Michael Atwell has spent the 2020 racing season winning at just about every track in Central Florida behind the wheel of a Super Late Model. He now has his eyes set on one of the area’s biggest races, the Full Throttle 100 at Citrus County Speedway.
The Naples, FL driver has already scored one win at the 1/3rdmile back in July, while having also won at 4-17 Southern Speedway and at Showtime Speedway. While on “The Bullring,” he talked about why he thinks he’s been able to have the year he has had to this point.
“I think that our tracks down here are more along the lines of short tracks, so our package for short tracks is really good and we can go from one to the other without having to adjust the car as much as if we have to go to 4-17 or Pensacola and the bigger tracks. It makes it a little bit more difficult but we’re adapting.”
Atwell has not had any luck in his two previous starts in the Full Throttle 100. His first start in 2018 saw him finish 19th after falling out of the race at the halfway point. Last year’s race was over for him before it even started after suffering a mechanical issue during warmup laps.
It has been a busy week in the shop to make sure everything is ready to go for Saturday’s 100-lap event.
“We’ve just got to make sure we’ve got everything ready to go. We were at the shop yesterday changing the clutch and making sure everything was ready to go. Last year we had a really good qualifying effort, went to start the race and on the first warmup laps there we pulled a toplink out of the chassis.”
The facility has undergone some improvements in recent years, highlighted with a new coat of asphalt over the track. The repave has allowed for exciting racing around the track, and is now starting to bring top talent from outside to compete with the Central Florida mainstays.
“It’s almost like Cordele (Crisp Motorsports Park) except smaller. They just repaved the track and the owners have done a great job of getting the place back going and getting the place looking really nice, being able to hold big races at a track with big names like Stephen Nasse and Bubba Pollard.”
Atwell gave fans a taste of what to expect come Saturday when some of Super Late Model racing’s best converge onto Citrus County Speedway for the Full Throttle 100 Saturday night. He will look to add his name to the short list of drivers who have won the event at the end of the night.
“It’s like any of the other small tracks that are down here. A lot of the guys down here know how to do that stuff, sometimes you have to use the bumper when you’re racing at tracks that small because it is so hard to pass. If you can get the car to rotate in the center, then you’ve got a good opportunity to get under people because you’ve got to make your passes off the corners.
“It’s a fun track with a lot of grip, but you’ve got to get the car to turn. The front straightaway is really narrow so if you can’t get your car to turn you won’t be able to make good passes. It’s a really fun track and you can be aggressive the whole race with that new asphalt. It makes it not as aggressive on the tires so you can go 100% the whole race.”
Fans who can’t make it to Citrus County Speedway can see the Full Throttle 100 live on Speed51.TV as a premium subscriber. Click here to join today.
Click here to watch a replay of Monday’s episode of “The Bullring.”
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Speed51 Photo