Race Weekend Central

This Day in Dirt: David Gravel Skunks Outlaw Field at Volusia for 3rd Win of 2023

Dirt Racing’s Winning Moment: Two-time defending World of Outlaws runner-up David Gravel continued a red-hot start to 2023, blasting by polesitter Jacob Allen on the opening lap and went flag-to-flag to win his third feature in four races at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla. on Monday (March 6).

Gravel maintains the series points lead following the win over Carson Macedo, who finished second.

2023 SPRING SHOWDOWN NIGHT TWO RACE RESULTS

Dirt Racing’s Dramatic Moment: The WoO sprint car feature was no slouch, but the dramatic moment of the night Monday at Volusia came in the three-quarter modified support feature, where Lake Helen, Fla.’s Timmy Hogan prevailed in a pitched battle with his cousin Mikey Kopka coming to the checkered flag.

As of this writing DirtVision has not made a replay of the winning move available, but Hogan prevailed on turn 2 exit after the white flag flew, with Kopka’s last-gasp move in turn 4 sending him spinning as Hogan took the checkers. 

What Dirt Racing Fans’ll Be Group Chatting About This Morning

Whether this is by design or not, Friday’s World of Outlaws feature at Port Royal Speedway may go down as the most anticipated race of 2023 for the series outside of Knoxville. Why? Because the season is nearly a month old and it hasn’t left Volusia. There’s been nothing wrong with the racing at the Florida oval, but contesting the entirety of the first two tour events on the same track means that analysis like this is exceedingly premature.

How exactly did the entire Outlaws field miss a spinning Brian Brown on lap 20? The world may never know.

The scariest incident of the night also came in the modified support feature, with Robert Fleming Jr. enduring a nasty roll-over accident with five laps to go that tore down a billboard in turn 3. Fleming fortunately walked away, but his incident exposed just how little wall there actually is in Volusia’s turns 3 and 4. 

Considering just how vocal I’ve been the past two seasons about the walls at Williams Grove Speedway needing an upgrade to prevent racecars from leaving the ballpark, I’ll say the same thing here. Turns 3 and 4 at Volusia would seem to be a good home for the Armco walls that Knoxville and Jackson Motorplex feature.

I do applaud Volusia and the Outlaws for embracing Bike Week in hosting their Spring Showdown event this week, but I also have to say I agree with this rather sarcastic take regarding the Wallace family’s Grand Marshal appearance at the track Monday night.

Leaving Volusia, DirtonDirt landed a killer interview with Brandon Overton following his headline-making scuffle with Chris Madden at Cherokee Speedway on Sunday. In short, Overton had very little to say about Madden and a lot more to say about the track conditions that I maligned in Sunday’s column on this site.

See also
This Weekend in Dirt: Overton/Madden Scuffle at Cherokee Tops Embarrassing Weekend for Southern Late Models

If anything, having read the interview I have an even higher estimation of Overton. And I hope that collectively the crowd of fans, drivers and track crew that have made Cherokee a viable facility find a way to allow it to host a race actually worth watching and competing in.

Dirt Racing’s Hero of the Day

Yes, I’m putting a lot of attention on the support class feature, but modified winner Hogan had one of the better victory lane interviews a dirt track will likely see in 2023. Genuine enthusiasm and multiple recognitions of race fans that either came out or tuned in on a Monday. And yes, speaking as a DirtVision subscriber, you’re welcome Mr. Hogan.

Dirt Racing’s Victim of the Night

Fleming. Just the latest to find out that it doesn’t matter how big or small your racecar is, you fought the wall and the wall won.

Numbers Game

2

Dirt tracks that ran oval-track racing programs in the U.S. Monday night.

86

Nation’s largest car count Monday night, the Lone Star Stock Car Tour at Devil’s Bowl Speedway in Mesquite, Texas.

$10,000

The nation’s largest purse awarded Monday night, to the World of Outlaws feature winner at Volusia.

Up Next: Frontstretch will be back Wednesday morning (March 8) with coverage from the second night of the Lonestar Stock Car Tour at Devil’s Bowl Speedway. Streaming coverage can be found on IMCA TV.

About the author

Richmond, Virginia native. Wake Forest University class of 2008. Affiliated with Frontstretch since 2008, as of today the site's first dirt racing commentator. Emphasis on commentary. Big race fan, bigger First Amendment advocate.

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