Short track pilots from all over the country are making the trek to what promises to be one of the biggest races of the year, as Tennessee’s Bristol Motor Speedway plays host this weekend to the inaugural Short Track U.S. Nationals.
The speedway is usually home to NASCAR stock cars, but this year the high banked, high speed short track will put short track racers in the spotlight on May 19-21.
The event will feature action from asphalt Super Late Models, Pro Late Models, Late Model Stock Cars, Modifieds, Compacts and Street Stocks.
Among the 69 entrants for the Pro Late Model portion of the weekend is Flowery Branch, Georgia’s Dalton Grindle, who is set to pilot the No. 23 Waters Motors/NGMT Chevrolet at the fast half mile.
The 22-year-old is a short track veteran, with over eight years experience in asphalt Late Models on speedways around the southeast. His most recent start came in January at SpeedFest 2017 at Cordele, Georgia’s Watermelon Capital Speedway. After starting the day in 11th place, he recorded a strong ninth place result against a stout field of Pro Late Models from around the country.
Grindle has competed in several events for various sanctioning bodies, including the Southern Super Series, the CRA Super Series, the Georgia Asphalt Series and the ASA Southeast Asphalt Tour. He’s seen action at Georgia’s Lanier National Speedway and Gresham Motorsports Park, along with Florida’s Five Flags Speedway and South Alabama Speedway in Opp, Alabama, among others.
With sponsorship from Gainesville, Georgia’s Jim Waters Motor Company and North Georgia Medical Transport, Grindle’s effort is the epitome of local short track racing. His No. 23 Chevrolets are prepared by Hoschton, Georgia’s Ace In The Hole Motorsports, led by veteran driver and car builder Jimmy Garmon.
Garmon brings his own experience to the team, including a win in the famed World Crown 300 in 1998 and a host of races around the southeast.
Grindle will need all of that experience this weekend at the world’s fastest half mile speedway. With the Pro Late Models capable of laps in excess of 129 miles an hour, teams will have to be smart and speedy to have any hope of bringing home the $5,000 winner’s paycheck.
For more information on the Short Track U.S. Nationals, visit BristolMotorSpeedway.com.