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2017-08-10 / Sports

“Speed, Power And Competition,” That’s What It’s About

BY TOM CRASH
LCT CORRESPONDENT


Built for speed, Arlo Provost’s non wing sprint car weighs about 1,500 pounds with a 500 horsepower engine, speed and power, bring on the competition, says Provost. Built for speed, Arlo Provost’s non wing sprint car weighs about 1,500 pounds with a 500 horsepower engine, speed and power, bring on the competition, says Provost. RAPID CITY/KYLE - “One time, I retired from racing,” said Arlo Provost who now is in his 28th year of racing, “I bought a boat, I took flying lessons, nothing compared to racing so it didn’t take long and I was back racing.”

Provost has a day job, he is the athletic director at Little Wound high school in Kyle, on Friday nights, during the racing season, he is competing at the Black Hills Speedway in Rapid City. Over the years, he has raced in several different divisions. Starting out in 1989, he raced in the Grand Nationals, at some point he moved over the modified and then the street stocks.

“In 2013, I won the Street stock competition but I started looking at a new division they were putting together, a nonwing sprint category,” said Provost, “it was a frame and a motor, about 1,500 pounds with a 500 horsepower engine, you are talking about power, it’s all about speed and power.”

Provost won the new non wing sprint division in 2014 and 2015, he was second at Black Hills last year but won the tour which includes Gillette, Wyo, Jackson, Minn. and Sioux City, Iowa. He’s running third, just out of second so far this year. In Rapid there are probably 17-18 registered cars in the division, usually there are 10- 12 that show up on the weekend; you have two heats and a main event.

Sure, people ask me where do I get the money to race, Arlo commented, you don’t see me going out to eat, or going to the movies, I just do my race car and racing, that’s where my time and money goes. According to Provost, Black Hills Speedway is a Premier track, it’s a half mile high banked oval where on the straight away you can get up to 100-110 miles per hour. If you’re into speed, there’s nothing like it, added Provost.

No, Arlo didn’t think of trying to go to a higher level of racing; I probably did rodeo, rode broncs for 16 years, when I got too old for that, I got into racing, I was 35, a bit old to be just starting out, the big racing entities invest in young drivers, late teens, early 20’s not a driver in his mid-30’s.

Two weeks ago, Provost took second, he was slowing down after passing the finish line when the car behind him plowed into him, after rolling a couple of times, his car finally came to a rest, I climbed out right away, totaled the car but I was ok, yea I probably had a concussion and by Monday I was sore all over. I’ve been lucky, you’re always tearing things up but I’ve managed to escape with only cuts and bruises, and I always try and jump out of the car right away, added Arlo.

Luckily, Provost was able to line up a back-up car, put his engine and rear end into the back-up ride and he was back in business.

At 63, Provost is one of the oldest drivers at the track. Still competitive, his son Cory started racing a few years back, we had a $100 bet one year, I was first, he took fifth, all I know is you’re going to have to bring it if you want to beat me, stated Provost.

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