It was a long run from our last stop at Eldora to the big state of Texas so we took our time. Making stops in Clarksville, Tennessee, and Hot Springs, Arkansas, made the trip bearable. And we picked an RV park once we got there that was to be one of the most fun out of the entire Tour.
Lakeside RV Resort located on Lake Livingston near Onalaska, Texas, was a place we could rest ourselves. It was a bit out of the way due to the fact that we had to re-align our schedule when we discovered that one of the racetracks near Houston didn't have an event the weekend we needed it. So, we would be camped right on the lake for the next week and this rare time spent not traveling would be well used.
That was OK, because after we visited the U.S. National Dirt Track Championships, we were able to rest ourselves before moving on to the last stop in Mississippi. It had been a long trip spanning more than four months in two segments and covering some 12,000 miles total.
The modern stands and dedicated sky boxes and press box loom in the background at the Texa
Texas Motor Speedway
We really didn't know what to expect when we arrived at this relatively newly constructed dirt track outside one of the premiere NASCAR facilities in the country. Built similar to The Dirt Track at Lowe's Motor Speedway, I knew it would be a well-built facility, but some aspects of it surprised me.
First off, and I will further explain the significance of this later on, there was no police security on duty at this event. Literally, every race I've been to had local police or sheriff's officers on site to make sure nothing gets out of hand in the stands or the pits.
I know when you go to a large track to watch a NASCAR race anywhere in the country, there are dozens, if not more, of officers on duty to watch over the sometimes-drunk crowd. It only makes sense. Not so here.
What was here in abundance was a huge number of Modified class cars representing two classes and a sprinkling of Late Models, 22 to be exact. The paved pits were full and more cars were parked in the grass pits adjacent.
The pits were full of more than 100 Modifieds and four-wheelers. Some teams had, I counted
The three classes were the Limited Modifieds, Modifieds, and the O'Reilly Auto Parts SUPR Late Model Championship. All three main events would prove very competitive and exciting to watch. The Late Model series is mostly composed of teams out of Texas and Louisiana. And most of the Modified teams were Texas-based, although a few teams made the trip from Oklahoma and beyond.
We parked our Tour bus right outside of the asphalt pit gates and right at the entrance to the grass pits where a group parked nearby would bring new meaning to the term "grassroots." I would later on learn how much "fun" this group could generate.
The facility was run much like what you would expect from a primarily NASCAR track, but the attendees made it a dirt event separate and apart from the big
track overtone. A crowd of more than 8,000 watched as some of the best racing we've seen unfolded.
The track itself almost looks like it's oiled. The dark dirt, common to this region, is not necessarily clay in composition, but is heavy. Deep ruts developed in the second groove in Turns 1 and 2 and high in Turn 4.
For many of these racers, it's the first time running a big track like this one. For the M
You're never too young to learn the art of tire prep. This Limited Modified team member to
Simple attention to details like this fence within a fence, make tracks not only more comf