today i have the pleasure of having 4 great men give there opinion's on the racing scene. i have asked these guys 10 questions, and they have decided to share there thought with all of you. let me introduce these guys to all of you.
Brent leech is known to most of you as the man who lives at the Tilton Hilton. Brent is a super fan who goes to just about every race, every week end.
Filmguy is the man behind the lense. his videos of bad Chad Layton are a thing of beauty.
Mike Root is the man who started the beerhill gang.
Drakpak is the gentleman who runs the williams grove national open chili cook off.
Question #1. The tire rule in 2007 did exactly what they intended it to do ?
Brent - Fact. I think it did . Some times evening up the competition doesn't
make for the best racing (NASCAR)
Filmguy - Fiction. Although it brought more parity to the local dirt tracks it did not significantly reduce costs for teams and owners.
Mike - Fact. Maybe a little too good as a lot of teams complained about not being able to pass this year.
Drak - I will honestly answer each of these questions as honestly and thoroughly as I can. I honestly don't know what they wanted to accomplish with the tire rule this year Bill. My overall observations from the racing this year are this............the tire rule put allot of different people into V-lane this year, but you really didn't see allot of quality racing. Tracks rubbered down early allot of times, and there were a few cars who were able to run the top and make some big moves up through the pack, but overall.............I think the tire rule hurt the quality of racing.
Question #2. With the new rules that the WOO are implementing in 2008, it will help with the cost of 410 racing ?
Brent - Fiction. I don't see any cost savings anywhere.
Filmguy - Fiction. Same scenario. The real crippling costs in sprint car racing is the purchasing and maintaining competitive 410 motors.
Mike - Fiction.
Drak - Fiction. The major portion of expenses felt by race teams are under the hood and on the road. I don't think the rule changes will help ease the numbers game in 410 racing.
Question #3 There are too many races run here in central pa every season?
Brent - Fact. I try to go to as many as I can , but two "speedweeks" and three and four race weeks twice a month dilutes it some .
Filmguy - Fiction. If the teams and fans show up and the tracks make money on all the shows then it's not to many.
mike - Fact. Depends on who you ask though. Most fans will most likely say no, as we have become spoiled rotten in Central,Pa. The Owners might say yes.
Drak - Fact. I completely agree that the schedule here in PA is too full/demanding. We are already seeing the first signs of this with Selinsgrove cutting back some 410 shows. I think with less shows the racing would improve dramatically.
Question #4. Passing points in heat races are the best way to set the feature line ups ?
Brent - Fiction. I NEVER saw a good race yet that was lined up through passing points and I've seen quite a few. Time trials is the FAIREST way , but I like the present handicapping system , with maybe a smaller inversion heat races.
Filmguy - Fiction. The invert has worked in Central Pa for years. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Mike - Fiction. don't mess with the handicapping system.
Drak - I don't know if passing points are the best way to set up feature line-ups, but I think it's something to try for an extended period of time and see how it shakes out.
Question #5. There should be an age limit for drivers that race locally here in central pa?
Brent - Fact . I think you should have your drivers license to drive anything over a 1/4 mile in length.
Filmguy - Fact. Same as age requirement for motor vehicle license.
Mike - Fact. I say 16 y.o. for 358's and 410's would be practical.
Drak - Fact. I think there should be an age limit in the 410 division only.
Question #6. The days of one driver winning 25 race's a year are over?
Brent - Fiction. Who knows , it could happen this year.
Filmguy - Fiction. Never say never. Hard work, thinking outside the box, and lady luck makes anything possible.
Mike - Fiction. someone out there is still very capable of doing it. It will be done again.
Drak - Fact. No doubt in my mind that with the way the rules are today in 410 racing that you will rarely, if ever, see another big win total from one team in 410 racing.
Question #7. Super teams are the wave of the future in central pa?
Brent - Fiction . It takes lots of resources to run a top team .The easiest way is to pool money together . But it is still possible for a person to come in with deep pockets too . Some teams merge to keep racing at a higher level rather than quit. Others use mulitble sponsors to reach
the same goals.It depends on what you consider a "super team".
Ps. I hate that term as much as I hate hearing "Pa Posse".
Filmguy - Fiction. Too many big egos to go with the big wallets. As a fan I let that stuff work itself out and appreciate every race car fielded by any team.
Mike - Fiction. I for one am not into it. Some teams might be forced into that with rising costs though.
Drak - Fiction. I think super teams are the wave of the future for the WoO crowd, but it's nothing that will catch on here in Central PA.
Question #8. The state of the 410 sprints will remain healthy for the next 10 years?
Brent -Fact. The state of the 410 sprints will remain healthy for the next 10 years. 10 years is a long time
Filmguy - Fact. Have no crystal ball but I'll do my part by supporting the sport. Central Pa is blessed with a multiple, self-contained, spirited sprint car community.
Mike - Fiction. I say that because it looks great right now, but I have a feeling it's gonna go down hill before 10 years are up.
Drak - I think the 410 division is healthy right now. 10 years is a long time to look down the road, but I'd say it's good for 5.
Question #9. USAC will make a huge mark here in central pa in 2008 ?
Brent - Fiction. It will be successful , but I don't think it will reach "huge mark " status.
Filmguy - Fact. USAC makes a huge mark wherever they go. Another form of awesome sprint car racing with it's own built in spice.
Mike - Fiction. I believe fans need to be exposed to non-wing events throughout the year rather than just the USAC swing.
Drak -Fiction. USAC will never make a huge mark here in PA. The Central PA fans love their wings. They will support the USAC swing and the tracks where they compete in 2008, but as far as influencing the 410 scene here in PA............nope.
Question #10. NASCAR drivers who have race teams are good for the sport ?
Brent - Fiction . It will give the sport more exposure , but I don't know if more exposure/money is a good thing . It'll just bring more money into the top traveling series' temas and make it harder for other teams to break in .
Filmguy - Fact. $ from former dirt track drivers is as good as any body's. If Nascar $ provides them the means to put their money into the sport that they come from then that's great.
Mike - Fact. They are in a way giving back and they are helping drivers obtain their goals of stepping up as well.
Drak -Fact. NASCAR drivers who have 410 teams are good for the WoO, but really have little effect on the local racing scene IMO. Kasey and Tony have my respect, but they are spending the bulk of their money out on the road. The Kahne race at WG this summer brought in some non-regulars for that race, and we always see the WoO influx of fans on the weekends when the circus is in town, but week in and week out the locals/regulars are who support the sport, drivers and tracks.
I would like to say thank you once again to all 4 members of the panel for taking the time to answer these questions and sharing their thought's on the racing scene here in central pa. We will do this again some time during the racing season. So keep checking back to Central Pa Racing Scene for more Fact or Fiction.