Special from Speed51.com – Excitement in the Air for Money in the Bank 150Zach Hiser
The Money in the Bank 150 at Berlin Raceway has become one of the premier Super Late Model races of the season. Its one-day format is a favorite to teams and fans alike, with a large purse that pays a cool $20,000 to win.
Berlin Raceway Director of Operations Nick Rice joined Speed51.com’s The Morning Bullring Monday morning to talk about the 3rdAnnual Money in the Bank 150. The race will once again be held on the Monday after the NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway, which has been attractive to race teams and fans alike.
“It’s always been the Monday after the race at MIS (Michigan International Speedway),” Rice told Speed51.com. “It’s just one of them days that during the summer, you don’t typically get to go to a race track on a Monday. They mark it on their calendar early and plan to be here. Everybody’s really geared up at the beginning of the summer to stack the grandstands, drivers don’t typically have a place to race on a Monday but they’re coming from someplace else racing Saturday and Sunday so you end up getting a really good field of cars.”
The first two editions of the race have seen NASCAR Cup Series drivers Kyle Busch and Erik Jones compete, as well as Truck Series drivers Matt Crafton, Harrison Burton, and Stewart Friesen. Bubba Pollard and Brian Campbell have won the first two editions of the race, and both drivers are entered for next Monday’s race.
Over thirty cars from around the country have started the Money in the Bank 150 both years, and race officials are expecting a similar car count for next Monday. Rice says that despite the talent coming in from all around, the local drivers will be hard to beat.
“We’ve got a pretty good entry list, twenty-four cars pre-entered. There’s guys from all over. You got Illinois, Oklahoma, Kansas, Georgia, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Colorado, and a bunch of our locals here in Michigan. It’s hard to beat some of our local guys here at Berlin, no matter how good you are.”
For the second year in a row, the Money in the Bank 150 will be sanctioned by the ARCA/CRA Super Series as a non-points race. Berlin Raceway has a great relationship with the Champion Racing Association (CRA) and looks forward to when they make the haul to Marne, Michigan.
“That’s big, and something we continue to look forward to,” Rice said. “Having those great guys with the CRA Super Series here is awesome but we really like to put our guys here in Michigan up against those guys because it ends up being a really good show.”
Berlin Raceway is known for having some of the stiffest local competition the country has to offer. The tricky 7/16-mile oval is a hard track to get ahold of for the outsiders, which gives weekly drivers an advantage heading into any given race. With some of the country’s best racers entered, it sets the stage for a night of great racing.
“We’ve had a lot of our guys really step up this year and are looking really good,” he said. “We’ve got our Brian Campbells and Johnny VanDoorns and other guys that are local to Berlin, but we also have guys racing just here on Saturdays. Scott Thomas and his brother Tom have been really strong all year. You can never count out Dave Lake, he’s had more laps around this place than anybody. Our current points leader Nate Walton has been super consistent here. Boris Jurkovic’s been on a streak here with his new Rowdy Manufacturing car.
“You never know who’s going to show up,” Rice continued. “You’ve had Kyle Busch here for several years even before when it was the Money in the Bank. You never know who’s going to show up. We have a really strong list already with some ARCA competitors and Bubba Pollard, it’s a really strong field.”
With the wrath of Mother Nature affecting Berlin Raceway and other tracks throughout the Midwest during the 2019 season, they are ready for the 3rd Annual Money in the Bank 150 next Monday. As one of the highest-paying Super Late Model races in the country, they are excited to see how the race will pan out and see which driver will celebrate in victory lane while becoming $20,000 richer.
“Having a $70,000 total purse on the line is something that’s awesome and draws a lot of attention,” he said. “It’s $20,000 to win and $700 to start and stacked in between. We’re excited to get this rolling. Obviously, we’ve been challenged like everybody else with weather throughout the season. We’ve rained out three of our seven events this season already, but we’re in the office and we’re ready to roll on this thing.”
Race fans unable to make it to Berlin Raceway Monday night will be able to watch the Money in the Bank 150 via a live pay-per-view broadcast on Speed51.com. Live video tickets can be purchased today for just $19.99 by clicking here.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51.com State Editor (IN & MI)
-Photo credit: Speed51.com