UMP Super Late Models
Pick to click: Jason Perry. Until the No. 27 car lets me down, Racin’ Jason is my pick.
Best bet for a comeback: Denny Woodworth had to scratch early Sunday night. I’m guessing the No. 45 car will be ready to roll this week. D.W. ran a strong fourth two weeks ago.
That’s a fact, Jack: Of the 70 late model feature laps run so far at the Bullring, two — count ’em, two — have been led by a local driver (Jerry Lierly, April 14). Brian Harris led the first 28 laps on opening night and Chad Simpson led all 40 last Sunday.
Pick to click: Are you kidding? Michael Long makes it two in a row.
Best bet for a comeback: Whatever was wrong with the No. 35 car is guaranteed to be fixed come Sunday night. Steven DeLonjay returns to contender status.
That’s a fact, Jack: Almost half of the 12 starters in last Sunday’s feature were former track champs in one class or another. The top three to cross the finish line — Michael Long, Dave Wietholder and Robbie Reed — all have big irons sitting on their mantles at home, and so do finishers 11 and 12, Steven DeLonjay and Kelly Bartz. Long, Reed, DeLonjay and Bartz have won some sort of modified title at the track and Wietholder is a former bomber champion. DeLonjay is also a former four-cylinder champ.
IMCA Sport Mods
Pick to click: This is Tony “One Man Gang (— a.k.a. OMG)” Dunker’s class. The rest of the dirt world is simply passing through.
Best bet for a comeback: Brad Holtmeyer, who missed the April 14 opener.
That’s a fact, Jack: OMG won the series’ first feature of the season, but it was Bobby “Bad Attitude” Anders who actually had the fast lap (63.884 mph) in the main event.
IMCA Stock Cars
Pick to click: Terry Houston. The Mayor of Mount Sterling thwarts Abe Huls in a second straight duel in the stock car dirt.
Best bet for a comeback: Taco Larsen, who should improve on his sixth-place feature finish on opening night.
That’s a fact, Jack: The stock cars had 10 entries in the pits on opening night, which might not sound like any sort of world record, but it is at least encouraging from a year ago. Fifteen out of 20 nights the stocks raced in 2012 there were fewer than 10 cars on hand. Small steps, folks. Small steps.
IMCA Sport Compacts
Pick to click: Pat “Little OMG” Dunker turns in a second straight dominating performance.
Best bet for a comeback: Seriously? If Seith Woodruff can simply finish a feature, it will be a major accomplishment for the two-time defending series champ. No driver can compare to his run of bad luck to start the season.
That’s a fact, Jack: The sport compacts have had a combined nine cars finish the first two features (and of those got DQ’d). It’s been a rough start for the four-bangers.