Commentary by: Rob Staley/Contributor

Danville, VA(January 14, 2011) — Nearly everyone who goes on this site knows of the incredible job that first year General Manager, Brad Allen did at Ace Speedway in 2010. Most also know that Allen has won multiple track championships in the track’s modified division, but what you might not know is that Allen once pursued a title in the Late Model Stock Car division.

Allen was just coming off a successful stint in kart racing when he decided to make a big move.

“I went from the karts straight to the Late Models,” Allen told me recently from his office at the track. “I bought the car that Todd Massey won the 1994 points with.”

In 1995, Allen began his quest for late model success as a rookie in a freshman class which also included Donnie Apple, Steve Hatley, Rod Barber and Dick Shirley.

“We ran really well, but lost the rookie title because of problems in three of the twin race events. All three of those nights, we crashed in the first race of twins and were unable to return for the second race. Steve Hatley ended up winning Rookie of theYear.”

Allen had a best finish of fourth in what was one of the most competitive years ever in the Late Model Stock Car class at Ace Speedway.

“The first two races of 1996 at Ace were rained out, so we decided to take the car to run at South Boston in their season opener,” Allen continued. “It didn’t turn out well, we were involved in a multicar crash in turn two, getting airborne. The crash looked similar to a crash that Ricky Craven had at Talladega.”

Allen’s season was done, but he made infrequent stabs in the Late Model Stock Car division at Ace, usually running midpack. In a funny sidenote Allen was involved in several incidents in the late 1990’s with an up and coming Rodney Cook.

“Rodney(Cook) asked me if that had anything to do with the decisions going against him last year,” Allen laughed.

Cook lost the 2010 points title due to a mid season restructure of points and a DQ from twin race wins for using offset spindles. After a brief stay with the Crawford Masonry #00 Late Model Stock Car in 2000, Allen decided to step back and take his talents to the track’s modified division. It has paid off with his track championships and he continues to race that division part time when not at Ace Speedway.