South Boston Speedway Competitors Work Hard To Enjoy The Offseason

by January 11, 2017 0 comments

SOUTH BOSTON, Va. – The offseason is a narrow window of time for weekly racers and you’d better believe they jam as much as possible into that two or three-month period when they are away from the track.

From time with family and friends to hockey games to sleigh riding, and of course, working on race cars, the offseason has been busy for South Boston Speedway competitors.

“From the end of the season until January we don’t do much on the car,” said Danny Willis Jr., who finished sixth in South Boston’s Late Model points standings in 2016 and won a race after moving up from the Limited Sportsman Division. “We try to spend a lot of time with family and friends and enjoying the holidays. Usually in January we start working on the car pretty steady getting it prepared to do some testing.”

The recent snow brought an extra dose of fun to the Willis household.

“This past weekend we had a lot of fun with Kim (his wife) and Declan (son) and some friends riding sleds in the snow,” said Willis.

The winter months haven’t been all fun and games for South Boston track champion and NASCAR Whelen All-American Series national champion Matt Bowling.

“In the offseason, I get to devote more time to the family business and work,” said Bowling, who also has been planning a March wedding with his fiancée Lauren Whapham. “As far as racing, I’ve been looking for opportunities and sponsors for next season to make the move up.”

Austin Thaxton, a multiple Late Model winner last season, has jammed his offseason full of work, fun and a bit more. He has almost totally rebuilt his race car, worked a full time job, taken a Caribbean cruise and, most importantly, become engaged. He and fiancée Lauren Carter will be married later this year, on October 28.

“It’s been a busy winter with the trucking company and then I got engaged right before Christmas,” said Thaxton. “I had enough time right after the season ended to tear the car down. The last month work was crazy so now I’m putting it back together.”

Eric Winslow, who will make the move from Late Model Stocks to the Limited Division this season, has had time for little other than preparing for the 2017 season.

“I’ve been spending most of my time improving my shop to be more organized and prepared for 2017 along with building an up-to-date car,” said Winslow, who recently completed an amazing upgrade to his shop. “I did attend my first Carolina Hurricane game over the winter and really look forward to going to another one.”

It’ll soon be back to the shops for drivers and crews to prepare for the 2017 season. South Boston Speedway’s 60th season opens on March 25 with the Danville Toyota NASCAR Whelen Late Model Twin 100s, featuring two 100-lap races for the Late Model Stock Division, a 50-lap Limited Sportsman Division race, a 30-lap Budweiser Pure Stock race and a 15-lap Budweiser Hornets race.

The full 2017 schedule can be found at

Source: South Boston Speedway

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