Late Model drivers across the country will see a significant change in 2023.
On Thursday afternoon at Eldora Speedway, Hoosier Racing Tire announced a new National Late Model tire starting next season. The tire will be used in all Super Dirt Late Model racing, including the World of Outlaws CASE Construction Equipment Late Model Series and DIRTcar Late Model divisions.
World Racing Group CEO Brian Carter was among the officials there at the announcement. He stated he thinks the change will be a positive one for Late Model racing going forward.
“It’s been in the works for quite a while now,” Carter said. “It’s a collaboration between all of the sanctioning bodies and Hoosier and the racetracks to try and consolidate the supply chain to help Late Model racing be sustainable for a long time.
“It should make it simpler for the teams, a lot less tires to carry, and should help the local racers, too. It’s a great step forward for Late Model racing.”
Current World of Outlaws CASE Late Models points leader Dennis Erb Jr. agreed with Carter on the consolidation.
“I think it’s a good idea to get them down to a few compounds and make it easier to go all different places and not have to worry about carrying a bunch of different tires and getting tires ready,” Erb said. “Hopefully, that will make things a little bit easier.”
Four-time defending DIRTcar Summer Nationals champion Bobby Pierce said it saves him time trying to figure out what tires he needs to run, but knows there will be some adjusting.
“It’s very nice to have everybody on the same exact rule,” Pierce said. “That way, you go race wherever you want and not have to worry about the tire rule. That’s always something we have to figure out.”
World of Outlaws CASE Late Models Rookie of the Year contender Gordy Gundaker is also on board with cutting down the number of compounds. He stated that it helps the drivers who aren’t used to running different tires in different regions.
“It’s going to be great for everybody,” Gundaker said. “Now you can go race anywhere in the country and have the right tires. That’s one of the biggest reasons why we didn’t really travel a lot over the past couple of years because once we leave the Midwest, you have to get 1300s, 1350s, and 1425s. It’s a wide range, and it’s tough for a guy like me to justify going for a weekend and buying all those tires.
“Them coming together and unifying the rule, I think, is great for all of us.”
World of Outlaws CASE Late Model drivers will get their first crack at the new tire when the Series opens its season in January at Volusia Speedway Park for the Sunshine Nationals (Jan. 18-21).