Fans can watch Sunday’s 53rd Annual Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway on Speed51.TV, and win prizes while doing it. Fans can draft their own fantasy racing lineup for the Snowball Derby on DirtDraft.com.
Through a partnership between Dirt Draft and Speed51, a 51 Fantasy contest will be held Sunday, December 6 for the biggest event in Super Late Model racing.
With Dirt Draft, fans utilize $100,000 in fictional currency to assemble a team of five drivers in races such as the Snowball Derby. Your roster then goes against those of other fans, competing for points which can be redeemed for souvenirs, event tickets, a Speed51 pay-per-view broadcast and more.
While joining Dirt Draft is as simple as clicking this link, determining who will make your starting five can be much more challenging. Here is a look at some potential names to consider as you fill out your roster.
Stay Glued to the News All Weekend: This isn’t so much a specific suggestion for drivers to watch as a general thing to consider entering the Snowball Derby. More than 50 of the top Late Model racers in North America, as well as some NASCAR stars, are taking part in this year’s event. However, only 36 or 37 (depending on provisionals) will take the green flag on Sunday.
Stay tuned to Speed51 throughout the weekend to see who is making the show. 30 drivers will lock in during qualifying on Friday night, leaving the rest to go to the Last Chance Qualifier on Saturday. Before rosters lock Sunday morning, make sure you have five drivers who are in the show to make the most of your entry.
The Champs Are Here: Eight former Snowball Derby wins are accounted for in this year’s entry list. Most of them will come at a premium to make your lineup. Two-time winners (and NASCAR Cup Series Champions) Kyle Busch and Chase Elliott will cost you $25,500 and $24,700, respectively. 2018 Snowball Derby champion and NASCAR Xfinity Series competitor Noah Gragson checks in at $24,300, while defending race winner Travis Braden will cost you $22,200.
The bargain of the previous Derby champions is Augie Grill, as the 2007 and 2008 race winner is priced at $19,800. By his own admission, he has struggled in recent years at the Derby, but he could be a sneaky good selection if he can shake the monkey off his back.
Bargain Hunting: With so many drivers on hand, some names for this weekend’s race are much cheaper on Dirt Draft than they would be during an average week.Names like Grill, former PASS National Champion Derek Griffith, 2019 ARCA Menards Series West Champion Derek Kraus and many more can be had for less than $20,000, the average cost for a driver in a Dirt Draft lineup.
Some names to also consider following Thursday practice are Kaden Honeycutt ($19,200) and Hunter Robbins ($19,400). Both were in the top 10 of the final practice timesheet on Thursday, and Honeycutt showed speed all day during the first day of practice.
Again, keep an eye on Snowball Derby news throughout the week on Speed51. More names could emerge during Friday’s practice, and who knows who could find themselves with a solid starting spot for Sunday’s race – or worse, who could simply be trying to make the show on Saturdya.
Don’t Shy Away from First-Timers: It can be daunting to select a driver making his first Snowball Derby appearance. Whether it’s a veteran from the Midwest such as Casey Johnson ($20,800) making his first trip to the Derby or a local young gun such as Daniel Dye ($18,500) enjoying his first year in Super Late Models.
Certainly some newcomers struggle during the Snowball Derby, but others shine in the bright spotlight. Jake Garcia finished second in the 2019 Snowball Derby as a rookie, for instance, while Dalton Zehr narrowly missed out on a top-10 finish last year.
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51 Content Supervisor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Speed51Photos.com