Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway more than 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.
Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.
Be sure to tune in for his sports talk program, Thursday Night Thunder, where he discusses the latest in motorsports news with drivers, crew members, and fans. The show takes place (almost) every Thursday at 8:00 pm EST on the Speedway Digest Radio Network.
Contact Adam: Email
Keeping the momentum, the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series championship format is undergoing a major overhaul in 2023.
The new model will be an elimination style format designed to reward the worthiest, battle-tested driver at the end of the season. In addition to the revitalized championship format, more than $470,000 has been added to the championship point fund, bringing the grand total for the Big River Steel Chase for the Championship presented by ARP to just over $1,000,000.
Under the new model, the field will be whittled down to a final four drivers through four rounds of eliminations. The remaining four drivers will go into the season finale at Eldora Speedway with an equal chance to win the championship.
After the first round of eliminations, there will be 15 drivers. After the second round, the field will drop to twelve, and following the third round eight drivers will remain. The final round of eliminations will leave only four drivers in championship contention.
The four rounds of eliminations are:
- Round of 15: Sunoco Road to Wheatland: May 27 at Lucas Oil Speedway; 31st Annual Show-Me 100
- Round of 12: Summit Racing Equipment Super Twelve: July 15 at Lucas Oil Speedway; 17th Annual Diamond Nationals
- Round of 8: UNOH Great Eight: August 26 at Port Royal Speedway; The Rumble by the River
- Round of 4: Big River Steel Big Four: September 30 at Pittsburgh’s PA Motor Speedway; 35th Annual Pittsburgher
Following each round of eliminations, the teams advancing to the next round will be awarded the following cash bonuses:
- Sunoco Road to Wheatland: 1. $2,500, 2. $1,500, 3. $1,500, 4. $1,500, 5. $1,500, 6. $1,000, 7. $1,000, 8. $1,000, 9. $1,000, 10. $1,000, 11. $500, 12. $500, 13. $500, 14. $500, 15. $500 = $16,000
- Summit Racing Equipment Super Twelve: 1. $5,000, 2. $1,000, 3. $1,000, 4. $1,000, 5. $1,000, 6. $1,000, 7. $1,000, 8. $1,000, 9. $1,000, 10. $1,000, 11. $1,000, 12. $1,000 = $16,000
- UNOH Great Eight: 1. $7,500, 2. $1,500, 3. $1,500, 4. $1,500, 5. $1,500, 6. $1,500, 7. $1,500, 8. $1,500 = $18,000
- Big River Steel Big Four: 1. $10,000, 2. $2,000, 3. $2,000, 4. $2,000 = $16,000
Drivers will continue to earn points at every event throughout the season based on the traditional championship point structure. At the season finale, points for the Big River Steel Big Four drivers will be consolidated. The first of the four drivers to cross the finish line in the 43rd Annual Dirt Track World Championship will be crowned the 2023 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series National Champion.
2023 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Point Fund:
Chase Bonuses: $66,000
Point Fund: $935,000
“The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series has seen tremendous growth throughout its history,’ said Rick Schwallie, Series Director. “We look forward to crowning our 18th National Champion, Tim McCreadie, on Friday night. As we look ahead to our 19th season, we’re ready for an action-packed season that will culminate in our first ever visit to the historic Eldora Speedway. Only twice in our Series history has the championship been contested at the season finale. The Dirt Track World Championship is an event that is worthy of crowning a Champion. Not only will the crown jewel pay $100,000 to win, but now, the race inside the race is worthy of the persona that is the Dirt Track World Championship. For us to be proud of this program, there were two key factors. First, the event needed to be contested at the speedway that dirt late model racing calls home, Eldora. Second, the four finalists contending for a national title needed to be well compensated for their efforts all season. The unwavering dedication of Lucas Oil, our exclusive broadcast partner FloRacing, and our great marketing partners allow us to strive as the elite dirt late model tour.”
"We are passionately committed to our involvement in motorsports and the continued growth of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series. We are incredibly excited about the new million-dollar point fund and elimination-style championship format for the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series - it elevates the drama, the action, the stories, and the passion that fans like us have for these drivers and teams," said Morgan Lucas, president of Lucas Oil. "Motorsports, and the Late Models series specifically, is in our DNA. Ratcheting up the fan experience and excitement for the sport while celebrating and supporting these tremendous athletes is a win-win. I can't wait to see how this season shakes out."
The Big River Steel Chase for the Championship presented by ARP kicks off at Golden Isles Speedway with the Super Bowl of Racing on January 25-28. From there, the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series is back at Bubba Raceway Park for two nights on January 29-30 before heading to All-Tech Raceway, February 2-4. The 47th Annual Wieland Winternationals will close out Speedweeks, February 5-11, at East Bay Raceway Park.
For a complete Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series schedule, please visit www.lucasdirt.com.
MTRSPT1, the live streaming network delivering premium motorsports entertainment to a worldwide audience, has signed a multi-year agreement with SLING TV, the live streaming TV service available on all major streaming devices, smart televisions, tablets, game consoles, computers and smartphones.
MTRSPT1 is the one-stop destination for all motorsports fans. Featuring LIVE races, 40+ series and more than 2,000 hours of content, the channel promises to be a great addition to SLING’s lineup as the only motorsports channel selected to launch on the platform. Now all SLING users can enjoy the two-wheel, four-wheel and other racing action for free, along with magazine and builder shows, documentaries and lifestyle programming, with no payment or credit card required to watch.
“We are committed to making our world-class content accessible to all motorsports fans across all platforms and with SLING TV we continue to deliver on that commitment” said John Duff, MTRSPT1 Chief Operating Officer.
For more information about programming, visit www.MTRSPT1.com.
Formula DRIFT has renewed its partnership with GT Radial for another three-year term to provide tires to teams in the PRO Championship through the 2025 season. Additionally, GT Radial has extended its agreement to remain the Official Tire of PROSPEC for another two years, taking it through the 2024 season.
Joining PROSPEC in 2021, all drivers will continue to compete on GT Radial Champiro SX2RS tires, which are made at the company’s plant in Chester County, SC.
For the 2023 PROSPEC Championship, the teams will again compete in four rounds, with the first scheduled for May 12-13 at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. The season finale will again take place at Utah Motorsports Park on September 14-16.
2023 FORMULA DRIFT PROSPEC CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
Englishtown Raceway Park
World Wide Technology Raceway
St Louis, MO
Utah Motorsports Park
In the Formula DRIFT PRO Series, GT Radial clinched second position in the 2022 FD Tire Cup, which awards points to top finishers for each tire brand. After finishing fifth in its first year, GT Radial rose to third last year before securing second at the Final Round of 2022. This was largely thanks to strong performances by drivers such as Jeff Jones, Travis Reeder, Kazuya Taguchi, Chris Forsberg and more.
“Formula DRIFT has proven to be an excellent showcase for our ‘American-engineered, American-produced’ Champiro SX2 RS tires, so we are thrilled to renew our partnership,” said Mike Meeiem, Motorsport Manager for Giti Tire USA. “Team members at our South Carolina plant take great pride in the performance of their tires in the world’s most demanding drift competition, and they had a lot to cheer about this year.”
The series organizers are equally upbeat about the continued partnership: “We’re extremely pleased to have GT Radial commit to another three years with Formula DRIFT and continue to support PROSPEC for at least another two,” said Ryan Sage, President of Formula DRIFT. “As we continue to promote the importance of PROSPEC to ensure a strong contingent of qualified drivers able to be promoted to the FD PRO Championship each year, it’s good to know they’re using some of the best tires available to prepare the drivers for the next step in their careers.”
WeatherTech Racing will compete in the GTD Pro category for the 2023 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship kicking-off with next month’s season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona, Jan. 28-29.
Jules Gounon (France) and Daniel Juncadella (Spain) will drive the No. 79 WeatherTech Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 with Mercedes-Benz of Billings, Montana support for the 2023 season. Maro Engel (Germany) will join for the endurance races with Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill.) coming onboard for the Rolex 24 At Daytona.
MacNeil will run a reduced schedule with only the Rolex 24 At Daytona at this time and will take on more of a management role with the team throughout season. The Proton Competition crew, headed by Christian Ried, will once again direct the program.
“We are happy to announce that Jules and Dani will be running with us for the full IMSA WeatherTech Championship in 2023,” MacNeil said. “I consider them to be among the best Mercedes-AMG GT drivers in the world. Last year we had a parade of drivers through the car and couldn’t really compete for the championship. Maro will join us for the longer races and adds a wealth of knowledge to the team. With our strong support from Mercedes-AMG, those three guys driving the car, and WeatherTech/Proton Racing spearheading the operation, I like our chances every weekend in the GTD Pro Class. I have won Petit Le Mans three times, Sebring twice, finished on the podium at the 24 hours of Le Mans three times, and a few championships along the way.
“In 2015 we finished second at Daytona, so the Rolex 24 is one of the last events to win on my racing to-do list. I will forever love the sport of racing but after 15 years it is time for me to turn the page and focus on the more important things in life like family and work at our company.”
For Gounon he is thankful and ready for 2023. The Frenchman had a very strong 2022 winning the Spa 24 Hour, Bathurst 12 Hour, Kyalami 9 Hour, and the GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Championship.
“I’m amazed and thankful to Cooper and David MacNeil to trust Dani and myself to take over the No. 79 WeatherTech Mercedes-AMG GT3 in the IMSA GTD Pro Class for 2023,” Gounon said. “We will give it our all to get the WeatherTech Mercedes-AMG GT3 to the front and get a big trophy at the end of the year. I think the line-up we have with Dani and Maro is very strong, and we will be very good with Cooper at the Rolex 24 as well. We all complete each other in different areas. We really make a great team. I really enjoy their company and am looking forward to a great year.”
Teaming with Gounon in 2022, Juncadella won the Spa 24 Hour, GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Championship, Indianapolis 8 Hour, and won the Intercontinental GT World Challenge Championship last weekend.
“I am super excited, next year is shaping up to be one of the most exciting chapters of my career,” Juncadella said. “It was a last-minute call for Daytona last year and then it turned into a couple more races with Cooper in the WeatherTech Mercedes-AMG GT3 which was fun. It was surprising to me, I discovered IMSA is one of the most exciting championships happening around the globe right now. It is great that we have managed to get our deal together to run the whole season with Jules for 2023 and WeatherTech Racing. On top of that, having Maro in the car for the endurance races and Cooper for the Rolex 24 puts the cherry on top. We start with the big race first the Rolex 24. We were competitive last year; we now have to bring it to the finish line.”
The 2023 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season will start with the traditional Roar Before the 24 test at Daytona International Speedway, January 20-22. The 81st running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona will take the green January 28.
For more information on WeatherTech Racing, including race recaps, photos and team gear, please visit the team site at www.WeatherTechRacing.com.
CrowdStrike Racing is taking a competitive step up in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for 2023 with a new LMP2 effort that will kick off with the Rolex 24 At Daytona on January 28-29.
CrowdStrike Racing with Algarve Pro Racing (APR) will contest the IMSA Michelin Endurance Cup rounds for the new season. George Kurtz will be one of the drivers in the No. 4 ORECA 07-Gibson LMP2 entry for the four premier races on the IMSA calendar: the Rolex 24, Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen and the 10-hour Motul Petit Le Mans.
“This is a big step forward for the growth of CrowdStrike Racing,” Kurtz said. “I really enjoy long-distance endurance racing and the challenges it presents. These races will test the team and drivers on the same track used by some of the top competitors in the world. The team aspect of endurance racing is important to me – for success to be achieved, everyone must do their job. It’s one way the world of business matches the world of racing. I can’t wait to get started with our new team.”
For the previous two seasons, Kurtz competed in the LMP3 class with IMSA team champion CORE autosport. Kurtz was part of the driver lineup that recorded a Sebring victory to go along with additional podium finishes. He also drove in the championship-clinching race at Petit Le Mans. Kurtz enters the 2023 season with solid momentum following an overall victory at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill in an LMP3 entry from CrowdStrike Racing by Riley Motorsports.
The lineup for the CrowdStrike Racing by APR entry is very strong. Joining Kurtz for each of the four long-distance races will be drivers Ben Hanley, the Rolex 24 LMP2 winner in 2020, and Matt McMurry, a two-time IMSA champion, LMDh test driver and engineer who won the 25 Hours of Thunderhill with Kurtz. Esteban Gutiérrez, former F1 driver and current ambassador for the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 team, will round out the lineup as the fourth driver for the Rolex 24.
The driving roster will share an ORECA closed-top prototype with a minimum weight of 2,050 pounds (930 kg) and power coming from a 4.2-liter Gibson V8 engine that produces in excess of 600hp.
CrowdStrike Renews IMSA Official Partnership
The move to LMP2 coincides with CrowdStrike’s second season as an Official Partner of IMSA and as the presenting sponsor of the WeatherTech Championship’s Endurance, Teamwork and Speed Award for Michelin Endurance Cup events.
The honor recognizes the team in each IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship class that demonstrates the unique qualities needed to be successful in long and grueling IMSA endurance races. Earning this award requires the powerful combination of performance on the racetrack and on pitlane by demonstrating:
- Endurance: Running at the finish of the race;
- Teamwork: The most efficient time on pitlane, putting a premium on efforts by the driver and crew;
- Speed: A car’s best qualifying time and fastest race lap.
The philosophies within the Endurance, Teamwork and Speed Award mirror how CrowdStrike approaches its role as one of the world’s leading providers of cybersecurity services. In racing, as in cybersecurity, success comes from delivering superior performance, having a relentless, team-based focus on execution, and understanding that the clock doesn’t lie — speed matters.
In addition to sponsoring the Endurance, Teamwork and Speed Award, CrowdStrike’s IMSA partnership will also include on-track signage at the Michelin Endurance Cup tracks such as Daytona International Speedway. CrowdStrike will also host exclusive IMSA VIP experiences for CrowdStrike VIPs and guests at select WeatherTech Championship races throughout the season.
The Rolex 24 At Daytona is scheduled for Jan. 28-29 from Daytona International Raceway. The race will stream live on Peacock with coverage on NBC and USA throughout the weekend.
BEN HANLEY – NO. 4 CROWDSTRIKE ORECA 07-GIBSON LMP2: “First off, I’m very excited to be part of a new program like this with CrowdStrike Racing and APR. All the drivers have good experience in endurance racing. These test days are really important to get to know one another and to have the team, the drivers and everyone to start working together. The biggest thing is knowing what one another likes in the car and achieving that balance that everyone is happy with. It’ll be important to get George a lot of laps and a lot of time in the car so he can be as comfortable as possible before we get to Daytona.”
ESTEBAN GUTIÉRREZ – NO. 4 CROWDSTRIKE ORECA 07-GIBSON LMP2: “My experience in endurance racing has been great from all aspects and I’m very excited to add another milestone by competing at the emblematic 24 Hours of Daytona. George and I have been friends for a few years now and it will be a real pleasure racing alongside him. I feel very grateful for him and CrowdStrike for this opportunity. Let’s go for the win!"
MATT MCMURRY – NO. 4 CROWDSTRIKE ORECA 07-GIBSON LMP2: “CrowdStrike Racing and George have a championship history in global motorsports, so it’s a massive honor to be invited to join a team with this kind of history and level of expectation. We’re 1 for 1 together with the win at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill recently and I’ll be giving it everything I’ve got to keep that pace going.”
For more information, visit CrowdStrikeRacing.com. Follow #CrowdStrikeRacing on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn for updates.
(Courtesy of NHRA Communications)
Charge Cars will continue to take the US by storm when its ’67 goes on display to the public at the 2022 Los Angeles Auto Show. Running from 18-27 November 2022, the show will give performance enthusiasts and classic car fans a chance to see the iconic lines of the ’67 by Charge Cars.
The British car maker will showcase its stunning Satin Kaynite Blue model at the LA Auto Show after it received a very positive reception when it was revealed to the media last month. Located in the atrium of the West Hall at the LA Convention Center, the ’67 by Charge Cars will be one of the “must see” attractions at this year’s show.
Production of the ‘67 is limited to 499 vehicles, hand-built in London by the Charge Cars team who carefully assemble the lightweight carbon fiber body panels over the brand new steel body shell. The shell accommodates advanced electrification that provides 1120 lb-ft of torque and propels the ’67 from 0-60 mph in 3.9 seconds. The electronics allow advanced 4iWD torque vectoring technology as well as a number of important driver aids. There is also a fully-connected driver interface as part of the brand new interior design, which includes keyless access and a premium, immersive sound system.
The London-based team at Charge Cars consists of experienced automotive designers and engineers who bring experience across multiple sectors to develop and assemble the first cars using core components from technology partner Elements Auto, a division of Arrival. Members of the team will be available to discuss aspects of the ’67 by Charge Cars with show visitors.
“We are excited to continue our US tour with a display at the Los Angeles Auto Show, which begins later this week. It will give enthusiasts and potential customers an opportunity to see the ’67 by Charge Cars in the flesh and get a proper insight into the technology we’ve packaged in the iconic vehicle,” said Vadim Shagaleev, CEO of Charge Cars.
SPECIFICATION AND FEATURES
’67 BY CHARGE CARS
- 4x PMSM (Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors)
- 4iWD (4 independent Wheel Drive)
- 63 kWh
Total Peak Power:
- 400 kW
Total Motor Torque:
- 1520 Nm
- 200 miles (322 km)*
- 3.9 seconds (0-60 mph)
- DC Peak Power: 50 kW
- DC Charging Speed: 1 hour (0-80%)
- AC Peak Power:
- 22 kW (Europe)
- 14 kW (US)
- 18x8" - Front
- 18x10" - Rear
- 235/40 ZR18 Michelin Pilot Sport 4S - Front
- 285/40 ZR18 Michelin Pilot Sport 4S - Rear
- Two-seat configuration
- Electrically adjustable and heated seats with lumbar support
- Rear luggage deck
- Wireless phone charging
Comfort & Convenience:
- Bespoke LED headlights with daytime running lights and automatic activation
- Bespoke signature LED tail lights
- Electric windows
- Electrically adjustable heated and folding door mirrors
- Auto-dimming rearview mirror
- Automatic climate control
- Steering wheel-mounted controls
- Electric power-assisted steering
- Tilt adjustable steering wheel
- Soft-close door latches
- Heated front and rear glass
- Anti-theft alarm system
- Anti-lock braking system
- Traction control
- Tire pressure monitoring system
- Single-speed transmission
- McPherson strut front suspension
- Double-wishbone rear suspension
- Performance four-piston brake calipers front and rear
- Electronic parking brake
- Adjustable driving modes
- Regenerative braking
- Adaptive cruise control
- Traffic sign recognition
- Reversing camera
- Rain and lighting sensors
- Phone app integration
- Over-the-air updates
- 12.3” driver display
- 12.8” central display
- Eight speakers plus subwoofer for an immersive sound experience
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Wireless phone charging
- Navigation system
* Vehicle range may vary depending on conditions, driving style, terrain, temperature, and more
Progressive American Flat Track is thrilled to confirm a season of record-breaking viewership numbers. The sport reached an all-time high of 3,377,919 total viewers throughout the remarkable 2022 campaign, with 2,861,000 P02+ viewers tuning in to the sport’s debut season on FOX Sports alone.
The 2022 Progressive AFT season saw the series join forces with FOX Sports in a blockbuster new multi-year agreement, in addition to relaunching the popular FansChoice.tv livestreaming hub halfway through the year.
“We are thrilled by the response to this year’s coverage on FOX Sports and appreciate their commitment to helping us grow the sport,” said Gene Crouch, COO of AMA Pro Racing. “On the heels of this successful debut season on FOX Sports, combined with the relaunch of FansChoice.tv and next season’s action-packed schedule, Progressive AFT is well positioned for another year of strong growth in 2023.”
FOX Sports provided 150 hours of linear television coverage for the sport in 2022. FS1 showcased the sport to a hungry audience of fans, both old and new, in highly desirable time slots for each round's televised premiere and followed that up with 133 re-airs on FS1 and FS2. As a result, the 2.9MM P02+ viewers tuning in to AFT on FOX Sports delivered the highest linear television viewership for the series to date.
Viewership totals for the 2022 Progressive AFT season:
For more information on Progressive AFT visit https://www.americanflattrack.com. To score the latest gear for the Progressive American Flat Track fan, visit our official merchandise store at https://store.americanflattrack.com.
How to Watch
FOX Sports and FansChoice.tv are the official homes for coverage of Progressive American Flat Track. For the 2022 season, all races will premiere in one-hour telecasts on FS1 during highly desirable weekend time slots. The complete schedule can be viewed at https://www.americanflattrack.com/events-foxsports. FansChoice