While climbing the racing ranks, Natalie Decker had not competed in a Super Late Model race for two and a half years. That changed last weekend, when the NASCAR Truck Series competitor entered the PRA Tours Super Late Model Series opener at Southern National Motorsports Park.
Decker narrowly missed out on a top-five finish in her return to Super Late Model racing, and now hopes to compete in more Super Late Model events in 2020 as her schedule allows.
Decker competed in the event with the backing of FURY Race Cars, as well as sponsor N29 Capital Partners.
“It’s really cool that I get to have a weekend off like this and run the Super Late Model,” Decker told Speed51. “We’ve had the Super Late Model for about four years now, we just haven’t had time to run it.
“I’m very thankful that FURY has taken over the whole Super Late Model program and I’m here with them. My sponsor, N29, he’s the one who has been backing me since I started racing ARCA, and I wouldn’t be here without their help.”
Before Saturday’s race, Decker last competed in a Super Late Model on September 16, 2017 at Toledo Speedway (OH). On that day, she finished seventh in an ARCA/CRA Super Series event won by Johnny VanDoorn.
While she has a busy racing schedule between the Truck Series with Niece Motorsports and the Trans Am West Coast Championshp with Ave Motorsports, Decker wants to compete in the Super Late Model as often as possible.
“I want to do as much as I can of it,” Decker explained. “My schedule is very busy, between the Truck Series and also doing the Trans-Am Series on the west coast. As much time as I have off, I want to get in the Super Late Model.
“Our schedule is open, but if a weekend comes up and we can go race, we will.”
Decker finished sixth in her return to Super Late Model racing. She spun after contact with J.P. Josiasse on lap 47, but rallied to nearly earn a top-five finish as the race went the remaining 78 laps caution-free.
“The car was amazing through the center,” she said after the race. “We were in that caution, but it was such a good car and we were so close to a top-five. We’ll just have to keep working on the car, making it better, and whatever fits into my schedule, we’ll keep doing as many Super Late Model races as we can.”
Most importantly, Decker enjoyed the chance to return to a Super Late Model and looks forward to doing it again soon.
“Being back in the car, it was so fun. That’s all racing is about is having fun. I’m really excited and hope to add more races.”
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51 Content Supervisor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Speed51 / Kyler Hope