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Thursday, February 29, 2024

Matt Compton: DragChamp Racer Spotlight

Matt Compton is in this week’s DragChamp Racer Spotlight. Learn all about this DragChamp Pro Member in his spotlight below!

SPRINGVILLE, TN – Matt Compton, originally from Boise, Idaho but now residing in Springville, Tennessee, has been involved in racing for about 43 years, starting with go-karts at the age of 10. His introduction to the sport came through his father, who transitioned from Kart racing to drag racing and circle track before returning to drag racing. Compton initially raced karts until around the age of 15 when his father purchased a ’68 Chevelle with the intention of converting it into a circle track car, though it was deemed too nice for that purpose. Instead, they built a bracket car from it, and Compton began competing in high school events at Firebird Raceway in Boise. There, he achieved considerable success, winning a championship and claiming four king of the hill titles, a record that still stands, shared with Shayne Schaeffer.

Currently, Compton competes in Top and Bottom Bulb classes with his cars, primarily racing at Gleason Raceway Park in Gleason, Tennessee.

Learn more about Matt below!

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His Race Car

Matt’s race car lineup consists of a 2003 dragster and a 1986 Mustang. The dragster, equipped with a 632 cubic inch engine, has been capable of running in the 4.50s with his daughter, Casey at the wheel. On the other hand, his Mustang, which is driven by his wife Liana, features an all-Ford setup with a 427 engine paired with a glide transmission. In Tennessee, it runs in the 6.0-second range.

Outside of Racing

When Matt isn’t racing, he enjoys traveling, spending time with family, and taking care of his home. Professionally, he works as a Kubota tractor technician, drawing on his mechanical skills. One thing people may not know about Matt is that he used to work on Harley Davidson motorcycles.

In his downtime, Matt unwinds with movies like the Bourne series and TV shows such as Yellowstone. Online, he frequents platforms like Facebook, Instagram, This is Bracket Racing Elite, and DragChamp. Beyond racing, Matt’s passion lies in soccer, particularly the Portland Timbers, and he’s also an avid Green Bay Packers fan in football.

Accomplishments

Matt has notched several victories in local races, securing wins in $2K Super Pro and Pro events. Meanwhile, his daughter, Casey, has made her mark in the racing world, clinching five Wally trophies, with four coming in her Junior Dragster and one in their big dragster. Additionally, she’s also won a $10K and $5K race and has performed strongly in several west coast shootouts. Matt’s wife, Liana, has also tasted success on the local circuit, finishing as a championship runner-up and claiming victory in three Fox Hunt events.

Matt’s Q&A

What’s on your bucket list, future goals, what do you hope to achieve?

2024 will be a return to driving for me. I dabble here and there but haven’t focused on it for a while. I hope to get to it this year and win at least 1 event and put Liana in the winners circle a few times. Long term we hope to travel around the south here and hit all these amazing bracket races.

What is your favorite race car, and why? 

I had a 62 Chevy II. Was the first car I built on my own after I moved away from home. Wasn’t fast but that car and I got along pretty good. I won quite a bit with it.

Who has made the biggest impact on your racing success?

My Family, Mom & Dad. But my wife Liana and daughter Casey are my biggest supporters. It helps that they love to race too. I love nothing more than helping them be successful on track as well.

Who do you look up to in the sport?

Anyone that stages up at a bracket race. It ain’t easy, and if you do it well and consistently, I have nothing but respect for you.

How do you support your racing, side hustle, sponsor, partner, etc.? 

Build some engines here and there to help. 

Who do you hate to see in the other lane, and why? 

Fear none, Respect all. I get amped for this guy or that gal, but honestly I just go stage up and do my best no matter what or who.  

What’s the hardest part of drag racing?

Staying Focused

What’s your most embarrassing moment in a race car? 

The old battery charger drag for sure..

What are you saying to yourself just before you stage the car?

Nothing really.

What do you enjoy the most at the racetrack?

Friends and meeting new friends. Going rounds, having a beer after with friends.  

Are you superstitious?  If so, what are they? 

I was superstitious was when I was younger, now not so much.

Do you love to win or hate to lose? 

Love the competition and rush of a win.

Which are you better at the starting line or the finish line? 

I tend to be a little better on the starting line. But have been able to tie both ends together when I need to.

What motivates you to continue racing?

Traveling to new places, the lure of the big win.

If money were no object, what would your racing operation look like?  Car, trailer, class, race schedule, etc.

Likely the same as it does. But if it were really a blank check, I’d have another door car for me and me alone, stacker and toter. 

How often do you use a practice tree? 

daily.

What is your daily driver? 

Dodge 2500 

Favorite music, artist?

Just typical Gen X stuff. Whatever is rockin me out.

What are you really good at? 

Engine dyno work and tuning.

Would you rather hang out with a crowd or have a quiet evening at home? 

Honestly either one.

What’s your favorite thing to eat?  Individual item, meal, or restaurant?

My wife makes an Italian pasta dish that I absolutely love.

Who would you like to thank, who helps you the most?

My wife Liana. We are a good team. 

What is a piece of advice you’d give to an aspiring racer?

Race often as you can, practice, be humble, and make sure you’re having fun.

For more DragChamp racer spotlights, click here.

Want to become a DragChamp Pro Member like Matt? Check out the details here

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