CONCORD, NC – Oct. 2, 2012 – Bub McCool will have a special ‘treat’ for fans when he unloads his No. 57J dirt Late Model in the Rolling Wheels Raceway Park pit area on Thursday night (Oct. 4).
The newly-crowned 2012 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Rookie of the Year has slapped a unique Halloween-themed wrap on his machine, assuring himself plenty of attention when the national tour visits the five-eighths-mile oval in central New York for a 50-lap, $10,000-to-win NAPA Auto Parts Super DIRT Week XLI showdown.
McCool, 35, of Vicksburg, Miss., won’t reveal much about the appearance of his two Victory Circle cars, which he reworked over the past two weeks while stationed at Hoosier State racer Chad Stapleton’s shop in Indianapolis after driving one of Stapleton’s mounts to a 16th-place finish in last Saturday night’s Knoxville (Iowa) Late Model Nationals.
“It’s kind of flamed up with a few characters on it,” said McCool, who has made running a Halloween-themed car an October tradition in recent seasons. “But that’s about all I can say. My mama has reamed me out about not letting nobody see this race car before it gets unloaded, so you’ll just have to look at it on Thursday.”
New t-shirts and diecasts will accent the debut of McCool’s Fright Night car – and undoubtedly add to his burgeoning popularity on the WoO LMS. His affable personality, hard-nosed racing style and success as a first-time national-tour traveler has made him a driver to watch.
McCool enters Thursday’s action having already clinched the 2012 WoO LMS Rookie of the Year award. With four races remaining he holds an insurmountable 282-point lead (3,304-3,022) over Kent Robinson of Bloomington, Ind., in the rookie standings, which are determined using drivers’ 25 best finishes. Jack Sullivan of Greenbrier, Ark., who dropped off the series as a regular in August but has entered 32 of the season’s 36 events, is a distant third in the rookie battle with 2,918 points.
The $10,000 Rookie of the Year honor tops off a memorable campaign for McCool, who scored his first-ever WoO LMS A-Main victory on April 27 at Tazewell (Tenn.) Speedway and also has finishes of second and third among his seven top-five placings. He sits seventh in the overall points standings, just 38 markers behind sixth-place Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga.
“We’ve definitely accomplished what we wanted to this year,” said McCool, who trails fifth-place Chub Frank of Bear Lake, Pa., by 128 points. “I would be satisfied with what we’ve done. I’d like to get into the top five (in the final points) if we possibly could, but winning the rookie deal, winning a race and getting the finishes like we have is a pretty good year for us.”
Chasing the 2012 WoO LMS has been a learning experience for McCool, who will make his first career start at Rolling Wheels on Thursday.
“It’s definitely taught us some things about race cars and tire choices,” McCool said of his ambitious ’12 schedule. “Racing at a lot of different racetracks all the time definitely makes you a better race car driver. I feel like we’ve gotten a lot better this year. We’ve learned some things that hopefully will pay off the rest of this year and when we get back at it next year.”
McCool said he plans to fly home on Friday morning to compete in this weekend’s sixth annual Gumbo Nationals at Greenville (Miss.) Speedway. He’ll drive one of Klint Byars’s cars in the event while his crew stays on the road; he’ll meet up with his team on Oct. 10 at The Dirt Track at Charlotte in Concord, N.C., for the running of the Circle K World of Outlaws Late Model Showdown.
While the 2012 WoO LMS Rookie of the Year crown has been decided, three other special awards are still to be decided over the season’s final four events.
* The Raye Vest Memorial Pill-Draw Awards presented by McCarthy’s One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning. The WoO LMS regulars with the lowest and highest time-trial pill-draw averages during the 2012 season will win the pair of $500 checks – spots currently held by Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y. (lowest at 35.3) and Rick Eckert of York, Pa. (highest at 45.65).
* Chassis Builders Challenge. This year the tour’s top chassis constructor is being determined by a points system that rewards points to all chassis builders represented in a WoO LMS event. If, for instance, 10 different chassis are represented in an A-Main field, the highest-finishing chassis builder receives 11 points, the second-highest chassis builder earns 10 points, and so on down to two points for the builder of the lowest-finishing chassis. All chassis builders who do not have a car qualify for the A-Main receive one point.
Rocket Chassis currently leads the standings with 355 points. Team Zero by Bloomquist is second (309 points) and Capital Race Cars (242) follow.
* DirtonDirt.com Hard Charger Award. The driver in the catbird’s seat for the honor – a $500 check presented to the driver who improves the most cumulative positions in A-Mains during the WoO LMS season – is currently Chub Frank, who has improved a total of 147 spots through 36 events.
Thursday night’s program at Rolling Wheels, which also includes the Mr. DIRTcar 358-Modified Series, is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. Grandstand gates will open at 5 p.m.
Adult reserved and general admission tickets are $39 for the doubleheader. Students 17-and-under are $10 in reserved seating and general admission areas, while children 9-and-under are free in general admission only.
Tickets can be purchased in advance by logging on to www.worldofoutlaws.com/tickets or calling the event hot hotline at 877-395-8606.
More information about NAPA Auto Parts Super DIRT Week XLI can be obtained by logging on to www.SuperDirtWeekOnline.com or calling DIRTcar Northeast Headquarters at .315-834-6606.
For more information on the WoO LMS, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com.
2012 Raye Vest Memorial Pill-Draw Award Standings (as of Sept. 22):
1. Tim Fuller 35.3
2. Chub Frank 36.8
3. Kent Robinson 37.4
4. Clint Smith 37.5
5. Shane Clanton 38.2
6. Vic Coffey 40
7. Bub McCool 41.3
8. Tim McCreadie 42.9
9. Pat Doar 44.3
10. Darrell Lanigan 45.62
11. Rick Eckert 45.65
2012 World of Outlaws Late Model Series Chassis Builders Challenge Standings (as of Sept. 22):
1. Rocket Chassis 355
2. Team Zero by Bloomquist 309
3. Capital Race Cars 242
4. Victory Circle 235
5. Warrior 222
6. MasterSbilt 195
7. Mars Race Cars 158
8. GRT 111
9. MB Customs 107
10. Pierce Race Cars 102
DirtonDirt.com Hard Charger Standings (most A-Main positions improved as of Sept. 22):
1. Chub Frank 147
2. Vic Coffey 131
3. Rick Eckert 121
4. Clint Smith 119
5. Darrell Lanigan 111
6. Tim McCreadie 95
7. Kent Robinson 94
8. Tim Fuller 90
9. Jack Sullivan 87
10. Pat Doar 75
The World of Outlaws Late Model Series is brought to fans across the country by many important sponsors and partners, including Arizona Sport Shirts (Official Apparel Company), Armor All (Official Car Care Products), Gravely Tractors (Official Lawn Equipment), Hoosier Racing Tires (Official Racing Tires), STP (Official Fuel Treatment), Vicci (Official Uniform), VP Racing Fuel (Official Racing Fuel), DirtonDirt.com (Hard Charger Award) and McCarthy’s One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning (Raye Vest Memorial Pill Draw Award); in addition to contingency sponsors Butlerbuilt, Cometic Gasket, Comp Cams, Dominator Race Products, Eibach Springs, JE Pistons, Klotz Synthetic Lubricants, MSD Ignition, Ohlins Shocks, QuarterMaster, Roush Yates Performance Parts, Superflow Dynos, Wix Filter, Wrisco Aluminum and XS Power Racing Batteries; along with manufacturer sponsors Integra Shocks, GRT Chassis, Jake’s Carts, Longacre, Racing Electronics, Rocket Chassis, TNT Rescue, and Warrior Chassis.