The year 2018 has been a tough one on Donnie Wilson and his race cars, with the former Southern Super Series champion getting swept up into one melee after another. After another round of repairs from a rough April, Wilson also needed some time to get himself fixed up before getting back into the cockpit.
Last month, the Oklahoma driver underwent an operation on his right foot, and he has used every day since to get well enough to put his foot back on the throttle this Friday night at Five Flags Speedway in the latest round of the Southern Super Series presented by Sunoco and Deep South Cranes Blizzard Series.
“For years I’ve had a knot in the front side of my right heel. It grew enough that it started messing with the nerves to my toes. Instead of going to Bristol I planned to get it done and heal up. It’s a pretty tedious recovery. When they mess with your heel it’s really sensitive. But I’m finally back to pretty much 90-percent. I’m ready to go. It’s been too long of a layoff,” Wilson told Speed51.com.
He is also hopeful that the doctors were also able to remove the thorn of bad luck that has stuck with him these past months, with notable wrecks at Greenville-Pickens Speedway, Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville, and Five Flags itself.
“Hopefully that’ll change my luck too. I haven’t had any good luck since winning the All-American 400 last fall. All I’ve done is tear up cars, and it’s not my fault.”
Despite the severity of some of the crashes, Wilson has managed to rebuild both his No. 2 race cars, with them both being race ready this Friday for Five Flags.
“I’ve rebuilt all of the cars. The car I ran at Nashville is our backup car for the weekend, and the car we ran last time at Pensacola is the same one this time. Hopefully it will get us to where we want to be.”
The previous SSS/Blizzard race at Five Flags in April was well noted for Wilson’s on and off track battle with Stephen Nasse, which culminated in a collision with each in turn one, collecting multiple drivers who were displeased with both of them, and notable physical and verbal exchanges.
As far as Wilson is concerned, both he and Nasse have no plans for a second round, with Wilson planning on going out to win.
“I’ve put it all behind me. It’s all good. Got to be a little more give and take. We’ve talked a little bit, me and Nasse. We’re there to race, not wreck. Just got to put it behind you. That’s the moral of the story.”
Wilson knows that winning will be a tough task, given the domination of drivers like Bubba Pollard, Casey Roderick, and Jeff Choquette. But Wilson knows that domination can only last for so long, and he wants to be the one to seize the moment and finally get a trophy from Five Flags.
“I think our chances are good. We’ve always had a fast car there, been a top five car, just haven’t been the top, top car. We know the guys to outrun are Pollard, Roderick, Choquette. Those three guys have been the ones to beat the past two years you could say. Bubba’s been the main one to beat. We know the challenge, just got to keep your head down and keep digging. We’ve been working to try and figure things out to make our stuff better. Hopefully we can finally break through the wall at Pensacola and just win one. Enough second’s.”
Friday is only the beginning for what is a busy month ahead for Wilson, as he looks to get back into his racing rhythm.
“After this weekend, we’ll run Montgomery next weekend. We’ve been really good there with a bunch of wins. After that on my schedule is the Redbud 400. Got a lot to get around to.”
Fans that cannot make it to Five Flags Speedway on Friday can see all the action on the Speed51 PPV broadcast. Click here to order
-By: Connor Sullivan, Speed51.com Northeast Editor – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo credit: Speed51.com