Late model car count drops, modifieds flourishing

October 25, 2009 2 Comments

The streak is over.

For the first time since 2004, the late model car count at the Bullring did not average 20 or higher per show, falling just short at 19. That average was still considered healthy, just not in the same neighborhood as, say, 2006 when the per-show norm was 25.

Modifieds continued their growth spurt since combining as one class prior to the 2006 campaign. ThIn theirr first year being sanctioned by UMP, the Bullring mods averaged 25 cars per show. Hitting an average of 30 in 2010 might seem a reach, but it wouldn’t surprise me, considering those wild-and-crazy modifieds averaged 28.7 cars in the pits over the final six weeks of the season, including back-to-back-to-back counts of 34, 34 and 30 between Aug,. 2-16. Over the finall 11 shows the season, the mods drew no fewer than 24 cars on any given night.

The stock cars’ per-show average of 14 matched their 2008 inaugural season. The hobby stocks’ 16-car norm was their highest since 21 in 2006, the final year they carried the “bomber” name tag.

AVERAGE CAR COUNTS

LATE MODELS

2009: 19
2008: 20
2007: 22
2006: 25 TRACK RECORD
2005: 20
2004: 17
2003: 16
2002: 16
2001: 16
2000: 16
1999: 18
1998: 15 (first year as an IMCA track)
1997: 13
1996: 14
1995: 16
1994: 13
1993: 17
1992: 16
1991: 15
(before 1991 not available)

MODIFIEDS

2009: 25 TRACK RECORD  (first year as a UMP track)
2008: 23
2007: 22
2006: 19

Last five years of “A” Modifieds
2005: 14
2004: 15
2003: 15
2002: 17
2001: 18 (“A” Mod track record)

Last five years of “B” Modifieds’
2005: 13
2004: 18
2003: 22
2002: 24 (“B” Mod track record)
2001: 22

STOCK CARS

2009: 14
2008: 14

HOBBY STOCKS (last 10 years)

2009: 16
2008: 14
2007: 15
2006: 21 (final year known as “bombers”)
2005: 20
2004: 23
2002: 30
2001: 31 TRACK RECORD
2000: 31 TRACK RECORD
1999: 22

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Comments (2)

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  1. Fan from a Distance says:

    Get rid of the invert and the late model car count will increase. StevieDirt – how many late model features were won from the front row / first two rows this year at Quincy?

    IMCA has several options – and the MUST reconsider otherwise it will continue to kill car count We lost Jason Frankel this past year and Mark Burgtorf has hinted at running few weekly shows next year.

    Couple this with the fact that there is little incentive for the Boone McLaughlins, Tom Gobles, etc. to show up and run on a Sunday night when they know the best position they can start the feature is 13th (assuming everyone qualifies). If a few don’t qualify they are starting 10th or 11th. Any we know any given Sunday there are 6-8 cars with a legitmate shot at winning the feature.

    Economically it doesn’t pay for many of these guys if they don’t feel they have a 1/3 or 1/4 chance of winning. Not including time, the typical late model costs $150-$250 a night to put on the track between racing fuel, maintanence costs, engine rebuilds, gas to/from the track for the truck and trailer, etc.

    Several options to consider (even though Brett Root will likely not read this):
    1) reduce the invert to 6 cars – not overly desireable but at least addresses the issue in some capacity; would also make for more exciting heat races (I guarantee Mark and Jason would be more excited…starting 6th sounds much better than 12th)
    2) invert the heats, start the feature heads up based on the finish in the heat – still not a lot of incentive for the guys who want to race Quincy a handful of times throughout the year as they will still be starting at the tail of their heat but at least they have a shot
    3) draw / redraw every week – proven time and again to be a very successful, fool-proof remedy (albeit based on the luck of the draw)
    4) draw for heat / feature lined up based on passing points – the fairest solution IMO that is not entirely dependent on luck or qualifying (as is the case in draw / redraw)

    All the above options would still provide for great racing and in part bring better racing to the heat races as there is more incentive.

    My last thought for QCR to consider for next year….UMP crate late models. As a promotor/fan/driver, there is nothing better IMO than the crate class. They are bolt-on cars (perfect for the weekend racer) that cost 1/3 to 1/2 the cost of a IMCA/UMP late model. Upkeep is probably 1/4 of the cost (the run E85 at $2.50 a gallon vs $10.00 a gallon VP racing fuel). Pay $300 to win the feature and $50 to start (a $1750 purse for 15 cars). My guess is within 5-6 weeks you’d have 10-12 new cars on a weekly basis (there are several crates in Quincy right now racing elsewhere). If they bring two crew and two fans per week (conservative estimate), the class has paid for itself. Not to mention you may see some of the modified drivers jump class considering a competitive crate is equal to the cost of a quality UMP modified motor alone.

    The only way local racing survives is to get more fans in the stands….and you get more fans in the stands by having more cars in the pits (they bring their family and friends)….and you get more cars in the pits by having rules that incentivize drivers to show up (i.e., no invert rule) and classes that are easy for the casual fan to jump into (a crate eliminates the hassle of being a motor guy….bolt it in and go!).

    Just my two cents as we head into the winter months….

  2. Dustin Griffin says:

    I think crates would be a great addition to Quincy raceways. But they normally pay $450 low to $600 High to win. On average to draw a good car count they pay $500. Granite City draws 25 to 30 cars a night and for the guys that run national points there isnt a track within 5 hours that runs Sunday nights. Now i know alot of the Engine shops are worried about losing business with crates, but UMP has opened it up so any engine builder can rebuild them. I just bought valve springs, retainers and keepers for my crate and it was $75.00 price a set for a IMCA motor or a good mod motor.

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