South Boston Speedway South Boston, VA Winslow Goes Back To Racing Roots, Wins South Boston Hornet Title

Discussion in 'Virginia Race Tracks' started by Race Results, Nov 22, 2015.

  1. Race Results

    Race Results Administrator Staff Member

    Eric Winslow went back to his racing roots this season and he’s never been happier … or more successful.

    Winslow, who has been racing most of his 27 years, decided to give South Boston’s entry-level division, the Hornets, a shot this season. It was an opportunity to take away some of the stress and hard work of the Late Model world while still getting behind the wheel every Saturday night.

    It was successful at all levels. He wound up winning the Hornet Division championship and got to enjoy racing again.

    “I love the structure of this division. Anybody can afford to do it,” said Winslow. “The way the rules are set up, you can start out and not put a lot of work in it. It’s open to anybody and that’s what I like about it.

    “I’ve been going to South Boston forever. To win a few races and a track championship there is awesome.”

    Winslow actually did double duty for much of the season, running back-and-forth in the pits from his Late Model car to his Hornet. The Hornet side of the pits was where he had the most fun, though.

    “It was really nice with (the Hornet). I didn’t have a lot of time to work on the Hornet. It was tough running two divisions,” said Winslow, whose fulltime job is working with Sellers Racing in Danville. “I would put it on the truck after the race, back it off at the shop and put the cover on it until the next week. You don’t have to devote half of your life to the car. That’s another perk to the division. Others you have to work on it all the time.”

    Winslow’s ride for the season was a 1997 Honda Accord he bought from a salvage yard for $450. Another $300 or so paid to build and install a roll cage and purchase a racing seat.

    “I did this basically because I could afford it,” Winslow said of his step back into the Hornet Division.

    And, he says, anybody with an interest in racing can afford it.

    “You don’t have to go to the track and buy tires. You don’t have to buy racing gas,” explained Winslow. “You run regular gas. And when you are racing a ’97 Accord, that thing gets 30 miles to the gallon and you don’t run but about 12 miles a night. You can buy two or three gallons and run a week or two.”

    Winslow said the division rules allow only street tires, which are $65 each. “I ran the left side tires all year,” he said.

    Entry-level divisions at other tracks have gotten out of hand, Winslow said, but the South Boston rules remain very basic.

    “What South Boston has done with the Hornet Division is what an entry division is supposed to be … street tires, put a cage in it. That’s the perfect way to go racing. It’s a great deal. I expect it to grow,” said Winslow, who had sponsorship help from Edward Jones Investment of South Boston. He also carried the Danville Cancer Association and Mission 22, a pair of non-profits, on his car.

    Winslow didn’t plan on running the entire Hornet schedule in 2015, but “we got out of the gate so strong, we kept going,” said Winslow, who won four races on his way to the championship.

    And he isn’t sure if he’ll be back in the division in 2016. He had the opportunity to drive the second car of South Boston Late Model champion Matt Bowling a couple of races late in the season. He finished second to Bowling in the final 75-lapper of the season and that’s got him excited about Late Model racing again.

    “After the last two weeks of the season running Bowling’s car, it’s got me interested in doing a little better in my Late Model,” said Winslow.

    Regardless of what happens, he’ll always have great memories of his championship season.

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