TWO IN TEXAS
MESQUITE, TX – A unique two-day oval event with big paydays was held on the weekend in the State of Texas. The fourth annual Lonestar 600 took place Friday and Saturday night at Devils Bowl Speedway in Mesquite, Texas. Former Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series competitor Marc Hobe’ was one of the entrants. “I’ve never raced in Texas before,” exclaims Hobe, “my son (Dylan) and I made the fourteen hour haul to go race.” Hobe’ left the NPP Late Model Series at the conclusion of the 2015 season and eventually moved back to Arizona to be closer to family and his grandchildren. His #2 Ford race car accompanied him back to the USA. “This was my first race since moving back to the States,” admits Hobe’, “it was a lot of fun and brought back some good memories when I raced in Canada.” The Lonestar 600 is unique in that all registered cars run on the track at once. There are no heat races, time trials or dashes, just two 300 lap Features.
“They paid $10,000 to win both nights. Whoever had the best average finish from both nights gets $5,000.” Total purse for the Lonestar 600 was $52,000. “This was the fourth year for this event. But the first year this event has been held at this track.” Night number one saw 135 cars take the green flag. It also saw an early exit for Hobe’. “Someone behind me wanted to win the race on the second lap. I got put into the wall. I didn’t realize that the car had been bent (front right tire) that bad. I stayed out for a few more laps then came to the pits.” Hobe was credited with a 125th place finish in the JoVi Trucking #2 Ford after just six laps. There were nine other drivers that retired from the race before Hobe’ pulled into the pits. “A lot of Modifieds, Street Stocks and Bombers in this race. There were very few Late Models.”
The track was a little less congested for Night #2 of the Lonestar 600. Carnage from Night #1 saw 37 less cars return to compete. A total of 97 cars took the green flag. Early in the race on Night #2, Hobe’ found himself running fourth. “The track (Devils Bowl Speedway) is almost like Edmonton (Castrol Raceway) as far as configuration. We really were running good on the second night.” At the start of Lap 26 Hobe’ felt a shudder under the flag stand. “The transmission let loose going down the front stretch and I rolled to a stop in the corner then immediately got smacked from behind not once but twice.”
Hobe’s night and inaugural experience at the Lonestar 600 was over. “Pretty discouraged with the early exits both nights,” sighs Hobe’, “but we had lots of fun. We did run at the front for a bit.” Hobe’ finished 93rd in the Saturday night Feature. “The car that was running third was taken out (crash) a few laps after us.” Hobe’ now is now focused on his next tasks. “I’ve started up a small trucking operation here (in Arizona).” As far as racing is concerned Hobe’ may have competed in his last ever event on the dirt. “The plan right now is to convert the car to run pavement and race at Tuscon Speedway next year.” Tucson is just a two hour haul from Hobe’s hometown.