Consistency propels Williams to first Lucas Oil Speedway B-Mod crown
WHEATLAND, MO — Never in his wildest dreams at the beginning of the 2023 season did Bobby Williams envision himself bringing home a Lucas Oil Speedway track championship.
Especially if you’d have told Williams he would not win a feature race along the way.
But the 24-year-old from Hermitage used relentless consistency to claim his first Lucas Oil Speedway track championship, edging out JC Morton for the Ozark Golf Cars USRA B-Mod points title in the Big Adventure RV Weekly Racing Series.
“It’s pretty cool,” Williams said this week. “I never thought I’d ever win one there. We struggled all season just winning a race there. Coming out with a championship without winning a race is pretty insane.”
Williams used eight top-five finishes and 14 top-10s in 15 features to finish just five points clear of Morton.
“We ran really strong weekly,” Williams said. “For me and that track, a lot of things have to line up perfect. You have to stay out of trouble. It’s just a tough race track to win at.”
But once he opened an early points lead, Williams never gave it up. It got to the point that by midseason, it was clear that the title was his to claim and that it was a matter of finishing. The outcome went down to the final lap on the final night of the regular season.
“It felt like ‘well, we’ll keep racing here and maybe we’ll come up with the points championship.’ The intentions never were really to have a points championship. We just wanted to try and win races,” he said, noting that he never wavered from the goal of chasing the checkers.
“I guess showing up every weekend and being consistent, we ended up with a championship … but I just went out there and drove and we just tried to win every weekend.”
The final night of the points season saw Williams score the best 10th-place finish of his career. Just before the midpoint of the main event, it appeared that Williams' title chances were slim when on a lap-seven restart, Williams was caught up in a multi-car wreck that sent him to the pits for repairs.
Williams made it back on the track, but at the back of the field in 15th and far behind fourth-running Morton, whom he needed to stay within four positions to win the championship. As the laps clicked by, Morton lost two spots and Williams made steady gains. By lap 17, Williams was 11th and Morton seventh.
Meanwhile, there was action at the front on the final lap with a caution leaving a one-lap shootout. Williams and Morton both gained one spot and that was enough for Williams and team to celebrate the championship.
A few weeks later, Williams ended his winless drought at Lucas Oil Speedway with a USRA Nationals preliminary-night feature win.
“That’s probably my biggest win of my career in my book,” Williams said. “It was pretty insane. All the fast guys were in there, too. It was really cool.”
Williams added a few more wins to the season total and finished with 11 overall in 51 attempts. He went 3-for-3 in wins at Nevada Speedway and he won five features in seven tries at Lebanon Midway Speedway.
Now he’s turned his attention to 2024, getting his J2 Race Car ready to roll and perhaps achieve a title repeat with some wins mixed in.
“That’s the plan. We’re planning on running Lucas every weekend again, since we won points this last season, and give it another run,” Williams said. “I don’t know. All of this is still just setting in.”
Williams gave special shout-outs to his dad, Jim, and uncle, Aaron, for their support, plus Kris Jackson of J2 and Jim Ruble Race Engines.
“They’re the money backers behind all of it,” Williams said of Jim and Aaron. “They believe in me and I’m grateful to have them behind me. Plus, Kris Jackson and Jim Ruble. They keep the car fast.”
Team sponsors, in addition to J2 and Ruble Race Engines, include White’s Marine Center, Aaron White Racing, Miller’s Body Shop, J Williams Contracting, Bear Trailers, Campbell Buildings & Metal Sales and Don Howe Gravel and Dirt.”
Season pass renewals, gift cards available: Lucas Oil Speedway recently unveiled its tentative 2024 schedule with Open Test & Tune set to kick things off on March 30. The speedway has gift cards available for purchase as a Christmas-gift option and also has season pass renewals for the 2024 season available at a discount through the end of the year.
Season passes for the 2024 season are available now at a $50 discount for renewals from 2023. Contact Admissions Director Nichole McMillan at (417) 282-5984 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Season Pass Renewals before Dec. 29th, 2023:
Adults (Age 16-61) $700 (dirt-track only)
Seniors (Age 62 and up) $600 (dirt-track only)
Season Passes beginning Jan. 15th, 2024:
Adults (Age 16-61) $750 (dirt-track only)
Senior (Age 62 and up) $650 (dirt track only)
Each season pass holder is entitled to one reserved stadium-style seat, complete with high backs and armrests located in the top six rows of the main grandstand of the dirt track.
Meanwhile, Lucas Oil Speedway gift cards are available in any dollar amount. Gift cards can be used in all departments including in the ticket office, pit office, camp shack, concessions, gift shop, suites and the Diamond Bar.
Lorton added that the gift shop is remaining open year-round, during week-day business hours, for those interested in stopping by the track and shopping for items.
For ticket information about any future event at Lucas Oil Speedway contact admissions director Nichole McMillan at (417) 282-5984 or email her at email@example.com for more information.