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Tires for the Snowball Derby


debwill

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While wandering through the pits, I couldn't help but notice the huge stacks of tires near the Tech area at Five Flags. From what I've heard, tire strategy is a key factor at Five Flags due to the rough racing surface.

 

When I spoke with the Hoosier representatives, they told me that they have 3,200 tires here at Five Flags. This tire inventory does not include any tires that were bought by the teams prior to arriving at the race track.

 

From what I've head from the racing teams, it takes about 22 tires for the PLMs and 32 tires for the SLMs. It's mind-boggling how many tires are required to race here at Five Flags.

 

Here's a shot of the tire area:

 

post-29-1196439977_thumb.jpg

 

And here's a veteran LM racer from Texas, Larry Bendele, getting tires ready for his son's (Brandon) #6 PLM:

 

post-29-1196440066_thumb.jpg

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Budman,

 

Maybe you were just being funny, but you might be right! You can definitely see some shiny stuff in the asphalt. We're all teasing that the track will probably wear out our shoes too by the end of the weekend!

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Deb,

 

If you will run down to the local Home Depot there in P'cola and pick up a caulking gun and a tube of sealer,

in you spare time there you can run out there on the track and seal all those cracks. Shoot, you could have that done in a jiffy and I'm sure the FF people would be very appreciative! :lol:

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And here's one of Carl Smith's tires that was retired after a practice session:

 

post-29-1196450250_thumb.jpg

That's what our tires looked like back in the 60s at Meyer Speedway in Houston. We had to scrub'em off, couldn't afford new ones every time they got dirty. :(

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Here's another interesting comment on the tires. On Lap 39, we clocked the Derby leader, Matt Hawkins, at a 19.05. Hawkins qualified at a 17.021. In less than 40 laps, Hawkins had already lost more than two seconds due to tire wear.

 

Also, I did a quick estimate on the tire cost for this past weekend, as follows:

Pro Late Models - 22 tires @ $122 each = $2684

Super Late Models - 32 tires @ $122 each = $3904

 

YIKES!!!

 

We heard some rumors that Five Flags is thinking about repaving. I'm wondering if that would take away some of the "charm" of that track, espcially since tire strategy seems just as important as horsepower.

 

And, yes, Budman, it might take a just a few (million) tubes of sealer from Home Depot to fix the cracks.

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Here's another interesting comment on the tires. On Lap 39, we clocked the Derby leader, Matt Hawkins, at a 19.05. Hawkins qualified at a 17.021. In less than 40 laps, Hawkins had already lost more than two seconds due to tire wear.

 

Also, I did a quick estimate on the tire cost for this past weekend, as follows:

Pro Late Models - 22 tires @ $122 each = $2684

Super Late Models - 32 tires @ $122 each = $3904

 

YIKES!!!

 

We heard some rumors that Five Flags is thinking about repaving. I'm wondering if that would take away some of the "charm" of that track, espcially since tire strategy seems just as important as horsepower.

 

And, yes, Budman, it might take a just a few (million) tubes of sealer from Home Depot to fix the cracks.

The tire numbers needed depend on how many mock qaulifying runs you do.The tires are good for 2to3 laps on the pros and 1to2 on the supers.Your numbers are probably a good average but there were alot of teams that used more than that.You also have to buy more tires than you need because you don't know the true rollout until they are mounted and once that happens your an owner.

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landlord,

 

It's scary to think that my estimate is conservative. Thanks for sharing a bit more information about the tires. As you can tell from my pictures and remarks, I found the tire situation to be very interesting.

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