A busy work schedule can be either a blessing, or a curse. Omemee, Ontario’s Craig Scott would love to be a regular runner in Kawartha Speedway’s Better Carpet Thunder Car field, but his full-time position as Vice President of Operations for Hy-Tech Drilling places so many demands on his to-do list, he’s only able to make it to the track a couple of times a year. The 59 year-old father of four – who got his first taste of the sport at the now defunct North Bay Speedway, a track once owned by pit crew member Gary Harling – says that even with a limited schedule, he still looks forward to the adrenalin rush that comes with running side-by-side with a trusted driver.
“I’ve never been able to shake the racing bug,” admitted Scott. “When the North Bay track ceased operations, I just started hauling the car farther south. The first stop was Barrie and when I moved back to the Peterborough area, bringing the car to Kawartha just made sense. It’s such an amazing facility. Everyone is so friendly and having a first class venue practically in my own backyard is like a dream come true.”
While some drivers enjoy the opportunity to advance through the ranks and a track’s different divisions during their time behind the wheel, Craig Scott has remained loyal to the #69 CSC Racing Products Hy-Tech Drilling/AMC Drilling Fluids/Reflex Survey Instruments/West Coast Drilling Supplies Chevy Monte Carlo thunder car throughout his 14 year career. Even with that level of dedication, Scott does confess to a brief flirtation with something a little more powerful.
“Last year, I was in California on business and during some down time I had the chance to drive a NASCAR Sprint Cup stock car at Auto Club Speedway,” said Scott with a wide smile. “It was part of the Rusty Wallace driving experience. I did about 40 laps in the car, reaching speeds of close to 180 miles an hour. Even with as much fun as I have in my own car on the 3/8th mile layout at Kawartha, there isn’t much that can compare to that thrill ride.”
With the combination of workplace pressures and tight constraints on his leisure time, Scott knows he’s fortunate to have long-time friend Harling and Harvey Sutton’s help to maintain his equipment in the garage and at the racetrack. Even his wife Monica is quick to offer support to her husband’s favourite hobby. Competing just a few times a season, Craig Scott knows he’ll always be at a disadvantage when it comes to running against the track regulars.
“Sometimes, it’s hard to keep your skills as sharp as you’d like them to be because you’re not there all the time,” said Scott. “There are also changes in the rulebook almost every year and you’ve got to be able to adjust to what the others are doing to keep pace with the pack. I’ve occasionally thought about getting out and maybe what people say about everything being for sale for the right price is correct. I just think I’m having way too much fun to walk away now, no matter how tempting the offer might be.”
Kawartha klips: Kawartha Speedway will host a pre-season test session for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series. Check the web-site for details…2012 race action gets started with an open practice Friday, May 25th. The first night for track points is Friday, June 1st. Fans can see the complete schedule and the latest off-season news anytime at www.kawarthaspeedway.com.
By Jim Clarke, Kawartha Speedway PR/Clarke Motorsports Communications