie season. A perfect example of this came last weekend at Tri-State (Ind.) Speedway, a track that he was seventh at in his rookie season.
"I have raced at almost all the track we go to, and when we go back, we know what to expect," he said. "Hopefully that will give us a little advantage and be able to run up front."
After running at the front of the pack all 40 laps last Saturday at Tri-State, Campbell is confident that he and his team have things headed in the right direction. He looks to keep this momentum going this weekend at Knoxville Raceway.
"It feels good to show what we are capable of," said a smiling Campbell. "We struggled for a long time this year but I think we got a lot of things figured out. Knoxville is one of my favorite tracks that we race at and I am looking forward to another strong run this coming weekend."
On Saturday, April 28 at Knoxville Raceway, adult general admission tickets will be $25, with reserved tickets $27. General admission tickets for children will be $13.50, with general admission tickets for children $12.50.