Dennis Erb Jr’s crew chief, Heather Lyne, said it best after Erb won the World of Outlaws CASE Construction Equipment Late Models championship in 2022: “We’ve raised the bar, and now we have to clear it.”
The dynamic duo will take their first step toward clearing that bar when the Series opens its season at Volusia Speedway Park during Sunshine Nationals on Jan. 18-21.
Erb couldn’t sit and enjoy his 2022 title for too long, as only 75 days fell between the final night of the World of Outlaws World Finals and the opening race of the season.
However, the hard-working approach he and Lyne take toward each race had them ready to prepare for the short offseason.
“It doesn’t take long,” Erb said. “By the time we get home and get everything unloaded and start getting things cleaned up, we’re back at it working hard, getting things freshened up, getting a new car put together.
“The offseason is really short now, so we don’t have that much time to relax.”
Erb said early in the 2022 season that he had a focus on going out and winning the championship. That fire hasn’t stopped burning for the Illinois driver as he attempts a repeat performance.
“We had a real good year last year,” Erb said. “Things were working good. The car was working good. We finished off on a good note and plan to pick up right where we left off. We’re real confident, and we hope everything works out, but I think we’ll be right there in the battle again.”
With a couple of new Rocket Chassis at his disposal for 2023, he’s looking forward to what’s to come—including a return to his home state and Farmer City Raceway.
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“Looking at the 2023 schedule, we’ve got a few new places we’re going to, and we’re always looking forward to that,” Erb said. “We just enjoy going to new places and our normal races we’ve got.
“Hopefully, we can get the [Illini 100] in. That’d be good to run there this year, a lot of the stuff in the Midwest and the tracks we’ve run at throughout my career. I like going back to those places, too.”
While Erb thrives in the Midwest, the season opens at another place where he’s found success.
He scored one of his four Series victories at Volusia in 2022 during DIRTcar Nationals.
“We’ve run real good at Volusia,” Erb said. “Like I said, hopefully, we’ll be able to pick up right where we left off last year there. We’re pretty confident in getting around that place, and we’ve had some pretty good runs there and won some races there.
“We’re looking to start off real good coming out of the box.”
Erb knows where the bar is set and takes his first leap toward clearing it when the Series opens its 2023 season at Sunshine Nationals at Volusia Speedway Park.
Joining the World of Outlaws CASE Late Models are the DIRTcar Pro Late Models and 602 Late Models as part of the Late Model Palooza.
If you can’t make it to the track, you can watch all the action live on DIRTVision – either at DIRTVision.com or by downloading the DIRTVision App.