Story By: MIKE WARREN / WORLD OF OUTLAWS – CONCORD, NC – Brian Shirley will return to the World of Outlaws CASE Construction Equipment Late Model Series in 2024 to contend for his first Series championship.
The Chatham, IL driver finished the 2023 season sixth in points with one win, nine top fives, and 24 top 10s – numbers Shirley said he needs to improve on to win the title.
“You have to put more wins in that column,” Shirley said. “To run for a championship, you have to figure out how to eliminate DNFs and have more top fives. Top fives and wins are what wins championships.”
A few places the four-time DIRTcar Summer Nationals champion can earn those improved finishes are tracks on the 2024 schedule he’s familiar with. Two new venues are Highland Speedway, where he’s raced previously, and Spoon River Speedway, where he won a Summer Nationals race in 2019.
His knowledge of those facilities may give him the best opportunity to add to his seven World of Outlaws victories, along with Series staples, and home state tracks, like Farmer City Raceway, where he has two World of Outlaws victories, and Fairbury Speedway where he has three Summer Nationals wins.
“Anytime you go to a track you’ve been to before, it helps to understand the night a little better than going to a place you haven’t been to,” Shirley said. “Anytime you can go to a track you have a notebook; you’re hopefully going to start off way better than when you go to one that you don’t.”
When the 2024 season kicks off at Volusia Speedway Park during DIRTcar Sunshine Nationals, Jan. 17-20, Shirley said he hopes for another round of strong runs to start the season on the right foot. He scored three top 10s in his first five races at the track this year.
“Leaving the last Volusia race, in general, is going to help your overall championship hopes for the rest of the year,” Shirley said. “It’s a big deal to come out in a good position.”
Shirley’s championship aspirations start in January when the World of Outlaws CASE Late Models start the 2024 season during Sunshine Nationals – a Late Model Palooza which will also feature Crate Racin’ USA Late Models and DIRTcar 602 Late Models.