The midway point of the 38th annual DIRTcar Summer Nationals Hell Tour has arrived as Week 3 commences, presenting a schedule of six races in four different states.
Jason Feger ruled over Week 2, posting top-five finishes in all five races and scoring two Feature wins. Though he leads overall points, Feger is expected to compete in only select events in Week 3, opening the door for projected Week 3 regulars Ashton Winger, Billy Moyer Jr. and Drake Troutman to capture the weekly points title.
The DIRTcar Summit Racing Equipment Modifieds will take Tuesday off while the Late Models race Springfield Raceway and pick the action back up Wednesday at Adams County (IL) Speedway. They’ll then travel with the Late Models through the end of the week, headlined by division standouts Tyler Nicely, Lucas Lee and Trent Young.
Week 3 Schedule
Tuesday, June 27 – Springfield Raceway (Springfield, MO) [Late Models Only]
Wednesday, June 28 – Adams County Speedway (Quincy, IL)
Thursday, June 29 – Benton Speedway (Benton, MO)
Friday, June 30 – Paducah International Raceway (Paducah, KY)
Saturday, July 1 – Clarksville Speedway (Clarksville, TN)
Sunday, July 2 – Lake Cumberland Speedway (Burnside, KY)
Tickets for each Week 3 event will be sold at the gate on race day. If you can’t make it to your favorite tracks, watch all the action live on DIRTVision.
Here are the drivers to watch and the storylines to follow this week:
BIG WILLIE STYLE – A string of five straight top-10 finishes in Week 2 competition brings Billy Moyer Jr. back on the Hell Tour trail for Week 3.
Moyer, of Batesville, AR, looks to expand on the momentum he built in Week 2, highlighted by his 11th career Summer Nationals victory Tuesday night at Moberly Motorsports Park. Coupled with a victory in the final week of competition last year in Michigan at Butler Motor Speedway, Moyer has been competitive in each of the last two seasons – when he competes on tour – and could translate his recent stretch of success into more wins in Week 3.
Of the six tracks on the Week 3 schedule, Moyer does not have a Summer Nationals victory at any, but did finish third to winner Bobby Pierce and runner-up Tanner English in the Summer Nationals event at Paducah last year.
SUMMER BREAK – After a successful second week on the trail of the Hell Tour, Week 2 points champion Jason Feger is headed back to the shop to prepare for select events in Week 3.
Feger, the 2010 Summer Nationals champion from Bloomington, IL, posted top-five finishes in all five races contested in Week 2, including two wins, earning him the $10,000 points fund check for topping the weekly standings. Currently, Feger and the team only have plans to compete Wednesday at Adams County (IL) Speedway and Friday at Paducah International Raceway but are projected to rejoin regular competition during Week 4.
Despite earning four consecutive victories in Paducah’s USA World 50 (2012-2015), Feger has yet to win a Summer Nationals Feature at the Kentucky 3/8-mile oval. He’s also winless in Summer Nationals action at Adams County but was runner-up to Ryan Unzicker there in MARS Late Model competition in May.
BUBBLING UNDER – It was a week full of ups and downs for Drake Troutman in his first full week on the Summer Nationals this season.
Troutman, 18, of Hyndman, PA, was running inside the top-three on three occasions over the five-race stretch of Week 2 but only managed one podium finish after blowing two right-rear tires on back-to-back nights (Moberly, Davenport). He was able to rebound on Saturday at Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55, crossing the line third after an intense battle in the closing laps with winner Stormy Scott and runner-up Ashton Winger.
More bad luck hit him on Sunday at Lincoln, when he was involved in a hard wreck in his Heat Race with Kye Blight, significantly damaging his car and forcing him to take a provisional to get into the Feature and keep himself afloat in the points standings. Despite his struggles, he’s shown speed with multiple top-10 finishes, putting him among the frontrunners to score his first career Hell Tour Feature win in 2023.
REBOUNDED – Like Troutman, Ashton Winger also ran into some misfortune early in Week 2 when an oil pump failure ruined his top-three run going in the opening laps Tuesday night at Moberly Motorsports Park.
Winger, 23, of Senoia, GA, rebounded quickly, however, going out the next night at Davenport and driving around Chris Simpson with four laps left to score his first Feature win on tour this season. He posted three-straight top-10 finishes to conclude the week – two of which were on the podium – and ended up third in Week 2 points, worth a $3,000 points fund check.
Now headed south, Winger could potentially be at his most competitive this week as he visits a few tracks he’s had success at before – specifically Clarksville, where he won the Summer Nationals race in 2021.
SOUTHERN MOD SQUAD – Several southern DIRTcar UMP Modified talents are expected to join the field this week as the Summit Modified Nationals heads into Kentucky and Tennessee.
- Tyler Nicely (Owensboro, KY) – Sitting second in Summit Modified points, Nicely earned two more runner-up finishes in Week 2, tightening his gap to Kyle Steffens – now 25 points back. Despite his numerous visits to the Kentucky and Tennessee venues, Nicely does not have a Summit Modified Feature win yet in either state.
- Lucas Lee (Paris, TN) – Five of Lee’s six career Summit Modified Feature wins have come in his home state of Tennessee; three of which were won at Clarksville, including last year’s race.
- Trent Young (Crofton, KY) – Young picked up his first career Summit Modified Feature win last year in his home state of Kentucky at Paducah. He already has two top-fives at Paducah this year and placed third on Plunger Night of the Tuckassee Toilet Bowl Classic at Clarksville in March.
DIRTcar Summer Nationals Late Models Overall Points Standings (view full standings)
1. Jason Feger – 675 points
2. Frank Heckenast Jr. – 582 points (-93)
3. Ashton Winger – 550 points (-125)
4. Bob Gardner – 482 points (-193)
5. Kye Blight – 426 points (-249)
6. Tyler Clem – 375 points (-300)
7. Brian Shirley – 352 points (-323)
8. Drake Troutman – 334 points (-341)
9. Shannon Babb – 329 points (-346)
10. Mark Voigt – 297 points (-378)