Story by Jacob Seelman & Adam Fenwick
Fans of dirt-track racing fans have been using the term “slide job” for decades. However, that term is becoming more popular across all forms of motorsports.
While it is unknown who first used “slide job” to explain a pass where one car slides under and in front of another, SPEED SPORT was curious as to the true definition of a slide job?
To answer those questions, we talked with more than a dozen of the best dirt-track racers in the United States. Their answers were very interesting.
“My definition of a slide job is when you drive it down toward the bottom and the guy in front of you is on the top. You slide up in front of him, take his line away and either he turns it back under you or he has to roll out of the gas and you’re off.”
“I don’t know about a definition, but a slider is basically when two guys are running the cushion and the guy behind you is held up and he says, ‘OK, I’m going for it this corner.’ He gets a good run down the straightaway and enters on the bottom and slides across the corner and winds up on the cushion ahead of you. Whereas opposed to when he originally entered he was running behind you on the cushion. So two guys on the cushion, the guy behind commits down the straightaway that he is going to run in on the bottom and slide up and that’s what he does.”
“A good, clean slide job. I don’t think there is anything more beautiful than a sprint car doing that. A nice slide job … you clear them and pull them down the straightaway I think is a good definition and then you just move on to the next guy and try to get it done again.”
“A slide job is where you get a run on the guy going down either straightaway, and then drive it as far as you think you need to into the corner to get past him. Sometimes, I think it’s evident that you either come up a little bit short or the guy you’re trying to pass is a little bit brave, so to clear that spot you either need to stick in front of him or back off if you know you’re not going to make it. It’s a bit of a judgment deal, but a correct slide job should be where you clear the guy and he at least has a chance to turn back under you.”
“Definitely a little harder to do a slide job in a big-block modified, but I guess it would be driving in low and hard and …I mean in order for it to be a slide job you’ve got to clear the guy in front of you. Not run them off the end of the race track.”
“Sliding someone is going into the corner on the bottom from the top of the track and attempting to slide in front of the guy ahead of you. Sometimes you’ll make contact, but I’d say a clean slide job is clearing the person you’re trying to pass and don’t hit them, but just break their momentum.
“You run her in deep in front of someone and slide up in front of them as clean as possible. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t.”