Earlier this year, Josh Brock scored a breakthrough win in the North/South Super Late Model Challenge at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville (TN). Even as the 2018 ARCA/CRA Super Series champion and his team prepare for Tuesday’s Slinger Nationals at Slinger Speedway (WI), they can’t help but relive the monumental win.
The Nashville race aired on Speed51’s Short Track America on MAVTV Sunday night. While Brock and his team were at dinner before enjoying the rest of their evening watching the Prelude to the Nationals at Slinger, the broadcast from Brock’s win started airing.
“We went to dinner last night,” Brock said on Speed51’s The Morning Bullring. “We were eating dinner, and about halfway through, we looked up and Short Track America was on MAVTV. That gave me chillbumps. I got to watch myself while eating. The whole crew was pumped up again. We went to the track, watched the Late Model feature, got the hauler parked.
“I think I’ve watched it every time it’s been on air,” he added. “It doesn’t get old. It’s great for us short track racers, something to be really proud of. Between Speed51 and MAVTV, you do a great job and put on a good show on TV for us.”
Now, Brock will look to add another marquee win to his resume, this time at a track he is visiting for the first time. The Kentucky native has some experience at similar high-banked bullrings, but this will be his first trip to the Wisconsin quarter-mile.
“I’ve ran some tracks similar to Slinger,” Brock explained. “Anderson [IN] is kind of like Slinger. I grew up on a track in Tennessee, Riverview Speedway, it’s no longer open, but it’s really similar to Slinger. I’m going there today with hopes up high. I’ve got a great crew behind me, it looks like a blast to drive. It’s a driver’s track, it looks like. Just get up on the wheel and go.”
While Brock has not competed at Slinger before, he knows from his experience at similar tracks and his homework going into the event that being aggressive will be key to success.
“You have to be on the wheel all the time driving the crap out of it,” he said. “There is an outside groove, so you can work it inside-outside if you’re trying to get around lapped cars or pass guys for position.
“You’re running 11-second laps around a quarter-mile, that is absolutely flying,” Brock added. “You’ve got to keep the car off the ground so you’re not bottoming out and wrecking every lap. If you lose momentum, it might take you two laps to get going because it’s so fast.”
Preparation will also be key to have a chance at victory after 200 laps at the demanding bullring, both physically and mentally.
“Hydration is very big. You’ve just to constantly stay hydrated, being dehydrated is the worst feeling. Eating healthy, trying to stay away from greasy foods, staying hydrated is the biggest thing.
“At those high-banked tracks, it’s a lot of mental preparation,” he continued. “You can get angry on lap 50 and be fighting around, but you’ve got to stay calm because you’ve still got 200, 400 laps to go.”
After all of that, there’s still one more tool a racer might need for success – a sturdy front bumper.
“I think after they saw how I drive, (my crew) started beefing up all my front bumpers,” Brock joked. “For Slinger and Redbud, it’s on there and ready to go. When it comes to winning, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do, man.”
Fans unable to make the trip to Slinger, Wisconsin for Saturday’s 40th Annual Slinger Nationals can watch the race live on Speed51’s pay-per-view broadcast. Click here to order your video ticket today. The broadcast is subject to a 100-mile blackout range.
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51.com Southeast Editor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Speed51.com photo