Home Dirt Late Model News Mike Ruefer’s Super Late Model Performance Ranking “Top 50”

Mike Ruefer’s Super Late Model Performance Ranking “Top 50”

Brandon Sheppard – Jacy Norgaard Photo

August 2020 “Summer Heat Edition”

It’s been hot and dry in my neighborhood. Then a Hurricane type storm decides it wants to destroy Eastern Iowa. Many families have had a tough time here lately and this year will go down in the history books as very challenging on and off the track.

I’m actually pleasantly surprised at how much racing we’ve actually gotten to enjoy considering all the health, political and normal weather barriers that impact the racing schedule. Almost all of the top performing drivers were able to race somewhere and someplace to keep their operation going. There are not a lot big changes this month but we do have new drivers entering the ranking and the rate gap between is ever so tightening

So let’s get on with the show and quickly recap the August “Top 10” for the fifth edition of the SLMP Ranking.

The top two spots don’t change between Brandon Sheppard #1 and Jimmy Owens #2 but the gap between the two has been reduced to 5.62. I’ll be honest I don’t see the performance dropping off for either anytime soon yet crazy things happen in racing. I’m staying zoomed in to this race to the finish.

I was watching Zack Dohm win and run up front in his region and BOOM, here he is jumping into #3. The other regional star holding down #4 is Max Blair. Both are good and continue to build on the family legacy started by their famous fathers.

The next duo is Brandon Overton #5 and Ricky Weiss #6. Both are very close to each other statistically with only .42 separating their average rate. Brandon Overton wins more and Ricky Weiss is more consistent.

What can I say about Tim McCredie #7 and Josh Richards #8 that I haven’t said already? They’re tough and experience drivers who get the job done. I think there will be more roof pounding and finger raising victory lane celebrations for both.

Last but not least to round out the “Top 10” is Dale McDowell #9 and Ross Bailes #10. In the South these two drivers continue to be a force to contend with. Never count either out of a great finishing position.

Well folks that wraps up my turbo analysis as we head into September. Gone is the World 100 and Knoxville Late Model Nationals. In their place we go on an Intercontinental adventure that leads us back for a Day Trip at FALS then trucking out to I-80. Along the way there will be exciting regional events to keep our hearts and souls happy. See you next month.

The current event qualifier number for August was 13 features and will now go up to 15 in September. I think I’ll hold it there. Currently 118 drivers have met this threshold. All results are tracked via DirtonDirt. Without them and their attention to detail because they’re the best, I couldn’t do this and have this much fun.

With 1048 drivers currently being tracked since January 1st, here is the Super Late Model Performance Ranking “Top 50” for August. It’s a strong list of the “Best of the Best” from around the country.

1          Brandon Sheppard

2          Jimmy Owens

3          Zack Dohm

4          Max Blair

5          Brandon Overton

6          Ricky Weiss

7          Tim McCreadie

8          Josh Richards

9          Dale McDowell

10        Ross Bailes

11        Chris Madden

12        Travis Stemler

13        Jonathan Davenport

14        Ryan Unzicker

15        Rick Eckert

16        Gregg Satterlee

17        Shane Clanton

18        Jesse Stovall

19        Brian Shirley

20        Tyler Erb

21        Ricky Thornton Jr.

22        Payton Looney

23        Chris Ferguson

24        Cade Dillard

25        Jason Feger

26        Kent Robinson

27        Jimmy Mars

28        Frank Heckenast Jr.

29        Spencer Hughes

30        Bobby Pierce

31        Shannon Babb

32        Cory Hedgecock

33        Billy Moyer

34        Devin Moran

35        Steve Casebolt

36        Dennis Erb Jr.

37        Kyle Bronson

38        Mike Marlar

39        Donald McIntosh

40        Chad Simpson

41        Chase Junghans

42        Mason Zeigler

43        Timothy Culp

44        Josh Rice

45        Tanner English

46        Darrell Lanigan

47        Ryan Gustin

48        Rusty Schlenk

49        Michael Page

50        Josh Putnam

What is the Super Late Model Performance Ranking? The SLM Performance Ranking has its origins from the A-Team Ranking developed by Sam Holbrooks in 1996 and printed in “Behind the Wheel” and Late Model America.” The SLM Performance Ranking is a national ranking for Open Motor events that pay a minimum $2000 to win. Each driver who makes a feature event will earn a mathematical formula based rate built on performance, competition and durability. The final ranking is based on rate and logic rules that reward racing more. Nothing in the rate, rank or logic is subjective. It’s just all numbers, math and rules. The SLM Performance Ranking isn’t about who is best but who is having the best year. If you think that makes the driver “The Best” that’s ok with me.


Mike Ruefer

Photographer & Writer


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