WHAT TO WATCH FOR: New Faces, New Race Places in Week 4 of 39th Hell Tour

Tyler Carr Photo

The 39th DIRTcar Summer Nationals has officially crossed the halfway point and now prepares for a Southern swing of six races in five different states.

Week 4 kicks off Tuesday with the Late Models’ and DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modified Nationals’ first-ever visits to the state of Arkansas at Old No.1 Speedway. From there, both series make stops at Benton Speedway on Wednesday, Riverside International Speedway on Thursday, Paducah International Raceway on Friday, Clarksville Speedway on Saturday and Indiana’s Tri-State Speedway on Sunday.

Tickets for each event will be on sale at the gate on race day. If you can’t be at the track to watch in person, stream every lap live on DIRTVision.

Here are the drivers to watch and storylines to follow this week:

MY TIME IS NOW – A rookie on the Hell Tour this year, Dillon McCowan has been close to Victory Lane several times but has yet to break through for his first career Summer Nationals win. However, the door may be open in Week 4.

McCowan, 20, of Urbana, MO, currently sits third in the overall Summer Nationals points standings and is only one of three drivers to have started every Feature on the schedule thus far. He’s finished on the podium three times, the best of which came at a track one hour south of his home – Springfield Raceway – where he ran runner-up to Ashton Winger one week ago.

The former Modified racer is coming off a third-place finish at Red Hill Raceway on Sunday. He’ll head back to racing in his home state on Wednesday when he and the Summer Nationals field stops at Benton Speedway in Benton, MO, for the second-straight year.

SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY – While the Hell Tour ventures into Arkansas for the first time, several Super Late Model and Modified racers of the Deep South region are projected to join the roster at various points throughout the week.

Tennessee racer Christian Hanger is set to compete during Week 4, having been to Victory Lane three times in 2024 – once at Moulton Speedway in Alabama and twice at Tennessee’s Duck River Raceway Park.

Multiple regulars of the DIRTcar-sanctioned COMP Cams Super Dirt Series are also projected to appear in various events. The Arkansas-based organization has held nine races in 2024, led by points leader and Missouri-native Logan Martin. Louisiana racer Clayton Stuckey has raced multiple events of the Hell Tour in Week 2 and Week 3, collecting two top-fives in seven starts, and currently sits sixth in COMP Cams points with one win.

NECK OF THE WOODS – Reigning Hell Tour champion Ashton Winger continues his 2024 Summer Nationals schedule march in Week 4, heading south where he’s primarily raced this season.

Winger, 24, of Hampton, GA, made his first Summer Nationals start of the season one week ago at Springfield Raceway and won, leading every lap of the main event for his 13th career tour victory. While he finished fifth in Week 3 points, the door could be open for him to contend for the $10,000 bonus check this week.

In the past, Winger has been to Victory Lane with the Summer Nationals at both Clarksville (2021) and Benton (2023), and also won the Friday night portion of the DIRTcar-sanctioned Tuckassee Toilet Bowl Classic at Clarksville this past March.

MOD MANIA – This week, the Summit Modifieds venture into some unfamiliar territory and will take on a host of different Modified talent on their home turf.

Shawn Knuckles leads the weekly Modified points standings at Benton with one win and three top-fives in three starts so far this year, leading fellow Missourians Tim Nash and Austin Rettig, who also have one win to their names. At Riverside, Johnny Gustavus tops the weekly Modified standings, but Tennessee racer Dillon Knight has been the standout, winning four of the seven races held there this year, including two in the last two weeks.

Southern DIRTcar UMP Modified regulars Charlie Mefford, Lucas Lee and Trent Young are projected to join the field at various tracks, as well as 2012 Summit Modified champion Kenny Wallace and Missouri Motorsports Hall-of-Famer Ken Schrader.

BEEN HERE BEFORE – Tanner English continues his Hell Tour stretch with all six races on his schedule for Week 4, going for his first Summer Nationals win since 2022.

English, 31, of Benton, KY, last won with the Summer Nationals in July 2022 at Highland Speedway – a short drive from his new residence in Benton, IL. This year, he’s made 10 Feature appearances, collecting seven top-five finishes in that stretch, including four podiums.

The 2022 World of Outlaws CASE Late Model Series Rookie of the Year has been to Victory Lane before with the Summer Nationals at Clarksville – the site of his first career Hell Tour win in 2018 – and returns this Saturday night, chasing a $10,000 Feature winner’s check.