HEDGER: SuperFans Part No. 3
We’ve been running down the 2013 finishes of our longstanding SuperFans contest, with Pro division winner Ed Reichart and Amateur titlist Joe Scholtisek already named as winners of the SuperFans plaques sponsored by Tim Frost’s National Speedway Directory.
Last time we profiled the top five Amateurs and will continue with longtime entrant Bob Litton of Iowa City, Iowa, who led the second five to the checkered flag in the “ticket buyers” feature.
Litton caught 107 races at two dozen speedways in three states and lost another 23 to weather. His best race of the year was a $10,000 score by Jason Utter in a 50-lap feature at West Liberty, followed by October hobby stock and street stock features at Memphis, Mo., with cars running four and five wide for the last half of each feature, and an open modified win by Scott Dickey at West Liberty in July.
As always, he loved the tenderloins at the SPI tracks and notes that he spent $1,227 on admission.
New Yorker Harold Brossman was one race off Litton’s pace but due to an early start in Florida this year, hopes to hit the 145 race mark for 2014.
Brossman loved the five consecutive nights of the inaugural ESS Speedweek, saying that their new two-wide restart format has really improved their show. He also enjoyed every race at Utica-Rome, as well as his regular trips to Williams Grove and the other Pennsylvania sprint tracks, and the sprinters at Volusia.
“I’ve gone three straight seasons without a Saturday night rainout,” said Brossman. “But I’ve had to travel around at times to maintain that record. So far I’ve been to 175 speedways and have seen 6214 races since I started at age eight. I’m now 67.
“My leading dislike is a show with too many divisions that look alike. Regular shows should never have more than five divisions and should never take more than four hours.”
Brenda and Dale Matthews, plagued by 18 rainouts, were the final Amateurs to hit the 100-race mark, good for eighth in the standings. After opening the season in Florida, the Pennsylvanians enjoyed first time visits to Belle Clair and Peoria in Illinois and Ohio’s Limaland.
They diverted from Indiana Speedweek to catch two Hell Tour LM shows, at Vermillion and Peoria, with Peoria’s non-stop feature Dale’s “race of the year.” Brenda’s favorite came closer to home, as she was wowed by Darren Clayton’s rim-riding USAC sprint win at Susquehanna.
June, July and August saw them hit 43 races in 92 days. They love camping at the speedway and Dale says his cookouts are way better than any track food, plus they get to enjoy the company of their friends.
Former Berlin Raceway official A.J. Krupp continued to expand his horizons now that he is retired and able to travel, getting out to 88 shows, 38 on pavement and 50 on dirt.
“I’d been oblivious to the variety of motorsports events available in my surrounding area and the last few seasons have been an eye-opening experience,” declared Krupp. “I saw races in four states, traveled 18,000 miles and spent $7600 on racing – $1,900 on tickets, $1,500 for food and hotels and $4200 on gas.
“I’ve discovered that dirt races are better than paved because the car counts are significantly higher. I focused on travelling series and special events and found that dirt car counts are virtually double the count at an equivalent paying paved track event, meaning you get about double the events for the same ticket price.”
Krupp also notes that the pavement shows often supplement the show with a bunch of support classes, “with low car counts and boring racing to fill time so the premier division can get prepped for the feature.”
Krupp’s No. 1 race was the WoO LM Prairie Dirt Classic at Fairbury, Ill., with the top three wheel to wheel for the last dozen laps and Tim McCreadie clawing his way from last to fourth. His worst race of the season was the following day, when he went to Indy for the Brickyard 400 on his way to Kokomo.
Krupp also wanted to, “thank the Super DIRTcar Series for coming to I-96 in Michigan so I could see Brett Hearn in person for the first time. After reading about him in the pages of NSSN for many years, I finally got to see him spank the field like he does back home all the time.”
Des Moines resident Jack Miles completes our top ten on the strength of an 81-race season highlighted right off in Florida by a Doug Drown/Don O’Neal battle at East Bay. He also loved a Johnny Herrara sprint win at Osborn, Mo., a Terry McCarl war with Mark Dobmeier at Huset’s finally won by the latter, the Hell Tour’s Herald and Review 100 at Macon, Ill., and the Lucas Oil Late Model’s at Granite City and Wheatland. Another highlight was the multi-night Late Model Nationals at Knoxville.
Miles also likes his weekly racing in Iowa, topped by Adams County, Jackson County, Lee County and Marshalltown.
Next time we’ll wrap it up and look at SuperFans 2014.