Lucas Oil Speedway Champions Review: Hometown driver Ott enjoys second Street Stocks title in three years
WHEATLAND, Missouri (November 14, 2019) - There's nothing like winning a track championship, especially when it's in your hometown. Wheatland's Toby Ott enjoyed that feeling again in 2019, earning Lucas Oil Speedway's O'Reilly Auto Parts Street Stocks championship.
"That's worth a lot, doing it right here in my own back yard," Ott said. "There's just so many people to thank and to think about that help us do it all."
Ott earned five feature victories and 11 top-five finishes to finish 76 points in front of Johnny Coats and 86 ahead of Cody Frazon. It was his second championship in three years and Ott already is thinking ahead toward chasing a third crown in 2020.
"The first one was pretty astonishing," Ott said. "This one here was actually kind of overwhelming with all the people I've had that have helped."
Of course, with winning come additional pressure. In the arms race of racing, where everyone is trying to constantly step up their game and improve their equipment, Ott knows the Street Stocks world will only get more competitive.
"Everybody's out to get Toby now," Ott said, with a laugh. "It kind of comes with the territory. It makes it fun, though. Looking on to next year, right now I have plans to run for points again. I'm going to have a new car this winter, if everything goes right. I've got some other ventures going, too.
"You have to be looking for the upper hand, no matter what you're doing. If you ever stop doing that, you're going to go backwards."
Ott said he's planning to team up with Bryan Larimore of Dirt Track Specialists on a new chassis. He said the duo may have more details to be announced later about a deeper venture into the the Street Stock chassis-building world, but for now their team is looking at two cars in 2020.
One will be the old car that Ott has won the two championships in.
"That car was built in 2012. It's been in the winner's circle a lot of times, even before I got a hold of it," Ott said. "That car will be ran next year. It'll be more of a back-up car. We'll put it back together and I think go back to how I ran it in 2017, with a crate motor back in it."
Ott said that Larimore, who's mostly specialized in Late Models, wants to get more involved with the Street Stocks. The two became friends the last couple of years with Larimore providing Ott a lot of help with shocks, in particular.
The new car could be pointed toward big-money events for Street Stocks throughout the region, such as the Lucas Oil Speedway's Big Buck 50 Presented by Whitetail Trophy Hunt.
"There are multiple larger-paying races out there now for the Street Stock class," Ott said. "It doesn't hurt as much to spend a little more on a chassis when you have some more money you can go and race for."
Whatever the prize money, Ott said one thing that's constant is the outstanding camaraderie he enjoys at Lucas Oil Speedway. That includes his friend Trey Rutherford and Ott's son, Kelby, helping on the car, and Wheatland buddy and fellow racer Mike Striegel.
"Striegel does all my race-car body work and we try to help each other out. He also gives me moral support," Ott said.
Ott also gave a shout-out to Chris Davis of Midwest Sheet Metal, who not only is a sponsor but a friend who offers constant advice. Then there's the crew from Hobbytime Motorsports, a long-time Lucas Oil Speedway supporter. Ott is a service manager for Hobbytime and his co-workers and Hobbytime owners Jeff and Melanie Freeman are out in force each week to cheer.
"They all really enjoy it and have a good time with it," Ott said.
The 2020 Lucas Oil Speedway season will begin on April 4 with the first Weekly Racing Series program of the season, following an Open Test & Tune on March 28. The tentative schedule was announced last week.
Season passes, along with Show-Me 100 three-day passes, will go on sale later this winter. Look for that information at LucasOilSpeedway.com and on Lucas Oil Speedway's Facebook page. Contact Admissions Director Nichole McMillan for more info at (417) 282-5984 or via email at Nichole@LucasOilSpeedway.com.
Lucas Oil Speedway General Manager
Office: (417) 282-5984