The Prunty family has a long history at the Slinger Super Speedway, with several track championships and Slinger Nationals wins to go around. The latest chapter of the saga was written Sunday night by Alex and Dennis Prunty, who fought each other for the lead for well over half the race.
2018 Slinger Super Late Model track champion Alex Prunty outdueled uncle Dennis over the final 40-plus laps to take the season opener at the fast quarter-mile. The two fought side-by-side and nose-to-tail throughout much of the race, with both drivers taking turns leading the event. In the end, Alex was too much for Dennis.
For the younger Prunty, the win comes after a trying end to the 2019 season.
“I love racing with Dennis. Anytime you’ve got a family rivalry one’s trying to prove to the other that they’re better than them,” Alex Prunty told Speed51. I’ll never say I’m better than Dennis because he’s one hell of a driver but it sure does feel good starting the season out taking a win, especially with the way the year ended last year with two bad crashes and getting over symptoms from a concussion.
“Rockford was really hard because I was getting headaches in the car, it’s just hard to focus. It took a full four months to recover from that and damn it, we’ve got a good car and we’re looking forward to a really good year.”
In a state with a deep connection to Super Late Model racing, Alex Prunty becomes the first Super Late Model winner in Wisconsin in 2020. He hopes Sunday night’s feature is just the beginning of a successful year and another track title.
“Everybody wants it, everybody’s fighting for it and I think we showed what we’ll do. We battled hard on the outside. My dad’s spotting for me saying we’ve got to stop and work together, we can’t burn our stuff up on lap 30. It just came together, the car stayed really good and we were able to pull away at the end.”
Former Slinger Nationals champion Dennis Prunty used the event as an opportunity to shake down a new race car, which led to a back-and-forth battle with nephew Alex for the opening night win. He was sure to race Alex cleaner than he would normally race a driver at Slinger.
“I sold my car so this is a different car for me, I was just trying to get the car dialed in for this first race and I tell you, I’m getting old. My arms are killing me,” Dennis Prunty said. “I wanted to get him clean. I got beside him a few times, I just couldn’t get it done without moving him so I let him go.”
While he says racing with his nephew is fun, the older Prunty admitted he was wishing it wasn’t Alex in front of him holding the top spot down.
“It’s more fun when someone else is in the lead so I can move him up a little bit. I couldn’t hit my own nephew, my brother wouldn’t help me with my race car. You’ve got to do what you got to do.”
Mike Held, Rich Loch, and two-time defending ARCA Midwest Tour points runner-up Austin Nason rounded out the top five.
Click here to watch a replay of Sunday night’s season opener at Slinger Super Speedway.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo credit: Speed51 Photo
SLM – Slinger Super Speedway Results:
- Alex Prunty
- Dennis Prunty
- Mike Held
- Rich Loch
- Austin Nason
- Brad Mueller
- Steve Apel
- Chris Blawat
- Jordan DeVoy
- Grant Griesbach
- Nick Wagner
- Jacob Vanosky
- Brad Keith
- John DeAngelis Jr
- Jeff Holmgren Jr
- Casey Johnson
- Rich Bickle
- James Swan
- RJ Braun