Auto Racing

Jeremy Floyd driving well, excited to represent his family behind the wheel at Hawkeye Downs

Hobby Stock racecar driver in second season at Downs as wife steps away from racing to recover from heart surgery

Jeremy Floyd (12) absorbs contact from Jim Hanson (07) on the backstretch during the Hobby Stocks feature race last season at Hawkeye Downs Speedway in Cedar Rapids. (Stephen Mally/The Gazette)
Jeremy Floyd (12) absorbs contact from Jim Hanson (07) on the backstretch during the Hobby Stocks feature race last season at Hawkeye Downs Speedway in Cedar Rapids. (Stephen Mally/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — For Jeremy Floyd, racing has always been “family time.”

The Hobby Stock racecar driver is in his second season of competition on the quarter-mile asphalt oval at Hawkeye Downs Speedway. While his primary objective is good competition alongside family and friends, the 41-year-old Cedar Rapids native has found some success along the way.

“I don’t have expectations,” Floyd said before the weekly points races Friday night. “I’m just going to go out there and have fun and I want everybody with me to have fun and stay safe. If we can sneak a couple of wins in there, that is always good.”

Before last season, Floyd raced primarily at dirt tracks in Eastern Iowa towns such as Independence, Maquoketa and Vinton. His wife, Kandi, was a fixture in the Hobby Stocks Division at Hawkeye Downs for several years until triple-bypass heart surgery forced her to step away from the racetrack.

“I kind of stepped into it last year because she struggled the year before with everything,” Jeremy Floyd said. “Right now I’m in it and we’ll see how she feels next year and she may be back in it. We’ll just have to wait and see how things go.”

Floyd finished second last year in the Hobby Stocks points standings and closed the summer in style with his first feature win in the division on the last race day of the season.

“It was kind of a blur,” Floyd said. “It seemed like we ran 150 laps out there and I come across the finish lane, I got to Victory Lane and I didn’t know what to say. I was just speechless. It meant a lot because we worked all year, really hard, to try to get one and we weren’t able to do it. And then we were finally able to get it.”

Floyd’s 23-year-old son, Jacob, has also enjoyed racing success both in the Hobby Stocks Division at Hawkeye Downs and at area dirt tracks. This season, Jacob assists his father with race preparations at Hawkeye Downs, while Jeremy returns the favor whenever Jacob races their dirt track car.

For Jeremy Floyd, the move from dirt to asphalt has been a welcome change.

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“It got to be too much for us to both do two cars, so I kind of got away from it,” Floyd said. “I’ve been helping him. … It just got expensive to be on dirt. Dirt has changed a lot over the last five years. The cars have went from basic Hobby Stock to, they’ve opened up a lot of things on them. … It’s really tough to compete. It’s expensive and I’m glad I don’t do it anymore.”

This season at Hawkeye Downs, Floyd is again second in the Hobby Stocks points standings. He finished second on Friday night, his fifth top-five finish this season. A week ago, Floyd collected his first feature win of the season. After a few weeks of trial-and-error, he feels the No. 12 Monte Carlo that has performed so well for his family throughout the years is poised for a strong finish.

“We started off kind of slow this year,” Floyd said. “Kind of struggled a little bit, last couple of weeks, actually. Worked on the car pretty hard two weeks ago and I think we’ve got it figured out, finally. It hasn’t been a terrible year, but I think we’ve finally hit on something that hopefully really works for the rest of the year.”

l Comments: douglas.miles@thegazette.com

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