During his highly successful racing history at Eldora Speedway, Scott Bloomquist has seemed so dominant that at times he could beat the field with one arm tied behind his back.
On Saturday night he perhaps felt like he did.
Bloomquist led the final 61 laps of the 100-lap feature and won by a whooping 9.065 seconds to become the first driver to capture back-to-back Dirt Late Model Dream features. And he did it with a torn rotator cuff in his left shoulder and a torn muscle in his right shoulder. Bloomquist said he re-aggravated his left shoulder Friday – almost to the point he couldn’t drive this weekend – when he slipped in the mud at Eldora and put his arm behind him to break his fall.
Bloomquist ended up visiting the emergency room at Wayne HealthCare in Greenville and didn’t leave until well after midnight.
“It felt like I was really done,” Bloomquist said referring to both the Dream and his season. “I didn’t think I was going to race at all. I thought I was going home for surgery. … I can still feel it even with the patches and the pain medicine. I can feel it right now. I know there’s damage.”
Feeling good enough to give Saturday’s $100,000-to-win event a run, Bloomquist got his pain killers approved – “We wanted to comply with everything,” he said – and started at the tail of his heat race because he missed Friday’s preliminary action. He roared from his No. 13 starting spot to finish third and qualify for the Dream.
Tennessee’s Bloomquist started 15th in the feature and worked his way into the top five by lap 15. He slide jobbed his way into second by lap 21. He chased and battled Georgia’s Jonathan Davenport for the lead for nearly 20 laps – including a few door-to-door drag races to the start/finish line – before finally pulling ahead and away for good on lap 60.
Four cautions in the final 40 laps bunched up the field and erased Bloomquist’s leads of three seconds or more. But he rocketed away from the field each time.
The win was Bloomquist’s eighth career Dream victory. He’s also finished second twice. Only Freddy Smith and Billy Moyer have multiple Dream wins with two each.
Dale McDowell finished second, Davenport third, Bobby Pierce fourth and Chris Madden fifth.
Bloomquist won the 1990 World 100 (he also has four of those victories) driving with a cast on his left hand that left him with the use of his ring and pinkie fingers. And just like then, on Saturday Bloomquist said he did most of the driving with his right arm.
“This is one place, if there is a place, where you can drive steering left and using your right arm,” Bloomquist said. “You’re just pushing your arm over the top.”
Bloomquist said doctors have told him it doesn’t matter if he tears his rotator cuff more. It’s only a matter of can he stand the pain?
“(Friday night) I definitely couldn’t,” he said.
“He said he was going to try and get me through my career. I don’t think that’s going to happen,” he added. “I think we’re going to have to do something this fall.”
Until then Bloomquist will remain nearly one armed. And dangerous.