Race Weekend Central

Daytona to Dirt: Kyle Larson, Stewart Friesen Stymied by Their Money Racetracks

NASCAR (and SRX) moving up north to run on Northeast asphalt left its representation within the dirt ranks a bit more lacking this week.

Lawless Alan

The Truck Series regular had a mixed bag of results in wingless micro sprint competition at Millbridge Speedway. Wednesday night (July 12) saw Alan navigate an uneventful heat race and move forward in the 30-lap feature, improving from 16th to 11th by race’s end.

The same could not be said Saturday. Alan lost two spots in his heat race and could not improve in the feature, finishing eighth of 11 cars.

Kyle Busch

Though he didn’t get behind the wheel this week, the Cup Series regular did make headlines with the announcement that he will be racing in the wingless micro division of Hyper 600 Speedweek at Action Track USA in Kutztown, Pa. this coming Wednesday.


Posted by Action Track USA on Saturday, July 15, 2023

Ross Chastain

The Cup Series regular stayed out of trouble but did little else in winged micro sprint competition at Millbridge Wednesday night, improving one spot in his heat race and two in the feature to finish seventh in the 13-car field.

Chastain will be back on dirt this coming week, as he is scheduled to make his Northeast modified debut driving for Matt Sheppard as part of the Short Track Super Series at Utica-Rome Speedway in New York Thursday.

Ross Chastain Dirt Modified 7-15

Huge props to our friend Nathan Solomon from The Podium Finish for capturing this.Ross Chastain provided some more details on how his deal with Matt Sheppard came together to race a dirt modified at Utica-Rome Speedway and what he expects.

Posted by RSN Trackside on Saturday, July 15, 2023

Tyler Dippel

The former Truck Series regular returned to modified competition with the STSS in the rescheduled Firecracker 50 race at Fonda Speedway in New York Monday night, running as high as 10th in the middle of the feature before fading to 15th in the final running order.

Stewart Friesen

The Truck Series regular kept very busy in his off week, running multiple races in his Northeast modified. Friesen’s dirt racing exploits started Saturday night with a fifth-place finish at the Fonda Speedway after being part of a barbecue benefit for those afflicted with autism at the track earlier in the afternoon.

Staying in New York, Friesen competed with the Super DIRTcar Series Sunday at Weedsport Speedway and had a strong run, leading more than 50 of the 100 laps in the Hall of Fame 100 feature event. However, despite all those laps led, Friesen was unable to hold off Matt Sheppard and eventual race winner Mat Williamson.

Monday night, Friesen returned to Fonda for the Firecracker 50 and battled a bad pill draw all night long, having to run from 10th to fourth in his heat race, then from 12th to second in the feature event. Friesen got a front-row restart alongside eventual race winner Sheppard with 12 laps to go, but washed up the track in turn 2 and lost the position to Alex Yankowski; by the time Friesen retook second, Sheppard had driven off into the sunset.

Friesen was visibly disappointed at the result, lamenting on the Dirt Track Digest TV broadcast that while he loved Fonda Speedway, “the track’s been a s—hole the last few weeks.”

Kasey Kahne

The former Cup Series regular ran all four nights of sprint car competition at Eldora Speedway this past week but had little to say in any of the events. Kahne failed to advance to one of the preliminary features for the Eldora Million Wednesday night, then failed to advance out of the second C-main on Million night.

Kahne’s results got a little bit better with regard to the Kings Royal, as he qualified for the A-main both on the Knight Before and for Saturday’s Royal in his first start in the crown-jewel event in over a decade.

Kahne posted finishes of 20th and ninth in those races, respectively.

Kyle Larson

The Cup Series regular made headlines at Eldora, but not in the way he intended to. After missing last year’s late model Million due to wedding commitments, Larson entered Wednesday as one of the favorites for the big money. He ran like it, going from seventh to second in his heat race and finishing third in his preliminary feature.

The Million was a different story. Larson again ran well, winning the fifth heat race Thursday night and running between fifth and sixth for the first segment of the Million feature. The lap 21 restart after the scheduled fuel stop, however, brought disaster, with Larson enduring two vicious impacts in the race’s Big One.

Larson was not injured in the crash, but the damage was so extensive that the No. 57 team was unable to complete repairs with the parts they had in hand, forcing Larson to miss Kings Royal preliminary action on Friday.

Larson did run the Royal program Saturday night, improving from 15th to fifth in the feature event despite a one-groove racetrack that put passing at a premium all night.

See also
This Weekend in Dirt: Donny Schatz Crowned King of Rough & Tumble Kings Royal

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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