It was nice while it lasted, but the National Dirt Racing League – also known as the Dirt Late Model Tour – is no longer.
The Phoenix-based league, in the middle of its second season of operation, issued a brief press release saying that it was “ceasing operations effectively immediately,” according to series founder John Kennedy.
“My vision for the series was to provide something that was special, unique and fresh — special events that catered to the fans, tracks and race teams,” Kennedy said. “Unfortunately, I lost sight of that vision resulting in NDRL’s 2014 schedule and plan resembling what Late Model racing has been for the last several years.”
The league was launched last season with five races and moved forward with a full schedule of several dozen events planned nationally in 2014. It had been somewhat of an alternative to the World Of Outlaws and USAC racing.
“Without (fans, tracks, promoters and teams), none of what was accomplished would have been possible,” Kennedy said. “We are extremely grateful for the support from all of the NDRL family and staff and our great sponsors as well.”
Kennedy also said, “My focus needs to be redirected towards family first. There will be plenty of time for racing as a family in the future.”
Kennedy also didn’t rule out the possibility of other race promotions.
“I may just decide to put together some unique and exciting events based on everything we have learned in the last few seasons,” he said.
Follow me @JerryBonkowski
SAKHIR, Bahrain – Toyota denied Porsche a swansong victory in its final LMP1 appearance in the FIA World Endurance Championship by taking a commanding win in the 6 Hours of Bahrain on Saturday.
Porsche started from pole in the last competitive outing for the three-time Le Mans-winning 919 Hybrid car, only to lose out to Toyota’s Sebastien Buemi within the first half an hour of the race.
Porsche lost one of its cars from contention for victory after an errant bollard got stuck underneath Timo Bernhard’s No. 2 entry, leaving Nick Tandy to lead its charge in the No. 1 car.
Tandy moved into the lead just past half distance after a bold strategy call from Porsche to triple-stint the Briton after a fuel-only stop, vaulting him ahead of Anthony Davidson in the No. 8 Toyota.
Tandy’s win hopes were soon dashed when he tangled with a GTE-Am backmarker at Turn 1, sustaining damage that forced Porsche into an unplanned pit stop that put the car a lap down.
With the No. 7 Toyota losing two laps following a clash with a GTE-Pro car earlier on, Davidson, Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima went unchallenged en route to the car’s fifth victory of the season.
Porsche rounded out the podium with its cars, with the No. 2 leading home the No. 1, leaving Toyota’s No. 7 car to settle for P4 at the checkered flag.
Vaillante Rebellion clinched the title in LMP2 after a stunning fightback led by Bruno Senna, with the Brazilian securing his maiden motorsport championship win in the process.
GTE-Pro saw AF Corse complete a hat-trick of titles in 2017, with James Calado and Alessandro Pier Guidi wining the class’ first world championship recognized by the FIA, while Paul Dalla Lana, Pedro Lamy and Mathias Lauda sewed up the GTE-Am title.