June 4, 2011, West Siloam Speedway - The crowd stood on their feet and cheered loudly as Caleb "Hook" Smith took the checkered flag and became the youngest Late Model winner in West Siloam Speedway history last Saturday night. Caleb, 14, won his heat earlier that evening and during the feature stayed out front and out of trouble and drove his orange #55 Late Model across the finish line first.
This is Caleb's second year to compete at WSS; however he is no stranger to racing. At the age of 5 Caleb received his first dirt bike and raced motocross for 3 years. At the age of 8 Caleb moved up to go-karts where he achieved many great honors. Caleb is a Texas Dirt National Go-Kart Champion; he finished top 5 in the US for 3 consecutive years in Mid America Karting; finished top 5 in the US in Young Lion Legend Car - dirt division; a Twister Alley Points Champion; he finished in the Top 10 in the Tulsa Shootout and is a Lucas Indoor Karting feature winner.
Caleb purchased his current Late Model with his own personal savings and by selling his Legend Car. Late Model is one of the most prestigious classes in dirt track racing, known for incredibly fast cars and fielding well-experienced drivers. Caleb loves to listen to the older drivers with stories and advice on how to "not spin the tires" and to "let the car do the work in the corner". The biggest challenge Caleb feels that he faces weekly is getting a good draw number.
Earlier this season Caleb had his scariest experience on the track, when he had to call his mom and inform her he rolled his car in turns 3/4 and relocated the safety fence. Caleb's car was badly damaged but luckily Caleb walked away unscathed and even more determined. Caleb's parents, Craig and Alisa Smith, are very proud of their son and all of his accomplishments. In addition to racing, Caleb is active in football, basketball and also enjoys hunting and fishing. Caleb's sponsors include Hook Mechanical and Signature Builders.
West Siloam Speedway is one of the few local tracks that run Late Models weekly. Saturday June 11, 2011 they will be hosting a Late Model special. The winner will be awarded $1100.00. Races will start at 7pm and Caleb is scheduled to compete in the event.