Thursday morning I was sure that I would be taking the weekend off from travels due to the high prices of gas and the fact I only had Saturday race that would be at new tracks so I would wait for another week. I sat down to read up on the midget racing news on-line and discovered a line that read see the Open Wheel Series National Midgets (SOWS) race on the “new” quarter mile track in Muskogee Oklahoma. Now this really caught my attention as I could see a new track on Friday night and then go to another track on Saturday. I did some research and found the races were to be held at the old Muskogee Fairgrounds that has a quarter mile oval inside the half-mile that I saw back in 2003. I was on the road by 5PM on Thursday night. Friday I pulled into the Thunderbird Speedway at 6PM for the 8PM start of racing on both ovals at the old Muskogee Fairgrounds. The stock cars run weekly on the half-mile slightly banked clay oval but tonight the flat quarter mile clay oval in the infield was also in use for the SOWS midgets. The big track has concrete walls and big tires to mark the inside of the turns while the infield track has no walls and some small tires on a dirt berm to mark the inside. There is also a motocross course inside the quarter mile. The old lights seemed adequate for the half-mile and they have brought in portable generators for lights on the small track. The speakers were fine for the big crowd that had gathered in the 10-row steel bleachers and the huge 24-row concrete covered grandstand. The car counts were not too high with 12 midgets, 11 street stocks, 9 sport mods, 8 strictly stocks, 7 modifieds, 6 360 mods and 6 super stocks. The heats went quickly with few yellows and after a short intermission the features were called to the track. Most features were 12 laps except the modifieds went 15 and the midgets went 20 laps. Jeffrey Daniels started 4th and won in a close finish over Dustin Boston in the non-stop strictly stock feature. The 360 mods had 2 yellows as Shannon Reheard came from 4th to win this one too. Dillon Rupe took off from the front and won the non-stop super stock feature. Matt Sherrell took off from the pole of the midget feature and led through a series of 4 yellows in the first half of the midget feature then Christopher Bell who started second but dropped back to 4th at the start began passing cars.
got under Sherrell and took the win with Sherrell second and Will Pierce third on the flat track that had dried out and took on some rubber. Action moved back to the big track with a non stop sport mod feature that had the first 5 cars receive the white flag as they raced in a tight pack. Kyle Slader pulled out the close win over Carl Conley and Dillon Rupe. The street stocks had 4 yellows in the feature won by front row starter Kyle Stevens over Matt Burnett from 10th. The modifieds rounded out the night with a wild feature as George Martin and Terry Beckham battled for the lead. The two cars touched on the 10th lap and Beckham stopped with a flat. He rejoined the restart at the rear and hit the wall two laps later when he drove in the 3rd turn too hard but no yellow came out. However on the next lap Martin had a tire go down and needed a wrecker after hitting the first turn wall. Jason Teague inherited the lead and took the win as the races were done at 11:45PM. Saturday I drove across Bell Arkansas and then 8 miles north into Missouri for a look at the Thunder City Speedway in Doniphan . This track completed its first full season last year and was running the second race of this year tonight. This is a small facility that was nearly filled to capacity when I arrived during track packing at 7PM on a warm spring evening. The track has been expanded to a quarter mile slightly banked oval with concrete and Armco walls and a couple of tires to mark the inside of the tight racing confines. The all dirt infield is kept clear but track lights were spotty and there was a speaker for only one of the two 7 row bleachers for the spectators. The races started at 8PM for the 16 four cylinder cars, 6 bombers, 8 modifieds and 8 hobby stocks. The heats went fast with only 3 to 5 cars in each. The 4 cylinder feature was first and had some good racing action but there was lots of banging and spinning on the tight track and it claimed the leaders as Rick Joiner and James Hinkle battled for the lead both spun for the second of the 9 yellows that would eventually be displayed. Both worked their way through the field and Hinkle pulled a slide job to take the lead from Joiner but spun again. Joiner took the win over Tim Pierce. Jerry Emmons won the bomber feature from the pole in a race slowed by 3 yellows. The hobby stocks had only 2 yellows and pole sitter Kevin Holman took the win. The modifieds had trouble with the tight track and had 6 yellows as 4th starter Brayton Anders took the win over Walter Dunn to complete the races at 11PM. Missouri
Thursday and Friday were not good weather as storms went through the central part of the country and I decided not to chance a trip south. Weekend races in