Braden Mitchell: The Mad Dash from Texas to Tennessee

Braden Mitchell: The Mad Dash from Texas to Tennessee

Braden Mitchell left the Dallas, Texas, at 5 a.m. and floored it to get to Tazewell Speedway in Tennessee. That’s nearly a 900-mile drive to race. However, he’s running for rookie of the year in the Crate Racin’ USA Dirt Late Model Series.

Mitchell, of Russellville, Alabama, earns a living in power line restoration. He works for Sparks Energy Inc., which is owned by his late model car owner Jay Sparks. When bad storms rolled through Texas, his work took him there. Saturday morning, Mitchell ventured back east, although he was uncertain if he was going to race at Tazewell. His direction became clearer after his wife, Morgan, called around 12 noon Eastern.

“We’ve worked too hard to stay running with the series just to not be able to come,” Morgan said. “I [told Braden], ‘I can get the car there if you can make it from Dallas on time.’”

Morgan loaded up the trailer, along with their two-year-old daughter Indy and nephew Braxton, and made it to Tazewell at around 7:30 p.m. Braden arrived at 8:15 p.m.

Morgan, obviously, isn’t afraid to dive in and get her hands dirty. She works for Twisted Performance and Machine. There Morgan takes calls, does invoicing, and, when needed, assembles engines.

Fortunately, a rain delay afforded some time for Braden and Morgan to prepare their car before qualifying. As the clock neared midnight, Braden time-trialed last in his group. The two went to work for the heat race, but the rains returned, washing out the show. Regardless of the on-track performance or the event being postponed, Braden Mitchell considered the night a success.

“Being gone for a week, being here [at Tazewell], with my wife, my daughter and friends, it means a lot,” said Braden. “What it all boils down to is that when you don’t do this stuff for a living, it’s all about quality time.”