In every sport, there is a legend that puts up the kind of numbers that makes everyone look at them a second time because they are that remarkable. In Northeast Dirt Modified racing, one driver with a number of these marks is New Jersey’s Brett Hearn. While known far and wide as an eight-time champion of the Super DIRTcar Series and six-time winner of Super DIRT Week, those only comprise a piece of a major mark on the horizon; 900 career feature wins.
In more than 40 years of racing, Hearn has collected 897 wins at 49 tracks in 11 states and two Canadian provinces. He is the all-time wins leader at both Orange County Fair Speedway (NY) with 301 overall, and Albany-Saratoga Speedway (NY) with 108. While competing on Fridays mostly at Albany-Saratoga, Hearn has gone back and forth with Saturday competition at OCFS and his current Saturday home track of Lebanon Valley Speedway. It is there where he got his 897th win this past Saturday in the Big-Block Modified division, also bringing him to 99 wins in the division, just one away from another special mark.
“We got a couple of milestones coming up quick, 900 and 100 at the Valley. There were years where we competed full-time at Orange County and part-time at Lebanon Valley. We had a couple of years where we were interrupted by the (NASCAR) Busch Series and a couple where we didn’t run complete seasons where Super DIRT ran Saturday night races. All that being considered, I’ve got 26 Saturday night championships and considering the years I lost, that’s pretty cool,” Hearn told Speed51.com powered by JEGS.
At age 58, there are some physical challenges for Hearn, but that does not compare to the mental ones that he has created himself.
“Outside the car the biggest challenge for me has been my attention to detail. I’m never satisfied. That has been one of the hardest things to deal with. As for in the car, everything has become pretty automatic.”
Most drivers still competing at this age would be grateful to still be competitive. For Hearn, he is grateful to be one of the strongest every night.
“We’re still near the top of the game, as long as we are there; I feel really fortunate that I get paid to play a game. I appreciate the fact that I get to be able to do that, as long as it doesn’t wear me out completely and we have a good team with good backing, there’s nothing I would rather be doing right now.”
As the month of June begins, Hearn finds himself in an early points battle at Lebanon Valley with the likes of Andy Bachetti, Keith Flach, Kenny Tremont, Jr., and JR Heffner, hunting for his 12th Big Block title at the “Valley of Speed” and sixth in a row. He is confident he has what it will take to get just that as well as possibly getting back to victory lane on the Super DIRTcar Series.
“We’ve taken our lumps here in a couple of races, but we’ve only been out 12 times and we got four wins, so the percentages are good. The speed of the car has been really good with the exception of just a couple of races. I’m pretty psyched about things moving forward.”
-By: Connor Sullivan, Speed51.com CT, MA & Long Island Editor – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo Credit: MoJo Photos/Speed51.com