YORK, Neb. – Cory Dumpert sought and achieved IMCA Sunoco Late Model perfection in 2020.
Dumpert raced to a second straight national championship, and his first outright, collecting three track titles and the KMJ Performance Nebraska State crown as well.
His 21 feature wins, in just 32 starts, were the most by an IMCA Late Model driver since Justin Kay’s division record 24 checkers in 2014.
“Our goal this year was to go out, get it done and leave no doubt. We built a brand new car and it was really good right out of the box,” said Dumpert, from York, Neb. “We were more familiar with the IMCA point structure this season. Once we knew we had a perfect score after our 20th win it was a relief and we could just go out and race after that.”
Putting together streaks of three, four, five and then six wins over the course of the season, Dumpert won eight times at Junction Motor Speedway, six times at U.S. 30 Speedway and five times at Boone County Raceway in taking track titles at each.
His two other wins came at Off Road Speedway, the site of his only finish all season outside the top five.
“A lot of our success is a result of time in the shop. The one DNF I had this year was due to a wreck when I was passing the leader,” he said. “You’ve got to finish the race to be able to finish first. The car, the parts, the motor, the driver, it all adds up.”
Boone County’s Fan Appreciation Night provided his highlight of the season, when Dumpert collected signatures on his car from some 50 young fans.
“They were pretty excited about that,” said Dumpert, who promptly went out and won that evening’s main event. “It was a lot of fun. I won’t forget that night.”
Dumpert began his racing career in go-karts, finding success in hobby stocks and street stocks before getting into a Late Model.
He’d won nine features last year on the way to becoming the first IMCA Late Model driver to earn national championship and the top rookie award in the same season.
“Racing is like a roller coaster. You have to enjoy the ride. There are good years and there are years you wish were over in April,” said Dumpert. “I’ve been racing a Late Model since 2012 and things got better almost every year. In 2019 and 2020, they got even better.”