Blog/Photos By RaceChaser Online Senior Editor Tom Baker — March 25, 2014 —
Before we get to talking about all the excitement and controversy that was at the Koma Unwind Modified Madness 125 on Saturday at Hickory Motor Speedway, we must first do a little bit of unfortunate “housecleaning”.
RaceChaser ran a story over the weekend about Modified racer Todd Szegedy’s new deal for the 2014 season. In the article, language very close to the same language that was used in a RacedayCT article by Shawn Courchesne was used and the source was not quoted. Mr. Courchesne regrettably chose to call us out for plagiarism on social media and contacted us about it just before 8pm on Sunday evening.
After having spoken with all of those who contributed to the writing/editing so I could understand how the final version of the story was arrived at, I must now issue a sincere apology to Shawn and those at RacedayCT for our inexcusable lapse in source-quoting procedure. Had those involved quoted their sources this would not have been an issue and that’s a mistake that just shouldn’t be made.
I have been 26 years in motorsports and can assure everyone that we are NOT in the business of copycat communications. We don’t need to do that. We know better and we are better.
We are blessed to be able to create more original audio and written content covering a wider variety of motorsports disciplines on a daily and weekly basis than others can and we’re thankful for the opportunity and capacity given to us by the Lord to serve the motorsports community in such a passionate and enthusiastic way.
We take our responsibility and roles seriously and make accuracy a must. We sometimes choose not to be the “first” with a story purposely because we feel it’s more important to gather all the facts and double-check ourselves rather than putting something out that might not be accurate just to say we “broke the story”.
Our staff is in agreement that this embarrassing mistake can never happen again. We will learn from and be the wiser for it.
I had the chance to visit Hickory Motor Speedway over the weekend for the first ever race of the newly-created Koma Unwind Modified Madness Series. Boy, what a race it was! I was really happy for Kevin Piercy and his staff that the crowd was one of the best I’ve seen there in a long time.
The combination of Tim Brown, Spencer Davis, Josh Nichols, Burt and Jason Myers and Jimmy Zacharias swapped the top six spots amongst themselves all throughout this wild 125-lap affair. This was one of the most exciting races I’ve seen in years and it showed the Modified division at its absolute finest.
The controversy surrounded the race’s pit stop rule (or lack thereof). Josh Nichols and Burt Myers pitted before lap 100 believing that was what the rule told them to do. They took on tires under green. Jason Myers took on tires after lap 100. Tim Brown just did a stop and go believing that’s all he had to do. The last two to pit were Davis and Zacharias. They pitted with less than 10 laps to go and both of them jacked up their cars then released the drivers without changing anything because Davis said afterward that’s what they were told to do by officials on the radio just prior to them pitting.
Did you keep all that straight? If not, you’re not alone.
When the parade of pit stops concluded it was Brown, Jason Myers, Burt Myers and Nichols in the top four and that’s how they crossed the line. Davis was credited with 8th originally but then later officials changed his result to fourth after determining that his transponder didn’t hit the scoring loop on pit road.
According to Koma’s facebook page, the final and official top five was Brown, Jason Myers, Burt Myers, Davis and Nichols.
After the race, Davis, Nichols and Burt Myers all expressed their displeasure with the “mistakes” in pit procedure, but most of them had a different idea of exactly what they were told the procedure was. I’m sure race officials will correct whatever miscommunications there were in time for their next race and I hope all the drivers come back because this series has the potential to be one of the most entertaining shows in the Southeast!
The Southeast Super Truck Series was also on hand with a strong field of trucks and again, a great deal of excitement throughout their 75-lap event. Randy Porter, Kevin Leicht and Kenny Headen were among those who made the battle for the top five spots heated from green to checkered. Jeff Caldwell was also in the hunt but went to the pits on lap 41.
Porter pulling away in the last 20 laps to get the win as Leicht and Headen raced tooth and nail to the line for second. Leicht ended up with the spot followed by Headen, Tim Lollis and Matt Leicht.
The East Coast Flatheads were also on hand Saturday. These “old-timers” always put on a fun show and they are just such kind and humble gentlemen who appreciate the chance to just come and put on a fun “remember when” show/race for the fans. Wayne Lawson was the winner in his first ever appearance at Hickory with 73-year-old Johnny Johnson coming home second.
It was a really enjoyable night of racing at one of America’s most renown short tracks!
I was able to get audio from Nichols and Brown after the race was over and we’ll have those along with Randy Porter’s “winnerview” and a pre-race chat with Spencer Davis as part of our Thursday night “Stock Car Steel/SRI Motorsports Show” this Thursday at 7pm Eastern.
You can listen to the show live just by clicking on this link and using your audio player (other than Windows Media Player).