He left his mark.
Mark Burgtorf did not win the track title at the Bullring, but there was ltitle else he did not accomplish at 8000 Broadway and around the immediate region. Burgtorf is the Stevie Dirt Late Model Driver of the Year.
Burgtorf dominated much of the Tri-State area, shown in his dominant No. 1 position in the Stevie Dirt Regional Rankings. He also won more races than any other late model driver at Quincy and more overall features than any other late model hotshoe in the Quincy-Lee County-West Burlington area.
Burgtorf was part of a banner group of late model drivers under consideration for the honor. Lonnie Bailey, Justin Reed and Jason Frankel were all quality candidates and the decision was not easy. I simply felt the scales tipped a little more in Burgtorf’s direction.
A driver’s success at the Bullring, combined with accomplishments at Lee County and West Burlington were all weighed. To be eligible for Driver of the Year, a driver must have been at least a semi-regular at Quincy Raceways.
Burgtorf, a first-row selection in 2008, follows Jason Frankel as Stevie Dirt Driver of the Year. Frankel is a second-row selection this season.
LATE MODEL DRIVER OF THE YEAR
WHY: Even though Burgtorf was No. 3 in points at the Bullring, he was either alone at No. 1 or tied for the top in the Stevie Dirt Regional Rankings all 20 weeks this season … He led Quincy drivers in total, feature and dash victories, feature laps led, second-half points and won the April Deery race at 8000 Broadway … Burgtorf was champion at Lee County Speedway … He also won his sixth straight Herald-Whig Performance Points title, a points formula that places more emphasis on high feature finishes more than anything else.
NOTEWORTHY: Burgtorf again topped all late model drivers in money earned ($15,030) at the Bullring and has pocketed $58,790 over the past four seasons combined — double that any of his rivals.
WHY: Bailey won his second track championsip at Quincy (despite not winning a feature) and was No. 2 in the SDRR … Led the Bullring in feature points and was 560-for-560 in feature laps run, which translated into no DNFs … The late model track championship was his third overall, making him one of only drivers in track history to win three or more titles.
NOTEWORTHY: Bailey was the only late model driver to finish in the top 10 in all 17 points features this season.
WHY: Finished second in the points race in a season-long, tight battle with Bailey … No. 4 in the SDRR, his second straight season in the top five … Reed has improved his place in final points standings at QR each year since 2006 … Led all late model drivers in improvement points … Winner of inaugural DIRTy online voting award.
NOTEWORTHY: Reed had the most second-place feature finishes (5) among late model drivers.
WHY: Frankel only ran 13 of 17 points races, which explained his 12th-place points finish, but still showed four feature feature victories at the Bullring … He finished No. 3 in the SDRR after winning the 2008 title … Frankel was the only late model driver to win a feature, heat, dash and “B” main.
NOTEWORTHY: Frankel captured the $10,000-to-win Pepsi USA National feature at West Burlington. He is only the second Quincy driver to win the race since its inception in 1992. Burgtorf has won the race three times.
WHY: Pratt was in thick of championship race for first two-thirds of the season before settling for a sixth-place finish, his best-ever showing at the Bullring … No. 7 in the SDRR … Captured the $3,000-to-win Titan Wheel Shootout.
NOTEWORTHY: Pratt needs to improve his second-half performance to make a serious run at his first track title. He has not finished in the top 10 in second-half points in any of the past three seasons.
STEVIE DIRT LATE MODEL DRIVERS OF THE YEAR
2009: Mark Burgtorf
2008: Jason Frankel