Welcome to the the ARCA page of a team you just have to love due to it's determination, lead by an Independent driver Brad Smith.
Well, this is the 1st Daytona opening week without Hylton being present at the track in over 50 years, this team walked into this track with heavy hearts but knowing the Hylton's were looking over their shoulder in hopes of making both James and Tweet as proud as can be. We brought a brand new car to the track, moving from Ford's to Chevy's, it was a pretty looking machine. It was a rough week, car was new to us and they were a lot of things we needed to learn about it which kept us busy for the entire time that we were out the track. This team came together accomplished all this and put a pretty good race car on the track, one that would have made both James and Tweet proud from above. This too could have not been accomplished without the help, from a distance, home recoverying from yet another surgery due to the tragic accident last year, from Terry Strange who in our hearts is always our crew chief and will always be our crew Chief. Via many phone/text conversations Terry was there for us the entire time and we thank him so much and he was missed at the track we just want him to be better so that we could see him again working side-by-side on this race car. Qualifying didn't go so well as Brad was having problems with the petals on the the car, and wound up losing the pack and the draft when the car stalled which relinquished him to a 34th place start in the Lucas oil 200 on Saturday. Still with high hopes knowing that we had a stout ride We would be OK for the race. Starting 34th Brad ran a smart race keeping the car out of the many accidents that happened and bringing his car home in 19th position while losing his clutch pedal during the race which hindered his ability to shift through the gears properly and keep up with the pack, but being that we had a strong car we will able to come home completing every lap but 1. Thanks again to the team, Jake, Rush, Little Jeff, Jeff D. John W, John B, Carlos. Brian, Dave, Carl, Uncle Ed, and out PR guy Kevin, for the hard work they put in it was seen by what we put on the track, we still have a lot more work to do on this car for Talladega which will be the next time we will use it but I guarantee you this it will be a better car than it was this week as we did learn a lot. Also want to thank Brad and his brother Jeff for all the hard work and dedication they put in to make sure that the 48 made it to the track this week, if it wasn't for those 2 guys we would have not been here either and the string of the 48 at Daytona ended, So thank you Brad and thank you Jeff, you guys made our dreams continue on and you made James and Tweets proud and memory live on. Next race is March 9th in Pensacola Florida when we will have our short track car ready to go and hoping for better finish there and catapult our season to another top 10 points finish for the 4th year in a row.
James Hylton and his son pass away in a car accident Saturday. RIP. I hope the team can stay afloat without one of the greatest heartfelt drivers/owners in ARCA.
Now after a disappointing week at Nashville Hylton Motosports was looking for a fresh start to the season at Salem, was not to be as they went from bad to worse. Let's start before the track, on the way down James had issues with out hauler, "The bus", as the he had motor issues and breaking down on the road on the way to the track. After getting the hauler running again they stopped for the night only to wake up in the AM with a flat tire on the trailor, only a prelude of things to come. The team hoping all the weekends bad luck was behind them unloaded and began to prep the car for what they hoped would be a good race weekend. Practice rolls around and the 48 gets on the track, driver much happier with the car than in Nashville the previous week, and then it hits, the motor let's go, race weekend is over for Hylton Motorsports as they do not have a reserve motor, this being a big hit as Brad will lose bonus points later down the road for competing in all the races. Not only did Hylton Motorsports lose a motor but so did Basham racing, being that Brad's weekend was over, and the Basham's had access to another motor they assisted them through the night to get the #34 ready for race day. Oh, and did I mention they still had to work on their own hauler so James could make it home the next day. Even though it was a loss for Hylton Motorsports it was a successful weekend for the Basham's as they brought their car home on the 15th position . Well another weekend down and next is Talladega, and still alot of work to be completed on the speedway car due to the accident Brad had in overtime in Daytona, but we know Terry will have it ready and as competitive as it was in Daytona, so expect a comeback week for Hylton Motorsports this upcoming week!!
A little behind, but here we go! Well there was a good stretch of time off between Daytona and Nashville, good for the Hylton Motorsports team as they needed the time to prepare the car in which they purchased over the winter for its inaugural race for Hylton Motorsports. Well, lets say it wasnt the outcome the were striving for, but they did learn alot about the car. Let's say, they unloaded the car and it was nothing but hard work and elbow grease to finish the car for this race weekend. Practice was a good indication of what was to come as the car was 4.3 sec off the top practice speed, really not what was expected but put the back to the grind to figure out what went wrong. The hard work put them in the right direction, but not where they wanted to be as they qualified 2.5sec of the pole position in 22nd starting spot. With that all behind the guys came raceday, hopes as always high, but as the race started they knew this was not to be their day as the car was I'll handling and they could not maintain minimum speed and were requested to get off the track and try to get the car in race shape. Team knew there wasn't much they could do at this point, looked at a few things and ran until asked to leave the track again. All in all they ran 18 circuits leaving them to finish 22nd and 12 in the points standing. Real disappointment, but you are bound to have off weeks and they are hoping this is the only one of the season. They packed up and now to get the car ready for Salem the following week.
Well today started with high hopes for what would be the day of Brad's 300 career ARCA start, unfortunately this days was not going to end as Brad or the team.
The day started with the garage opening at 10AM and teams being able to make final adjustments at 10:30. The 48 team looked over the car too assure it was race ready and topped it off with fuel leaving three crew with nothing to do until there pushout to the starting grid at 4PM
This Daytona, as it is every year the fans have the opportunity to meet the drivers to say hello, shake a hand, takes a picture and walk away with an autograph. Brad must have made the day of 150 or more fans today, providing these fans the ultimate racing experience.
Now we forward to 4:30 whet we strapped in Brad into his Hylton Motorsports entry to make his 300th career start and high hopes for a great finish which was not to be. Brad started the race losing the lead pack rather quickly resulting him losing a lap by lap 17. Within this timeframe the 48 also picked up a vibration but it was decided to leave the car out and hope Brad could drive with it as coming in would have resulted him the team losing a lap. On lap 23 the 1st caution came out and being that Brad was the 1st car one lap down he was granted the "Lucky Dog" putting him back on the lead lap and a second chance at a good finish. Under the caution laps Brad began feeling a loss of power and this became a big decision for the team as to what to do. The crew chief and Brad decided to stay out as even if the motor was going sour there was nothing they could do so they opted to try and run as many laps as possible. Restarts were also a challenge as getting up to speed was an issue and while at top speed could only peak at 6600rmp's when normally these cars will run at 7000-7200rpm's. On lap 40 or so another caution flag flew and the 48 team decide to come in pack the 48 car with Sunoco racing fuel and clean the window as they were well within the windows to make it to the end of the race without another pit stop unless they had a tire issue. Luckily around lap 54 or so the car started showing life again and on lap 58 of the race Brad ran his fastest lap at an average speed of 178.417mph. As at any Daytona race, as you get closer to the end of the race the drivers up front become more impatient and of course this leads to accident after accident, and this race was no different. With the field taking the white flag and the field on the backstretch her came a big accident. With Brad's smart driving and patience after this accident Brad found himself restarting in the 14th position for the green/ checkered finish, but unfortunately the wrecking was not over. After the field took the green flag the two leaders decided to start beating and banging to the point where they took each other out along with 6 other drivers and one of them being Brad. Brad was riding the high line in hopes to clear the accident until he was hit from behind and still looking at the opening to make it through only found the opportunity short lived as the opening closed up quickly collecting Brad. Brad fortunately was ok after the accident but we could not say the same for the car. The car had extensive damage to the left side of the car, the only thing we could do wad load it up on three hauler and take it back to the shop and hope too be able to have the car ready for Talladega which would be the next time we would be using the particular car.
No, this was not the finish the team hoped to see for Brad's 300th career finish but this is racing. This had not diminish the teams hope for a great 2018 racing season, we are stil very optimistic and hope you are along for the ride with us, and we hope too see you at the track someday!!!!