Last updated: August 24. 2013 9:47AM - 224 Views

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LIMA Some drivers that race at Limaland Motorsports Park come from different parts of the nation. Others make a two-minute drive over to compete on their home track.

That is the case for Max Stambaugh and Darren Long. Both drivers are from Elida and only live a few miles away from the track.

Stambaugh, who will be a senior at Elida, has been pleased with his performances lately.

Weve been a consistent car here at Limaland about every week, Stambaugh said. Weve had about five top fives and we tore it up the first couple of weeks. Were really consistent lately and thats what we hope to keep doing.

Long, who is in his 14th year of racing, hasnt been as happy with his performances on the track lately.

Honestly weve actually been struggling a little bit up until just last weekend, Long said. We finally had some good speed, the speed that weve been accustomed to having the last 14 years.

With temperatures reaching the mid-90s just before racing got underway Friday, both drivers mentioned the heat doesnt really affect them when they are racing.

You dont really notice it that much, Stambaugh said. Its all an adrenaline rush. Its hot out here walking around in the pits with your suit on but other than that its not too bad.

Long added, You sweat and get hot but when youre racing you dont really think about it. When youre doing what youre doing on the race track, you dont really notice it until you get done when youre just drenched.

While some may see competing at a home track an advantage, Long does not see it that way.

I really dont like it because Ive had a lot more fun going to other places, Long said. When I come to Limaland, I see 40 people that I know standing at my trailer door and I see them all throughout the week and theyre always asking me what happened here and there. Its a lot more relaxing for me when I go out of town. A lot of it is also because we raced here for about eight years before I got my first win. Once that happened, the pressure was off a little bit.

After being a rookie in the sprints at the Limaland track last year, Stambaugh is happy to have the experience of a seasoned veteran now.

Were getting better and better every week, Stambaugh said. We still havent gotten a win here but were getting close. Im usually consistent with my finishes, if I was running for points, Im usually pretty good at that. Im also pretty good at hitting my marks.

Even though Stambaugh and Long arent close in age, both still enjoy having somebody else from their hometown out there competing.

Were both from Elida and he (Long) is always a gasser, Stambaugh said. Hes always up front and tough to get around.

Long has enjoyed seeing guys from Elida compete and do well on the dirt track.

Its pretty cool because there arent too many people who drive sprint cars, Long said. To have two guys right from Elida is pretty cool. My cousin Mark Long and Travis Miller also graduated from Elida. There might be some that Im forgetting but its kind of neat to be a part of that.

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