the end of template body racing ?

With the decision of shady bowl speedway in degraff Ohio to switch to an outlaw bodied late model for this season and the closing of Columbus motor speedway at the conclusion of this racing season, it will leave the state of Ohio with only outlaw bodied late models running a weekly schedule at Ohio’s paved speedways. I was wondering if other states paved tracks are following along on this trend.

Barberton Speedway reopened this weekend after sitting for basically two years. There was only nine Late Models there, but, three of them were template-bodied cars - Jeff Walker (a red #50); Paul Mate (a black #26), and his brother (I’m assuming), Phil, in a yellow #14. Since we don’t see "template’ cars over here very often (seen a couple at Midvale over the four years I’ve been going there), I was wondering if maybe them guys came from out of town somewheres.

all our asphalt tracks in Florida are running template bodies in late models, but outlaw bodies are real big in Sportsman thou, wish it would change in late models, would help with the costs of racing


To bad they are trying to put body rules on sportsman cars cuz the car count will go down. There was a reason this class was so popular and prob the biggest class in Florida. They keep adding rules and trying to make this class like the late models. ABC body’s suck and they deff would have more late models if the had went to outlaw type body’s

Without standard body rules you would not get supers from all over this country to speedweeks and the Gov cup. Template bodys ARE a pain but we can run these cars any where and it also helps the resale value of this type of car. Lastly we would have to scrap what we have and change them which is NOT saving any $$.

This is where you are wrong my friend. Just putting limits on the bodies so they don’t get out of hand is all. Tom you are spot on we would never get cars from any where at any track without ABC bodies.

Diversity in the cars is one of the most entertaining aspects of the sportsmen along with the competition. Any rules being considered should still allow much more creativity than the ABC templates. I love the wild shit running along side the relatively tame.


Well Ricky it’s just my thoughts so maybe I’m not wrong. What’s been wrong with the body’s to want to change them now anyways? Must be trying to please a certain few that are getting beat or something and are crying. When you start with making body’s rules it will only take a few years and every car will have to look the same. The no side panels and stuff is fine but leave the rest to whatever. The cars look sweet and people get to put their creativity to work.

I would rather watch paint dry than watch cookie cutter looking race cars,NASCAR included.

Way back when late models were steel bodied cars it was great to tell that a chevelle was a chevelle a fairlane was a fairlane etc. Today’s template bodies don’t have that personality which is one reason Iiked the sportsman class here in Florida when I first came to Florida. They still had that personality. I remember back in the early 70s when Michigan’s joy fair built a four door ford maverick which at first was banned from competition. Then in the late 90s when NASCAR decided to let four door Taurus bodies run. I love watching the outlaw body’s run but I’ve grown up and grown old watching template body racing. It seems odd watching it disappear in my old home state. Not necessarily a bad thing or a good thing just odd.

There ya go.

Make them template bodies–of '64 Chevelles and '66 Fairlanes!

I like outlaw bodies. Selfishly, am good with things as is because the template late models give the Sportsman cars their own identity.

Why limit anything? They are good as is.

The reason for the upcoming quarter panel height rule for 2017 is because the rear deck lids are getting so high, you can’t see through the car in front of you anymore. If somebody wrecks in front of a car you are following you will never see it. If they lower the quarter panels back to a reasonable level it should tear up less cars.

They do look damn good with all that rake in the bodies, but it’s more of a safety deal.

Patrick Thomas 111

makes sense.


I’m sorry Patrick but I don’t believe that’s the reason the cars are getting tore up. Real outlaw car from up north all have the body’s with a bunch of rake in them and you can’t hardly see thru them. Almost every sportsman guy has spotters anyways these days.

Er…what is the reason you think they are getting “tore up”, then…?

The front guy blocking and the following guy trying to drive through him on a bullring has always been popular. Especially after about the third hit and both guys feel slighted.

But really, it is like driving on the street. Back in the day, you could see through cars and easily avoid stuff up ahead. Now the trunk lids are higher and it makes it harder (a late model Taurus, for instance). And full sized pickemup trucks might as well be a semi. The answer is to drop back a little, but that is unpopular in racing.:slight_smile:

I think the rear deck height could contribute to a legit “accident” when there is trouble beyond the car in front of a guy.


i would much rather spend $2600 on an abc body rather than $300 and make my own also $7500 for trans and clutch as opposed to $1500 for a bert without drag racing starts and definatly need radio and mirrors for safety although dirt cars don’t need them neither do outlaw cars but they are good for blocking or having daddy drive from the stands. make racing more user friendly with no abc nascar wanna bee bodies let us quit the drag race restarts which will end the over priced transmission needs.let us build our motors the same as these stroker sealed motors. motor rules like michigan there are none

outlaw bodies

ABC bodies, are 100% the way to go. You may be able to buy the sheet metal for an outlaw body for 300.00, but then you have a pile of sheet metal!

How many of the late model racers have the know how, to build and mount a competitive wedge/outlaw body? And when I say competitive I mean there is an art to building one of these bodies.

You can pretty much go anywhere in the country with the ABC rule package and race. Anytime you can streamline the rules to be the same all over the place, it is a plus for racing.

From my other post, this is the same reasoning behind me personal belief that running the Hoosier tire at all the track in Florida is a plus for racing also.

I do not race now, and have no involvement with any teams, I just love racing, and love going to the races, and want to see the sport thrive. I was involved in the sport for 20 plus years, and have seen all of this before.

Just my opinion, Vince P. “trying to save racing, one post at a time”

$300 aluminum outlaw body with a sheet of Lexan for the roof/windshield. Me, Dad, and my brother, Scott, designed and built this body ourselves in our driveway. Drill out a few rivets at a time, take one panel off at a time and beat it back out with a rubber mallet on a concrete driveway every week. Granted…this was 1986-1988…