2024 Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series at All-Tech Raceway

Blair Nothdurft Is Making Headway During Georgia-Florida Speedweeks

Blair Nothdurft Is Making Headway During Georgia-Florida Speedweeks

Blair Nothdurft is progressively getting better with the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series these Georgia-Florida Speedweeks.

Feb 2, 2024 by Kyle McFadden

Blair Nothdurft has no expectations for himself this weekend at All-Tech Raceway with the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series.

How come? For starters, the Renner, S.D., native’s relationship with the tricky half-mile is kind of complicated.

“Me and All-Tech are not the greatest of friends, I would say,” Nothdurft said. “I really struggle there.”

To that point, the 22-year-old’s yet to qualify for a main event in three previous trips to the Florida oval. Could Friday bring to the young driver greater fortune now in the midst of his fifth Georgia-Florida Speedweeks?

He’s qualified for three of the last four Speedweeks events at Georgia’s Golden Isles Speedway and Ocala (Fla.) Speedway, so there’s that. Since 2019, when Nothdurft contested his first Speedweeks as a 17-year-old, he’s entered 86 events and qualified for 19 features.

But dating back to last February’s DIRTcar Nationals finale at Florida’s Volusia Speedway Park, he’s made four of the last seven features. Last year, Northdurft qualified for nine features in 18 overall events at Speedweeks. Trends suggest that Nothdurft could very well right the ship at All-Tech.

He’ll also be driving a little more determined on Friday. Wednesday at Ocala, he wasn’t pleased with himself when a self-inflicted error caused him to finish 27th from an outside pole starting spot. Eight laps into the 40-lap running and having slipped back to 11th, Blair lost control of his family-owned No. 76 Rocket Chassis along the top side in turns one and two.

“It was either a push, a driver error, not knowing where I’m at … something. Just hit the wall,” Nothdurft said on Wednesday, his words underscored with disappointment. “Turned in on the slick and the car just didn’t react to turning on the slick. Yeah, just jumped the cushion and hit the wall.”

Nothdurft did win the third heat of the night, a battle won over Ashton Winger, which adds him to the profuse list of heat winners these Speedweeks. On Tuesday, he was 0.028 seconds shy of overall quick-time honors, but landed atop the Group B charts.

All told, Nothdurft’s early-night speed at a wonky place like Ocala might bode well at All-Tech.

“We’re pretty good at the beginning of the night,” Nothdurft said. “Heat race wise, we’re decent. We’re not the greatest. We had good track position (on Wednesday). Other than that, (in the) feature, got to work on the car, work on myself. Yeah, just disappointed (with Wednesday).”

“I definitely wanted more,” he added.

Despite a futile track record at All-Tech, the South Dakotan is staying encouraged. He’s trending in the right direction and even if plans don’t pan out at All-Tech, there’s East Bay Raceway Park to happily move on toward.

“I have good success at East Bay,” Nothdurft said. “I’ve started the last, I don’t know however many nights there, in the A main. I don’t have very good track position in the A main when we’re there. Hopefully that changes this year. As long as we keep qualifying good, staying up front in the heat races and having good track position for the A main, I think we should be alright for the rest of Speedweeks.

“I love East Bay and love going to Volusia also, I just don’t … I’m hesitant about All-Tech. Not the best there, but at the end of the day, we’re going to go there and learn. At least we’ll get better.”