The wins are nice, the paychecks are nicer

April 30, 2013 27 Comments
Brian Shirley

Brian Shirley

QR OLD LOGOimagesThe next time Brian Shirley visits the Bullring this season you may want to think about his performance in a different light.

Shirley is one of those guys who does what he loves for a living — he drives race cars. Late models, to be precise. And a year ago, Shirley, who lives in Chatham, Ill., won just about everything in sight, including the UMP Summer Nationals and UMP national title.

But when Shirley talks about pressure going into the 2013 season, it’s a different kind of pressure than you might have expected.

“There’s always pressure, but not necessarily to try and do what you have done the year before,” he said while in town for the April 21 “Clash for the Cash.” “There are bills to pay, and it’s not like going to a 9 to 5 job.”

The victories are sweet, but the paychecks are sweeter — and needed.

Shirley’s wife, Shannon is a nurse at Memorial Hospital in Springfield. She stays home most of the time.

“We each do our part to help pay the bills,” he said. “We have bills like everyone else. I’d like to have her be able to travel more with us, but not many people are able to to take their wives to work with them.”

Brian Shirley (3) and Shannon Babb battle for position in a 2012 UMP late model race.

Brian Shirley (3) and Shannon Babb battle for position during a 2012 UMP late model race.

Shirley, 32, has been a full-time racer for eight years. His favorite track is in Pevely, Mo., but he also enjoys the small ovals like Quincy.

“We race on more tracks like Quincy than any other,” he said. “It all comes down to how well-prepped the tracks are.”

The size or location of the tracks Shirley runs are not the issue. It’s the payouts.

“It’s tough making a living doing this, because of the way the economy is and how expensive the (equipment, cars, etc.) have become,” Shirley said. “The purses are the same they were 20 years ago, but the expenses aren’t, and that doesn’t make any sense.”

For the record, Quincy has done its share to support Shirley. He won $9,185 at the Bullring in 2012 and took away another $1,000 for his fourth-place finish in the “Clash” two weeks ago.

 

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  1. DRONE says:

    DID YA SEE SHIRLIEYS COMMENT.
    “HOW WELL THE TRACK IS PREPARED”

    WELL THAT SURE AS HELL LEAVES QUINCY OUT TO LUNCH…………..

    DRONE IS WATCHING YOU !!

  2. Charlie Bryson says:

    Drone, why don’t you just fly the hell back to the little nest you came from, a lot of people get tired of hearing your s%#t. If you don’t like the races stay the hell away.

    Yes! I am Charlie Bryson not afraid to put my name out just like Tony D.

  3. Keith Pratt says:

    Wow, tell fans to go away….genius! I had more than a few people tell me they aren’t coming back anytime soon because the races are “boring”. Racing is a form of entertainment and 1 pass for a lead all night long in LMs is not entertaining! Drone is right….no track prep cost drivers more money by burning up tires. I could go on all night but i have a car to work on…..wonder if the track has been touched yet

  4. TEAMFOURBOSS says:

    STILL WAITING FOR SOMEONE….EVEN IF ANONOMOUS TO LIST ON HERE THE CORRECT WAY TO PREP A TRACK. EVEN IF TRACK OWNERS DONT CARE TO BE TOLD…..I AM ANXIOUS AS HELL TO HEAR THIS

    #3

  5. lmfan says:

    While the track has not been very racey, the format they use leads to poor racing as well.

  6. DRONE says:

    SORRY CHARLIE, I’M BUSY MATING WITH THE QUEEN………

    DRONE IS WATCHING

  7. Quincyracing says:

    I really think when they had the rotatill out the then packed the track it was a much racer track.I know it not a easy thing to do.but if you can open track up early in the week to get moisture in the track then rotatill then pack it the track will be racer. Having said that Jake started 11 was up battling for 3 finished 5 and Robby Warner started 14th ran 6th I think so there was some passing but it was all the down low.Someone mention moving the tires out if they did that No one would be doing any passing on this current track.Track Prep is like the weather man hard to get it right and when you do get it right no one says you did because they think you are suppose to do it right. Tough Job just do the best you guys can and buy a rotatill.

  8. TEAMFOURBOSS says:

    lmfan YOU ARE EXACTLY RITE – THE FORMAT IN UMP TAKES ALOTTA THE RACE AWAY. HELL THEY PUT THE FAST GUYS IN FRONT TO START THE RACE, IF YOU LOOK BACK I BET THE 90% OF THE SAME 8 GUYS START IN THE FRONT 4 ROWS OF MOD & LM FEATURE. A GUY IS ONLY SO FAST WEEK TO WEEK.
    I KNOW ITS GONE NOW BUT I REMEMBER ALOT OF EXCITING IMCA LM RACES W/ PRATT BURGTORF WARNER REED & WOODWORTH
    AND HELL YEA DANNY A ROTATILL IS THE ANSWER FOR INTERMISSION TRACK PREP, NOT SURE IF I HAVE SEEN AT THE TRACK LATELY AS I KNOW THE TRACK DIDNT OWN THE ONE THEY HAD OUT THERE

    #3

  9. Ron Scott says:

    It’s time to try something instead of nothing.
    The super dry slick tracks and dust flying are not good for racing,
    for the fans and the drivers.
    If you want the show to continue, Action is required NOW.
    The track needs some more water with a bit of top dirt work before packing.
    Then an organized packing of the track.
    Then work the track during each nights show.
    Add water as needed and or repack between each heat if required.
    Someone has to take on this situation on and FIX it.
    The pre-race prep of the track has been good up to the point of the final finish.
    That’s where this has to be stepped up.
    I am tired of eating dirt and watching the cars burn their tires OFF.
    And from what i am reading, am not alone on this opinion.
    If you want help, say so and I will HELP.
    How many others will Help? I expect many will help.
    I have helped with the track preparations before, so I have some experience.
    No one can do this on their own, BUT the problem needs to be recognized and fixed.
    Quincy Raceways is a wonderful facility, but with a bad reputation for track preparation.
    Now is the time to LISTEN and ACT.
    Even Brian Shirley commented about the track preparation.
    Let’s bring back the full glory of the mid slinging days of Quincy Raceways.

    Let fix this together. Ron Scott

  10. Quincyracing says:

    Ron I don’t think anyone wants to watch track prep all night if track is good at the beginning of the night should make it threw the whole night with the car counts at quincy. But if needed you could do some at intermission before features. That away track could sell more concession. And Sun could get a little lower for a races surface under the lights.Good luck to the track crew it is a hard job trying to make track races at this time of day but it can be done.

  11. Bryan says:

    Or maybe drivers could learn to set their cars up for a dry slick track.. Someone once told me the best way to keep tires on your car is your right foot..

  12. not35fan says:

    Bryan your right its 1 thing when its a two groove dry slick track but when its a boring one groove track it sucks for the fans and the drivers follow the leader is asphalt racen not dirt and when its slick your ganna burn up tires and tony you say if they get it tacky its ganna rut up right there should tell every1 qr has no clue about track prep

  13. KENNY PRATT says:

    AFTER READING ALL THE HUB-BUB ABOUT RACING CONDITIONS LAST WEEK I THOUGHT I’D TAKE A PRO-ACTIVE APPROACH TO ANSWERING TONY DUNKERS QUESTION, WHICH IS , ARE THERE ANY SUGGESTIONS TO MAKE IT BETTER. SO HERE WE GO……….

    ON THURSDAY I WENT TO THE TRACK AND WALKED THE ENTIRE RACING SURFACE WITH A GOOD OLE PHILLIPS SCREW DRIVER IN HAND. AS OF 10AM THE TRACK HAD NOT BEEN TOUCHED EXCEPT FOR TROY GROTZ’S MUD PIT IN TURN 4.

    THE RACING SURFACE WAS DRY-SLICK WITH A ONE INCH LAYER OF CRUST ON TOP. I PICKED 6 OR 7 SPOTS AND REMOVED THE CRUST TO FIND THAT THE PHILLIPS #2 EASYLY WENT DOWN TO THE HANDLE IN EVERY SPOT.

    LIKE WHEN BOB N JEFF SCOTT, MIKE KARHOFF AND LATER JAROD NISSEN WERE IN CHARGE OF THE SURFACE, AND IN MY VERY HUMBLE OPINION THE FOLLOWING NEEDS TO TAKE PLACE EACH WEEK.

    #1 THE TRACK NEEDS OPENED UP SUNDAY NIGHT OR MONDAY MORNING 6 TO 8 INCHES DEEP. WHEN IT RAINS LIKE IT IS RIGHT NOW YOU HAVE “FREE” WATER GETTING ” NOT ON BUT INTO” THE TRACK. (NO LABOR OR FUEL COST INVOLVED)

    #2 DEPENDING ON THE WEEK A FEW LOADS OF h2o MAY NEED APPLIED TO THE OPEN SURFACE.

    #3 COME FRIDAY NIGHT OR SATURDAY MORNING THE SURFACE NEEDS TO START BEING SMOOTHED OUT WITH THE ROTILLER (THANKS DANNY G) WITH A FEW LOADS OF WATER APPLIED TO KEEP A HEAVY MOISTURE CONTENT. SATURDAY NIGHT THE TRACK AGAIN NEEDS WATERED AFTER THE SUN GOES DOWN.

    #4 SUNDAY MORNING A LOAD OR TWO OF WATER, THEN SHEEP FOOT TO START PACKING THE MOIST SOIL TIGHT. THREE PM, WATER ONCE OR TWICE, 445 PM
    GET WRECKERS, PICK UPS AND CARS ON THE TRACK TO SMOOTH IT OUT……

    THEN PRESTO, WE HAVE A HEAVY TWO OR THREE GROOVE TRACK FOR HEAT RACES………..AFTER THAT IT’S ANYBODYS GUESS……..

    DISCLAIMER: THIS MEMO IS MEANT TO BE PROACTIVE. IN NO WAY AM I POINTING ANY FINGERS AT THE OWNERS, TOWER CREW OR CURRENT TRACK WORKERS. FOR EVERY BUSINESS PROCESS COMES A BUSINESS EXPENCE. IT WILL TAKE SOMEONE FAR BRIGHTR THAN I TO DECIDE WHAT MAKES FISCAL SENCE FOR PAUL AND BOB. AFTER ALL, NO PROFIT , NO RACE TRACK…………….NO RACING………

    ALL I KNOW IS A DRY SLICK RACE TRACK IN HOT LAPS WAS NOT PREPARED PROPERLY.

    LIKE CHARLIE BRYSON SAID:

    I AM:

    KENNY PRATT
    205 ASH STREET
    URSA ILLIONIS
    217-430-1061

    PS: IF ANYONE WANTS TO RIP ME A NEW ONE, CALL ME, OR I STAND AT THE BASE OF THE TOWER EVERY SUNDAY WITH MY WIFE AND GRAND KIDS……………I JUST CARE ABOUT THE PLACE AS MOST OF YOU DO…………

  14. showstopper says:

    Very good post Mr. Pratt. Hope the owners see it. Off topic here but if anyone would like to see a free informational video on how to beat UMP tire test please go to http://www.stlracing.com. It’s very comical and hosted by a Quincy regular late model driver! It’s found in the forum discussion under (moon calls out feger nation). Didnt Moon go to the back last week and drive up to 3rd? Now we know why. Venom tire juice.

  15. Qcy Godfather says:

    Here’s an idea. Maybe we could have a track preparation deal like the Jr. Speedster. Each week another expert would be picked then they would have all week to get the track ready for Sunday night. At the end of the year the fans could vote on who is best and the track could offer them a job.

  16. TEAMFOURBOSS says:

    K.P – SOUNDS LIKE A VERY GOOD SYSTEM AND THAT YOUR THOUGHTS ARE KEEPING WATER “IN” THE TRACK IS THE ANSWER.

    ALTHOUGH YOUR SCREWDRIVER TEST SHOWS THE TRACK IS HOLDING MOISTURE, SO SWITCHING OVER TO THE ABOVE MAINTENANCE GONNA KEEP THE TOP FROM SEALING OFF?
    OR IS IT THE MATERIAL/SOIL TOP IN THE TOP OF THE TRACK?? TO MUCH SAND DRYING IT OUT AND SEALING OVER?? I DID NOTICE DOWN BY LINE-UP AREA THE STORM WASHED UP ABOUT 10 DUMP TRUCK LOADS OF STRAIGHT SAND, SURELY ALOTA THAT GOT MIXED IN THE TRACK SURFACE……………IDK

    ANYBODY GOT ANY PICS OF THESE OTHER TRACKS THAT ARE STAYING TACKY ALL NITE??
    ALL THE WOO & LUCAS PICS I SEE THE TRACK IS BLAAAAAAACK

    KEEP THE TRACK SMOOTH & BLACK………..JUS KNOCK DOWN THE DUST SO THE FANS WILL COME BACK

    #3

  17. KENNY PRATT says:

    GOOD THOUGHT TONY, I’M NOT SURE HOW MUCH SAND IS ON THE SURFACE, WASNT LOOKING FOR THAT. ALL I KNOW IS IT NEED OPENED UP, MIXED UP , WETTED AND SMOOTHED OUT. WATER AND A SHEEP FOOT WILL NOT REMOVE LAST WEEKS DRY SLICK CONDITIONS.

    GOOD LUCK SUNDAY DUDE, KP

    IF HE BRAKE CHECKS YA AGAIN, IM SURE DINO CAN BUILD YA A FRONT BUMPER…..CUZ HE MIGHT DESERVE GETTING IT RIGHT UP THE OLE TAIL PIPE

  18. Flyby Fan says:

    Here is the video of the Moonman that someone posted above. I couldn’t get it to open on the STL page. As Showstopper said, it may explain why Moon moved up so easily on a track that no one else could pass on.

    http://touch.dailymotion.com/video/xzje1p_jim-moon-vs-feger-nation_sport

  19. not35fan says:

    You will never keep all the dust down with a south wind for the fans. I can and I think other fans can deal with a dry slick smooth track as long its a two groove slick track but I also think what kenny is saying will also work but is there anybody that does the track prep out there have time to work on the track 7 days a week. I also got nobody to anser my qustion on how come mods don’t get hotlaps but lm do when there pulling the same car count and pay the same pit pass that’s strait stupid you won’t get new guys to show up more then 1 week by not giving them hotlaps

  20. not35fan says:

    Realy how drunk is moonman giving that awsome speach about how to cheat on tires what a dumb azz way to make a fool off your self moonman.that’s what I would do is tell every1 that’s how I come from the back Sunday night and ran 3rd I used 6ounces not 7 you big dummy I used to cheer for you not no more when you make a fool off your self like that

  21. racegirl says:

    Moon I have lost all respect for you and was a fan but not any more. At the same time I am a Fieger fan and will continue to be always. And anymore its not who cheats its who gets caught. Look at nascar to the local tracks. I just hate that Fieger wont be at the summer nationals and I wont be traveling as many as I would if he was running. Moon you seem to know so much about cheating. Hmmm!

  22. bullringfan says:

    yeah let’s hate on moonman for telling the truth. we all know nobody else in the dirt racing world is doping their tires….get real people. Feger got caught,others will too,if you are going to bend the rules,be prepared to accept the consequences.

  23. MWNN says:

    Circle Track magazine had a nice article on dirt track prep.

    http://www.circletrack.com/techarticles/40158/

  24. FLYBY says:

    SOUNDS GREAT IN THEORY PRATT BUT IF YOU TEAR UP THE TRACK AND WE GET A GULLY WASHER THEN WHAT???STARE AT THE TRACK AND HOPE IT DRIES?? IF THEY KEEP IT SEALED OVER AT LEAST THE WATER WILL RUN OFF AND THEY WILL RACE RATHER THEN RAINING OUT BECAUSE OF A STORM 3 DAYS PRIOR.OTHER TRACKS ARE KEEPING THE TRACK SEALED OVER DURING THE WEEK AND ARE NOT HAVING ONE LANE DRY SLICK PROBLEMS. .WADDAYADO?

  25. Charlie Bryson says:

    Let’s see didn’t the Moon Man just admit that he cheats every week, just hasn’t got caught, maybe the guys that finish behind him should make a point of that at the races sunday night and see what happens.

  26. Quincyracing says:

    Flyby most the time the races get canceled the track isn’t the issue it’s the pits . If they don’t open track somehow and get water in it the track will never get better

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