A unique test awaits the Super DIRTcar Series when it travels to New Egypt Speedway on Saturday, March 30 for Power in the Pines.

The 7/16-mile facility provides a shape different from any other track on the 2024 schedule. And for some drivers, it’ll be their first time racing there.

But that’s not the case for 10-time Series champion Matt Sheppard, defending track champion Ryan Godown, and Anthony Perrego. Each has recently won at New Egypt and gave insight into how to drive its unique shape.

“You’ve got to have some patience there,” Perrego said. “(Turns) 3 and 4 are awfully tight, and I feel like in 1 and 2, it’s very easy to turn three or four times. Like, you catch yourself triple steering. The backstretch is kind of like a dog leg. You turn a few times. It’s just different. It’s kind of like a horseshoe back there, and if you can make that back straightaway longer, it’ll help you.

“It’s an odd track. It’s unique.”

Sheppard, who won the New Egypt Speedway track championship in 2007, said there’s several different lines drivers can use for success, especially going into Turn 1.

“It’s tough,” Sheppard said. “You go into Turn 1, and it seems like it’s 10 miles wide. You could probably enter Turn 1 in one of 10 different grooves, from the outside wall to the inside wall and anywhere in between. Turn 2 really funnels together. If you’re running the bottom, it’s like a sharp left-hander, and if you’re on the top, it kind of drifts out. But then you got the dog leg in the backstretch. When you’re running the top, you think you’re in good stretch, but then you got to turn because there’s a dog leg there. 

“Then you get into 3 and 4, and it’s kind of like a hairpin. You can either drive in hard and let it slide all the way across the track, or you can try to pinch it off and drive off the bottom. There are just a lot of really unique lines compared to any other racetrack we go to.”

Godown, who’s from nearby Ringoes, NJ, agreed with Sheppard. He also said the track’s unique shape will allow teams to race side-by-side in exciting fashion.

Ryan Godown
Ryan Godown heads down the backstretch at Oswego Speedway during Super DIRT Week 51/Brent Smith photo

“It’s more like a D-shape,” Godown said. “It’s not one corner out of [Turn 4] and into [Turn 1]. It’s kind of like everywhere else. But going into [Turn 1], coming out of [Turn 2], and going into [Turn 3] down the dog leg is just unique altogether. 

“I think the track is going to be just like it was last year. They fixed it to where you can run the bottom and the top three-or-four wide, and it was a pretty cool black and slick track to race on.”

The shape isn’t the only unique factor drivers will face at New Egypt. Perrego said the dirt also has a different feel than other tracks in the Northeast. The Montgomery, NY driver compared it to Volusia Speedway Park, where the Super DIRTcar Series started the season.

“The dirt is a little different [at New Egypt],” Perrego said.  “They’ve changed it a few times over the years, but I feel like it’s similar to Florida where it looks like it’s got some grip, but it really doesn’t.”

While New Egypt officials recently put some new dirt on the track in the offseason, Godown doesn’t expect much change from last year. The “Ringoes Rocket” said he expects a fun battle if drivers have the proper setup.

“You can always get to the front no matter where you’re at,” Godown said. “It’s so unique because it’s not just middle lane, bottom lane, or top. At some of these other racetracks that are maybe higher speed, they get into one lane. This, you can poke around the bottom. You can go in on the bottom and come off the middle. It’s so unique that it makes it fun to drive. As long as your car’s right, it’s an awesome place to race.”

All three drivers hope to tame the unique track and find Victory Lane when the Super DIRTcar Series opens its championship season at New Egypt Speedway on Saturday, March 30, for Power in the Pines—a 75-lap, $7,500-to-win Feature.

If you can’t make it to the track, watch all the action live on DIRTVision, either online or with the DIRTVision app.