Dillon Sigmon Interview

It’s All About Having Fun!

by Erin Tesseneer for Harry’s Racin’ Photos, July 2, 2013

Whenever the crowd gathers at the Historic Cleveland County Fairgrounds Speedway, there’s a shared feeling of fun. Kids are running around with smiles on their faces, awaiting for the engines to fire up from the pits. The adults are laughing, sharing stories, and pulling for their favorite drivers. With fists raised in the air to summon their chosen car around the fourth turn, the jubilation intensifies. It’s what keeps the crowd coming back for more.

Fun is just another part of what makes dirt racing exciting and enjoyable.

One other person that finds fun in the sport is Dillon Sigmon, son of Tim Sigmon. Within their family unit, and family racing team, they’ve found nothing but enjoyment in what they do every weekend. It’s been passed down through the generations, and Dillon plans on carrying that on as long as he can. The competition drives him, and he hates missing a race. It’s safe to say that the sport has truly grown on him.

ET: How are you doing tonight, Dillon?

DS: Pretty good. How’re you doin’?

ET: I’m doin’ good. At what age did you begin racing?

DS: Dad’s been doing it since I was born, and before I was born. I’ve always been going with them. I didn’t really like it when I was younger. When I moved down here, I was about fifteen or sixteen, and I started coming with them. Ya know, getting into it. I really didn’t think I was going to start racing, but he [Tim Sigmon] started talking about putting me a car together. That’s how it all started.

ET: Who really got you into racing? Would you say it was your dad?

DS: Yeah. It was definitely dad. It’s just me and him, and Kyle [Stallings] helps us sometimes. We’re out there in the shop for hours at a time, and it’s just about having fun. Precious memories of my dad that I’ll be able to keep forever. He’s really the one who got me into it, because I just followed his lead. Now we’re racing together, and having fun.

ET: Even though you said you didn’t really like it back then, have you grown to love it now?

DS: Oh yeah. When I was younger I couldn’t stand it. We couldn’t get around cars, because he was afraid we’d get hurt. We just kinda sat on top of the truck, and it really wasn’t that much fun. But now, I really hate when it rains out, or I miss a race… I just hate it.

ET: What is your biggest draw to this sport, to come out here every single weekend to hit the dirt with everyone?

DS: It’s a bunch of different things; it’s how fun it is, seeing if you can compete, and running with other people. Everyone is nice over here at the Fairgrounds. You don’t see that very often now. Now everyone wants to be for themselves. Over here it’s been real fun this year, because everyone’s nice, and racing’s real fun.

ET: Can you recall your first win on the dirt circuit?

DS: Yeah. It was actually just last year: June 30th. Me and dad were racing. He was leading the whole race. He was leading every lap, and well, I headed up to second. A caution came out, and I pulled up beside him… just messing with him a little bit. You know, he never says it out loud, but I think he gave me a little bit. I got in front of him pretty easy, and he fell in behind me. Then he got into it with another driver, and I was out there by myself. I finished the second half of the race in front. I messed up a few times, and almost got passed, but I ended up holding out until the checkered flag.

ET: So you were able to say you beat your dad?

DS: I guess so. He’s outrun me, and I’ve outrun him a couple of times. We race hard.

ET: How long did you race before you got that first victory?

DS: I think I was racing about two and a half years, and then all the circumstances were just right. I happened to get it that night.

ET: Do you ever get nervous out on the track? If so, how do you handle it?

DS: Well, still to this day, dad says the same thing. Right before we go out, I get butterflies in my stomach. But as soon as I hit the track, it all goes away. From about the time I get in the car until we get onto the track, I’m pretty nervous. I’m trying to just think how I want to do everything, and trying to make it work.

ET: Try to get in the game?

DS: Oh yeah.

ET: What is your personal code of conduct out on the track? I know I asked your dad last week, and I’m curious how you view it as well.

DS: You mean like my ethics?

ET: Yes.

DS: I’m not going to run over anyone. Not on purpose. If I hit somebody, it’s probably an accident. I don’t want to have to go home and fix my stuff. I know a bunch of other people who don’t want to go home and fix a bunch of stuff. So, if I race everybody clean, I’m hoping everyone will race me clean. There’s been times where I’ve had to just drop the hammer, but I don’t like it. I don’t like doing that. I just want everybody to race hard, have fun, go home, and make a little bit of money if they can. Just go home with everything still together, and be able to come back next week.

ET: Who is your favorite person to race against?

DS: When me and dad are together, it’s pretty fun. He really doesn’t give me much anymore. We race hard.

ET: So now he makes you work for it?

DS: Oh yeah, he’s not gonna give me anything. I got my first win out of the way, so he’s not going to give me anymore. As far as anyone else, the Dunlaps. We’ve raced against them. We’ve battled with them. They’re always fun to race with. They’re always competition. You know when they show up you’re going to have some competition. You’re not going to have a cakewalk. The Dunlaps are some of the funnest to race with, because they’re competition.

ET: Is there anyone out there that makes it especially difficult for you when you’re on the track?

DS: Not specifically right now. I’m going to try my best whether I break, whether I finish first, last, whatever. I’m going to try my best, and try to go home without tearing stuff up. It’s all about circumstances, really, unless you have the fastest car and you win every week. It’s all about circumstances if you can get out there, and maybe luck out. Maybe your car was hooked up that night. No one specifically, really, gives me trouble.

ET: Where do you see yourself later on in your racing career?

DS: It’s really more of a hobby. I’m not the kind of person who would want to get big, and have to do it for a living. If I had to do it for a living, it probably wouldn’t be fun anymore. I just enjoy it while I can. If there’s ever a time where I can’t, so be it. I’m going to have fun while I can, and make it last. I’m never going to forget these memories of what me and my dad do. Most people get about my age, and they want to go out. Maybe some people want to get drunk, or whatever. I race, and I hangout with my dad. Most people can’t say that they just go hangout with their dad. I really enjoy that part of it.

ET: With your dad talking last week, it’s still that family affair feeling.

DS: Yeah, he teaches me how to run, because when he stops racing he wants me to be the fastest I can be. He’s tried to teach me about everything he knows. I’m learning. I’m not nearly as good as he is right now. I don’t know if I ever will be, but I’m gonna try for it.

ET: What advice would you give someone that wants to get into racing?

DS: My first couple of years, I got discouraged a lot. I knew I wasn’t going to go out there and be able to win instantly. There was a lot of times where stuff would happen, stuff would break, and I would constantly have my head down. Well, dad told me to stay in it, and it’s paid off. I can run now, and I can run upfront with everyone. You just have to stay with it, and not get discouraged.

ET: What keeps you coming back to the Historic Cleveland County Fairgrounds Speedway?

DS: You know, everyone’s just nice. Roby Combs is doing a great job with this track. Everybody likes getting into it. The people in the grandstands, they get into it. When someone stops on the track, the announcer says their name. It makes it fun racing. It’s not about the one person that wins, and that’s it. Everyone has a shot to get some publicity, and just have fun, and feel important.

ET: Do you have anything to say to the fans that will be reading this on DirtRaceFans.com?

DS: I enjoy coming to the fairgrounds, and I hope everybody enjoys it as much as I do. But dirt racing, it’s a great thing to get into because you’re not going to get into a lot of problems. It’s a good hobby to get into, and it’s always fun. Just stay with it, and have a good time. That’s all you really need to do. Just make sure you have a good time.

COPYRIGHT: ERIN TESSENEER FOR HARRY’S RACIN’ PHOTOS

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