Concord, North Carolina (07/18/21) – National Dirt Late Model Hall of Famer completed the weekend sweep in the inaugural Carolina Sizzler at The Dirt Track in Charlotte. Johnson started the night by setting fast time before taking the checkered flag 0.853 seconds in front of runner-up Cameron Weaver. Johnson received $5,000 for his weekend sweep.
Much like Saturday, crews and drivers were greeted with hot, muggy temperatures as day 2 of the 2021 The Carolina Sizzler dawned at The Dirt Track at Charlotte. Rain showers helped weary track personnel early Sunday giving the water trucks a much needed pause but as the noon hour approached, those clouds gave way to bright skies and high humidity.
Thirty four of the best Limited drivers on the east coast gathered for a $5000 to win show co sanctioned by the Steel Block Bandits Dirt Late Model Challenge and the Vision Wheel Topless Outlaw Dirt Racing Series presented by Discount Tire to wrap up their portion of this six class event for a rare Sunday night gig. The oppressive heat was visible on everyone’s faces Sunday as the grind from a two day show reared its head mentally and physically.
Hot laps/ qualifying would be the call of the day as speedway officials tried to beat both a curfew and approaching weather. In Group A , Ronnie Johnson would lay down the fastest lap with a 16.074 , Cameron Weaver Racing would be fastest in Group B setting up a front row that featured a veteran and a young buck. Johnson picked up the $200 pole award from Bryan Sullivan for the second straight night.Two B mains. Six laps each were up next with Karl Tipton winning the first one and Tim Allen grabbing B main number two. The top 6 finishers then transferred to the big show.Johnson and Weaver brought the field to green as the 28 car field roared to life as storms clouds continued to build around the speedway.
The Chattanooga, Tennessee resident scooted away much like he did on Saturday while Weaver tried mightily to keep the 5 machine within an earshot. Russell Erwin and Michael Rouse battled much of the night for the third and fourth spots as Erwin looked much better than he did in night one. On a restart the field bottled up off turn four collecting Derick Quade Racing #74 ending the Mechanicsville, Maryland drivers night in the hook. As the leaders reached lapped traffic, Weaver patiently followed the tire tracks of the veteran, sizing him up masterfully to make a charge later. Then as Johnson was working around the lapped car of Lance Brasington the two made contact forcing Weaver to make an impressive quick move to avoid the two. The caution was called for Brasington so Johnson would retain his spot as the leader. Johnson would maneuver around a couple more lap cars and hold off the charging Weaver to score the win. Erwin would come home third, Rouse fourth with Jason Manley fifth, scoring his second top 5 finish of the weekend.
The National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame member was satisfied with the win afterwards-
“ We weren’t quite as good as we were last night, a few too many changes probably hurt us a little for these track conditions. The guys did their homework though and we accomplished what we came here to do.” On the lapped cars- “They (tower) were telling them to hold their line but the lanes were so much more narrow than they were last night so me and the 11 just kinda got together, I thought for sure, there went my race.”
Johnson was taken to the corporate office’s yesterday for a tour-
“Yeh they came and took me over there to see dads pictures when he won the 600 and even saw one I’ve never seen. That was a pretty chilling moment so this entire weekend has been nothing short of incredible for me and this team” Speedway officials plan to duplicate his big check from Saturday to hang beside his fathers trophy.Weaver was thrilled with his effort-
“We couldn’t be happier, never saw this place and to be fastest in our group then to run second to Mr Ronnie is pretty awesome.” Weaver on his run- “ He was so good in clean air that I knew my only chance was letting him catch those slow cars fast and that advantage, I thought we had him when he got together with the 11 but he got out of that and that’s why he’s one of the very best.”
Notable tidbits:Tough night for many Bandits as only Erwin, Rouse, Robbie Emory and Dustin Mitchell finished in the top 10.Quade has big night on Saturday, goes off early Sunday on the hook.Shaun Harrell and Willie Milliken struggle, coming home 12th and 14th respectively. These two finishes will really shake up the points.
Clint Hodges comes home 21st on Sunday after a disappointing Saturday run. That team could not get away from Charlotte fast enough.Series officials, Jim Long Jr and Michael Robinette were very pleased with the outcome of Saturday and Sunday, the two staffs worked very well together and it made for a smooth program for their portion.
Weather was a prominent fixture all weekend and stayed on everyone’s “radar” but the rain held off long enough to get our portion in the books before the bottom fell out after the checkers
Next up: Lakeview Motor Speedway August 28th, $5000 to win , $500 to start.
The event was co-sanctioned by the Steel Block Bandits Dirt Late Model Challenge Series and the Vision Wheel Topless Outlaw Series.
The Carolina Sizzler
The Dirt Track at Charlotte (Concord, North Carolina)
July 18, 2021 Results
1)Ronnie Johnson 2)Cameron Weaver 3)Russell Erwin 4)Michael Rouse 5)Jason Manley 6)Robby Emory 7)Chase King 8)Dustin Mitchell 9)Mike Weeks 10)Oreo Thomas 11)Layne Clifton 12)Shaun Herrell 13)Timmy Blackwell 14)Willie Milliken 15)Karl Tipton 16)Eddie Baggs 17)Tim Allen 18)Joey Cascel 19)Matthew Bissette 20)Michael Marlowe 21)Lance Brasington 22)Clint Hodges 23)Coty Wright 24)Daniel Richards 25)Austin Neely 26)Brady Walton 27)Derrick Quade – Jordan Horton (DQ)