Dirt Late Model Terminology Confusion
I'm a huge Dirt Late Model fan. My dream is to someday race my own car, which brings me to my questions. I look at used cars almost every night on the internet, but I'm having a hard time with some of the suspension and chassis terms that I see.

Terms like four-bar, three-link, swing arm, Z-link, under-rail, or over-rail. Can you help me out with what all these terms mean or any other terms I may have forgotten? Also, how are they different from the others? Surely, I can't be the only one out there who doesn't know. Any help is highly appreciated!

Thanks!
—Steven McKinley

Steven,
The list is too long to cover here. Those cars are some of the most complicated race cars there are anywhere. Your best bet would be to buy a few books on the subject and hang around a dirt team helping out in some way. Just being near a team can teach you a lot about those terms and what they mean.

There was a time I knew nothing about racing terminology and not a thing about racing setups, race car preparation or anything else connected to racing. I had to become involved with a race team, help out and work with them in the shop and at the track so I could learn from them. I was lucky right off the bat because I chose a well organized and technically intelligent team to learn from.

I read all of the books that were available on racing technology and I ended up working with many more teams before I truly felt I knew anything worthwhile. It takes time and it takes effort. If you truly love racing, then it will be easy and fun. It was, and is, for me.


Vertically Challenged Race Cars
I just read your article in the Dec. 2012 issue of Circle Track, "Stock Appearing, Its Time Has Come." You asked for comments and questions. Well, I have a few. Why not give some of us paying subscribers some articles on Midgets, both racing technology and some racing articles?

Month after month, Circle Track seems to favor the full-bodied so-called race cars, how come? Does any of your staff know what a Midget is? Or better yet, have they ever seen a Midget racing event? What makes you people think that everybody is interested in that type of race car? Yet you're talking about Stock Appearing!

We see the stock appearing cars every day on our streets and freeways. Give us some articles and stories on real race cars every now and then. Maybe that's why you can`t find CT at the magazine stores today. I can remember when CT catered to all types of race cars. Remember that old saying, real race cars have no doors and no fenders. I rest my case.

A loooong time subscriber,
—R. Gonsalves.

Mr. Gonsalves,
Thanks for your comments. First off, the fendered race car teams are a huge part of our readership. And, the Late Model stock cars don't look anything like those driving on the street, at least not yet. If we have anything to say about it, and we do, that will change in the near future.

I was watching Midget racing in my youth here in Daytona at the municipal football stadium back in the 1960s. I even had the pleasure of having A.J. Foyt sitting right in front of me one night. Now he could drive a Midget. So, I know what they are, and I still think those were the best racing shows I have ever seen.

The reason why you can't find CT on the magazine rack at Walmart is because we are a racer's technical resource magazine and not a fan magazine. If you race, you can subscribe to CT and become one of the family. If you advertise in CT, you will be sure to reach 100-percent racers.

As to putting some Sprint Car tech into our magazine, yes that would be a good thing to do and we are exploring ways to do that consistently. We have addressed those cars in past articles and admittedly, it has been a while. We'll see what we can do about that.