Picking the winners of big short track races throughout the country is a tradition that our staff at Speed51.com has enjoyed for many years. With one of the biggest Outlaw Super Late Model races in the country being held Wednesday night at Kalamazoo Speedway, we decided to challenge our staff once again.


This week we asked members of our Speed51.com team, “Who are you picking to win the Kalamazoo Klash?”


The answers we received varied, but when all the votes were tallied it was Tyler Roahrig who was named the favorite to win the big race.  Overall, five different drivers received votes from our panel of 17 experts.


Check out our full list of staff picks for the Kalamazoo Klash at Kalamazoo Speedway below.


Aaron Creed, Speed51.com National Correspondent 

Pick: Andy Bozell

The Bozell name is synonymous with Kalamazoo Speedway, and although the members of the Michigan family have been absent from Kalamazoo Klash victory lane since Phil won in 2011, I’m going with the winner of the first two runnings of this prestigious event in the early 1990s. Andy’s most recent Klash win came in 2007, but since then the veteran campaigner has only finished outside the top 10 twice. Top-five finishes in all but one race from 2012 through 2017, including a fourth last year, shows that the multi-time track champion can still get the job done.


Adam Mackey, Speed51.com Announcer

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

Tough pick for me between about four guys who can be dominant in Outlaw Late Model racing. After finishing second to his dad in the Summer Sizzler, Tyler Roahrig is going to be hungry for one spot better and will take this year’s Kalamazoo Klash.


Allick Jorgensen, Speed51.com Florida State Editor

Pick: Terry Senneker, Jr.

Is there a hotter chassis builder in the game of Outlaw Super Late Models right now? Give the legendary Senneker the best in-house chassis in the business and I don’t see how you can go wrong.


Bob Dillner, Speed51.com Executive Editor

Pick: Steve Needles

Listen, everyone picking Tyler Roahrig or Terry Senneker is taking the easy road. I agree, either one can get it done for sure. But, I would like to “needle” those if the guy I’m picking gets the big check at the Zoo. So, I’ll go with Steve Needles. My wife Angie and I have always admired his talent behind the wheel. He’s always fast, and if he can make it to the end, he can win the thing.


Brandon Paul, Speed51.com Editor

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

Some may call it the easy pick, but I’ll call it the smart pick.  After shaking the monkey off his back in this race one year ago, I think the floodgates have opened for Roahrig at the Kalamazoo Klash.  Add in the fact that he’s going to be extra hungry  after coming up short at the Summer Sizzler and you have the recipe for a back-to-back Kalamazoo Klash winner.


Connor Sullivan, Speed51.com Northeast Editor

Pick: JR Roahrig

If there’s one thing the elder Roahrig has at the moment, it’s momentum. Fresh off his win in the Summer Sizzler, expect him to enter the Zoo with plenty of confidence. Also, there’s a good chance he does’t want to go another year with his son having a race win he doesn’t.


Dakota Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN & MI)

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

After nearly lapping the field in the Firecracker 75 at Kalamazoo on July 6, he said that the car wasn’t where he wanted it to be. Come Klash time, he will have the No. 24 to his liking. Combine that with the disappointment of a runner-up finish at last Thursday’s Summer Sizzler, and “The Rocket” will be on a mission to go back-to-back in a race that had eluded him for several years.


Daryl Canfield, Speed51.com / MoJo Photos

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

I will take Tyler Roahrig because Mark Keeler (see his pick below) knows what he is talking about!


Elgin Traylor, Speed51.com Southeast Correspondent

Pick: Terry Senneker, Jr.

Terry Senneker will get back on track and win the Klash for a sixth time.


Evan Canfield, Speed51.com / MoJo Photos

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

Being from dirt country in the Northeast, many drivers in this race are unknown to me. But I have heard the name Tyler Roahrig quite a bit in 2018, so I feel that he could be a safe pick for the Kalamazoo Klash victory.


Jeremy Anders, Speed51.com Northwest Editor

Pick: Terry Senneker, Jr.

I’ll go with Terry Senneker for the win in the Klash. It seems that every time I look around the country it’s a Senneker chassis getting a win in Super Late Model competition. This time it will be a Senneker in victory lane but for the Outlaw Super Late Models.


Kevin Peters, Speed51.com Southwest Editor

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

It is difficult to go against the 2017 winner, who has finished no worse than second in his last four starts this year.


Patrick Hahe, Speed51.com Great Lakes Editor

Pick: Steve Needles

Outlaw Late Model racing is hard to predict, mostly due to the mechanical failure factor being higher than other divisions since these drivers are pushing the envelope so far. My pick will be Steve Needles, a driver that has racked up a few wins this year, but also had some mechanical issues along the way. When everything lines up for this team, they are one of the fastest out there. I do expect Tyler Roahrig to be battling for the win, but coin flips help make picks sometimes.


Mark Keeler, Speed51.com Operations Manager

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

It’s hard to believe it’s been four years since his bad wreck at Anderson (IN) that nearly ended more than just his driving career. Since being back he’s left little doubt how good he is every time he is behind the wheel. In a reversal of this year’s Summer Sizzler finish, I’ll be looking for the younger Roahrig in victory lane for his second straight Klash win, while I’m sure elder JR won’t be too far behind.


Rob Blount, Speed51.com Associate Editor

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

The Klash was the race that eluded Roahrig for so long. He finally got it, and now that the pressure is off, I think the flood gates will open up. I think last year’s win was the first of many for Roahrig in this race and he’ll get his second this week.


Ryan McCollough, Speed51.com Southeast Correspondent

Pick: Terry Senneker, Jr.

I love an underdog just as much as everyone else, but there are times when you just can’t ignore the favorite. Terry Senneker is a five-time winner of the Klash, and is the man to beat as soon as he signs his name on the entry blank. After sitting out of the race last year, Senneker is back in 2018 and will chalk up another victory at the ‘Zoo.


Tom Ryan, Speed51.com Digital Manager

Pick: Tyler Roahrig

My pick is plain and simple. I’m picking the best driver there: Tyler Rohrig.


-Text by Speed51.com Staff

-Photo credit: Speed51.com

Speed51.com Staff Picks for Kalamazoo Klash XXVI