From Racing Rivals, to Racing Teammates. By David.

Darne giving Polenz the Bumper.  Pictures Taken by Robert Fortier 2011

Darne giving Polenz the Bumper. Pictures Taken by Robert Fortier 2011

Its incredible how racing goes full circle so often, even more wild then the numerous circles we make every race.  Three plus years ago, I was driving the 33 On the Run Machine, battling for wins against some of the strongest competitors on the east.  We won many and lost even more.  A large part of those losses, were at Old Dominion Speedway against a friendly but tough competitor named Mike Darne.  He wasnt at Old Dominion Speedway every week, but when he was, we knew who we had to beat for the win.  When he showed up to the track, he made every competitor wonder whether they would have a shot for 1st or just worry about 2nd that night.  We had come up on top of the battle a few times, but Mike had ran ODS for many more years then myself, and frankly just beat us bad on some occasions.   Then there were times where the cars seemed equal, we could really battle it out, but what was so respectable about my on track rivalry with Mike. I never came home with a tore up race car, or tire marks from nose to rear. When we raced it was clean, at times there was a bumper used, but not as an unguided missile, but as a work of finesse.

Fast forward three years, here I am in a crazy up and down financial situation in racing, and I have moved to Mooresville, far away from Stafford, Va, the home of Moon Racing, where Dave Moon and Jordan Irving prepared my #33 car for the wins and championships we captured.  I have always had the best race cars prepared from those guys and I could not be more thankful.  Now we have all moved on to different endeavors in racing, with Jordan helping the #83 BK Racing Sprint Cup Car become competitive, and Dave venturing in the Parts business.  Distance, and new situations, left me with a decision to have the #33 set up elsewhere for our 2016 season.

The Last two years, I have tried to prepare the #33 in my two car garage, even with help from good friends, Chevy Rollings, Chris Puskas, Johnny, Ryan Polenz and many more, I have learned although I can turn a wrench pretty good, that does not mean I can set up a race car to compete with the best in the business! I realized this when we were out at Hickory, Mike Darne had seen us struggling with a vibration and car setup, so he came by and gave us a hand for a little while before practice. It eventually led to us fixing the vibration, and finding the little bit of speed we had in the race car to make the race.  Unfortunately, no matter what we did that day, nothing could have helped us get to victory lane, but salvaging a top 15 finish after starting 28th, in a top notch field, had a lot to do with Mikes help, and my fathers determination to get the problems corrected. After this moment, and watching the 2015 performances of Mike Darne, Jonathan Findley, Andrew Grady, and others out of Mike’s Race Shop, my decision became easy on what I needed to do.  So after all of these years battling Mike for the win, instead the #33 will now have the handy work, and racing intelligence of my rival Mike and his right hand man, Dennis for the 2016 season.
DPR at DarnesI know this is a work in progress and may not be a day one success story, but it is a step in the right direction for my race team.  We have set the expectations high, with a chance of failure, but knowing Mikes drive for victory lane, I am not worried if we don’t light the track on fire first time out.  April 2nd and 3rd will be the first test at the brand new Dominion Speedway, with this brand new partnership.  It’s an exciting start to the year, but this isn’t the only big news the #33 team has for 2016, with an announcement pending, but one hint to that is we will be at the race track more this season, then years passed!

See you at the track! #LiveFastDieLast.

-David Polenz

mike dave 2

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