Darrell Lanigan has always been a fiery competitor behind the wheel of a Dirt Late Model. However, during the three years he spent out of his own equipment it seemed as if that fire may not have burned quite as hot as it had in previous seasons. But among the many changes that took place during the most recent off-season, one of the most noteworthy was the announcement that the Union, Kentucky driver would return to his own Darrell Lanigan Racing team and run full-time on the World of Outlaws Late Model Series for the 2019 campaign.
And it didn’t take long for that fire to get stoked back up to full temperature inside the 48-year-old driver’s belly.
After a weekend of aggressive racing by all drivers, particularly on Friday night, in the WoO Late Models lid lifters at Georgia’s Screven Motor Speedway the teams on that series made their way to the Volusia Speedway Park. The first night of competition at the track located near Daytona Beach, Florida fell under the UMP DIRTcar Nationals banner and featured many drivers from both the World of Outlaws Late Model Series and the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series.
During some particularly intense racing, Lanigan found himself engaged with an old rival during the Monday night feature event. “The Bluegrass Bandit” often found himself mixing it up with Josh Richards back when the two hard charging racers used to compete for championships on the WoO Late Models tour several years ago and on Monday night they found themselves in another such situation.
Richards now drives for Clint Bowyer Racing which is the team Lanigan just parted ways with.
Just after eventual winner Mike Marlar passed by the two of them on the outside going down the backstretch late in the race, Richards made a strong move to the inside of Lanigan going into turn three as they contested the runner-up spot. The two cars touched briefly and both skated up the track. On the way back down the front stretch, Lanigan regained his momentum and the No. 29 machine surged ahead of Richards while at the same time cutting down to keep the No. 14 car at bay.
Following the race the second finishing Lanigan unleashed on Richards during an interview with DirtVision.com.
“We had a really good hot rod,” Lanigan declared. “I think we had a chance to win there, but the 14 car didn’t want to race me clean. You know what, if he wants to race that way, we can race that way. I’m done with that sh–.”
It’s not that Darrell Lanigan didn’t want to win when he drove for CBR. But perhaps he simply feels more comfortable being himself when driving his own equipment rather than someone else’s.
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