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Monster Jam Inspired 1 of the Most Recognizable Looks in Short Track Racing

It’s one of the most instantly recognizable wraps in Super Late Model racing.

Kodie Conner has run the tiger stripes on his No. 45 since he was in Legend Cars and now, he’s brought it to Five Flags Speedway for his debut appearance in the Snowball Derby.

“My earliest memory of that paint scheme is that my parents took me to see ‘Monster Jam’ when I was like two or three, and I said, that’s what I want to drive right there.

“So, when I moved up to Legends, I still loved that paint scheme and I wanted to use it. I was like five years old, and I got to have my race car, there wasn’t any other paint scheme were going to have. It’s stuck with me ever since.”

That Monster Truck was Prowler and Conner is now 19 years old, carrying a surge of momentum towards the biggest race of the year.

Conner has six Super Late Model touring victories, all in the Mid-Atlantic region, but decided to travel to some of the biggest races this season. He was involved in a crash not of his own making at the Winchester 400, offsetting a competitive run where the 46 was biding his time until the run to the finish.

They then took their repaired car to the All-American 400 and made a massive statement by sitting on the pole before finishing eighth against a field that included winner Casey Roderick, Derek Thorn, Chandler Smith, Corey Heim, Stephen Nasse and Bubba Pollard – the teams he would have to beat in the Snowball Derby.

So, if the funding could be secured, why not?

Conner and his family crowdsourced tire and fuel money over social media, and indeed, the tiger stripes were ready to pounce in the Super Bowl of Short Track Racing.

“Nashville taught us that we could race with anyone,” Conner said. “The pole was bigger than any win we’ve had just because of the level of competition. Then, I feel like we backed it up in the race. If we bring the same mindset to Pensacola, I think we should be able to make the show, we’re aiming for a top-20, and then we can work on our race pace.”

As Conner approaches his twenties, it’s been suggested that he may have outpaced the tiger stripe colors.

“It’s been good for growing my fan base, and it makes people talk, for sure,” Conner said. “I like, everyone seems to like it. But I’ve had people say that maybe we should do something else. But it’s so hard to have something that no one else has in racing, so we’ll probably stick with it for now.”

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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 is also the associate motorsports editor of Autoweek Magazine and its website, which allows him to cover the highest levels of the sport.

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