ROSSBURG, OHIO (May 8, 2015) – The track that late Earl Baltes built is cut into the corn fields on the western side of Ohio started as a quarter mile oval when it was built but grew into the famed half mile speedway it is today. To sprint car drivers and fans it is certainly a diamond in the rough. It’s simply known as Eldora Speedway and drivers and fans alike enjoy the action that takes place on the track. Tony Stewart now owns the track and the action continues to be fast and exciting around the high banked oval. Jamie Veal was making his second ever visit to Eldora Speedway and this time he was aboard the Jason and Bobbi Johnson owned Waco Metal/FK Rod Ends #41 Maxim. There were 39 sprint cars in the pits with wings and another 30 USAC sprint cars without wings ready for the first of two nights of scheduled racing action billed as the ‘Mother’ of All Sprint Car Weekends.
Jamie climbed into the cockpit of the Priority Aviation Services, LLC/Kenny’s Components Maxim and was the first car to push out for time trials. It is absolutely amazing how fast these cars get around this track and when the Warrnambool native crossed the stripe and stopped the clock, the quicker of his two laps was 13.300 seconds, which was 15th quick overall.
His qualifying effort gave him a great view for the start of the third 8-lap heat race. He was on the pole with Gary Taylor’s #1st sharing the front row and David Gravel and Donny Schatz in row two. The Aussie jumped on the loud pedal when the green flag waved and headed towards turn one. When the first lap was in the books, he held the lead over Taylor but the two were racing side-by-side at speed. The racing action was exciting and Veal was flying in the Priority Aviation Services machine. Taylor was not giving up though and made a pass for the lead stick as he led the remaining distance with Veal crossing the finish line second ahead of Schatz, Gravel with D.J. Foos capturing the fifth and final transfer position.
Tackling the high speeds at Eldora is certainly fun, but treacherous when you are inside the cockpit. Jamie and the JJR team went to work to get the forty one ready for 30 laps of high speed action Eldora ‘style’, aboard the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/Valvoline rocket. Starting on the inside of row eight, from the fifteenth starting position, there was work to do and time to do it. But, things happen really quick at Eldora so one small bobble and a good night can turn into a bad night in the blink of an eye. When the green flag waved, fellow Australian Kerry Madsen jumped out into the lead and set a torrid pace up front. Jamie was on the move, but struggling to gain any places on the scoreboard. Up front, Donny Schatz tracked down Madsen and took the lead just before the halfway point of the race and Jamie was still turning laps but fighting to hold his position. When Schatz took the checkered flag for the win, Jamie cruised home with a 21st place finish.’
After the race, team owner Jason Johnson commented, “Jamie timed 15th in time trials, got 2nd in his heat, and turned some really good laps out there in the A-Main.” He continued, “This is only the second time he has been to Eldora and he did a really nice job tonight. We will get back at it tomorrow and see what we can do.”