World of Outlaws Late Models 2022 schedule enriched by new tracks

Outlaws Late Model 2023
World of Outlaws Late Models

The World of Outlaws Late Model Series will visit 34 tracks in 16 states in 2022, including 12 venues that are either new or returning for the first time in many seasons.

And as with the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series, late models will feature a record purse. The late model champion will earn $125,000 with the top 12 drivers in the standings splitting more than $500,000. There will be increases of at least $5,000 for each position.

“We are always bouncing ideas off our teams to try and get feedback on things when it comes to the schedule and points fund,” said series director Casey Shuman in a release. “We have tried to add some new big weekends each year, and in 2022 we will do that again, along with a very enticing point fund for our full-time teams.”

The Outlaws Late Models get the 2022 schedule underway with two multi-day shows at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville Fla. The Sunshine Nationals will run January 20-22 followed by the DirtCar Nationals a month later, from February 16-19.

The series will close with the Outlaws World Finals, November 2-5, at the Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C. The World Finals will feature four nights of racing in 2022 with three features.

New tracks include Bloomburg (Pa.) Fair Raceway in May, Jacksonville (Ill.) Speedway in June, Boyd’s Speedway in Ringgold, Ga. in September and Humboldt (Kans.) Speedway in October. The Rev in Monroe, La. also joins the Outlaws Late Models 2022 schedule with a two-night show in March that culminates in a $20,000-to-win Saturday night feature.

Tri-City Raceway Park in Franklin, Pa. returns for the first time since 2010 while U.S. 36 Raceway in Osborn, Mo. last hosted an Outlaws Late Model event in 2009.

But it is Tri-City Speedway in Granite City, Ill. that has had the longest hiatus. They will host an Outlaws race for the first time since 2004. Darrell Lanigan was the last Outlaws Late Model racer to win there.

2022 Outlaws Late Models Schedule

Thursday-Saturday, Jan. 20-22 – Volusia Speedway Park

Wednesday-Saturday, Feb. 16-19 – Volusia Speedway Park

Friday-Saturday, Mar. 11-12 -The Rev
Friday-Saturday, Mar. 25-26 – Cherokee Speedway

Friday-Saturday, Apr. 1-2 – Farmer City Raceway
Friday-Saturday, Apr. 22-23 – Atomic Speedway
Thursday-Saturday, Apr. 28-30 – Bristol Motor Speedway

Thursday-Saturday, May 5-7 – Mississippi Thunder Speedway
Thursday, May 19 – Bloomsburg Fairgrounds Speedway
Friday, May 20 – Thunder Mountain Speedway
Saturday, May 21 – Port Royal Speedway
Friday- Saturday, May 27-28 – Sharon Speedway

Friday, June 3 – Tri-City Speedway
Saturday, June 4 – The Dirt Oval at Route 66
Friday-Saturday, June 17-18 – Orange County Fair Speedway
Friday-Saturday, June 24-25 – Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55
Sunday, June 26 – Jacksonville Speedway

Friday-Saturday, July 8-9 – Boone Speedway
Tuesday, July 12 – Gondik Law Speedway
Friday, July 15 – River Cities Speedway
Saturday, July 16 – I-94 Sure Step Speedway
Sunday, July 17 – Red Cedar Speedway
Friday-Saturday, July 29-30 – Fairbury Speedway

Thursday-Saturday, Aug. 4-6 – Cedar Lake Speedway
Friday, Aug. 19 – Williams Grove Speedway
Saturday, Aug. 20 – Sharon Speedway
Sunday, Aug. 21 – Tri-City Raceway Park
Thursday-Saturday, Aug 25-27 – Davenport Speedway

Friday, Sept. 2 – Smoky Mountain Speedway
Saturday, Sept. 3 – Lavonia Speedway
Friday-Saturday, Sept. 23-24 – Boyd’s Speedway
Friday, Sept. 30 – Cherokee Speedway

Saturday, Oct. 1 – Senoia Raceway
Friday, Oct. 21 – Humboldt Speedway
Saturday, Oct. 22 – 81 Speedway
Sunday, Oct. 23 – U.S. 36 Raceway

Wednesday-Saturday, Nov. 2-5 – The Dirt Track at Charlotte

The road to the 2023 Daytona 500 is not paved for Travis Pastrana, he’ll attempt the DIRTcar Nationals

Pastrana DIRTcar Nationals
Jacy Norgaard / World of Outlaws

Travis Pastrana will attempt to make his first NASCAR Cup series race on February 19 with the grandaddy of them all, the Daytona 500, but his road to get there will not be paved and his car will have only two fenders as he tackles Florida Speedweeks and the DIRTcar Nationals.

In mid-January, it was announced Pastrana will attempt to qualify a third car from 23XI Racing that fields fulltime entries for Bubba Wallace and Tyler Reddick. Sponsorship will come from Black Rifle Coffee, who approached him during the offseason to ask what kind of “really cool stuff” he would like to do. Pastrana replied, “the Daytona 500” with a characteristic laugh in his voice.

“It’s good,” Pastrana said in a press release. “We’re going to go down, we’re going to go hangout with [NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion] Matt Crafton, one of [Black Rifle’s] drivers, we’ll go to Modified races and watch all the Late Models. We’ll watch the racing, and we’ll bring [United States military] veterans down and hangout with [Steve] Arpin.”

But there is a saying among dirt track fans that goes, ‘asphalt is for getting to the track; dirt is for racing’ – and Pastrana is taking that to heart.

After racing on the snow in Nitro Rallycross February 4-5 in Calgary, Alberta, the original plan was to head to Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Florida to watch the modified and late model races. Until Crafton called him out for not racing.

Pastrana relayed the conversation: “I told Crafton [I was coming to watch] and he goes, ‘Ah, too much of a sissy to drive?’ I called Arpin, and said, ‘So, Longhorn, I heard you guys have vehicles that can kick the crap out of Crafton’s vehicle.’ [Arpin] said, ‘Yeah, if you don’t suck, you can beat him.’ I said, ‘Alright, I’m in.’”

The DIRTcar Nationals run from February 6-18. The first week features six UMP Modified Mains each night they run, on Monday (Feb. 6), Friday (Feb. 10), and then the prestigious Gator Championship race on Saturday (Feb. 11). Pastrana hopes to run every night in one of Arpin’s cars, also with sponsorship from Black Riffle Coffee.

And this is not just for bragging rights; there is money on the line. Pastrana and Crafton have a $1 bet on who has the best finish.

While Pastrana is accustomed pitching his car sideways on a combination of left and right turns in a rally car – he won the Nitro Rallycross race at ERX Motorsports Park in Minneapolis, Minnesota last October and became the first two-time winner in the 2022/23 season at Wild Horse Pass in Phoenix, Arizona in November – the DIRTcar Nationals will be an entirely different proposition.

It took a day for Pastrana to get comfortable in the modified. And it took a little coaching from Arpin, who has experience in both dirt modifieds and rally cars to make him fast.

“[Arpin] showed up the second day after hearing how bad the first day was,” Pastrana said, which is confirmed in the Instagram post embedded above. “But he just told me, until you commit, it’s not going to work. Once I committed, it started making a lot of sense. But coming in, if you’re lifting off the gas while trying to turn, it just doesn’t turn and all your natural instincts say, ‘Don’t get on the gas.’ So, yeah, I feel like it should suit my driving style because I’m more of an aggressive sideways type of driver, but it was very difficult. Turning and sliding, I’m fine. Getting it there is not the easiest.”

Pastrana has one previous start in a dirt late model that came in the 2010 Prelude to the Dream. He finished 23rd in the 27-car field and was three laps off the pace. He wasn’t the only driver having difficulty getting a feel for the car that night; Jeff Gordon finished on the same lap, only one position ahead of him.

Travis Pastrana will race one of Steve Arpin’s dirt modifieds during Florida Speedweeks as he prepares for the 2023 Daytona 500. – Jacy Norgaard, World Racing Group

The price of the weekend could well exceed the dollar he may lose to Crafton.

“It’s going to be an expensive weekend,” Pastrana said. “Not everything is covered. If I crash anything, it is going to be all on me. This is one of those things where I want to come down and have fun. I want to hang out with the crowd, I want to sign autographs and give high fives. Especially for the Modified crew, that’s the grassroots racing that I love and some of my friends are involved with. We’ll be camping down there with Arpin and all the Longhorn guys, just hanging out. I feel like that’s a great opportunity for us to bring a lot of [US] veterans and bring people that are into racing and aren’t into racing, friends and family, and just have an awesome time.”

And it’s not out of the question that Pastrana could add another top-10 to his record book in the DIRTcar Nationals. After the rocky first day, Pastrana gained speed. Enough so that Arpin’s confidence was raised.

“We’re pretty confident Crafton is going to have to run hard to keep his dollar,” Arpin said.