A champion has been crowned in the ULTIMATE Mid-Ohio Valley Super Late Model Series for the 2019 season. West Virginia drivers Tyler Carpenter and Ryan Montgomery finished the season tied with the points lead in the series, with Montgomery being crowned champion. The ULTIMATE rulebook states that drivers have to be a member and participate in 75% of the races to be eligible for the points fund.
The Fairmont, WV driver’s championship comes in his second year behind the wheel of a Super Late Model after spending several seasons in a Pro Late Model. It brings a lot of meaning to the small team, who was unsure of how the points situation would play out after the season finale at Florence Speedway was canceled due to weather.
“It means a lot, last year I really just wanted to get more comfortable behind the wheel of a Super,” said Montgomery. “We worked in the shop every night and it shows that our hard work pays off in the end. I couldn’t do it without my dad and the guys in the shop working with me every night and working on my stuff. They’re setup gurus and we got help from Rocket and everybody.”
The season started off strong for Montgomery before a mechanical issue affected his team later down the road. In ULTIMATE competition, he finished with two wins, four top-fives, and eight top-10s, and also added his first career Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series start in the Pittsburgher 100 last month.
The season ended on a sour note, however, with Montgomery suffering a mechanical issue at the Paul “Butterball” Wooldridge Memorial at Richmond Raceway (KY), preventing him from competing in the feature race.
“We started out really good with winning the first race of the year with the series, but it kind of ended on a bad note with the oil pump belt breaking,” he said. “We wanted to see how the tiebreaker was going to work out in the final race but the weather didn’t cooperate with us well. The season went better and better as we went, we got top five finishes, top ten finishes. If the oil pump wouldn’t have broken I think we would’ve had been sitting pretty comfortable in the points standings. It all ended up working out.”
Montgomery made big strides in his second year of Super Late Model competition, scoring his first win in a Super in the ULTIMATE MoV Mike Sampson Memorial at I-77 Raceway Park back in June. He added another win in September with the ULTIMATE Northeast Series at Greater Cumberland Raceway in Maryland. He credits his success to the seat time he has gotten over the two years in a Super.
“My first year, we were just kind of learning and getting seat time. Going from Crate cars to Supers, I didn’t think there was going to be that big of a difference, but there ended up being a huge difference with there being more horsepower and trying to control the car, trying to set up the car and doing all that,” he said. “I was a little more comfortable in the seat this year with the calls, what to make as the racetrack changed. With just getting more seat time the better we get, so hopefully the third year will be even better.”
As for future plans, Montgomery is scheduled to do more of the same in 2020 as he did in 2019, chasing after a potential second-straight ULTIMATE MoV championship.
“2020 is going to be sticking to the same thing we did this year. We’re going to try to run regionally with the ULTIMATE Mid-Ohio Valley and running here around the house trying to get better as a regional driver,” he stated. “There’s a lot of big-name drivers that live around here and we go to all the racetracks in Kentucky and West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, and Ohio and try to be really competitive and try to win a bunch of races next year.”
Highlights from ULTIMATE Super Late Model races throughout the season can be viewed on the Speed51 Network. Click here to subscribe today.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN/MI) – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Speed51.com