Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Clanton Ties The Knot

One thing is certain: no one spent the early-August break in the World of Outlaws Late Model Series schedule quite like Shane Clanton.

While some Outlaws raced, some regrouped in their shops and one vacationed in Miami (points leader and 2012 dominator Darrell Lanigan), Clanton used the nine-day hiatus to…get married.

Last Friday morning, on a beach in Panama City, Fla., Clanton tied the knot with the former Michelle Davies. A native of Warren, Pa., Michelle is the daughter of veteran dirt Late Model racer Ron Davies, who followed the WoO LMS fulltime in 2011.

While Shane and Michelle had their planned pre-wedding arrival in Panama City scrambled slightly by the WoO LMS event at Shawano (Wis.) Speedway that was postponed by rain to Tues., Aug. 7 – both had to change their flights back to Clanton’s home state of Georgia – they made it in time to obtain their marriage license. Their preparations for the Big Day then went smoothly…until the morning of the Big Day.

Fri., Aug. 10, dawned cloudy and rainy in Panama City, so Shane and Michelle’s wedding planners set up all the chairs and decorations for the ceremony under a pavilion. Just minutes before the nuptials were to begin, however, the sun came out, so Michelle’s hopes for the beachside wedding of her dreams were rekindled. Her wedding director said there wasn’t enough time to reposition all the chair and decorations on the beach, but the ever-persistent Shane Clanton wasn’t about to let that pronouncement deter him from making his wife-to-be happy.

“When the weather cleared just enough, I said, ‘Tell everybody I am walking down the beach, not (through) the pavilion,’” said Michelle. “I paid for a beach wedding and I was gonna have it since the sun had come out.

“Of course, I couldn’t talk to Shane (when the weather cleared), but my wedding day director told him that I said to go to the beach. Then everybody picked up their chairs and moved them, and – of course – Shane and his brothers moved all the decorations themselves in less than five minutes.”

Michelle got her wedding on the beach. The weather held out for the ceremony and pictures before a downpour struck as the new Mr. and Mrs. Clanton were headed for the reception, which was attended by a small group of the husband and wife’s family and friends, including WoO LMS regular Clint Smith and his wife Kim; Clanton’s former car owners Ronnie and Janice Dobbins; and Steve Francis’s wife Amanda (who handled the music for the ceremony).

Shane and Michelle stayed in Panama City to honeymoon, but they couldn’t stay too long. It is still racing season, after all, so they returned to the Peach State on Tuesday and headed that evening to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, where they hopped on a plane with Clanton’s crewmen, Jonathan (Dumplin’) Owenby and Petey Cochran, to fly to Chicago.

Why Chicago? Just outside of the city, at Frankie Heckenast Jr.’s shop in Orland Park, Ill., is where Clanton’s hauler has been sitting since Owenby parked it there last Wednesday following the WoO LMS event at Shawano. Clanton and his mechanics will spend Wednesday and Thursday at Heckenast’s shop prepping their machines for this weekend’s WoO LMS doubleheader in Michigan – Aug. 17 at Winston Speedway in Rothbury and Aug. 18 at Merritt Raceway in Lake City.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Bub McCool’s Secret Weapon

After Bub McCool won his first-ever World of Outlaws Late Model Series A-Main last Saturday night at Tazewell (Tenn.) Speedway, he made sure to thank a long list of people: his parents, his crew, his sponsors.

Bub McCool with his son 'B2.'
But the 34-year-old Rookie of the Year contender from Vicksburg, Miss., saved his biggest pat on the back for his son Johnny McCool III, or ‘B2’ as the 7-year-old is known.

It was, after all, ‘B2’ who put dear old Dad in position to win in just his second career visit to Tazewell’s menacing high banks. The youngster accompanied his father to the pre-race draw for the top-eight starting spots in the ‘Outlaw Sizzler 50’ – McCool won a heat race to earn a redraw berth – and promptly pulled the number one pill from WoO LMS announcer Rick Eshelman’s coffee jug.

Armed with that prime spot, McCool outgunned outside-polesitter Scott Bloomquist for the lead at the initial green flag and never looked back. He made no mistakes during the caution-free race, holding Bloomquist at bay at a track located virtually in the legendary Tennessee star’s backyard.

“He drew good for us,” McCool said with a beaming smile as he rubbed his son’s head while standing in his trailer following the race. “It was tough to pass out there tonight, so him drawing that ‘one’ is what did it for us.”

That wasn’t all the younger McCool did at Tazewell, though.

Bub celebrates at Tazewell with his son and team.
“Today he showed his first interest in working on the race car,” a proud McCool said of his boy. “He came up to me this afternoon and said, ‘Daddy, I want to help you.’ I said, ‘O.K. You can scrape some mud (off the car).’ He came right back and said, ‘No! I want to turn some bolts and things!

“I was like, Well, O.K. So we turned him loose and let him tighten some stuff.”

Perhaps ‘B2’ didn’t make the setup and tire choices that propelled Bub to victory, but his work pleased Dad nonetheless.

“I had a new crew chief tonight,” laughed McCool, his arm draped around his son’s shoulders.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Losing A ‘Stray Cat’: Clint Smith Parts Ways With Mechanic Brad Baum

A month-long springtime break from World of Outlaws Late Model Series action hasn’t been uneventful for Clint Smith. Last Friday he split with his chief mechanic Brad Baum, ending a relationship that began in 2010.

While in-season driver/crewman breakups are never easy, this one was done on good terms. Both men Tweeted complimentary words about the other after Baum made known his decision to depart.

Clint Smith (r) and Brad Baum.
“Parted ways with Clint Smith Racing,” Baum wrote on his Twitter feed (@thedirtone) on April 13. “I have to thank Clint, Kim and Jenna for everything. Couldn’t ask for a better family and team to be with. Wish CSR luck as we move on.”

Smith announced the news first on his Twitter account (@clintsmith44): “Brad Baum has moved on from Clint Smith Racing. Headed back North. Good luck to Brad on his new journey.”

The 36-year-old Baum, who has worked in the dirt Late Model industry for most of the past 13 years, won the 2007 WoO LMS Crew Chief of the Year Award while employed by Chub Frank. He joined Smith’s operation in 2010, relocating from his native Sherman, N.Y., to Senoia, Ga., to serve as a second CSR crewman alongside Darrell (‘Don Vito’) Cooper. Baum and Cooper soon became known in the WoO LMS pit area as Cat Daddy’s ‘Stray Cats,’ but Cooper left the team during the 2011 season and Baum assumed the role of Smith’s primary mechanic.

“I had a great time working for Clint,” said Baum. “Clint and his family really did take good care of me. They’re great people. It was just time for me to go and do something different, and now we’ll see what the future holds for both of us.”

Baum’s next racing gig is with a former employer, chassis builder Bob Pierce, who has hired Baum to work with his son Bobby, a 15-year-old dirt Late Model talent who just two weeks ago turned heads with a career-best WoO LMS finish of eighth in the Illini 100 at Farmer City (Ill.) Raceway. Baum previously served as a mechanic for the elder Pierce in 2002.

Baum is currently back at his family’s home in New York and spending the week doing some work for regional dirt Late Model racer Rick ‘Boom’ Briggs, who shares a shop in Bear Lake, Pa., with his cousin Chub Frank. Baum plans to head to the Midwest on Friday and meet up with the Pierce team at Peoria (Ill.) Speedway on Saturday night. He’ll live in an apartment near the Pierce shop in Oakwood, Ill., and spend the 2012 season on a barnstorming tour with Bobby, who plans to enter more than 70 events, including the month-long DIRTcar Summer Nationals.

Smith, meanwhile, has enlisted the mechanical assistance of Georgia dirt Late Model driver Duane Treadwell to support his continued WoO LMS efforts. Treadwell helped Tim Fuller during February’s racing in Florida and during the Illini 100 at Farmer City and has also been working with Smith this year.

“Duane Treadwell is gonna back off his racing just a little bit to help me on the road and we’ll form a teammate-type deal to race around the house here,” said Smith, 47. “He needs a trailer and I need a crew guy, so we’re gonna join forces to help each other. We’ll work out of my trailer when we race together around the house, and he’ll come out on the road with me to help out (starting with the WoO LMS doubleheader on April 27 at North Alabama Speedway in Tuscumbia and April 28 at Tennessee’s Tazewell Speedway).”

Smith went racing on April 14 at Dixie Speedway in Woodstock, Ga., with a family member listed as his crew chief: his 19-year-old daughter Jenna.

“She done pretty good,” said Smith, who finished fifth in Dixie’s ‘Spring Championship’ event. “We didn’t run too good – too much motor for the site we were at – but we had a good time. She gave me hand signals (during the race) and helped me out in the pits.”

But did Jenna give dear old Dad any setup suggestions during the night?

“No,” laughed Smith. “None of that.”

Monday, April 9, 2012

Tim Fuller: He’ll Be Missed On The Road With The Outlaws

The news filtered out first in a Tweet from Clint Smith. Shortly after the completion of the Illini 100 on March 31 at Farmer City (Ill.) Raceway, ‘Cat Daddy’ informed his 1,000-plus Twitter followers: “Tim Fuller just announced out of money and dropping off tour…losing a great travel partner!!”

Tim Fuller with daughter Ainsley & wife Lori.
Indeed, Fuller, a 44-year-old DIRTcar Big-Block Modified transplant from Watertown, N.Y., had reluctantly come to the end of his World of Outlaws Late Model Series road. A regular on the circuit since winning the Rookie of the Year award in 2007, Fuller had told his good buddy Smith that – in the wake of a disheartening Illini 100 DNQ – he simply couldn’t continue following the demanding schedule and was on his way to let WoO LMS director Tim Christman know of his decision.

Considering Fuller’s penny-pinching racing effort and nightmarish start to the 2012 campaign – he exhausted his supply of four emergency provisionals in the first six races of the season, leaving him no pathway into the Illini 100 starting field after failing to transfer through a heat or B-Main – it was no surprise that he found himself forced to reevaluate his plans. But it’s still difficult for his friends, colleagues and fans to accept that, barring a dramatic turn of events, he won’t be in the pit area when the series resumes action on April 27 at North Alabama Speedway in Tuscumbia, Ala., and April 28 at Tazewell (Tenn.) Speedway.

“Tim Fuller is definitely going to be missed,” said Christman, who began his stint as WoO LMS director during Fuller’s rookie season on the tour. “He has been a loyal supporter of the World of Outlaws, and he established himself on the national dirt Late Model scene while racing with us. He’s a proven winner on the World of Outlaws Late Model Series.

“From my conversations with him, I know how badly he wants to continue racing with the World of Outlaws. But he understands that he can’t do it the way he’s been doing it, and I have to agree with him. He’s too talented to be struggling the way he has the last couple years.

“Hopefully stepping back from traveling across the country will help Tim get his Late Model program back where it needs to be,” added Christman. “We’ve seen the great things he’s capable of accomplishing on the World of Outlaws Late Model Series and I’m confident that we’ll see him making more headlines with us in the future.”

Fuller at speed. (
What’s so frustrating for Fuller is that it was just three years ago that he had appeared to cement himself as a WoO LMS championship contender. After winning once in his rookie season and twice in 2008, he broke out in ’09, tying the tour’s consecutive-win record of four en route to triumphing seven times over a sizzling 11-race span. He finished a career-best fourth in the points standings and earned $172,150, including points-fund cash.

But Fuller was unable to maintain that performance level in 2010. A new in-house engine program installed by his Gypsum Express team owner, John Wight, seemed to nudge Fuller out of the comfort zone he had found with Custom Race Engines and he struggled all season, winning just twice (back-to-back in June) and recording just six top-five finishes (after bagging 17 in ’09). He tumbled to eighth in the ’10 points standings and his earnings fell to $118,875.

Then came the trying 2011 season. First there was an early-season breakup with Wight; Fuller left the only dirt Late Model owner he had ever known after Wight’s falling out with World Racing Group officials over DIRTcar sanctioning of his two New York tracks prompted the businessman to prohibit Fuller from entering WoO LMS events. Fuller was able to strike out on his own thanks to help from BPG Inc.’s Chad Sinon (the Pennsylvanian’s sponsorship check allowed Fuller to purchase one of Wight’s Rocket cars), former New York track owners Harvey and Joan Fink (the couple provided Fuller an engine) and other benefactors, but he was woefully under-equipped to compete against the nation’s top dirt Late Model drivers. He went winless in ’11, scoring just two top-five finishes and finishing 10th in the points standings.

Fuller called his 2011 “pretty disastrous.” He earned just $73,070 – over 100-grand less than he pocketed just two years earlier – and admitted that the only thing that kept him on the road was his stubborn streak.

“I guess it just got to the point where I wanted to prove that I could do the whole series with one car,” said Fuller. “We did it, but it was a brutal season.”

Fuller was hopeful that he had weathered the worst in ’11, but after seven 2012 WoO LMS events he came to the realization that he can’t continue piling highway miles onto his hauler without getting results. Even with a backup car at his disposal this year thanks to assistance from former WoO LMS team owner Dale Beitler, Fuller has been unable to gain traction on the tour. After a season-opening Georgia/Florida trip that included a flip at Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Fla., and not a single top-10 finish, Fuller knew the Illini 100 weekend would be do-or-die. Falling short of the $1,500-to-start A-Main was the last straw.

Sitting 15th in the points standings with just $4,300 in earnings to his credit this year (he had to forfeit last-place money each time he used an emergency provisional), Fuller had to make the right choice for his family (wife Lori and 7-year-old daughter Ainsley). That means focusing on a schedule of dirt Late Model specials closer to his home – including WoO LMS shows when the tour visits the Northeast – and selected DIRTcar Big-Block Modified events with the New York-based J&S Racing team.

“It was a hard decision to make,” Fuller said in a press release announcing his plans for the remainder of the 2012 season. “I’m just so far behind right now (on the WoO LMS). We dug ourselves too big of a hole already and there’s just no way that we can catch up.

“We really needed to make some money while we were in Georgia and Florida to be able to continue with the series and that didn’t happen. The second night out we wrecked pretty good and that put us even further behind. I think it’s time to sit back and reevaluate where we are as a race team.”

Good luck, Tim Fuller. We know we’ll see you back at the front of a World of Outlaws pack, partying like it’s 2009.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Dirt Late Model Racing’s King of All Media

Clint Smith: Dirt Late Model racing’s King of All Media?

In a manner of speaking, that’s what the veteran World of Outlaws Late Model Series standout is becoming.

He has a sharp, up-to-date Web site ( He’s on top of the social media scene, keeping fans informed of his exploits on both Facebook ( and Twitter (

Clint Smith (r) in the WEKS radio studio.
And last month Smith expanded his reach to the airwaves, joining a local radio show, the Southern Race Report on WEKS-92.5 ‘The Bear’ in Griffin, Ga., as a co-host.

Now if the driver known as ‘Cat Daddy’ can land a job as a pit reporter for, a color commentator for SPEED and a columnist for a magazine, he’ll have all his media bases covered – and just might get that WoO LMS press card he’s been asking tour director Tim Christman about.

At the moment, Smith’s most high-profile media role is as a budding radio personality. He made his in-studio radio debut Feb. 8, accepting an opportunity to share the microphone with Southern Race Report co-hosts ‘Uncle Rich,’ Brad Myers and longtime Atlanta Journal-Constitution motorsports writer Rick Minter. He’s been a regular on the show ever since, offering his insider’s view of the dirt-track scene every Wednesday from 7-8 p.m.

“They called me to come be on the show one time,” Smith said of his path to the radio gig. “Then me coming on got to be habit forming, so they just said, ‘The hell with it, you’re just gonna be a co-host of it.’ It’s not a paid deal, but it’s fun.”

The always opinionated Smith, who celebrates his 47th birthday on March 20, isn’t merely an expert analyst for the show. He’s right in the mix, lining up guests from the dirt-track arena and questioning them when they call in or visit the studio.

“I got all the dirt guys’ phone numbers so I usually handle getting up with them to come on the show,” said Smith, whose home in Senoia, Ga., is just a couple miles from the radio station’s studio. “The other guys on the show do the (NASCAR) Cup stuff, and I bring some dirt stuff to the show. Now that we’re getting more into the season we’ll probably get the biggest (dirt) winner in the south each week, and we’ll probably cover a World of Outlaws guy each week because that’s what I do.”

Cat Daddy on the air.
Smith has already had several of his WoO LMS brethren on the show, including Shane Clanton, Tim Fuller and Tim McCreadie. Other dirt Late Model guests have included locals Bubba Pollard and Brian Reese.

How does Smith rate his interviewing style? He thinks he handles the role well.

“I’ve been asked so many questions over the years, I know you have to phrase the question so it’s gonna get more than a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer,” said Smith. “It’s gotta be direct, but still enough to make the guy talk. Just keep it to a certain topic and make sure it will take a little bit to answer.

“Of course, you get Clanton on there and he’s gonna ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer things anyway.”

So is ‘Cat’ saying that his Georgia buddy Clanton doesn’t rank at the top of his list of interview subjects?

“Yeah, Clanton was too much ‘yes’ and ‘no,’” Smith said with a laugh. “My best interview was probably me and Tim Fuller; we called in on our phones from down in Florida (on Feb. 15 at Bubba Raceway Park), which was pretty cool. T-Mac was good too, and I’d say one of the best was one of my first, Brian Reese. I went to lunch with him first and I told him how to answer questions on the radio and he did a heck of a job.”

Fans outside the radio station’s coverage area south of Atlanta can listen live to Smith and his Southern Race Report cohorts every Wednesday from 7-8 p.m. by logging on to Smith also posts audio of past shows on his Facebook page.

Clint Smith at speed (
To keep abreast of the show’s dirt-track guests, fans should be sure to follow Smith on Twitter. Each week he Tweets a reminder to tune in to the show – one of many updates he sends out on his very active Twitter feed. It’s unlikely you’ll find a dirt Late Model driver who pumps out as much info over Twitter as Smith, who had 933 followers as of the morning of March 20 and hopes to reach the 1,000 mark before the next WoO LMS event, the Illini 100 on March 30-31 at Farmer City (Ill.) Raceway.

“I Tweet every word myself,” Smith proudly stated. “I’ve been thinking I might even take a picture (from inside the car) under the caution and Tweet it out.”

Just remember, Cat Daddy -- no texting and driving.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

The World of Outlaws’ Number One Fan…From Ireland

Sean O’Donnell has no illusions about the first impression he presents when he’s at a dirt track. Wearing green shorts, green sneakers, a green cap, a sleeveless t-shirt and strands of green party beads around his neck, he knows he doesn’t look like the typical World of Outlaws Late Model Series fan.

Irish WoO LMS fan Sean O'Donnell.
“People always ask me, ‘Why are you dressed like this?’” O’Donnell said last month while getting ready for an evening of WoO LMS action during the UNOH DIRTcar Nationals Presented by Summit Racing Equipment at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla. “I tell them, ‘This is the way I dress every day.’”

O’Donnell, of course, is a proud Irishman, so his penchant for sporting the color green is no surprise. It’s his habit of flashing his unique style at WoO LMS events that turns so many heads.

While O’Donnell, 62, is a native of West Belfast in Northern Ireland – not exactly a hotbed of dirt-track stock car racing – he’s become an unabashed fan of the WoO LMS. Currently a resident of Winter Garden, Fla., he attends World of Outlaws shows throughout the Southeast. This year he’s already taken in races at Volusia, Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Fla., and Screven Motor Speedway in Sylvania, Ga., and in recent years he’s seen the tour compete at such ovals as The Dirt Track at Charlotte in Concord, N.C., Swainsboro (Georgia) Raceway, Needmore Speedway in Norman Park, Ga., and Columbus (Miss.) Speedway.

The seeds of dirt-track racing were planted in O’Donnell when he was a youngster and spent time living outside Albany, N.Y. He remembers watching Big-Block Modified races at the nearby Lebanon Valley Speedway and other area tracks.

After an extended period away from the dirt-track scene, O’Donnell reconnected with the sport in 2005. Living in Florida at the time, he saw that the DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds would be racing at Volusia during the DIRTcar Nationals and decided to check out a night of competition. He enjoyed the Modified action, but he fell in love with the full-fender division that shared the card.

“I saw them World of Outlaws Late Model boys out there and I was impressed,” said O’Donnell. “They really do some racing. I’ve been following them ever since.”

The 2005 DIRTcar Nationals happened to be the dirt Late Model coming-out party for Tim McCreadie, who that year at Volusia won his first-ever WoO LMS A-Main as well as two other DIRTcar UMP-sanctioned features. O’Donnell adopted the former DIRTcar Big-Block Modified regular from Watertown, N.Y., as his favorite driver.

“He’s one of the best guys that does the Outlaws right,” O’Donnell said of McCreadie. “He’s a good guy and I can remember watching his father ‘Barefoot’ Bob run a Big-Block back up in New York.”

O’Donnell proclaims his backing of McCreadie to the public as part of the distinctive parking-lot display he sets up behind his Toyota at each WoO LMS event he attends. He hangs a T-Mac shirt on a chair, puts a McCreadie hat on one of the three stuffed animals (Jerry, Connor and Seamus) he positions on another and shows off a Sweeteners Plus No. 39 license plate. O’Donnell also flies an Irish flag from his car, arranges a variety of Irish-themed items in the open hatch of his car, plays Irish music out of his vehicle's speakers and sits in a fold-out chair between two large coolers. His pre-race tail-gate party includes drinking pints of Guinness beer (“Guinness is not a drink,” he likes to say, “it’s a meal”), sipping some Paddy Old Irish Whiskey and chowing down on various delicacies (shrimp and cold cuts were on his menu the afternoon of Volusia’s WoO LMS finale).

While O’Donnell travels to the races alone (his wife and two kids – a 21-year-old son who attends the University of Florida and an 18-year-old daughter – aren’t into the sport), he’s never at a loss for conversation. He has a cheery, “Hi, Lads!” for all passersby and breezily makes new friends. He’s also easy to spot, either in the parking lot (he arrives hours before race time) or meandering through the pit area with his homemade shillelagh, a traditional Irish walking stick (he makes them in his spare time and has given one to McCreadie as a gift).

“We have fun,” said O’Donnell, who typically returns to Ireland for several months each year to work as a lobbyist. “I enjoy all the people at the racetrack. If anybody wants to stop by and talk racing or politics about Ireland, we’ll sit there and talk – and maybe have a pint too.”

Monday, February 20, 2012

'Hulkamania' Runs Wild At Bubba Raceway Park

Hulkster, meet the Outlaws. Outlaws, meet the Hulkster.

Professional wrestling legend Hulk Hogan made a special appearance during Saturday night’s Bubba Army Late Model Winter Nationals finale at Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Fla., sending a dose of ‘Hulkamania’ through the stands and the World of Outlaws Late Model Series pit area.

Hulk Hogan directs the field. (Butler photo)
A close friend of BRP owner/radio show host Bubba ‘The Love Sponge’ Clem, Hogan visited the three-eighths-mile oval to serve as the Grand Marshal of the biggest event that Clem has hosted since taking over the facility in the spring of 2011. He watched time trials from the infield and qualifying events from the roof of the scoring tower before heading trackside for one of the most unique pre-race driver introductions in the history of the WoO LMS.

After the 25-car starting field for the 60-lap A-Main was parked in double-file formation on the homestretch, Hogan walked from the back to the front of the pack, shaking hands and posing for a photo with each driver. The pictures were Clem’s “Hogan-themed” gift to the race’s competitors; he said he would get each driver an autographed print of their meeting with the Hulkster.

Judging by the excited looks on the drivers’ faces, they all enjoyed their photo-ops with the 58-year-old Hogan. Wearing a sleeveless ‘Bubba Army Racing’ shirt and a blue do-rag, Hogan provided them some of his trademark bravado, pointing at each driver as the photos were snapped and telling them, “Good luck, brother.”

Jason Feger with the Hulkster. (Butler photo)
Hogan seemed to be most impressed with DIRTcar UMP Late Model star Jason Feger of Bloomington, Ill., who struck a Hulkster point-to-the-sky pose as the wrestler approached. Hogan smiled and gave Feger a hand-clasp rather than the handshake everyone else received.

Once the feature lineup was introduced, Hogan stood alongside WoO LMS announcer Rick Eshelman – a huge professional wrestling fan who, with his pre-race interview of Hogan, had the opportunity to picture himself as famed WWE Hall of Fame announcer Mean Jean Okerlund – and put his own twist on the most famous words in racing.

“Gentleman, start your engines…brother!” yelled Hogan.

Finally, Clem enlisted Hogan to throw the green flag for the A-Main. But rather than have Hogan squeeze his 6-foot, 7-inch body into the flagstand, Clem parked a golf cart in the infield grass at the edge of the homestretch racing surface so Hogan could wave the flag and then ride away.

Rick Eckert meets Hulk Hogan.
Standing so close to a charging pack of dirt Late Models did concern Hogan at least a little bit. When WoO LMS director Tim Christman suggested to Clem that Hogan should back away from the track surface, the Hulkster quipped, “I’m with ‘ya brother.”