From finish lines to waist lines

By Anthony Rhoads

Chris Dilbeck has quite a few accomplishments for someone who is just a college freshman.

The 2004 Henry County High School graduate and current West Georgia student has won countless Legends and Bandolero races, four state racing championships and two track championships at Lanier National Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Now you can add television star to his resume'.

Dilbeck will be the subject of a Discovery Health channel documentary ?National Body Challenge,' airing in January.

The opportunity came about when producers of the show contacted Atlanta Motor Speedway about doing a documentary on a NASCAR driver but they recommended Dilbeck.

The documentary will help Dilbeck achieve two goals – to get in better shape and to get him more publicity that will help him in his racing career.

"It's pretty neat," he said. "I think it will help a lot in my racing. We also want to find a sponsor with losing weight. We're trying to get into a bigger car (up from the 5/8 reproduction Legends series cars)."

The Discovery Health crew starting filming Dilbeck last Thursday, following him around campus. The crew also accompanied him when he visited his parents Friday night and when he appeared at an open house Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

The crew is coming back today and will go with him Friday night to the speedway for some Legends races. They're also going to do a photo shoot at the speedway Saturday morning.

The television crew will also be with him at the speedway during the upcoming Bass Pro Shops MBNA 500. Dilbeck is going to be working in the speedway's media center that weekend.

Dilbeck plans on being at West Georgia for two years before transferring to Georgia Tech, where he will pursue a mechanical engineering degree.

Dilbeck has been racing since 1999 and won the Bandolero Georgia Dirt Track Championship that year. His other state titles include the 2001 Georgia State Young Guns Championship, the 2002 Georgia State Semi-Pro Championship, the 2003 Georgia State Pro Championship.

In 2003, he won Lanier National Speedway Pro Division championship. In 2004, the Hampton native won at his home track, winning the Atlanta Motor Speedway Thursday Thunder Pro Division championship.

Dilbeck is the second Thursday Thunder driver to be featured on a television show.

Earlier in the year, former Thursday Thunder driver Michelle Theriault was featured on the CMT reality show ?The Drive.'