It was another fun season for Lawson Racing. We once again raced at a diverse selection tracks. It’s always fun getting to travel to the various tracks around ND and into Canada and meet all the great fans and friends along the way. We couldn’t have done it without Jerry and Lindsay helping in the pits and the support from the rest of our family. Ethan once again was helping out in the pits at the Minot races and Ellie made her first appearance at the track in September. We couldn’t have done it without out great sponsors: Wayne and Matt Evans at Prairie Ford in Stanley, Jen and Tad Wagner with Too Dark Motorsports, Alice and Marlo Anderson with National Day Calendar, DG Graphics, Tires Plus in Minot, Bob Rodgers with Winsupply of Minot, and RHRSwag.com. Stay tuned as we begin to work towards 2018!!
This past Sunday, Lawson Racing made our annual appearance with the World of Outlaws at the Nodak Speedway. 30 cars were on hand, so we knew our work was cut for us to make the A main. I drew number 2, so I was first out for qualifying. I would lay down a lap of 15.9 seconds and end up 28th. Kevin would go 15.8 seconds and end up 27th. I was scheduled to start 10th in the 1st heat, but while checking the left rear wheel for tightness, it was loose. Tried to tighten the wheel nut and it was just spinning. There was a spacer that was getting hung up and not sliding back. After redoing the spacers, the wheel tightened and we headed to the push off lane, but the other cars had already gone out and we weren’t allowed to join the race. Kevin would start 9th in the 3rd heat. He would finish 10th. After he took the checkered flag, the car in front of him lost their left rear wheel coming out of turn 2 on the cool down lap and rolled over. Kevin was able to avoid him. We would both have to race in the last chance showdown. Kevin would start 9th and I would start 10th. The top 6 finishers would move into the A main. Off the start, the field strung out pretty quickly, so moving forward was going to be difficult. There were 4 of us racing together for spots 7th on back. There was a restart with 5 to go, but again the field strung out off the start. Kevin would finish 7th and I in 8th. While neither of us would qualify for the A main, Kevin’s finish made him the 1st alternate in the event one of the already qualified cars could start the race. Right before the A main rolled out, some water was put down on the track and the cars were given some hot laps to run it in. During these hot laps, one of the cars pulled off with an engine issue. Since the race hadn’t started yet, that allowed Kevin to take their place in the A main. Kevin would get to be a part of the 4 wide salute and he would go onto run the first 5 laps, then he pulled off as the leaders were approaching. All in all, a good night with the Outlaws. We are back in action at the Nodak Speedway, racing both night of Motor Magic, Sept. 2nd and 3rd. See everyone there!!
Lawson Racing recently completed back to back Saturday races. On July 29th, we headed to the Dacotah Speedway in Mandan to compete in the 2nd night of the Governor’s Cup weekend. Kevin and I started on the front row of heat 2. On the start, I got the lead out of turn 2 and held it for the first 2 laps. There wasn’t much up on top and I fell back to 5th as rubber had developed down low. Kevin would finish 4th and I 5th. That started us side by side again in the feature, Kevin in 9th and I in 10th. The track quickly developed a lane of rubber and that was the fast way around. I ended up chasing Kevin for most of the feature, but just couldn’t make the pass. He would finish 8th and I in 9th. The next Saturday saw us tow out to the Devils Lake Speedway for the 4th and final visit of NOSA to the track. Kevin was in heat 1. On the start, he moved up to the high side and the car was working really well up there. He would come home with a 5th place finish after getting passed for 4th in the closing laps. I was in the 3rd heat. I started 3rd, but fell back to 5th in the first lap. My car was really working down low and I was able to move back up to 4th at the finish. After the race, it was discovered that my car had developed an oil leak somewhere as the front of the motor was covered. We tried to see where it was coming from, but weren’t able to pinpoint the source. It was looking a front cover gasket or front seal, neither of which can be fixed at the track. For the feature, I fell to the back and only completed a few laps before pulling in. Kevin started 15th and was moving forward in the first half of the feature, but the bottom burned away and he fell back to a 16th place finish. We now shift our attention to our biggest race of the year, the World of Outlaws race in Minot on August 20th.
On July 8th, Lawson Racing visited the Devils Lake Speedway for the first time in 2017. I would start outside row 2 in the 2nd heat. There were some fast Nosa cars behind me and I would fall back and eventually finish 6th. Kevin was in the 3rd heat and would start 5th and finish 4th. In the feature, Kevin would start 10th and I would start 17th. We would run the 1st 10 laps under green. After that, the middle portion of the race was slowed by several cautions. Somewhere in there, I broke a left front shock mount. Not sure how or why it broke. After that, I couldn’t be as aggressive into the corners or the car would start bouncing. I would finish in 16th and Kevin 14th.
Lawson Racing once again had a doubleheader race weekend. On Friday night, we made our first trip of the season to the Dacotah Speedway in Mandan. Sprint cars were part of Dacotah Speedway’s Super Show. Kevin was in the 1st heat, starting 2nd. The track was dry by the time the heats rolled around and Kevin’s car was having a hard time hooking up to it. He would slide back and finish 6th. I was in the 2nd heat and would start 2nd. I fell back to 5th, but would pass for 4th a few laps from the end and finish there. In the feature, I would start 10th and Kevin would start 12th. For the first 5 laps, my car was feeling really good and I was racing around 6th. Soon, though, my car would get so tight that it would barely turn. I fell back and would eventually have to pull in with 3 laps to go. After the race, it was discovered that I had a right rear tire going down. Kevin would come home 13th. On Saturday, it was onto the Jamestown Speedway. This was the first time we had been there in over 5 years. I started on the pole of the 1st of 4 heats. Off the start, I would slot into 3rd place and would run there for the entire race until the last lap when the car slide out a little out of turn 4 and I was beaten to the line and would finish 4th. Kevin was in the 4th heat and fought a very loose racecar to a 6th place finish. That would start him on the pole of the b main. He would jump out into the lead and stay there until a late restart bunched everyone up. He was passed into turn 1 and would finish 2nd. In the feature, the groove was down around the inside wall and it was a battle to get down there. On lap 2, I was heading into turn 3 with a car under me when a car came down off the high groove and into my right front tire. That jumped my car sideways and clipped the car on the inside, causing him to flip. My car suffered front end and front wing damage and would end my race. Kevin would race on, but he would eventually pull in. Not the results we were hoping for in Jamestown, but that’s racing. Stay tuned for our upcoming races.