BUTZ LOOKS TO CARRY TRADITION TO THE NEXT LEVEL
PORTAGE, Wis. (May 9, 2018) – When it comes to family-owned Super Late Model teams, it’s hard to overlook the accomplishments of the Butz family of Green Bay, Wis. In joining the TUNDRA Super Late Model Series Powered by Wisconsin Potatoes, Chad Butz hopes to build the legacy while competing for the title of Back 40 Wraps Rookie of the Year.
Chad’s parents Mike and Patty have owned cars driven to Championships at Wisconsin International Raceway by the likes of Jeff Van Oudenhoven, Terry Baldry, and Matt Kenseth. His big brother Matt – who is now his Crew Chief – was also in the mix as a young crew member. The combo of Butz and Baldry was dominant in the late 90s and connected again in 2010 for another title. It’s that Chad Butz cherishes.
“The person I remember the most was probably Terry Baldry and winning that last track Championship,” Butz said. “That was probably the most memorable driver we had.”
But as time passed Butz progressed his way into the Super Late Model ranks. After beginning at WIR in the Wisconsin Sport Truck division, Butz moved up the Super Late Models. Before tackling the half-mile – which can be intimidating – Butz began his career at Norway (Mich.) Speedway. He made a large statement at a young age.
In the 2015 season – at just 15 years of age – Butz became the youngest feature winner at the facility. His win came in the second week of action. To prove it was no fluke, he won again the following week. Butz finished Third in the Late Model standings that year and backed it up with a Seventh Place finish in 2016.
With more experience under his belt, Butz returned to his home track. He competed full time in the Super Late Models at WIR in 2017. The rookie found a little help from a source that had been a long-time competitor against his father’s cars.
“It took a ton of work,” Butz said of making the move back to WIR. “I learned a lot from Lowell Bennett. He helped me through a lot of bumps and stuff in this track.”
The advice paid off with an impressive Tenth Place finish in the season standings. Butz recorded seven Top Ten finishes in 14 events. He also secured finishes of Third and Fourth in back-to-back weeks in July.
The high school senior wants to continue to branch out in his racing career and sees TUNDRA as the perfect opportunity. It could be the stepping stone to more, as well.
It’s a good, affordable tour to get some exposure to different tracks. I’m really looking forward to it,” Butz said. “Our goal is Rookie of the Year and a Top Ten in points would be cool. It’s a pretty stout field TUNDRA has this year, so it should be fun.”
Butz said he’s looking forward to Jefferson most because it is a track he hasn’t been to yet. He’s already tackled Dells, Golden Sands, and set fast time at Marshfield this season. He has made select appearances at Wausau in the past. With that bit of experience he hopes to be toward the top of the rookie class in 2018.
“It would mean a lot to be Rookie of the Year and would be good for my resume,” he said. “A lot of people know that TUNDRA is a premier series, so it would be really cool.”
This season Butz is sponsored by Dental Health Products, Inc., 141 Speedway, Miller Welders, Gatorbar, FRP Rebar, K&K Material Handling, Chad Roffers Trucking, Accel Automotive, Gilbert’s Sentry Foods, Best Price Autos, J.W. Winco, North Country Inn and Storage, and Mike Butz Racing.
Kroll’s West Round One for the TUNDRA Super Late Model Series Powered by Wisconsin Potatoes takes place Saturday, May 12 at Wisconsin International Raceway. The Super Late Models will be joined by the TUNDRA Sportsman and Triple Crown Late Models. Qualifying is at 5:15 p.m. with racing at 6:45 p.m. Adult admission (13 and up) is just $12. Kids 12 and under receive free admission.
Wisconsin International Raceway is located just past the intersection of Hwy 55 and KK outside of Kaukauna, Wis. For more information visit www.wirmotorsports.com