NEW CASTLE, Ind. — July 30, 2013— While he hasn’t raced at the Belleville High Banks in Kansas, in five years, Tracy Hines has turned plenty of laps at the famed half-mile in his career. All of those laps though have come in a midget. He’ll look to use that experience this week as he not only competes in the historic Belleville Midget Nationals for the Honda USAC National Midget Series, but also in the inaugural Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series event at the legendary high-banked, half-mile.
The trek to Belleville will begin for Hines with the running of the Chad McDaniel Memorial at Solomon Valley Raceway in Beloit, Kan., on Tuesday, July 30 for the Honda USAC National Midget Series. The event honors the former midget race who lost his life at Knoxville Raceway in Iowa, in 2009. Solomon Valley Raceway is a semi-banked, quarter-mile oval in North Central Kansas.
“This is definitely a busy week with the travel out to Kansas and then all the racing,” said Hines. “Racing on a quarter-mile at Beloit (Solomon Valley Raceway) will be a big difference from racing at Belleville. We’ve run pretty well on the smaller tracks in a midget this year, so we should be pretty close when we unload.”
The 36th Belleville Midget Nationals at the Belleville High Banks will open for Hines, who pilots the Parker Machinery/Powered by Toyota Spike, on Thursday, Aug. 1, with a full racing program for the Honda USAC National Midget Series Dirt Championship, along with practice for the Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series. On Friday, Aug. 2, the USAC Traxxas Silver Crown Series will take to the track for the Hustle on the High Banks event. The 40-lap Belleville Midget Nationals finale is set for Saturday, Aug. 3.
Hines last competed in the Belleville Midget Nationals in 2008, finishing fifth in the 40-lap main event. He opened that night by winning the third eight-lap heat race. On the opening night of the 2008 Belleville Midget Nationals, Hines turned the 12th-fastest lap in time trials of the 32 entrants. He finished fourth in the fourth eight-lap heat race and 15th in the main event.
“It’s been a few years since I’ve raced at Belleville (High Banks), but that’s a place you always remember,” he noted. “It’s all about horsepower and keeping your momentum up around the banking. The Belleville Midget Nationals have so much history and for a midget driver, that’s an event that every wants to run. I’ve been close there in the past, and we’ll give it our all this week and see what we can do.”
The native of New Castle, Ind., finished a career-best third in the Belleville Midget Nationals in 1996 and matched that performance again in 2000. He has a total of four career top-five finishes in the finale of the fabled event at the high-banked oval.
Hines has made one start on the dirt with the Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series this season, in the Lightfoot Racing Beast, finishing third in the season-opening Hoosier 100 at the Indiana Fairgrounds in May. He opened that event by qualifying in the third spot. He has made a total of four starts in 2013 with the Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series, with three of those coming in pavement events.
“Racing a Silver Crown car at Belleville will definitely be a unique experience,” Hines said. “We race at Eldora, which is the steepest track we race those cars on and Belleville is even more banked. It will be a challenge to set the car up, especially with a full fuel load to get around Belleville, and on top of that you are always turning there with the shape of the track.”
Entering the Belleville Midget Nationals, Hines is sixth in the Honda USAC National Midget Series Dirt Championship standings on the strength of sixth top-10 finishes. With the Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series, the 2000 series titlist is fourth in points. He has three top-five finishes in four starts.
Tracy Hines Racing would like to thank: Hansen’s Welding Inc., Parker Machinery, Motor City Auto Transport, Turbines, Inc., Afco Racing Products, Daum Crop Insurance, Schoenfeld Headers, Allstar Performance, Kenny’s Components, Race Bumpers and Bell Racing.