FREELTON, ON – After graduating from the Flamboro Speedway Mini Stock division midway through 2014, second-generation racer Darren Dryden is set for his first full schedule with the Lucas Oil Canadian Vintage Modifieds.
His first race with the club as a fulltime tour regular will come this Saturday, May 16th at his former hometrack – Flamboro Speedway.
“I’m incredibly confident for our rookie season,” beams the likeable teenager. “As far as setup goes, the car is exactly the way it was when it rolled off the track at the [Sunset Speedway] Velocity 250 in September. We started 17th that night and finished 6th. If we can get the car working as good as it did then, we’ll be happy”
Although many within the club have tabbed 18-year old Dryden as a future star within the organization, the DJD Graphics founder remains humble and grounded in his aspirations for his freshman campaign.
“I’m not intending to come out and blow through the competition – there are a lot of accomplished racers on this roster,” says Dryden. “I just want to be at the front more often than not. If we can contend for the championship by the time it’s all said and done, I’ll be able to view 2015 as a success”
When asked about his strategy entering the season opener, Dryden is quick to explain that the key to a strong run lies just as much in understanding your competition as it does in understanding your own equipment.
“We’ve always had a lot of success at Flamboro, but there’s no denying that it’s a tough place to pass at,” says Dryden. “It’s going to be important to know who’s around you. Knowing who’s running a crate motor compared to an in-line six will play a big role in how you set someone up for a pass”
“The first time we were at Flamboro with the tour, I started scratch and really learned a lot about how to read a driver’s line and how to put my passing abilities to the test. I think that will come in handy on Saturday night”
With a 13-race schedule ahead of him, Dryden hopes a conservative strategy will aid his family-run effort in their pursuit of a breakout season.
“We just want to finish up front as much as possible. Consistency and patience are the two things that are going to get us through this season. Typically, it’s the drivers that try and rush their way to the front that are left with the repair bills week after week. I want to get there – but it’s not important to me to be there on lap-2.”
Darren’s 2015 efforts are supported by Dryden Autobody, DJD Graphics, Sharpie Art by Darren Dryden, M&L Testing, EPIC Racewear, Lucas Oil, Line-X, Hi-Tec Welding, Robson Technologies, Flamboro Machine Shop, Hypervibe, Jessica Dryden Illustration & Photography, State Farm Insurance and A-1 Auto Parts.
By Spencer Lewis (@itsspencerlewis)