CONCORD, N.C. – One of the most interesting pairings at this year’s World of Outlaws World Finals presented by Can-Am is the union of six-time All Star Circuit of Champions titlist Dale Blaney with Chase Briscoe Racing.
It’s not that the Blaneys and the Briscoes don’t have prior history – they do – but it’s because the elder Blaney brother wasn’t the one who was associated with the Briscoe family for the longest time.
“It’s actually interesting, because my brother drove for Chase’s grandpa back in the day in 1983 or ’84, and now I’m running for Chase. It’s kind of ironic,’ Blaney pointed out.
Blaney is actually coming off one of his slowest seasons in recent memory. A work-related injury that necessitated surgery to his hand put him out of the seat for much of the first half of the year, not long after a deal to run for Bill Coomer Motorsports fell through just a couple of races into the partnership.
“I had planned on running a car for Bill Coomer in Ohio a little bit, but I only ran about three races for him before we realized it wasn’t exactly working out like we wanted it to,” said Blaney. “We went our separate ways after that, and I’ve only run about 10 races all year. I raced for one of my buddies that has a car near here at Lernerville (Pa.) Speedway and Sharon (Ohio) Speedway a little bit, just to shake some things down for him, but I haven’t run much and it feels really good to get back in a competitive car.
“I don’t know how much rust I’ll have, but I’ve always run pretty good at Charlotte and that’s always been a pretty good track for me, so hopefully we’ll be strong here this weekend and can make some things happen for this team.”
A World Finals winner at The Dirt Track at Charlotte in 2012, Blaney is hoping that his past experience at the four-tenths-mile dirt oval and his years of racing at the touring level are enough to combat his dearth of track time in recent months.
Blaney did score a 410-sprint car feature win at Sharon Speedway back on Aug. 11.
“If the motor runs good and the car gets around the corners well, things come back really easily,” Blaney laughed. “That’s always a huge help. I think I’ve got a good opportunity to have that happen. Chase has good cars, good motors and good equipment, and his dad has been around a long time … so I look forward to the rest of this weekend and doing as well as we can.
“I won here in 2012 and have ran well here a bunch of other times; I think it fits my style, especially when it gets wide and slick,” he added. “We’ll see what happens, but I think we’re off to a good start.”
As far as the future goes, Blaney’s wish is simple: he’d like nothing more than to be on the road again.
“I’d love to get back to racing full time and running 75 races a year,” Blaney stated. “Maybe even running for another All Star championship, if the right situation were in the cards. If not, I just want to race as much as I can and find someone who I can do that with. My goal is to perform well enough this weekend that maybe people go, ‘Huh, Blaney can still race a little bit.’
“The last couple years have been kind of tough, I won’t lie to you,” he continued. “I lost one of my best buddies. George Fisher and I were together for a long time and that was not easy. Since then, it’s been different. When you spend 15 years with a guy and the plan is to retire together, it makes things not go as well. I’m ready to go though.
“I’m ready to be back racing and trying to be Dale Blaney again before people forget who Dale Blaney was.”