A-Team Top 25 Dirt Late Model Ranking

Mike Ruefer’s

A-Team “Top 25” Dirt Late Model Ranking

June 2019 “Mid-Season Edition”

Can you believe that the year is half over? I can’t, as the weather has impacted just about everyone who is involved with racing. I can’t remember a year where its rained this much everywhere. I’m getting tired of even talking about it, so let’s get into the top 10 and we’ve got new comers and old goers. The A-Team is all about consistency folks. To stay at the top, you’ve got to have very good finishing positions and even win a few. DNF’s send drivers spiraling down in a hurry.

The #1 top performing driver continues to be Brandon Sheppard. The Rocket House car ride is divine and the Family House car is an ultra-fine. Brandon’s performance is just brilliant to watch. Drop the mic!

Second and Third is like a photo finish between Jonathan Davenport and Darrell Lanigan. The Fast 49 inched forward with his last win at Florence Speedway and to be honest unless the “Back in Black” 29 slacks off, it will take high levels of performance to be in second. Anything can happen and with the A-Team scientific formula every race and every position matters.

In fourth place is Bobby Pierce. As the Summer Nationals have heated up so has his rating and final rank. Bobby isn’t winning right now but he is digging and scraping every night and getting good finishes.

Can you smell what the Terbo is cooking? His DoD interview after the Tri-City Speedway bout with Kyle Bronson was an instant classic that is “Best Performance” material. The young man is a heck of driver and exciting. I like him. Fun to watch for sure.

Earl Pearson and the Black Diamond crew hang in there every week and battle up front on tough Lucas Oil tour. He’s holding down a strong 6th place rank and making a home right now in the Top 10.

Hold onto your hats fans. The regional drivers are starting to dot the landscape throughout the Top 25 and Chad Simpson has bolted into 7th place. His string of three wins and three top five’s on the MLRA circuit has electrified his initial ranking this year. The tip of the hat to Team 25!

Oh’ Canada is coming to America. Ricky Weiss is a contender for wins and doing really good with his focus on Open Motor racing. He’s got the team, talent and consistency to be a top performer in the ranking and has a solid 8th place.

Old Age and Treachery Beats Youth and Enthusiasm in my book. There are not many drivers left from the Hav-A-Tampa days and Dale McDowell is still getting it done today against all the kids at a very high level. Dale holds down the 9th position.

Being a Top 10 driver at any point in the year means you’ve been very good up to this point and Ross Bailes is just that. He’s been really good in his region and at the big show. Can he hold it, only time will tell? There’s a lot of fast Hot Rods right on his tail.

That’s it for the Month of June. July could be steamy as driver’s jockey for position.

The current event qualifier number for June was 14 features and will go up by 2 each month. It will top off at twenty in September. Currently 64 drivers have met this threshold. All results are tracked via DirtonDirt. Without them and their attention to detail because they’re the best, I couldn’t do this and have this much fun.

With 920 drivers currently being tracked since January 1st, here is the A-Team “Top 25” for June. It’s the “Best of the Best” from around the country.

1 Brandon Sheppard
2 Jonathan Davenport
3 Darrell Lanigan
4 Bobby Pierce
5 Tyler Erb
6 Earl Pearson Jr.
7 Chad Simpson
8 Ricky Weiss
9 Dale McDowell
10 Ross Bailes
11 Ashton Winger
12 Donald McIntosh
13 Shane Clanton
14 Michael Page
15 Brian Shirley
16 Josh Richards
17 Chase Junghans
18 Will Vaught
19 Tim McCreadie
20 Jimmy Owens
21 Rusty Schlenk
22 Ryan Unzicker
23 Chris Madden
24 Brandon Overton
25 Chris Ferguson
26 Mike Marlar

What is the A-Team Dirt Late Model Ranking? The original A-Team was developed by Sam Holbrooks in 1996 and printed in “Behind the Wheel” and Late Model America.” The A-Team is a national ranking for Open Motor events that pay a minimum $2000 to win. Each driver who makes a feature event will earn a mathematical formula based rate built on performance, competition and durability. The final ranking is based on rate and logic rules that reward racing more. Nothing in the rate, rank or logic is subjective. It’s just all numbers, math and rules. The A-Team isn’t about who is best but who is having the best year. If you think that makes the driver “The Best” that’s ok with me.

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