Weedsport, NY — April 23, 2010 – By Tom Skibinski, Super DIRTcar Series PR Director
*Larry Burnett Photo
Up next in the 2010 Super DIRTcar Series is the 19th Annual Hall of Fame Classic at Cayuga County Fair Speedway scheduled over the Memorial Day Weekend. And what better person to receive sound advice from than Northeast Modified Hall of Famer ‘Barefoot’ Bob McCreadie.
That is exactly who fellow Watertown, N.Y. racer Billy Dunn turned to when he launched his motorsports career during the summer of 2001. Today, Dunn finds himself taking on some of the same short-track superstars that McCreadie battled in his quest for Super DIRTcar Series success.
“Bob told me starting out that you have to go to Cayuga County and Rolling Wheels to get better,” recalled Dunn, 25, who scored his lone Big-Block feature win at Cayuga County in 2007 before kicking off the 56th straight year of racing at the legendary Weedsport oval last week with a runner-up finish. “If you can take a checkered flag at those places you’ve really done something.”
Dunn is looking to pull off something really big in the coming month. The next extra-distance test will be the 60-lap DIRTcar Challenge Cup at Rolling Wheels Raceway Park on May 2 before the Hall of Fame 100 series showdown takes center stage at Cayuga County on May 30.
“Cayuga County has always been my favorite track since I started racing Big-Blocks,” remarked Dunn, who debuted at the fairgrounds in 2004 and ran the entire ’05 campaign highlighted by a third-place finish. He chased another north country notable, Tim Fuller, across the line to record a series-best 2nd-place at Cayuga County in 2007.
“When your car is right, you can race anywhere at Weedsport. It’s more of a drivers track where you don’t need the big motor, and its always been easy on equipment.”
“At the same time, it’s been one of the toughest to finish up front consistently with some of the best competition around. Starting position is key with so many guys capable of winning. You just have to be patient and keep the tires on. There are many lines to choose from so knowing where your car works best and being able to get to those spots in traffic first usually decides the winner in Weedsport,” Dunn said.
With the first two Super DIRTcar Series shows already in the books, Dunn is among the leaders when it comes to most cars passed. He charged from 13th to fifth in the tour opener at Hagerstown Speedway in March, then two weeks later rallied to place ninth at Fulton Speedway after starting 25th even with a lap 60 tangle sending his Number One Speed no. 49 Pemco Contracting-SUNY Canton/Bicknell ride back to the rear.
“We’ve got a brand new car this year and finally figuring some things out,” noted Dunn, who currently ranks seventh in series points. Last season he made all but three tour appearances in his third year following the Super DIRTcar Series to place 14th on the final points chart, finishing among the Top-10 three times with his only front-five (4th-place) scored at Brockville Ontario Speedway in the July. “I think we’re finally getting a handle on what it takes.”
“Four years ago I’d be happy with a top-five. Now after finishing second (Sunday at Cayuga County) I’m actually a little disappointed. Top-fives are still good because there’s such a fine line nowadays between first and fifth, but now we have a car that’s good too and can take us farther. We want to stay consistent although we also feel we’ve put in enough time and paid our dues so the next step is winning,” Dunn figured.
Frequenting area speedways as a youth alongside his father Norm Dunn, owner of the family business —Number One Speed— Billy finally kicked off his own racing career in 2001, capturing the New York State UMP-type Modified title the following year. Engine woes the next two seasons allowed him to contest in only a handful of Big-Block events.
“I think we’ve finally gotten to where we expected to be a couple years ago,” added Dunn, whose 2010 plans include weekly stops at Can-Am Motorsports Park (Fri.) and Cayuga County (Sun.), plus all specials in between at Rolling Wheels as well as the entire Super DIRTcar Series. “Everything will have to fall into place to get a series win but I’m excited with our runs so far and think we’re ready for it to happen.”
“(Racing) is a hard job yet its one of the most rewarding when you accomplish something. Its great growing up with racing and now going against some of the best in the sport, the same drivers you watched as a kid. Running side by side with guys like Danny (Johnson) and Dale (Planck) is quite a treat, and it’s an even better feeling when they race you clean knowing you do the same,” Dunn said.
The Hall of Fame Classic at Cayuga County will round number three in the 2010 Super DIRTcar Series with Dunn respected among an all-star cast entered in the headline 100-lapper paying out $6,000 to twin. Defending overall Hoosier Tire-VP Racing Fuels Mr. DIRTcar champion Brett Hearn joins current series point leaders Billy Decker and Matt Sheppard in the holiday special, with CCFS opening-day winner Danny Johnson and two-time reigning track champ Alan Johnson set to defend home soil on May 30.
Raising the bar even further on race day will be the arrival of series stalwarts Jimmy Phelps, Justin Haers, Gary Tomkins, Ryan Phelps, Michael Storms, Dale Planck, Larry Wight, Jeff Brownell Jr., Steve Paine, Rich Scagliotta, Tom Sears Jr. and Lance Willix.
For more information, contact DIRTcar Racing Northeast Director of Competition & Track Sanctioning Joe Skotnicki (704/796-4566) or log into www.superdirtcarseries.com for additional news & notes. Be sure to sign up on http://www.twitter.com/SuperDIRTcar and receive updates anywhere at anytime. The speedway office can be reached by phoning 315/834-6606 and the track website is www.cayugacountyfairspeedway.com.
2010 Super DIRTcar Series Schedule
NP=Non-Point event; SP=Show-Up point event;
DAY-DATE TRACK WINNER/LOCATION
*** FLORIDA DIRTcar NATIONALS ***
Wed-Feb 10 Volusia Speedway Park-np Stewart Friesen
Thr-Feb 11 Volusia Speedway Park-np Matt Sheppard
Fri-Feb 12 Volusia Speedway Park-np cancelled
Sat-Feb 13 Volusia Speedway Park-np Matt Sheppard
Sat-Mar 27 Hagerstown Speedway Billy Decker
Sat-Apr 10 Fulton Speedway Dale Planck
Sun-May 30 Cayuga County Fair Speedway Weedsport,NY
Tue-Jun 15 Grandview Speedway Bechtelsville,PA
Wed-Jun 16 Orange County Fair Speedway Middletown,NY
Wed-Jun 23 Mohawk Int’l Raceway Akwesasne,NY
Sun-Jul 4 Rolling Wheels Raceway Park Elbridge,NY
Sun-Jul 11 Cornwall Motor Speedway Cornwall,ONT
*** ALL-STAR WEEKEND ***
Thr-Jul 15 Brewerton Speedway Brewerton,NY
Fri-Jul 16 Cayuga County Fair Speedway Weedsport,NY
Sat-Jul 17 Cayuga County Fair Speedway Weedsport,NY
*** GREAT CANADIAN TOUR ***
Mon-Jul 19 Autodrome Granby Granby,QUE
Tue-Jul 20 Autodrome Drummond Drummondville,QUE
Mon-Aug 2 Merrittville Speedway Thorold,ONT
Thr-Aug 26 Lebanon Valley Speedway West Lebanon,NY
Sun-Sep 5 Cayuga County Fair Speedway Weedsport,NY
Sat-Sep 18 Mohawk Int’l Raceway Akwesasne,NY
Sat-Oct 2 Fulton Speedway-sp Fulton,NY
*** SUPER DIRT WEEK ***
Sun-Oct 10 New York State Fairgrounds Syracuse,NY
*** DIRTcar FALL NATIONALS ***
Sun-Oct 17 Brockville Ontario Speedway Brockville,ONT
*** WORLD FINALS ***
Thr-Nov 4 The Dirt Track at Charlotte(qual.) Concord,NC
Fri-Nov 5 The Dirt Track at Charlotte Concord,NC
Sat-Nov 6 The Dirt Track at Charlotte Concord,NC
DIRTcar Racing Northeast main office is located in Weedsport, New York on the Cayuga County Fairgrounds, home of DIRTcar All-Star Weekend in July. DIRTcar Northeast’s crown jewel event —Super DIRT Week at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse runs annually in October featuring Hoosier Tire-VP Racing Fuels Mr. DIRTcar Championship Series events for Big-Block Modified, 358-Modified, Sportsman and Pro Stock divisions. Ticket and schedule information is available by contacting the Weedsport office (315/834-6606) during the day or logging into www.allstar100weekend.com and www.superdirtweekonline.com anytime.
The Big-Block Super DIRTcar Series is brought to fans across the Northeast by several sponsors and partners, including series sponsors Hoosier Racing Tire www.hoosiertire.com and VP Racing Fuels www.vpracingfuels.com. Promotional partners include the University of Northwestern Ohio www.unoh.com and Chizmark & Larson Insurance www.chizmarklarson.com, and contingency sponsors are Bicknell Racing Products www.bicknellracingproducts.com, Bilstein Shocks www.bilstein.com, KSE Racing Products www.kse-racing.com, Motorsports Safety Systems www.motorsportssafetysystems.com, MSD Ignition www.msdignition.com, Penske Shocks, www.penskeshocks.com, Racing Electronics www.racingelectronics.com, Vicci Racing Apparel www.vicci.com and Wrisco Industries www.wrisco.com.