Not very often does one driver go on such a hot streak as Harrogate, Tenn. racer Travis Fultz has recently in the Sportsman Late Model division. The 37-year-old has won six of the last seven features for his class at Tazewell Speedway and has piled up a total of eight victories thus far in 2017.
Fultz says that the key to his recent run of good fortune is simply taking advantage of the system in place with a good car and good driving. He points out that starting up front on the high banks of ‘The Bad Fast Taz’ is the key ingredient to a winning recipe.
“I don’t know if it’s really a secret,” Fultz declared in an interview with InsideDirtRacing.com. “Here, you get the choice if you’re on the pole if you want to start inside or outside. In this class, outside is the place to be. That’s about the biggest advantage of anything here at this track. Experience from years and years, this place gets rough, you’ve just got to learn your shock package and how to drive through holes and what not to hit.”
Furthermore, a big part of Fultz’s ability to run up front stems from a new piece of equipment he recently added to his arsenal.
“This engine was brand new about six or seven races ago and it’s really helped our program,” the head engine builder at DJ’s Performance said. “We were behind quite a bit on horsepower which really made me work hard the first of the year to get the car to work better. When we added the horsepower to get up with the other guys, we were right there with them.”
Almost all of Fultz’s success has come on the red clay of his home track. However, he also scored one win at Volunteer Speedway in Bulls Gap, Tenn. during this red hot run. Unlike some, this driver embraces the steep banking and high speed at Tazewell.
“This is where I learned how to drive,” Fultz explained. “I live ten miles down the road. I like it. I’m used to it. It’s just normal.”
However, there is a need for adjustment when a driver who normally races at Tazewell takes on a new speedway.
“It was a bit of a learning curve the first time I ventured away from here,” the driver of the No. T0 machine said. “I learned you don’t charge the corners at other tracks like you do here. You’ve got to slow it up a little bit. It was just a learning experience. Actually the win at Bulls Gap earlier this year was my first win on a track other than here.”
Fultz believes the Sportsman class, with its rules meant to keep costs in check, best suits his racing program.
“I believe they’ve got a really good rules package to make it an affordable Late Model class,” he explained. “The Crate Late Model deal can get expensive because you have to travel a lot. They have shocks that are a lot more expensive. And honestly, they’re a little bit rough on sheet metal. This deal here, I really like it, it’s not much more expensive than the Super Stock class. There are a lot of new guys but there are also guys who have been racing for ten years running this class.”
So how does this driver intend to take full advantage of his recent success as the season rolls on?
“We’re going to probably finish out the points races here but any other chance we’ve got, we’re going to go to Bulls Gap and 411.”