South Boston - When one sees Jason DeCarlo at South Boston Speedway, he often has a smile on his face.
Each event is a fun time for the Chase City, Virginia resident, one of the competitors in South Boston Speedway’s grassroots Budweiser Hornets Division.
“It’s a blast,” DeCarlo says of racing in the Budweiser Hornets Division.
“A lot of the fun is the group of people we race with. We all get along really well. They’re all good guys. We’re all real competitive, but we’re not tight-lipped like some of the guys in the top divisions are. We share information to a point. Everybody is competitive, but we’re friends.”
The 2021 season is DeCarlo’s first full-time season racing in the Budweiser Hornets Division. Thus far he has recorded finishes of third, seventh, fifth and fourth. He stands seventh in the division point standings entering the upcoming Budweiser Hornets Division race that will be part of Saturday night’s Halifax Insurance NASCAR Late Model Twin 75s racing program.
“This isn’t a bad season for our first season,” DeCarlo remarked.
“I just wish the finishes were a little better.”
Drivers in the Budweiser Hornets Division draw for starting positions for their races. DeCarlo feels his finishes could possibly have been a little stronger if he were to have had some better luck when it came to the draw.
“We just need a little luck,” DeCarlo pointed out.
“Except for the first race, we’ve been starting near the back of the pack most of the season. I even let my son draw for me the last three races, and that hasn’t worked out too well, but it is what it is. I think we’ve started eighth, ninth and 11th the last three races. It would be good to be able to start a little closer to the front.”
The Mazda 3 hatchback car DeCarlo races in the Budweiser Hornets Division is unique in that it is the only car of its kind in the field.
“We’re kind of in our own little ballgame,” explained DeCarlo.
“It’s a little hindrance because you can’t talk with others and ask what works with you, how does this work or how does that work. I helped Kevin Currin on his (Hornets Division) car several years. He and I are good friends. He’s been worlds of help. With different cars we can’t look at similarities in what works and what doesn’t work and apply it.”
While that presents a challenge for DeCarlo, he says having a different car is part of the fun of racing in the division.
“Part of the challenge and part of the fun of it is figuring it out,” DeCarlo said.
“Building the car and seeing what you built was a lot of fun. Coming up here to South Boston Speedway and driving it is a bonus.”
DeCarlo feels he is heading in the right direction with the car and his driving.
“The car is getting a little better, and I’m getting a little better,” he said.
“This is the first year that I’ve raced most of the season. A lot of it is on me. The car is pretty decent. I’ve just got to fine-tune it and see what works for it and me.”