HAYS, Kan. – He might not like racing for points but IMCA Modified rookie Dakota Sproul proved he was pretty good at it.
From Hays, Kan., Sproul won 16 features in earning national and Jet Racing Central Region rookie of the year honors. The Dodge City Raceway Park and KMJ Performance Kansas State champion finished seventh nationally and third regionally.
“I’ve never liked to race for points because it seemed like I got too involved in it and wasn’t able to travel to more bigger shows,” admitted Sproul, who had totaled 43 wins in five Karl Kustoms Northern SportMod seasons. “We had like three or four races in (the region) and were turning in consistent finishes when we actually decided to run for rookie of the year.”
His first two wins came back-to-back, on June 6 and 7 at Sherman County Speedway. Sproul later put an “insane” streak of seven straight W’s together, starting with a Kansas Thunder Series sweep at Osborne Speedway.
“The next night was at Dodge City, where my car is always good, and then I won at Junction Motor Speedway on my birthday,” said Sproul, who saw the streak continue with wins at hometown RPM Speedway, Dawson County Raceway and DCRP.
He put his name of the Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot by winning Thomas County Speedway’s Jeff Hartwell Memorial in August.
Sproul piloted a 2018 VanderBuilt, doing the bulk of the maintenance while learning the 4-link and adjusting his driving style to the car and always bringing the right mental approach to the track.
“I didn’t let anything get in my head. I was locked in mentally and not once did I hit the track not thinking I could win. Zack VanderBeek and Gresham Services built a great car and I made sure it was 100 percent every time I left the shop,” he said. “It had always been my dream to race a Modified. I wanted to learn in a SportMod and go to a Modified. There were races where I made my mistakes but my season went absolutely phenomenal.”
Starts-41 Wins-16 Additional Top Fives-11
His Crew: Father Chad and uncle Kenny Sproul.
His Sponsors: DCS Underground, Kenny Sproul Floor Covering, Ron and Tammie Williams, Hays Auto Spa, Golden Plains Trucking and Chuck and Gina Sproul, all of Hays; Kohlrus Oil Field Pumping Service and Travis and Susie Kohlrus, both of Ellis; El Dorado Shocks of Fargo, N.D.; and VanderBuilt Race Cars of New Sharon, Iowa.