Lebanon racer Dylan Fetcho hasn’t racked up a victory so far this season at Fairgrounds Speedway, but consistently high finishes have him atop the championship standings in the premier Pro Late Model division.
“I’m not discouraged,” says Dylan, who has posted third-, sixth- and second-place finishes in the season’s first three races.
“I’ve got two top-three finishes in three races and I’m up there in the point standings. Hopefully I’ll win one eventually.”
Dylan won an estimated 150 races in karts, Legends and various other categories of racing as a youngster. Does having seen all those checkered flags flapping make his current come-closes finishes more agonizing?
“No, not really,” says Dylan. “Those wins didn’t come against the same sort of completion I’m facing now. I’m racing against some talented drivers in the top division, and wins are hard to come by.”
After Dylan graduates from Wilson Central High next week he will attend an advanced technical school in Kentucky. Afterwards he plans to join his father Scott’s Precision Auto Body Repair business in Lebanon.
“We’re having a good season so far,” says Scott, who was one of the area’s top racers until his retirement several years ago. Since then he has devoted his time to assisting his son with his racing aspirations.
Scott knows first-hand how time-consuming and frustrating the sport can be, and the steadily-rising costs can be daunting for amateur race teams. But he says he’s glad to support his son’s aspirations.
“Dylan has worked hard to make himself a good driver, and he’s good at it,” Scott says. “I remember how I felt about racing when I was his age. I’m proud of him, and I’m willing to help any way I can. It’s something we can do together.”
In addition to running for the championship at Nashville, Dylan plans some races at Montgomery, Alabama and Pensacola, Fla. The latter includes the prestigious Snowball Derby this winter.
“I’ve loved to race for as long as I can remember,” says Dylan, who began driving go-karts at age four. “I’d like to race professionally someday – that’s been my dream as long as I can remember – so we’ll see how it goes.”
Dylan is considered one of the area’s top young talents. He finished an impressive fifth among 44 drivers in last season’s championship standings in the premier division. That was just one position behind two-time Daytona 500 winner and four-time track champion Sterling Marlin.
Last season a crash demolished Dylan’s race car and wiped out a promising season. The team never got back on track.
“It was disappointing, but that’s part of racing,” Dylan says. “You have to re-group and go on, and that’s what we’re doing this season.”
Helping pay the bills is a sponsorship by Big Machine Records, founded and owned by Scott Borchetta, a long-time friend of Scott Fetcho and a former fellow racer. With some of the music industry’s top stars in the fold, such as Taylor Swift and Tim McGraw, Big Machine Records attracts attention to the team,
“Scott (Borchetta) is a former racer who knows the sport first-hand,” Fetcho says. “His support means a lot.”
Dylan says he is aware – and appreciative – of the support from his parents, and agrees with his father that racing forms a strong bond.
“My dad and I work on the cars together and he coaches me when I’m on the track,” he says. “He makes a lot of sacrifices to support my racing, and without him I couldn’t do it. He knows how much I appreciate it.”
Fairgrounds schedule: The next race is June 2. Information about the schedule, tickets and point standings is posted on the track’s website.
Rim running: Highland Rim Speedway’s schedule is underway, with a full slate of racing every Saturday. Lebanon’s Hunter Writer is the track’s defending Legends champion. Detailed information is available on the website.