Even with harsh winters being the norm, racing season in the Northeast isn’t just exclusively during the summertime. Many tracks in the region will hold Enduro races over the winter, with the events often held on surfaces covered with snow.
One of the bigger events took place over the weekend, with 130 cars making the trip to Riverside Speedway (NH) for the annual Winter Blast 100. Maine racer Jamie Heath emerged from the field that saw triple-digit entries to score the win at the quarter-mile.
For Heath, it has become one of his favorite races to take part in over the years.
“We look forward to it every year. It was pretty neat to think they had 130 cars and we were able to finish,” Heath told Speed51. “I don’t know, it’s very different. You have to be patient, there’s a lot of people out there who aren’t patient. It takes a lot of patience.”
The Winter Blast 100 is a race that embodies “to finish first, you first must finish.” The snow and the large amount of entries throw wrenches not seen in other forms of racing into the event.
One thing that will help drivers in the Winter Blast 100 is a starting spot towards the front. Heath was helped out in that regard Saturday afternoon, who started 14th after several years of starting mid-pack.
“Take it easy until the end because if you’re not there at the end then you can’t really go. We always take it easy and ride for a while and once they weed out half the cars we start racing. We started 14th and it was the best starting spot we’ve ever had, normally we’re like 45th. It was neat to get up front and stay up front for a while.”
The accomplished 4-Cylinder racer is no stranger to big-time wins at the Groveton, NH facility. He won the precursor to the Winter Blast 100, the Pre-Hangover 150, in 2011 and has also won the marquee 4-Cylinder race held at the track.
Heath considers Saturday’s Winter Blast win one of his biggest wins of his racing career.
“We’ve won this one before, I’ve got a couple seconds and a win. We’ve won up there before in a 4-Cylinder in the Jake McDowell 100 and that was probably one of my biggest wins. This one was right up there.”
As the 2021 regular season sits a few months away, Heath is making a big jump for the new year. He will return to Riverside weekly, but will be doing so in a Late Model.
“We just bought a Late Model, so we’re going Late Model racing at Riverside. It’s going to be a new adventure, I can’t wait. It’s going to be a big jump from 4-Cylinder Front Wheel Drives to a rear wheel drive, hopefully we’ll learn quick.”
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Susan Johnson