CRA SpeedFest kicks off a new year of major Super Late Model racing for drivers east of the Mississippi. It brings several changes to drivers competing in the event, which can include new rides, paint schemes, and more. For Stephen Nasse, it will mark his first race in a new Rowdy Manufacturing Super Late Model.
The 2017 Southern Super Series champion talked about the transition to a Rowdy car while on “The Bullring.” After a strong 2019 that saw Matt Craig, Donnie Wilson Motorsports, Preston Peltier and others have great success with the new chassis builders, Nasse wanted to try it for himself, getting his first chance this weekend at Crisp Motorsports Park.
“We tried to work a deal with the guys at Rowdy Manufacturing to get the car ready for the Derby last year. Rowdy had a great season last season. I really liked what I saw what they did with Matt Craig, guys like that. I just wanted to see what all the hype is all about,” Nasse said during an appearance on Speed51’s “The Bullring.” “We got one ordered up, it was supposed to be here for the Derby, but just didn’t end up getting it in time.”
The decision to acquire a Rowdy car comes after spending the last couple seasons driving a Fury Racecar and winning several races, including the Winchester 400 and the Short Track U.S. Nationals. Nasse sees the switch as a business decision with the times, harboring no hard feelings toward Fury.
“I still like the Fury guys, they’ve been really good to me. They still help us a ton, but there’s no rule that says you can’t try a little bit of everything,” he stated. “I want to be as fast as possible and if I think a car has the potential to be a little bit better, I’m going to go try it and see if it can be. Cody Glick has been helping us a lot, he’s pretty awesome. He makes sure if my crew chief needs anything, he gets it to him and gets answers for him. I’m just looking forward to the race, that car has got some real good drive. I think Cordele will be a good track to show it.”
Nasse’s offseason after the 52nd Annual Snowball Derby was a short one, getting back behind the wheel two weeks ago at Showtime Speedway in his hometown of Pinellas Park, Florida for the first installment of their Showtime Triple Crown. He finished despite having to make a pit stop during the race.
“I got back to racing pretty quick a couple weeks ago there at Showtime, the old Sunshine Speedway. It felt good to be back in the seat,” Nasse said. “I thought we had a good shot at winning the race, we had a really good car. We ended up having some really bad luck, the shifter handle ended up coming off so we had to come in and put it in high gear and we were able to get back out there and salvage a third-place finish. I was definitely hoping to get a win there to start the season off but you can’t win them all. Next weekend, we are going to Cordele so hopefully we can pick up off that.”
Less than two months removed from his Snowball Derby disqualification, Nasse is as focused as ever to prove he can put the Jett Motorsports No. 51 in victory lane. It starts this weekend at SpeedFest in Georgia, feeling confident after a successful test session with the new Rowdy car.
“That has been my biggest thing, we were testing in Cordele and felt really good about the car. We want to come out and we want to prove to everybody that we won that race, we deserve that trophy,” he stated. “We won it flat out, we didn’t luck into it because of the wreck, we were up there the whole time and I want to prove that. I know we had one of the best cars that day and I know we’re going to continue to go to the track and preparing these awesome race cars and my guys at Jett Motorsports are going to give me a hot rod. It’s just going to be my job to keep my head on straight and drive the dang thing and get to the front. I know we can, so I’m looking forward to it.”
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-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN/MI) – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo credit: Speed51