1. The track: For the most part, especially once the spring rains were through, the racing surface has received great reviews. The track has been well maintained and provided multi-groove racing, which is exciting for both fans and drivers alike.
2. DeLonjay’s streak: Steven DeLonjay is going for a record-tying six straight feature victories in the modified series Sunday night. Whenever I begin to assess what DeLonjay — who is just 19, remember — has already accomplished in his career I always think back to what fellow modified racer and two-time track champ Tony Dunker said two years ago. One night I asked Dunker what the future held for the modifieds, and he pointed toward DeLonjay, 17 at the time, and said, “There’s the future.”
3. Anders’ streak — and suspension: There was no hotter driver in recent years than Bobby Anders in the hobby stock division during April, May and into June. He appeared to have a chance to establish some incredible records, but on the night of June 12 lost his temper at the conclusion of a race and made a bad decision, ramming fellow hobby stocker Steve Carlin on the cool-down lap. It was the first race he had not won all season. The result of that action was a four-week suspension. To Anders’ credit, he accepted the punishment and has returned to race again, this time in Wes Mayfield’s car. Last week would have been his first race(s) in the new ride, but a mid-afternoon rain wiped out that night’s schedule. Surprisingly, Anders still leads the track in overall victories, so he has plenty of incentive remaining — even though the hobby stock title is out of reach.
4. Positive buzz: Granted, No. 1 has played a big part in the “positive buzz” that has been building this season at 8000 Broadway, but items like Nos. 2 and 3 have helped greatly, too. Along that same thought, have you noticed most of the talk this season concerning Quincy Raceways been about the racing, and not about the drama. That alone shows how much progress has been made.
5. Hall of Fame: After years of talk, the first steps are now being taken to make this a reality. As I said before, won’t be great to be able to say about certain drivers: “Hall of Famer (fill in the blank).”
6. The Modified Four: Steven DeLonjay, Jared Schlipman, Dave Wietholder and Shawn Deering have dominated the modified division and provided us with four months of genuine excitement in doing so.
7. Oh Deer-ing: As successful of a season Shawn Deering has had, it has also been an extremely frustrating summer. He has five runner-up feature finishes, more than any other driver at the track, as he continues his quest for that first-ever main event win.
8. Emergence of Jake Griffin: Jake is 12 years old and is sixth in points in the modified division — and he missed one week of points racing. His improvement since last year has been like night day. Apparently, that jump from 11 to 12 is a big one. His voice is much deeper this year, too.
9. Justin Jennings’ ARCA ride: Quincy regular Justin Jennings landed an ARCA ride two weeks ago for a race at Iowa Speedway and finished a respectable 19th.
10. The stock cars: Slowly, but surely this class if gaining a foothold, partly due to a field that is incredibly balanced. Just about any stock car that takes the track has a legitimate chance to win that week’s feature, led by Aaron Brocksieck. Brocksieck lapped the field early in the season, but the rest of the guys have (almost) pulled even and this is now arguably the most balanced division at the Bullring.