CARS • TRUCKS • JOBBERS C-STORES • INSTALLERS • RECYCLERS CARWASHES • SERVICE STATIONS DEALERS • GARAGES • BODY SHOPS
NOVEMBER 2014 $4.95
A CENTURY OF SERVICE IN FREDERICTON, NB
(STORY ON PAGE 56)
40 FAST YEARS AT NOVA SCOTIA’S AMP (SEE PAGE 26)
PUTTING RUBBER TO THE ROAD!
TIRES HAVE COME A LONG WAY FROM THE EARLIEST ONES WHICH WERE MADE OF IRON, LEATHER AND EVEN STEEL.
TRUCK CONVOY BREAKS RECORDS! (SEE PAGE 32)
LESSONS FROM THE AIA FORUM (SEE PAGE 64)
A BRAND NEW GARMIN® NÜVI® 40LM GPS NAVIGATOR OR A NAPA 126 PIECE TOOL SET!
GUESS & WIN
DETAILS ON PAGES 69 AND 70!
OWNED AND PUBLISHED BY ALFERS ADVERTISING & PUBLISHING INC.
Publications Mail Sales Agreement Number: 40062985
scan & visit our online hub!
Call us toll-free: 1-866-423-3939 Fax us: 1-902-423-3354 E-mail us: email@example.com Mail us: 51 Bethany Way Halifax, NS B3S 1H6
V O L U M E T H I R T E E N • I S S U E 6 • N O V E M B E R • 2 0 1 4
SKID MARKS – Globally-speaking, tires are real BIG business, explains Carter Hammett PUTTING THE RUBBER TO THE ROAD – Kenneth E. Seaton offers a round up of various tire technologies and demonstrates just how far it’s taken us, baby! WHERE THE RUBBER MEETS THE TRACK – Racing Pundit Tim Terry reminds us that tires make the industry go ‘round –literally.
ILLUSTRATION BY JAMES SOMERS
n ovemb er 2014 n autoatlantic.com
ADVERTISING DIRECTORY: PAGE 68 PUBLISHER / OWNER Robert Alfers firstname.lastname@example.org EDITOR Carter Hammett email@example.com OFFICE MANAGER James Somers firstname.lastname@example.org REGIONAL SALES MANAGER Meg Devries email@example.com
Auto & Trucking Atlantic magazine is owned and published bi-monthly by Robert Alfers of Alfers Advertising & Publishing Inc. For advertising rates or information regarding Auto & Trucking Atlantic magazine, please call or write to us at: 51 Bethany Way, Halifax, Nova Scotia B3S 1H6. Tel 902.423.6788 Fax 902.423.3354. Opinions expressed in Auto & Trucking Atlantic do not necessarily reflect official policy of Alfers Advertising & Publishing Inc. Printed and produced in Canada.
RUBBER SOUL: You know that new kiddy playground installed across the street? Once upon a time it might have been getting its kicks on Route 66, explains editor Carter Hammett. ATLANTIC ROAD REPORT – NB scores high during International Roadcheck in June. • More! NEWS OF THE WEIRD – California senator who voted against ride sharing busted for DUI. Because ya’ll had to know! HAVE YOU HEARD? HDDC IS NOW HDAC! Venerable organization updates self with a spankin’ new handle. SAFETY IN NS REACHES NEW HEIGHTS THROUGH UNIQUE STRATEGY – Partnership promotes new safety initiatives that just might help save your life one day! CHANGES TO THE WEIGHTS AND MEASURES ACT – New law introduced in August now in effect. What you need to know. SNOW TIRES OR ALL – SEASONS? YOURS TO DECIDE! Jay LaRue weighs in on the options and finds arguments for and against on both sides. YOUTH ARE THE FUTURE! The Automotive Sector Council launches new TestDrive initiative to promote future careers in the motive industry . GET READY FOR NEXT SEASON: EXAMINE YOURSELF FIRST – in which, Bob Greenwood asks a very simple question: Do you believe you can achieve your goals? A CENTURY OF SERVICE – Fredericton’s Auto Machinery / EAW celebrates 100 years of business! WHAT GOES UP MUST COME DOWN – Andrew MacDonald introduces exciting new automotive recycling program to our neighbours in the far north with some encouraging results. WIN BIG! A Garmin Nüvi GPS from National Energy Equipment, or a NAPA 126 piece tool set in our 2 BIG contests!!
Page 40 Page 43 Page 44 Page 46 Page 48 Page 50 Page 54 Page 56 Page 62
Member AIA Canada, CCA, AAIA, ATA and the AMA
Publications Mail Agreement No. 40062985 Return Undeliverable Canadian Addresses to: Alfers Advertising & Publishing Inc. 51 Bethany Way, Halifax, NS B3S 1H6
Page 69 Page 70
Letter from the Editor
LOBALLY SPEAKING, TIRES ARE BIG BUSINESS. SO MUCH SO, THAT THE WORLD’S MAJOR TIRE PRODUCERS HAVE COMMITTED A WHOPPING $8.6 BILLION TOWARDS R & D AND EXPANDING CAPACITIES, ACCORDING TO TIREBUSINESS.COM
The commitments represent about 45 million units in new annual capacity for consumer tires and up to five million for commercial tires to be released during the 2015-2018 business cycle. Not surprisingly, South Korean and Indian companies rank as the top spenders with financial commitments surpassing the billion dollar mark. South Korean company Hankook Tire earmarks over a billion for its automobile and light truck plant in Tennessee, as well as a research centre in Korea. Meanwhile, India’s Nexen company is planning on expanding its operations into the Slovak Republic. Spending has been pretty evenly distributed across the major markets, with
By Carter Hammett,
Asia clocking in at $2.7 billion and North America just passing the two billion dollar mark. Hankook, Giti, Kumho, Telleborg have all committed to building factories in North American markets. Goodyear is currently mulling over a new plant for the Americas but won’t fully commit until later on in the year. Latin America meanwhile, has benefitted from about $77 million in investments during the last calendar year. Goodyear, along with Continental A.G. trailed in terms of capital spending during the last fiscal year, with Michelin and Bridgestone both investing over two billion each into their tire businesses. Goodyear was pegged at about half of that with 1.7 billion. Overall, tire makers invested much of their sales into capital improvements, up slightly from 2012. In terms of capital spending during fiscal 2013, Group Michelin and Bridgestone Corp.’s Tire Division were by far the biggest spenders, investing $2.63 billion and $2.62 billion, respectively, into their tire businesses. Goodyear and Continental A.G. trailed at $1.17 billion and $1.06 billion, respectively. On average, the tire makers profiled here invested 8 percent of sales into capi-
WHY BUY NEW WHEN USED WILL DO!
n Recycled replacement auto parts n Rebuilders available
n Parts locating service
autoatlantic.com n n ovemb er 2014
tal improvements in 2013, up slightly from 7.7 percent in fiscal 2012. With numbers like this, it’s plain to see that tires are big business. Canadian retail sales for tires and auto accessories were listed at $672 million as of June, according to Stats Can. Those are fairly healthy figures despite a rather sketchy economy and clearly reflect how important tires are to consumers and commercial purchases alike. It’s no surprise that this issue of Auto and Trucking Atlantic focuses on tires. Later in this issue, I delve into the business of recycling tires in Canada and check out some pretty impressive projects happening throughout the Maritimes and elsewhere. From fashion accessories to children’s playgrounds, to bedding for your pets, you just might be surprised at the impressive array of manifestations your end-of-life tires can appear as in their next life. It’s becoming big business thanks to government initiatives—and creative entrepreneurs—and all of that is having positive environmental impact. And that’s a good thing. Meanwhile, ATA contributor Kenneth E. Seaton takes us on a ride, literally, through history leading up to airless Non-Pneumatic Tires, which have been in development since 2005. Conceived as a “blowout-proof” tire, this development is reportedly self-supporting and uses an internal glass fiber rib composite to carry its load, which basically allows the tire to retain its rigidity thus removing the need for air-filled support. With winter’s apBrookside Road, Truro, NS proach, and the unpredictable Phone: (902) 897-0252 quality of Atlantic Canada’s roads, it’s always a good idea Fax: (902) 897-2854 to check in and review your winter tire needs, ensuring vancehanesautoparts.com that quality and safety requireDAILY SHIPPING ANYWHERE ments are up-to-date. We’ve reviewed some of these issues in previous issues, but it’s always a good idea to review this information on at least an annual basis to ensure the safest and most reliable tires for both yourself and others on winter roads. And with that, I hope you enjoy this latest issue. Start your engines but drive safe! Onward!
n ovemb er 2014
Tires and Treads
TIRES HAVE COME A LONG WAY FROM THE EARLIEST ONES
n ovemb er 2014
ER TO THE ROAD
By Kenneth E. Seaton
S WHICH WERE MADE OF IRON, LEATHER AND EVEN STEEL.
H YES, THE BASICS ARE THE SAME: THEY ARE ROUND, HELP US MOVE AND ARE MADE OF A STURDY MATERIAL. WE TEND TO KICK THEM WHEN WE’RE BUYING A USED CAR AND TO GET UPSET AT THEM WHEN THEY FAIL US. BUT WHERE WOULD WE BE WITHOUT THEM?
It was around 1844 that Charles Goodyear patented the procedure for vulcanizing rubber. He discovered that when rubber is heated with sulfur it turns into a pliable material, making it suitable to be fashioned into tires. It is sadly ironic that his work started us on the road we have travelled to today and yet Goodyear died bankrupt and in debt. Two years later, in 1846, the first solid rubber tire was produced, soon followed by vulcanised rubber pneumatic tires. When you think about it these were really the first airless tires or Non-Pneumatic Tires (NPT) on the market. Britisher John Dunlop invented the first practical air-filled bicycle tire in 1888 and then a pair of Americans, Alexander T. Brown and George F. Stillman filed a patent in the US in 1892 for a detachable inflatable car tire. Cars travelled on bias-ply tires for the next 50 years. Basically bias-ply tires are made by taking an inner tube filled with compressed air and then wrapping it in an outer casing consisting of layers of rubberized fabric cords. These layers or “plys” run in alternating diagonal layers that crisscross each other. Bias-ply tires continue to be made today and are often sold as authentic equipment to vintage car collectors. Steel-belted radial tires first appeared in Europe in 1948. They were called radial tires because the ply cords radiate at a 90 degree angle from the wheel rim. This casing is strengthened by a belt of steel fabric that runs around the circumference of the tire and the ply cords are made of nylon, rayon, or polyester. Radial tires deliver improved steering ability; have a longer tread life with less rolling resistance resulting in increased gas mileage. The bad news was they have a harder riding quality and since they are technologically more complex than bias-ply tires, they are about 45 percent more costly to make. So far we have been looking at tires and their historical time line. But did you know that the type of wheel your vehicle drives on can make a difference? Essentially there are two different types: Steel rims are seen as practical, are inexpensive and usually come as standard equipment on vehicles. These rims are often covered with hubcap covers to improve the aesthetics of the wheels.
Aluminum alloy wheels have a more stylish rim and are 15-20% lighter than steel. They are made of stronger materials than steel rims which improves the braking, acceleration, general vehicle handling and its steering response. Another technological advancement that some tire manufacturers are looking at is the use of carbon fiber wheels. Carbon fiber is a super strong material that’s also extremely lightweight; is five times as strong as steel and twice as stiff, yet weighs about two-thirds less. It is made of very thin strands of carbon twisted – like yarn – which are then woven together. To make carbon fiber into its permanent shape, it is laid over a mold and then coated with a stiff resin or plastic. The strength of carbon fiber plus its weight savings properties are the primary reasons that it has become such an attractive replacement for metal and why, more and more manufactures are making the switch. The aerospace industry, sporting goods makers and the military, just to name a few, who are now utilizing carbon fiber components. Several vehicle manufactures are realizing that by using the lighter carbon fiber wheels on a vehicle its ride, noise and handling capabilities will significantly improve. Less weight equates to less inertia which in turn means a quicker acceleration and greater fuel efficiency. The current major drawback to carbon fiber wheels is cost. But as technology advances so do the vehicle and parts manufactures. Increasingly, attention is being devoted to lowering vehicle weights and operating costs – especially fuel related – so it is logical to expect that the costs associated with producing carbon fibre wheels will eventually drop too. This should make them more attainable and affordable. But that’s the future and this is now and Charles Goodyear could never have envisioned Run-flat Tires or Run on Flat tires (RFT) and if he did he would have chalked it up to having consumed too much ale! Although they are not a total industry standard, currently many luxury and mid-range cars roll off the lots with RFTs installed. Through non-stop research combined with technological advancements, tire manufacturers’ have greatly improved their tires’ durability and endurance and only recently have they developed tires that can temporarily maintain vehicle mobility using original equipment and aftermarket wheels. RFTs are designed to perform when deflating or even deflated and allow vehicles to travel at a top speed of 80 kph for up to 80 kms. Additional selling points for RFTs include safety concerns over not having to stop on the side of the road to change tires. Driving and steering remain near normal as the tires can support the vehicle without air. Removal of the full-size or temporary spare tire – depending on its size – will lessen a vehicle’s weight by around 19 kilos. Not having to carry a jack and its tools should also result in further weight savings and an increased cargo area. Run-flat Tires can be broken down into three basic yet
n ovemb er 2014 n autoatlantic.com
Tires and Treads
different types, including: Self-sealing tires have standard tire construction with an extra lining built into them and are designed to fix most tread-area punctures instantly and permanently. Because there are no traditional loss-of-air symptoms most drivers won’t even notice that they have a flat. Self-supporting tires are made with a tougher internal construction, which is capable of temporarily carrying the weight of the vehicle, even after the tire has lost all air pressure. In order to do this rubber is inserted between layers so that the reinforcing cords won’t break in the event of a puncture. Because they do the job so well they require a tire pressure monitoring system to alert the driver that they have lost air pressure. Auxiliary supported systems have an extra support ring connected to the wheel. In the event of a flat tire the ring’s purpose is to support the vehicle’s weight. This system delivers a more comfortable and safer ride than other run flat options because it places most of the vehicle strain on the wheels which are typically stronger than tires. For those drivers who still need more piece of mind in their trunks, another option is to purchase a tire inflator or sealant kit. Many new cars are now sold with an inflator or sealant kit instead of the traditional spare tire. In-fact, some dealers make it an optional purchase if you want to have spare tire in your vehicle. However be aware that sealant kits only work on small punctures and do absolutely nothing if you have a blowout. Also if you have used the kit to repair and inflate a tire when you take it to be replaced, due to the sealant properties, the tire repair shop may have some issues with fixing the tire. Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems If you do not use RFTs, another tire advancement you might be interested in are Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS). This system electronically monitors your vehicle’s tire pressure and if the pressure is low, alerts the driver. Every tire technician, mechanic and even most drivers know that for optimal vehicle
handling proper tire pressure is important for safety, fuel economy and reduced wear and tear on the tires. Some newer vehicles will have tire pressure monitoring systems already factory- installed. The system will continually monitor the tire pressure on all four wheels. For example, the 2015 Ford Mustang’s instrument cluster displays the tire pressure for each individual wheel. With the technological improvements that apps have brought, drivers can now download a TPMS app on their smartphone. They must also purchase and install sensors on the tires. The sensors will monitor temperature and tire pressures and then alert the driver if it detects an abnormal situation. With the demise of the penny, drivers are now looking to save nickels and dimes and are keenly pushing for tires that deliver improved fuel mileage that combines with greater tire longevity. Tire manufactures have been burning the midnight oil improving Low Rolling Resistance (LLR) tires. Savvy tire companies are working on refining tread designs and LRR compounds that deliver the optimal in fuel and tire efficiency. According to a National Research Council (NRC) report rolling resistance is the measure of “force at the axle in the direction of travel required to make a loaded tire roll.” So basically, as the tire rolls, LRR tires cut down on wasted energy so that there is a reduction in the required rolling effort and this improves vehicle fuel efficiency. To this end tire manufactures are using new materials and tread designs to cut down on the amount of energy it takes to move vehicles. Manufacturers like: Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. rolled out its Assurance TripleTred All-Season tire. This tire incorporates three distinct treads – each intended for a different purpose – and the treads actually expand with tire wear. Its multiple tread zones are made of different compounds which result in improved handling, year-round drivability and greater fuel efficiency. Michelin North America Inc. released its new EverGrip™ technology. It developed this by combining new rubber compounds that have hidden grooves that materialize as the tread
n ovemb er 2014
NOW AVAILABLE AT YOUR LOCAL ATLANTIC NAPA STORE!
Tires and Treads
wears down. They also added high amounts of silica to improve wet traction, and sunflower oil to enhance the pliability of the rubber in cold temperatures. Bridgestone Commercial Solutions launched its Firestone FS561 all-position radial tire which has stone rejecters in its center grooves to reduce susceptibility to stone retention and drilling; and an innovative sidewall design for reduced tire weight that improves fuel economy without sacrificing durability. Finally, and back to the future, we come to airless Non-Pneumatic Tires (NPT). Under development since around 2005 this blowoutproof tire is self-supporting and uses internal glass fiber rib composite to carry its load and this allows the tires to remain rigid and without the need for air-filled support. There are three main elements to the tire; an inner steel rim, a honeycombed support structure, and a rubber treaded band that makes contact with driving surfaces. Currently they are being used
by the military and some elite security vehicles. Additionally, some smaller vehicles like golf carts and lawnmowers and most famously the Apollo astronauts rode around on NPTs on their Lunar Rovers. Commercially, since airless tires never go flat, deliver improved fuel economy, and have a longer life than conventional tires, it’s more than likely we will soon see them commercially available to everyone. As manufacturers continually move forward with new technological advancements in their vehicles, so too must tire manufacturers. As former concept vehicles, including hybrid and electric power train, are becoming more common place on our hi-ways and bi-ways, we will also see adjustments in tire technology to keep pace with the new vehicles. Since electrical vehicles have more torque in the lower end, increased battery weight and generally run with less engine noise, specific tire adjustments in technology must be made. Tires will need to
n ovemb er 2014
run quieter to compensate for the much quieter engines, will need increased uniformity to preserve vehicle comfort and maximize vehicle range. Meanwhile since we still haven’t reached the point where drivers are travelling around in flying cars – like the Jetsons – how the tire meets the road is still a vital element in the motoring experience. If you really look at your vehicle and its tires you’ll notice that they only come into contact with a small portion the road, about the size of a tablet computer. That means that there is a lot riding on that tiny contact point. So much of our driver satisfaction relies on the tires. Not only should they look good, they also need to perform well. The tires must offer superb handling and longevity, deliver outstanding fuelefficiency and provide exceptional safety and security. Whether the tires on your vehicle are original equipment or an aftermarket purchase your satisfaction as a vehicle operator is central to your future purchasing choices. Each and every driver wants and expects their tires to run quieter and smoother, offer a more comfortable ride, last longer and be more cost-efficient. As long as vehicle and tire manufacturers interests are principally driven by driver satisfaction there will be continued advances made in tire technology. Savvy vehicle manufacturers are financially aware that the performance of the vehicle’s original equipment tires will have a profound impact on the likelihood that a satisfied driver will generally repurchase the same brand of vehicle in the future.
In the last issue of the magazine we had this NSTSA photo referencing the Kentville Terminal Team which was incorrect. It should have read the Truro Terminal team. Our apologies.
Tires and Treads
WHERE THE RUBBER MEETS THE TRACK, TIRE TALK
IT IS WHAT MAKES THE INDUSTRY GO ROUND - LITERALLY.
By Tim Terry
HINK ABOUT I T, W I T H OUT TIRES, THE AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY AS A WHOLE, INCLUDING US WHO GO AROUND IN CIRCLES EVERY WEEKEND, WE WOULDN’T BE GOING FAR.
Tires are a vast subject that we could go on for issues with when it comes to stock car racing. At the upper echelons of NASCAR, Goodyear brings tires to the race track based on the type of track they are going to. Different race tracks have different compounds that comprise the rubber and the construction of the tires vary. For example, a superspeedway tire that the circuit runs at Daytona and Talladega
is different than the product brought to a short track like Martinsville or a road course like Watkins Glen. Different surfaces and different speeds create different problems for Goodyear and they typically keep on top of them. Of course, you have instances like the 2008 Brickyard 400, where a new car for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and a new tire that Goodyear brought to the track to handle to abrasive Indianapolis Motor Speedway course turned out disastrous. Because tires began to cord and eventually pop within a dozen or so laps, NASCAR threw “competition cautions” to slow the field down every ten or 12 laps. Going to vastly different venues and an ever changing technological aspect of the sport, it keeps the tire builder for NASCAR’s top three series on their toes 365 days a year trying to keep up and ahead of the sport. In the short track ranks in Atlantic Canada, the tires throughout the season
stay pretty status quo. Sure, there are variances in what are used between divisions, but most tire rules do not change each and every year, but as you’ll see as we go through this, change does happen from time to time. Let’s begin with the biggest division racing locally in the region - the Pro Stock or the Super Late Model. Two tracks in this region, Petty Raceway in Moncton, New Brunswick and Speedway 660 in Geary, New Brunswick host this class on a regular basis while the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour contests 12 races a year for this type of high powered, high dollar car. All three sanctioning bodies use the same Hoosier Tire Company tire. All tires for this class are impounded and inventoried by the sanctioning body. For example, the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour sells tires to teams, those tires are kept in inventory until race day. Teams will advise the Tour what tires they would like to run for the weekend and they are packed into
ALL PHOTO’S BY TERRY WATERFIELD
n ovemb er 2014
the tire trailer, which travels with the series to each of the 12 races. With the three series using the same rubber compound produced by Hoosier, it also allows teams at Petty International Raceway and Speedway 660 to use tires from their inventory to race with the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour. When the competitor gates open on race day, teams take their allotment of tires from the tire trailer to their hauler. Every tire has to be left out in the open and no race tires can be placed in their hauler. The amount of tires depends on the length of the race and the amount of new tires depends on whether the team is a full time or part time team on the series. For example, a team is able to purchase eight new tires at the season opener and must use four of those new rubbers in the first event. If a team misses the opener, or runs on a part time basis, there are rules outlined for them in the rulebook on how many new tires can be purchased. The Tour houses a “used tire” inventory as well for teams to use in addition to their new tires. After Race Three, a full time team can purchase two new tires and if they do so, the team must start the feature on their new tires. At the “250s” (IWK 250 at Riverside Speedway and Atlantic Cat 250 at Scotia Speedworld), teams are eligible to purchase eight tires for those races, four lefts and four rights. With different sizes and the tires doing different things throughout a run, knowing tires, even on a regional series like the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour, can be a science. A majority of teams dedicate one crew member to tires, to monitor throughout a race weekend what happens with the tires, keeping a good set together and making sure what is in their tire inventory for the season is what they want. One odd sized tire or a mismatched set can put a car, well handling or not, from the front of the pack to the back of the pack. If a tire is needed to be broken down from a rim, a Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour official needs to oversee the process. Why, you may ask? The answer is simple - to keep teams from “gaining an advantage,” or the straight up term, cheating. It might seem trivial, but if teams were allowed to take their tires home, they could be adding chemicals to the rubber, more commonly known as tire softener, to ultimately get more speed out of the four patches of rubber hitting the track. You can also get into traction control devices and other mechanical additives to make a car go faster. Remember, at the end of the day, it’s the four patches of rubber that are hitting the track to make the car go faster. Tires, like the ones on your street car, are not cheap either. With an approximate $200 price tag per piece of rubber (price changes per year due to the exchange rate on the US Dollar), those eight tires for your Pro Stock are already running you around $1600. Sportsman tires typically run $10-20 cheaper per tire and Street Stock tires sold by race tracks in the region are a bit cheaper as well, but that is the ballpark figure. Yes, you can run on used tires, but nothing helps a car gain speed like fresh rubber! Sportsman tires in the region are, much like their Pro Stock counterparts, sold by the race tracks and sanctioning bodies that run the Late Model cars. The Sportsman cars are a different car than their higher speed cousin, and require a different tire than a Pro Stock to meet their needs. Tracks do not impound Sportsman tires and most tracks either have a “dry tire” rule or a durometer rule to monitor the softness of the tire. Hit a certain number on the durometer and the tire - and your race in most cases - is deemed illegal and you face penalties such as a disqualification or a suspension depending on what the procedure reads for the track. Same can be said for tracks that run Street Stocks. With it being a different division, a different tire is needed to fit their needs. Oyster Bed Speedway in the last few seasons has introduced new tire programs for their Late Model and Street Stock classes. The
Tires and Treads
Oyster Bed Bridge, Prince Edward Island oval has their Late Model division, their premiere division on their Weekly Racing Series card, on used Pro Stock tires. Teams who decide they do not want select used tires in their Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour inventory, or have practice tires they have purchased they want to get rid of, they can sell the tires to the Island teams or to a business like Central Engine Services and they will sell tires to the teams. The going rate for a used Pro Stock tire at the beginning of 2014 was $30/tire for the Oyster Bed Late Model teams. Compared to putting them on Sportsman or Pro Stock tires and having teams pay upwards of $800 a set, the rule has saved teams money they can put elsewhere in their racing budget, like in their gas tanks to haul their cars to the track. Their Street Stock class at Oyster Bed runs off a re-capped Hoosier tire that are purchased by the trailer full down south.
Teams are charged $100 a tire, which is, again, cheaper than a $140-$150 bill for a new Street Stock tire, saving that class money as well. Does it affect the racing product? Of course not. Sure, whenever you bring a new rule change in, whether it is coilbinding a shock or a new rubber compound, some teams are going to pick up on it quicker than others. I can tell you firsthand, the racing on the Island has been some of the best in the region all season and while tires are a small piece of the equation on the grand scale, it is definitely not hurting the teams. We’ll get into some more “tire recycling” in a bit, but first, we need to talk about the Legend and Bandolero classes. Both race cars are turnkey, spec race cars that are manufactured in Harrisburg, North Carolina at US Legend Cars International. For those that follow my columns in this magazine have read about
these cars but for those that may have picked this up for the first time, they are the perfect rungs on the ladder per say to move up the ranks of stock car racing in this region. Champions the likes of Cole Butcher, Dylan Blenkhorn, Brad Eddy, DJ Casey and Emily Meehan each started in Bandoleros before moving to Legends and now the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour. While we could go on about the wonderful things about these race cars, to stay on topic at least, each division uses a spec tire that comes from the Harrisburg shop and is stamped with the INEX branding. While the Bandolero tire is stamped just as that, a “Bandolero Tire,” the Federal Tire Company is responsible for manufacturing the 205/13R60 595 series tire for Legend cars. Sure, you can go to Federal and buy that specific tire, but in order to be legal for competition, the “INEX” emblem must be on the tire. The series comes with a “dry tire” rule, and cannot pass below a
n ovemb er 2014