Team FK Rod Ends Driver of the Month for June 2019

Rising to the challenge is what separates a top-notch driver from the rest of the pack.  Whether it’s dominating a race, going on a winning streak or sealing a win with a late-race pass, drivers slowly rise to the top of the field and make a name for themselves.  


That’s why the FK Rod Ends, who has nearly 10,000 combinations of rod ends and spherical bearings available and carefully crafts their products, is proud to honor a monthly “Team FK Driver of the Month” from the short track ranks of America on  Each month, an esteemed panel of short track industry insiders will vote on which driver had the most success on the track.  The driver with the most votes will then be the “Team FK Driver of the Month” and will receive a $25 product certificate to use at FK Rod Ends.  At the end of the 2019 season, the driver that received the most votes throughout the season will then be the “Team FK Driver of the Year” and will be awarded a (to be determined) prize from FK Rod Ends.  To learn more about FK Rod Ends and their growing inventory visit


The winner of the “Team FK Driver of the Month” for the month of June is…


Brian Shirley celebrates his Hell Tour win at Peoria Speedway (IL). (DIRTcar photo)

Brian Shirley

Dirt Late Models

When we’re young, the summer means reprieve from school, freedom from the daily responsibilities of homework and the enjoyment of more time at home and family vacations.  As we get older, those summer vacations are a lot harder to come by, especially in the racing world.


Nowhere is that more true than on the DIRTcar Summer Nationals circuit, often referred to as “The Hell Tour.”  With a grueling schedule of races nearly every night over the course of a month, the Summer Nationals are not for the faint of heart, as any setbacks are magnified by the quick turnaround from race to race and the summer heat ratchets up the intensity.


Like so many racing circles in 2019, this year’s Hell Tour has been plagued by Mother Nature, with a dozen rainouts on their docket.  Despite those rainy nights, Brian Shirley has risen above the rain, the heat and a strong field of competition to score four wins thus far in the Summer Nationals, making him the FK Rod Ends Driver of the Month for June 2019.


The defending Hell Tour champion started off his 2019 Summer Nationals with a win in the opener at Kankakee County Speedway (IL), leading 39 of the 40 laps.  One week later, Shirley followed up with a win at Spoon River Speedway (IL), taking the lead from polesitter Shannon Babb on the first lap and leading the rest of the way.


Two days later, Shirley held off Frank Heckenast, Jr. for his third Hell Tour win in four races, this time winning at Fairbury Speedway (IL).  Shirly would also take the win on June 26 at Peoria Speedway (IL), beating out the likes of Brandon Sheppard and Bobby Pierce for that victory.


With his strong start to the Hell Tour, Shirley leads Pierce by 22 points entering the next Summer Nationals event Tuesday night at Wilmot Raceway (WI).  He’s also our FK Rod Ends Driver of the Month for June 2019.


Other drivers receiving votes this month were: Brandon Sheppard (The Dream winner, World of Outlaws Late Model win and two Hell Tour wins), Brad Sweet (four World of Outlaws Sprint Car wins) and Ronnie Williams (four Modified wins, including wins at New Hampshire, Seekonk’s Open Wheel Wednesday and the Stafford SK 5K).


To learn more about FK Rod Ends and their growing inventory, visit


-Text by staff

Team FK Rod Ends Driver of the Month for June 2019