-Tell us about your racing background and how you ended up at the Lucas Oil Regional Series:
I got my start in Go-karts in the early 2000’s. I was a long-time fan of short course racing at all levels and knew I had to get involved somehow, someway. After watching an SR1 race when LOORRS included them in a round at the national series, I was instantly impressed by the sounds and speeds of these cars. They just looked like a handful and a blast to drive. I then attended a Regional race to speak to the current SR1 drivers to get the scoop on the class and if any cars were for sale. I purchased my first car from Ronnie Faisst to get my feet wet, then had an opportunity to buy an updated car. Now I’m finishing up my 2nd full year in SR1 Pro-AM.
-Family seems to play a big role on most regional teams and we see your family at the track with you at every round. How important is your family to your success and what roles do each of them play on race weekends?
Family is a HUGE part of my racing program. I couldn’t do it without the support of my wife and kids that come out to almost every race and stick with me during the lows as well as celebrate the highs with me on the podium. For a lot of us our pit crews are our families.
-What is your advice to someone looking to start out in short course off road racing?
Find a class that attracts you, talk to the current drivers, and do your homework. I chose SR1 which happened to be a great class with an awesome group of drivers. The comradery is very strong, and I was stunned with the support that came from some of the top contenders my first year. Be patient – Come into the series with realistic goals and expectations of yourself. As most of us want to be on top of the podium round after round, figuring out your car set up, drive style, and adjusting to changing track conditions all take time to learn. I am continuing to learn every time I get behind the wheel.
-What is your favorite track and why?
My favorite track was Lake Elsinore, who didn’t love those big jumps and smooth landings? As of now, I equally like Glen Helen and Victorville tracks respectively. They both have evolved into technical tracks which promotes some good racing. A few times a year I’ll race Wild Horse Pass in AZ to join the Arizona Regional Series. That track is fast with the big sweepers and change of scenery including a Hotel/Casino on the grounds. The SR1 class is strong there and those drivers make the trip to CA as well.
-When you're not at the track, what can we find you doing?
Working my day job to fund my racing program…ha ha. I also enjoy riding at the MX track with my son or spending time supporting my daughters in their sports programs. Mountain biking and deep-sea fishing are my other hobbies outside of racing.
-How much time/work goes into preparing for each race weekend?Luckily the SR1 cars are reliable and built tough. So, I feel like the time spent to prepare my car is a fraction compared to some other classes. With the rounds being roughly 4-6 weeks apart, this gives you adequate time to repair, rebuild, and tune your race vehicle. However, getting faster is always on my mind. I spend a couple days a week going over the car and looking for creative ways to tweak the car.
-What/who is your biggest challenge on the track?
I’ve been having a bad relationship with ruts in the recent past. I’ve managed to put the car on two wheels a few times pushing the car too hard in the wrong area of the corner. I’m still learning every race and every lap. Paul O’Brien and I have had some good battles in the Pro-Am class this year. We’re currently close in points and the pressure is on the last two rounds to determine the 2019 Pro-Am Championship. He’s been fast all year and I’m looking forward to it!
-Any goals for the next few years or beyond?
Next year my goal is to continue making my way up to the podium while gaining recognition for my sponsors as I build my race program. Overall the regional series is a more affordable off road racing series, however the costs add up quick! I’m confident I can get this SR1 on the box competing at the highest level with hopefully more companies and sponsors coming on board for 2020. I’d like to continue fine tuning my driving skills to compete with the SR1 Pro class.
-We know it takes a lot of support to race and you seem to be backed by some great companies. Is there anyone you would like to thank for their support?
I’d like to thank Weller Racing for creating the SR1 class while continuing to build and innovate parts keeping the SR1 class fresh and current. Jason and Corry from Weller Racing are great people and are always willing to help other drivers at the track. I’d also like to thank Vik at FS Werks. He’s my crew chief, spotter, and fabricator. I couldn’t continue to compete without his knowledge and skills.