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Burt Myers details his side of Franklin County incident

Legendary southern Tour Type Modified racer Burt Myers says he has two hard and fast rules when it comes to competing with him.

‘You don’t mess with my family and you don’t touch my cars.’

Myers said the former happened over the weekend at Franklin County Speedway in a much-publicized physical confrontation between his team and track officials during a Carolina Crate Modified Series event.

In a video posted to Facebook, the 10-time Bowman Gray Stadium champion says that an official poked and prodded 15-year-old son Slate with the stop-and-go sign, which led to a scoring dispute escalating into what happened next.

The race ended six laps short of its scheduled distance as the elder Myers, his crew and officials from Franklin County Speedway needed to be pulled apart, as several spillover fights erupted in the infield.

Slate was spun in an incident with seven laps to go and there was a dispute about where race control told him to rejoin the field. Burt was trying to delegate that dispute but is adamant that there was no hostility towards series officials but there was confusion.

The series stopped scoring Slate, and then called for a red flag to sort out the running order during a caution one lap later, all with the Myers car still on the track.

“Slate comes on the radio and says, ‘Dad, get over here, Get over here,’ because the guy is over here poking him with the stop and go sign and calling him words that I’m not going to repeat on this video,” said the elder Myers.

“I run over there and yeah, I jumped down on the track and I told the guy, ‘That’s my 15-year-old son who’s buckled in the car (so) if you’ve got a problem and you want to talk to somebody that way, talk to me that way.

“At that point, I was pushed, I was shoved. I did throw my radio. I shouldn’t have done that. I’m embarrassed about the whole night, to be honest with you but I just find it hard to believe that anybody that was in that situation wouldn’t have done the same thing when you’re talking about your son.

“It had nothing to do with what happened on the racetrack. I could care less about what happened on the racetrack. Slate’s going get his ups and downs in racing. That’s racing.”

The elder Myers said there was no issue with the on-track contact because that’s just racing too.

“What I was concerned with was a track official who is a grown man, who is 250 pounds, 6’3 and is threatening and cussing and pushing.”

It’s worth noting that the officials who were aggressive with the Myers were track officials and not series officials, with both in attendance and working together, in theory. Series director Keith Graham has reached out to Short Track Scene to reiterate that his officials only efforted to deescalate the situation and his group would not behave that way.

Burt Myers and crew brawl with officials at Franklin County

Myers gripe with the series is that his son should have been parked at the tail end of the lead lap cars and not at the tail end of the field, which is correct. They kept telling Slate to go to the rear of the field.

He said ‘that had pretty much blown over’ when a fourth-party then escalated the scene.

“What brought all this to a physical confrontation was when a car owner from another team that had nothing to do with anything that was going on in this situation basically came at me and tried to attack me and grabbed me,” Burt said. “That’s when it all went down, and that’s when people started pushing and shoving and throwing blows and everything else.

“So we’re embarrassed. We’re embarrassed. I know it’s a black eye on southern modified and short track racing. I know fans love seeing that kind of stuff, but from our standpoint, that’s not the image we want to give.

“With that being said, I want to apologize to everybody that was kind of thrown into this thing but I want you to think about how you would judge somebody until you’ve actually been in there situation.”

Burt says someone was physically provoking his son, strapped into a race car under red flag conditions, and he was not going to accept that.

“I just wanted everybody to know it wasn’t just that Burt was telling slate not to go in line because we were trying to be defiant or that we didn’t think that’s where we belong,” he said. “So we’re not going there.

“The officials in the pits were communicating with me and we were trying to figure out the situation. What race control has to understand, as drivers and as teams and as crew members, we ride side-by-side with a car to address the situation.

“When you’re riding side-by-side with a car, it means ‘Hey, could you stop for a minute and address what’s going on here?’

Burt reiterated that he feels embarrassed, even while justified in his conviction, but that you can’t mess with his family like that.

“It’s just the way we’re wired as humans,” he said. “We all do things that we regret, we do things that maybe we shouldn’t have after it happens. You think about what could I have done differently. At the end of the day, I’m going to stand up for my family every time and I don’t think there is a parent that would not have done what I did.”

Uh, but at the end of the day, I’m gonna stand up for my family every time. And, uh, I don’t think there’s a parent out there that wouldn’t have done exactly what I did.

Matt Weaver is the owner and founder of Short Track Scene. Weaver grew up in the sport, having raced himself before becoming a reporter in college at the University of South Alabama. He also has extensive experience covering NASCAR, IndyCar and Dirt Sprint Cars.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Jay altizer

    June 4, 2024 at 12:09 pm

    Not exactly how it all went down. If you want another side of what happened reach out to me.. I was standing right beside Keith during race

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