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Willie Traywick announces plans to run a full dirt Super Late Model schedule in 2024

By James Hayes ------

Willie Traywick announces plans to run a full dirt Super Late Model schedule in 2024

Willie Traywick has announced that he will compete in a full schedule of dirt Super Late Model racing for the 2024 season. Willie has been competing in Dirt Late Model action across the southeast over the past several years and is ready to take his racing career to the next level with multiple touring dirt Super Late Model series in the United States.

Willie Traywick is a name known across the southeast and even further up into the country in places like Pennsylvania. Willie is an Alabama native from Wilsonville, AL, and has found success performing music and racing at local dirt tracks in Alabama, Tennessee, and Georgia.

We here at Field Pass were fortunate enough to sit down and chat with Traywick about his journey through racing and singing and how he manages to balance both careers at a high level.

To start the interview, we asked Willie, when did you get started racing?

Willie: I have been around it my whole life. I have helped my family. I had some cousins that raced. I helped them work on their cars, and pit crewed for them. It was all at local dirt tracks. I was 16 and still in high school when I saved up enough money to buy my own car. It was the front-wheel-drive class that you would find at pretty much any local dirt track. I ran those cars all the way up until I graduated high school, then I started racing late models.

Where was it that you got your start racing?

Willie: We had a track that was only about a mile from my house called Shelby County Speedway in Wilsonville.

Tell me more about your time running the front-wheel-drive class while still in high school.

Willie: I raced my own car for about four or five races, and then I drove for some other people. We actually ran pretty heavily with the front-wheel drives, won a bunch of races, and won a bunch of money. Unfortunately, I was having some differences with the guy I was driving for, so we parted ways. Despite not driving for him for the full season, we still managed to finish second in points in 2014. In 2015, when I graduated, I didn't run quite as hard that season, just a few races here and there in a couple of different cars. Then, in 2016, I started racing for Revis Auto Services, a local shop in Wilsonville, AL. We ran about half the season in the front-wheel drives, then ran the other half in late models. We won a few races in the front-wheel-drive. Still, we actually ended up winning the championship in the late model at Shelby County Speedway.

Did you travel much that season in the late model?

Willie: Yeah, we traveled a little bit. We ran in Mississippi, and I think we hit about every track in Alabama. None of it was as successful as we were at Shelby County, but the seat time was crucial to get in.

So, let's change lanes here. When did you start your singing career?

Willie: It was shortly after that 2016 racing season.

Was music always something you had a passion for?

Willie: Honestly, it never really was. I knew how to play like four songs. I got talked into playing with a guy at a BBQ restaurant. My uncle knew the guy and said, "Hey, Willie knows how to play." So they talked me into doing that, and a few weeks later, a buddy of mine called me and said, "Hey, I signed you up for this open mic night." I told him I was like an hour away. He responded with, "You're the last on the list, so come on!" So I drove to Bar 31 and ended up meeting a guy named Rick, who said I needed to do this for a living.

How long did it take to get that part of your career up and going?

Willie: It took me about a year, a year, and a half between working odds and ends jobs. I was a diesel mechanic; I did flooring a bunch of stuff. It took me a couple of years, but I was finally able to quit my job and start doing music full-time.

What kinds of places have your singing career taken you?

Willie: I've been all over Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee. I've been to Texas, as far north as Pennsylvania. So you could say we are definitely what you would call a touring band.

What are some of the places you have played music at that jump out?

Willie: We have played Ol' Red in Gatlinburg, Tin Roof in Birmingham, FlorBama, and Tootsie's in Nashville, which is a pretty big one too.

The summer you started singing, were you still racing at local dirt tracks?

Willie: I raced about three races in my old front-wheel-drive car. I lost my sponsorships in the late model because they felt I didn't have the time for racing anymore. I was really focused on doing music full-time and got that career really going. It wasn't until 2020 that I really started focusing on racing again. I put my old car back together. I didn't have any sponsors to start out with, so I was just doing it on my own and funding it through my music career. Then, I met Greg Crews at a show I was playing on the beach. To be honest, really, all my sponsors I have met through doing music. Greg helped me get a car, and I put my motor together, and then we went racing.

You built the motor for your car, too?!

Willie: My uncle Bobby Traywick and I did. He is probably one of the best engine builders around. He doesn't do it for a living, but let me tell you, he puts together some quality stuff. We have given that motor hell, and it's still hanging strong.

So, walk us through balancing racing and your singing career.

Willie: We knew to begin with going into this thing because of how technology advances so much and so often that this year we were going to lay back and run as much as we could and as much as my music schedule would allow. I have some off days, just not very many. It's just a matter of scheduling a racing event around what I already had scheduled music-wise. I usually book out music about six months in advance, or really as far as I can. Sometimes, I have it scheduled seven or eight months out. It's worked really well. It's really not as hard as some people think it would be. Everything is just on a schedule. Now, you do have cancelations here and there, or you get sick, but, for the most part, it works out pretty smoothly as long as we all stay organized.

Let's talk about your racing campaign in 2023. How did the season go for you guys?

Willie: We were kind of digging ourselves out of a hole. We had a few good runs. We ran seventh with the Southern All-Stars. We finished second a few times. We had the opportunity to drive for a few different people. It was more or less a building year, kinda reconstructing our program and setting things up for a strong 2024 season.

Willie Traywick announces plans to run a full dirt Super Late Model schedule in 2024

Stay tuned for Willie’s full race schedule release later this year and don’t forget to swing by and catch him singing at a show as well. For tour dates when it comes to Willie's singing, check him out on Facebook, Instagram, & TikTok at Willie Traywick Music so you can go and check out this multi-talented artist in everything he does.

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