Sprint Car driver Alan Krimes knows how to stretch his racing dollar. He’s been doing it his entire career.
And yet, Krimes has been able to compete against the best. He wins a few races a year and is known for his consistency.
Krimes will be looking for similar results in 2016. Despite a limited budget and only having one sponsor, the Denver driver plans to run a full schedule with weekly stops at Williams Grove and Lincoln Speedway, as well as shows at Susquehanna Speedway.
“Right now, that is what we are planning,” Krimes, 36, said. “We will also run Grandview and Path Valley. Nothing is changing, but it’s all tentative.
“We haven’t found new sponsors, and it depends on how good we run. If we run good, we will make it. If we crash or have motor issues, then we will cut back to time trial races at the Grove.
“It helps that Susquehanna has seven or eight races. We would like to run 65 to 70 shows this season.”
Survive is more like it.
It doesn’t take much to burn through the Sprint Car racing wallet. Even the well-funded teams struggle at times.
Motors are the major expense. Krimes, who indicated that some teams are spending $70,000 for a good power plant, gets around it by building his own with father/car-owner Larry Krimes. But even that takes a toll.
“It’s really difficult,” Krimes said. “It’s a money issue more than anything. I mean, $70,000 for a motor, that’s our budget for the whole year.
“We do the best we can with what we have. I’ve really never won with a lot of money, so I don’t know what it feels like.”
The offseason didn’t help the cause.
Crew chief Dennis Kohler moved over to the Mark Coldren-owned team and will be turning the wrenches for Doug Esh. That’s a huge loss.
Krimes also inquired with a couple other teams. In each case, he was beat out by a driver bringing more than talent to the team.
“The people that got the rides brought money,” Krimes said. “That’s what it comes down to nowadays.
“It’s really frustrating. I’ve done pretty well with not having a high budget team. I’ve won a lot more races than some of the people in those cars, but it doesn’t matter. I understand it, but it’s still frustrating.”
It won’t stop Krimes from moving forward. Not after winning over 20 races at Williams Grove and Lincoln combined, plus the 2014 Lincoln Speedway title, in his current situation.
For Krimes, it’s business as usual in hopes of adding to his win total and completing the entire 2016 season as scheduled.
“It’s tough losing Dennis,” Krimes said. “I feel he helped us out over the years, especially at Williams Grove.
“We might suffer there, but not as much at Lincoln. If we start struggling, we might look to bring someone on. Hopefully, he will come cheap.”
By Jeremy Elliott | firstname.lastname@example.org