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Jerrod Hull Motorsports Rebounds in 2009 with Sprint Car Racing Wins
Jerrod Hull in his sprint car.
To be successful in racing, it must first start with the heart. Jerrod Hull’s heart led him to racing BMX bicycles at the age of six, and he has never looked back. What started at a tender age has led Jerrod to become a dominant force each and every time he hits the track today with his own sprint car operation. Jerrod Hull bleeds black and white checkered blood.
Hull first purchased a sprint car from legendary Hall of Famer Sammy Swindell. Early success in the sport fueled the passion as Jerrod quickly found his niche in racing. Success has come easy at times, but there have been difficult times as well. Never once has Jerrod Hull Motorsports had the capabilities of big dollar sponsorship. It has been Jerrod’s determination to run the front, but at the same time, he has carried a philosophy to know when to call it a good run and end a night early.
“I catch a lot of grief sometimes when I pull in (to the pits or infield) when the car isn’t handling right,” explains Hull. “I take it in stride because without some of the funding as these other guys have, I have to make things last a little longer. We don’t necessarily have the top-level equipment in our program; we have the best equipment that will last while still being competitive. If I can load up the car at the end of the night in one piece and have to make a small repair versus blowing a motor, I am happy.”
There have been many tracks across the country where Hull has found success over the years, but only one stands out in everyone’s mind, and that is Morgan County Speedway in Jacksonville, Illinois. Hull won his first and only track championship in 1997 at the venue. His philosophy of running an “outlaw-type” schedule throughout the Midwest has kept him from repeating that performance. Jerrod wins 41 percent of the time he races at Morgan County Speedway, with an astonishing 90 percent rate of 5th place or better over his career.
Hull has won 12 events at nine different racing venues making for an already extraordinary 2009 season.
“Jacksonville has always been a great place for me to race. It was one of the first places we went when we first got started, and I quickly fell in love with the track and the fans, says Hull. “Winning the Herb Barlow race there twice in my career has got to be one of my biggest highlights personally. It’s an annual race that a lot of guys want to win in this area, and I have been blessed to win it two times. I hope for a couple more before I am done.”
Hull is the all-time winningest driver with not just one, but two sanctioning bodies; the Midwest All Star Series and the Sprint Invader Association. He is also the only champion the Midwest All Star Series has ever had taking championships in 2007, 2008, and positioned to claim the title in 2009 considering his substantial lead in the points.
The 2009 season started out with a bang. But before we can begin talking about 2009, we must reflect on how the 2008 season ended for the Sikeston, Missouri hot-shoe. In early October at the Queen’s Royale, one of the area’s biggest events at Farmington, Missouri, Hull utilized a brand new chassis and instantly shot to the lead in his heat race. He was leading the field by more than a half-track when disaster struck. A faulty fuel line pumped fuel into the cockpit soaking Hull’s driver suit, which quickly ignited.
He brought the car to an abrupt halt and made an attempt to get out of the emblazed sprinter. While trying to alight, he twisted his leg and fell to the ground. The car was out of gear, causing it to roll over part of Hull’s leg. Injuries sustained included minor burns, a torn ACL, torn MCL, and a torn meniscus, which put him on the shelf for the remainder of the year. He was particularly dismayed to miss the trip to the Short Track Nationals, as well as his annual trip to Florida Speed week.
The rebound would begin in the first event of the 2009 season. At a USCS event in Malden, Missouri, Hull picked up where he left off, ahead of the pack in his heat race. With just two laps left in a dominating performance, Hull brought his sprint car to a stop in the infield, concerned about motor issues. Once back into the pits, the diagnosis was a broken setscrew, which was quickly remedied, and Hull was sent out for the night’s feature event starting in 22nd position. He methodically passed each car on his way to the lead, and as the laps wound down, he lapped the field up to 9th position for the win.
The relationship with Hull and his crew chief Scott Bonar has been well documented, but one win has always alluded the duo; a victory together at St. Francois County Raceway in Farmington, Missouri. That all came to an end in a very emotional evening. Just days before the 2009 event, a close friend of the team passed away. Hull rose to the occasion, pulled off the win selflessly, and dedicated the win to their fallen friend.
To date, Hull has won 12 events at nine different venues making for an already extraordinary season. Recently, Hull led the charge in two exciting events in Tennessee with the Midwest All Star Series. Taking a bit of revenge on the state from the 2008 season, he came out of the weekend further ahead in the series points than anticipated. The weekend would set the tone for an exciting event at Paragon Speedway in Paragon, Indiana. In a field stacked with higher financed, former World of Outlaw travelers and bigger horse powered power plants, Hull commanded the night’s event leading the competition to the checkered flag.
Hull is quick to give the credit for the success of the 2009 campaign to God, his crew, and his newly developed product support program. In the offseason, Hull takes time to assess product supporter expectations to be sure he is meeting them all. K&N filters was one of the biggest additions to the program this year, bringing with them the best air filters and oil filters on the market. Hull connected with K&N thanks in part to hiring long time supporter and marketing advisor Robert Cortum, of Got Dirt Racing Promotions, who negotiated the partnership.
“I have personally seen through my own business how Jerrod Hull shares the benefits of partnering with his team,” commented Cortum. Without my involvement with Jerrod Hull Motorsports, I would not be where I am today.”
“The best thing I can do for my sponsors, supporters, and advertisers is to give them back more than they expect,” added Hull. “If they just expect their name on the wing, I am going to show people the product benefits. We are always looking for the opportunity to under-promise and over-deliver. The addition of K&N Filters to our program this year has made a world of difference. We would not have had as much success without their support.”
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K&N Engineering, Inc., with headquarters in Riverside, California, has been the world's leader in performance filter technology since 1969, serving the needs of the automotive, motorcycle, marine, industrial and military markets. K&N is heavily involved in nearly every form of motorsports from off-road and powersports to drag racing, stock cars and road racing. For more information about K&N Filters, please contact K&N Engineering, Inc., P.O. Box 1329, Riverside, CA 92502-1329, (800) 213-4182 for a dealer near you, (800) 858-3333 for technical service/questions, (951) 826-4001 Fax, e-mail email@example.com, or visit www.knfilters.com.
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