TALLADEGA COUNTY, AL — Dan-O’s Seasoning founder Dan Oliver recently visited Alabama to meet up with fellow Tok Toker Bama Andy for some Saturday night racing. It was there Dan would see a Limited Late-Model Racecar named Cherry Pie that Dan-O’s Seasoning sponsored, and would receive the royal treatment you only can get from a small racing community.
The driver of Cherry Pie is local driver Jason Morris of Team Morris Racing who frequents the Talledega Short Track. The track is just a few miles from the legendary Talladega Superspeedway, but the feel is something completely different. This is a smaller racing community where everyone knows each other by name and the races are mostly for fun.
Talladega Short Track is a ⅓ mile high-banked clay dirt track, where a variety of classes run. Dan visited the track on race night, where he was given the grand tour and the equivalent of a backstage pass. The crew took Dan right in, where he got to walk the track, go into the tower, and even wave the green flag for the race he came for.
The driver, Jason Morris, was connected to Dan-O by local social influencer and Morris Racing team member Bama Andy. Morris, who has been racing since the mid-’90s, started out racing go-karts right there at Talladega. Racing for Morris is a family affair, as his dad and many others in his family raced before him.
There are folks running at the Talladega Short Track who are paid to race, but the weekend warriors and hobby racers rely more on the support of their community and sponsors. “Racing is a big family. If you need something, somebody’s got it there at the track. Unless you just wrecked each other last week, they’ll take care of you to get back in the race.” said Morris.
When asked how the Morris Racing and Dan-O’s sponsorship came to be, Morris recalls Bama Andy cooking up come breakfast where he used Dan-O’s Seasoning, which Morris was thrilled with. “We use it on everything,” mentioned Morris, whose favorite use is the Spicy Dan-O’s on grilled chicken. After becoming a fan, Andy reached out to Dan Oliver, and a partnership was born.
Since getting the Dan-O’s makeover, Cherry Pie has had mixed luck at the track. The night of Dan-O’s visit, the Morris Racing team ran into some fuel system trouble and had to pull out of the race early. The following week, things went better and the team finished 6 of 18 in the limited late model run, and then the third weekend of August, Morris grabbed a podium finish of third place in his class.
When asked if there was anyone he wanted to mention, Morris replied “My sponsors, helpers, family and friends. There’s no way any of this can happen without them or the crew… Todd, John, (and) Andy. It takes a tribe of people giving up time with their wives and families to turn wrenches so we can have fun on Saturday.”
In his three-part YouTube series documenting his experience at the track, Dan mentioned, “This was so much fun. If you’ve never been to a track, find one and go. Because it might just change your life. And I’m coming back as soon as possible.”
Morris also wanted to give a special thanks to his wife Keri, and his daughter Jordyn. Morris has plans for some more runs at the track this season but is enjoying a more relaxed schedule to visit the races as a spectator and spend time with his family.
To keep up with the action, you can follow the Morris Racing team on Facebook at 10 Morris Racing, or Bama Andy. You can also find Bama Andy on Tik Tok (@bamaandy). To learn more about Dan-O’s or try the seasoning, visit the Dan-O’s Seasoning Website.