By Corey B. Elliot
BROWNSBURG — Flyer Correspondent
Despite torrential downpours that canceled events on Saturday, Lucas Oil Raceway was alive and busy Sunday with small town teams and drivers from surrounding states biding their time for the opportunity to get on the track.
The Mopar Monster Weekend provides car enthusiasts an opportunity to show off the muscle under their hoods and for some, a chance at some quick cash.
“We don’t have a lot of money so we just keep it local,” driver Billy Roth of Olney, Ill., said. “As every drag racer would say, you spend more than you make. You don’t really win that much.”
But Indianapolis always means a little more when it comes to racing, he added.
“I like the people,” Roth said. “It’s always a good time. We come for the weekend so it’s fun to hang out. I actually got my advanced ET license here, which means I can go as fast as I can. I always like coming back to Indy because the U.S. Nationals are here and it’s a good track.”
The racing is full of competition while the environment is full of family. Some come to win while many come just to enjoy family and friends.
“Hanging out with family is pretty much all this is. It’s a family sport,” Roth said. “I’ll be doing this forever.”
Nothing says family more than several generations gathering at the track in the name of racing. For most families in attendance at Lucas Oil Raceway, it’s no different.
Dusty Hamlin is from Highridge, Mo., and he was in town for the weekend with his nephews Robert Dunn and great-nephew Chad Dunn, both of Granite City, Ill. Hamlin’s 1963 Plymouth sports the name “Asphalt Monster” along the side of the car while his nephew’s 1974 Scamp displays the nickname “Little Miss Attitude.”
“I’m 67 years old and I’ll be doing this until I die,” Hamlin said.
For the Dunns, racing is an ongoing experiment.
The father and son duo bought their 1974 Plymouth Scamp from Hamlin three years ago and have been making the trip to Indy ever since. Chad is the driver and Robert helps with the mechanics and tuning.
“We’re just trying to go out and go faster than the last time,” Chad said. “We are just trying to learn to be steady and get the times closer to put the best time in the window. We just go out there and have fun, for the most part.”
And while the Dunns are relatively new to the sport, they aren’t pushovers on the track. Chad has gone motor-to-motor with his uncle.
“We’ve raced three times on the track and I’ve won all three,” Chad laughed. “He gets me off the line, but I catch him on the top end.”