The weekends spent racing have dwindled over the past couple of years, but the pace of life for veteran IMCA Modified racer Brad Pounds is every bit as hectic.
Marriage and twin toddlers will do that.
“I like to travel, the most I’ve ever raced is about 50 times a year,” Pounds, 33, said. “Now that we’ve got kids that ain’t gonna happen.”
Pounds married the former Tina McGowan, who also races, in 2015 and the two seldom compete on the same night so that one is always available to watch Casey and Cole, who are 2 ½ years old and already mainstays in the pits.
Brad Pounds has made all of the IMCA Modified races at Bakersfield Speedway this year where he is the points leader, as well as a handful of other races. Tina Pounds has competed in about a half-dozen Sport Mod races and recently won at Bakersfield Speedway.
Both divisions will be in action on Saturday night at Bakersfield Speedway in the fourth annual Mike Moshier Classic but Brad will be the only Pounds competing.
“We just bought a new house, it’s in escrow, and we’re trying to save money,” Pounds said.
Besides, someone has to keep an eye on the kids.
Following in dad’s footsteps
A second-generation racer, there was never any doubt that Brad Pounds would follow father Scott and carry on the family tradition.
And, like his dad did in the late 1970s, Brad got this start at Bakersfield Speedway at the age of 15 in 1999.
“I started in a Hobby Stock and moved up to the Mods when I was 17,” Pounds said.
He’s competed in Modifieds ever since.
“Pretty much we can go anywhere in the United States and race if we want to because the rules are the same,” Pounds said of why he thinks Modifieds have such a wide appeal. “I like racing against different people. More people from out of town come here to race Mods than Hobby Stocks or other divisions.”
Plus, there is a bit of family history in Mods.
“My dad grew up racing those, he made his name in Modifieds and won a national championship,” he said.
The younger Pounds has never campaigned for a national or regional title but he has won state championships.
“We won the state a few times, just by accident,” he said. “We weren’t really running for the title, just running whatever races we could.”
Still about family
These days it is truly a family-oriented operation.
Scott Pounds came out of semi-retirement and ran some last season, but has hung up the helmet once again and Brad is now driving his dad’s car.
“I raced for Bill Henderson last year when my dad started racing again,” Pounds said. “Dad was home working on his car, I was working on Bill’s car and (Scott Pounds) said if you’re going to drive for somebody it needs to be me.”
While the younger Pounds said it was fun racing against his dad, it’s more fun driving for him.
“When I win, my dad wins,” he said. “It’s just more fun driving for him, it’s better than competing against him. I’d rather we both win.”
The twins are often in the pits and “help” father or son air up the tires or wipe mud off the body work.
“I’ve done a lot of racing and I’d like to travel a bit more when the kids become more self sufficient, but right now it’s about staying close to home and keeping the family happy,” Pounds said.
Honoring Mike Moshier
Saturday night’s race is the fourth annual Mike Moshier Classic, honoring the longtime Speedway track announcer, who died of cancer in 2015 shortly after attending the first race in his honor.
The race is a favorite for racers, many of whom received nicknames coined by Moshier.
IMCA has mandated that all of the Modifieds and Sport Mods competing do so topless (without a roof). The Speedway gives the drivers the option of running without a roof every August as a Hot August Nights promotion and it was a favorite of Moshier.
Pounds was the only Modified driver to run without a roof in the August 11 race at the track and is looking forward to his fellow competitors going topless on Saturday.
“I think that will be cool,” he said. “I think Mike Moshier would be pretty excited about it.”
Like many of the drivers at the Speedway, Pounds was given a nickname by Moshier.
“I was probably 19 years old, had won a few races in the Modifieds and Mike came walking by in the pits and said I’ve got your nickname: ‘Dominator’,” Pounds said.
At 19 Pounds wasn’t about to disagree with the Race Doctor, Moshier’s own nickname.
“I said OK, and that’s been my nickname ever since.”