With the dawn of a new Blizzard Series season at Five Flags Speedway (FL) just on the horizon, many Southern Super Series presented by Sunoco teams have descended upon the half-mile oval to turn some testing laps.  One of those teams has Ryan Luza as their driver.


260 51 network adLuza is the 2015 Pro Late Model track champion at Five Flags, but this time he isn’t in a Pro Late Model.  Instead, Luza is in the more powerful Super Late Model and ready to do battle with the big dogs like Bubba Pollard, Casey Smith and Casey Roderick.


“You’ve got all the big guys here,” Luza said.  “It’s just like running at the Snowball Derby basically because all the guys that run the Derby are here.  I’m just ready to compete.  I hope I can run with them, and I’m ready to do my best.”


Luza is making the transition from the Pro to the Super, and his debut is Friday night in the Southern Super Series/Blizzard Series event at Five Flags.  On Thursday afternoon Luza was waiting for rain to end so he could make some laps in the Super Late Model ahead of race day.


“I haven’t even sat in the car yet,” Luza said.  “We have a lot of experience here at this track.  I just want to learn as much as I can here tonight and in the two practice sessions tomorrow.  It’s really not a lot of time, but I know the line really well around the track so that should help.  I just want to learn as much as I can, really.”


The 20-year-old Texan said he is completely done with Pro Late Model racing and isn’t looking back on that part of his career.


“Yeah we’re done with that,” he said.  “Our car got sold and that pretty much helped us make this transition by getting a new car.”


Luza’s plan now is to run the rest of the Southern Super Series schedule with the exception of the race at the Fairgrounds Speedway in Nashville, Tennessee.  He said that he and the team wanted to be at the first two SSS races as well, but they couldn’t get the car ready in time.


Running all of the Southern Super Series races also means running all of the Blizzard Series races, which is the track series for Super Late Models at Five Flags.  After winning the championship a year ago in the Pro Late Model at Five Flags, Luza said he thinks he can unseat Casey Roderick as the Blizzard Series champion.


“I really think we can,” said Luza.  “A few of my friends have just made the transition and have had success.  Hopefully we can follow in their footsteps.  I’m not looking to set the world on fire tomorrow night.  I just want to have a good run, keep the car clean and have good notes for the next time.”


Speed51.com will have Trackside Now coverage and more from Friday’s Southern Super Series event at Five Flags Speedway beginning at 3 p.m. CT.


-51 Sports/Southern Super Series Press Release

-Photo Credit: Speed51.com photo

Five Flags PLM Champ Making SLM Debut This Friday