Some day, at least I hope, Iowa Racing News will be successful enough that it can be the primary source of income for my family.

Until then, like a lot of racers, I need a steady form of income to keep the roof over our heads and the lights on. So, I have a “day job.” Some of you know what that is. For those of you who don’t, it’s really not that important to what I’m writing today.

Last week was one of those times where the demands of the “day job” nearly made it impossible for me to do the “fun job” – Iowa Racing News. Again, I’m sure a lot of racers out there understand what I’m saying without having to get into specifics.

It’s also not meant to be whining, but rather just an explanation for when – in the future – it may seem like not much is happening on the website. We’re not going away anytime soon. So, don’t worry, when it looks a little lean, it probably means I’ll have a big batch of racer features coming.

Speaking of which, I would LOVE to have them rolling out on a daily basis. But to do that, I need you all to feed me story ideas. If you know a racer who has a story to tell and is willing to tell it, just let me know. And if you’re concerned about how it all works, let me also assure you that the process is mostly painless:

  • I ask questions.
  • You answer questions.
  • I may ask a couple more questions.
  • You answer questions.
  • I write an article – that you get to proof before we publish.
  • We find some photos to go with the story.
  • I set a publishing date – but only after you’re happy with what we got.

Writing the racer features is, without a doubt, my most favorite part of the “fun job.” And, I firmly believe every racer – from the 30-year veteran to the first-year rookie – has a story to tell that people want to read.


Late last week and early this week, the IMCA stock car community got its collective cage rattled by the news of an in-season rule change regarding rear deck heights. I think some people were surprised, but honestly, I think most in the division had to know it was coming.

As early as when the first “I’m ready for Bristol” photos started showing up on Facebook, the grumbling had already begun.

I think it was the only call the IMCA could make under the circumstances. What had been for decades a “gentlemen’s understanding” about “stock appearing” racecars had suddenly gone off the rails with one-off chassis designs that looked about as stock as a Beverly Hills housewife.


Hawkeye 100 weekend has arrived and in a matter of hours, the World of Outlaws super late models are going to be trying to climb the top shelf on the high banks of Boone Speedway. Right off the bat, we have the intrigue over Scott Bloomquist’s decision not to go.

Regardless of the actual reason – I don’t put a lot of stock in most of those thrown out there by the keyboard commandos this week – there’s going to be plenty else to talk about by Sunday morning. And there’s plenty to talk about now, going into the event.

There are two Iowa racers in the “rookie” trio this season who are making some serious noise. Decorah’s Tyler Bruening is now fourth in the points with six Top 10s in the first 12 events of the season. And then you’ve got “The Reaper,” Ryan Gustin of Marshalltown, who has four Top 10s and is flirting with moving up into Top 10 of the point standings.

A win for either of those two would be huge at this point. There are only four wins total among the Top 10 in the standings at this point – two of them held by “The Topside Tickler,” Kyle Strickler – who is the third member of the “rookie” trio.

Other questions I have going into the Hawkeye 100 this week:

  • How many cautions will we have for guys who run too high on the topside and get sucked over the edge?
  • Will they continue to “farm” the track as they usually do, and if so, how will the WoO guys react to the repeated “resets” of the track?
  • They’ve been doing three-wide starts at Boone Speedway for decades, but the WoO guys never have, so how crazy is that first start out of Turn 4 going to be?
  • Ricky Thornton Jr. proved last week in his modified that he can take the lead from any starting position at Boone, so is he the guy to beat this weekend?
  • Or, is this the week Brandon Sheppard finally puts the “Rocket1” in Victory Lane for the first time this season?

Regardless of the answers to those questions, I think there’s going to be a lot of reasons to watch what happens in Boone this weekend. In the meantime, thank you again for doing what you do, which allows me to do what I do.

(Photo via

Bob Eschliman is publisher-editor of Iowa Racing News. He’s an award-winning professional journalist with more than 20 years’ experience covering dirt track racing – and more than 40 years’ experience watching fast cars make slide jobs for the win. His email address is For more news and information that “covers the Iowa dirt track scene,” visit


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