Die or Die events by Eric Hunt and Zinford Hardin are becoming increasingly popular. Here in North Carolina, no-prep racing is on the rise, and these guys are some of the first to ride the wave. The particular event is the second one at Rockingham dragway. Both events brought more than 20 big tire cars and a staggering 100+ cars, all to battle it out for almost 40k. Christmas Clash itself had 20 big tire cars and 108 small tire cars. The big tire class purse came in at a cool 6k while the small tire pot brought 32.5k! Both classes lost two amazing guys between the August race and this one, Craig Bradshaw, a small tire racer that I had the pleasure of spending many days at the track with, and Sammy Tayman, a top tier big tire racer. Both of the classes were in their remembrance, and the trophies displayed their cars right in the center.
Rain forced big tire’s Friday schedule to postpone into the am on Saturday, causing the track crew to dry the track. A new, dry surface with no rubber left from the night before proved troublesome for most racers left in the group. They all spun down the track to the finish line. The big tire class’s key twist is that AWD cars and trucks are allowed, and ultimately, one came out on top. Colby Patterson drove his turbocharged regular cab 4wd GMC Sierra STREET truck sporting slicks on all fours past every other racecar on the property. It was a sight to see given he could drive it home after he picked up his 6k in winning if he wished.
Everything from food vendors to performance shops, apparel, and traction compound companies like Stripper Glitter were set up ready to help. With 108 entries into small tire, the afternoon was sure to go into the wee hours of the morning, but Eric and Zinford had it under control with minimal downtime. We even had a fan propose to his girlfriend right on the track! Foot races, smart car races, grudge racing, and side bets, Everyone had something to do while weathering temperatures in the low 30s.
The small tire has always been a very competitive class, it’s not about how much power you have but how well you can get it applied to the track, all without a test pass. Some big-time small-tire guys took the fall early, leaving the 32.5k on the table for racers whose names aren’t as well known. That large pot couldn’t have gone to a better racer, almost having to sell his car to fund medical bills, Bobby Parks decided to come out and try his luck. Fate was on his side as well as his car and team, and they took home the 32.5k! Seeing something like that happen to a person in need jerked some tears from the crowd.
Dig or Die is here to stay; with more events placed in the calendar every year, the chance to come out and enjoy the fun is increasing. Pay attention to these guys; they’re just getting started, and invite everyone out to the Rock March 26-27th of 2021 for the first race!