VERNON, NY — story by Race Chaser Online New York correspondent Steven Ovens — Go Nuclear Late Model Series photo — Not that this should come as any surprise to anyone who lives in or follows the Northeast, but Mother Nature has not been kind to the beginning of the 2014 racing season.
One series that has struggled early with rain is the Go Nuclear Late Model Challenge Series. This series has gained a lot of traction in the offseason with racers, track promoters and race fans featuring their full-blown late model chassis and either 604 or 602 Crate engine package. The series has attracted several race teams that may have followed other traveling series or completely different divisions altogether.
The Go Nuclear series features driver-friendly purses and a television package that aids teams in finding sponsorship due to their ability to be seen on tv in several regional markets in New York State. Go Nuclear has also added to their team an all-star race director in Dean Reynolds. You may recognize Dean Reynolds as the Vice President of the Lucas Oil Empire Super Sprints which will hit the Selinsgrove Speedway for the Mach 1 Chassis Spectacular this weekend.
“I am tremendously excited to kick off our biggest year yet on the Go Nuclear! Late Model Tour,” said Series Director Shayne Tenace. “While Mother Nature decided that we should hold off on starting out, it looks like she is willing and able to help us out on Sunday at Utica for the first annual Gnome Cup – featuring one of the most unique trophies in Motorsports.”
The originally scheduled tour stops at the Mohawk International Raceway for the Atomic Spring Clash were washed out on the weekend of May 4th. Tenace told Race Chaser Online that this coming weekend’s tour opener will highlight an entire season filled with increased purse events.
“The purse for several of our existing programs have been upped. For example, this weekend’s Gnome Cup pays $175/start which includes NO entry fee. We have worked hard in the offseason to really improve our program – we upped our points fund to $5,000 to win and a total purse of $20,000.”
This will certainly entice more competitors to step out of their normal schedules to come out and follow the Go Nuclear! Tour in 2014, a concept that Shayne has heard over and over during the winter and early spring.
“In 2013 we really picked up a lot of momentum and all signs point to more of the same in 2014. We have heard from a lot of great teams that have told us that they plan to join in on the fun. It is likely that we could see a dozen new teams on the circuit this year.”
One team that will be joining the GNLMS is the Knowles Racing Team consisting of brothers Jason and Brian Knowles. Their father, Larry, is a super stock and late model legend in the southern finger lakes and southern tier. Jason dominated the action on opening night at the Yates County Speedway on Friday May 2nd.
One large investment that Tenace told us the series made for 2014 was in their tech department.
“We have improved our tech program by adding 3 new tech officials, new tire testing program, and lots of engine testing equipment.”
Just announced this week from the GNLMS was a tire testing agreement with Blue Ridge Labs. This is the same lab that performs testing for Tony Stewart’s Eldora Speedway and the NDRL. Drivers always want to know that they are competing on the same level with their competitors and it appears they will have that peace of mind in 2014.
For more information, results and breaking news, visit www.gonuclearlatemodels.com