At 51 years old, Tim Allison, a Sprint car driver from Ohio, says some people consider him to be on the downside of his racing career.
Tim Allison won the 360 Sprints car championship at Waynesfield Motorsports Park in 2009
Tim Allison has 95 career wins and has set a goal to reach 100 in 2010
Allison has a different perspective. He says as long as he keeps moving, he'll stay healthy and be able to race for years to come.
After winning the 360 Sprint car championship at Waynesfield Motorsports Park in 2009, it's hard to argue he is slowing down. Add that he was the runner-up at Limaland Motorsports Park and is the winningest driver in the 360 Sprint car division at Eldora Speedway, and it looks like Allison has plenty left in the tank.
"Knock on wood, I'm in good health," Allison said. "If you keep your body moving, it puts you in better health. I've been fortunate over the years, had a couple of bad crashes, but I survived them."
Tim Allison is determined to win another Sprint championship
Allison uses NASCAR driver Mark Martin as an example and a source of inspiration on how to have a lengthy and successful auto racing career. Martin, also 51, is considered a Sprint Cup Series championship contender despite being one of the oldest drivers in Cup.
"He can still get the job done," Allison said.
Tim Allison has 14 wins in the 360 Sprint car division at Eldora Speedway
Apparently so can Allison. He won three races at Waynesfield Motorsports Park en route to the track championship.
He has 95 career wins and has set a goal to reach 100 in 2010. He would like nothing more than to do it at his hometrack, Limaland Motorsports Park.
"I'm still competitive. I can still win," Allison said. "I have a lot of energy. I don't like to sit still."
Even though he was the runner-up at Limaland in 2009, he has won more Sprint car championships at the track than any other driver with five.
He also has 14 wins in the 360 Sprint car division at Eldora Speedway, the track owned by NASCAR driver Tony Stewart.
Allison says he plans on racing at all three tracks again in 2010. He works six days a week and races at least two days a week. He stays busy and wouldn't have it any other way.
He says he races against 25 drivers at Waynesfield, a third-mile dirt track, on a regular basis. Eighteen to 20 of those drivers have a chance to win any given race, he said.
"Everybody set the bar higher," Allison said. "Everybody's got good stuff. It's tough. You have to be aggressive, but you have to keep the car in one piece and be there at the end. I love it. It's action-packed."
Limaland presents a different challenge. It's more of a technical track, another third-mile dirt oval, with ties to the University of Northwestern Ohio.
"It's one of the nicest tracks in the United States," Allison said. "It's an awesome place to race, great competition."
Eldora Speedway is the track that has the fondest memories for Allison. He has raced against Kasey Kahne and Stewart at Eldora. He remembers one race which he beat Stewart in a Sprint car.
It was back in 2005. Allison won his heat race. Stewart won his. They started the main event side-by-side. Allison had the ninth spot, Stewart in the 10th spot.
When the race started, Allison shot to the front of the pack. Stewart had trouble getting up to speed and settled in around seventh place. Allison ended up winning that race with Stewart crossing the finish line in eighth.
"It's the fastest half-mile in the world," Allison said. "It's a track that takes a while to conquer. It takes a while to learn how to get around there."
Allison has learned quite well how to get around Eldora, winning twice in 2006, twice in 2005 and three times in 2001.
His goals for 2010 are two-fold. He wants to win another Sprint championship at one of the three tracks. He also wants to win his 100th career race.
"I want to hit that 100 mark and send out a picture," Allison said. "My goal is to win 100 races and we're only five away. We're going to gear back up. Our goal is to win at least one more championship."
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