Picton, ON- Turning in a title winning performance is the goal of any racer, whether they’re competing at the weekly short track or under the bright lights and capacity crowds of a big money touring series. While he would have loved to claim the Canadian Modified crown in his Bob Pierce chassis at Brighton Speedway, Andrew Hennessy was still pleased with his 2013 runner-up showing at the local third-mile clay oval.
The 27 year old Prince Edward County speedster scored nine qualifying event wins and made it to Victory Lane in seven ‘A’ mains, while also capturing the division’s best appearing car award. The easy going driver says that earning the year’s championship hardware was pretty much the only thing he didn’t accomplish during the recently completed campaign.
“It was a great season despite a couple of ups and downs,” said Hennessy, who works as a heavy equipment operator for Cobourg Development Services. “During the rough spots, I was reminded how much I really love the sport. We all thrive on the wheel-to-wheel competition, but no matter how badly someone wants to beat you on the track, your biggest rival would still lend you the parts you need to get back into action. The entire racing community is like one big happy family…just with different last names.”
The graduate of the Comp 4 and Street Stock wars at Brighton, who also turned some laps in a Pro Late Model ride during the 2012 season, was able to rely on the support of his extended motorsports family on two different occasions during the recent term.
When a blown engine could have sidelined his program early in the year, his parents stepped-up to the plate to replace their built motor with General Motors 602 crate powerplant. Later, bouncing off the front stretch retaining wall knocked him out of the night’s fray, but help from a group of friends including his crew of former racer Billy Monro (who ran a variety of different series in a career spanning more than 20 years), Josh Hennessy, Chris Taylor, Bill and Jim Broad got him back to the track after re-clipping the car without missing a beat.
Hennessy – who enjoys working on old cars and trucks, ice fishing, four-wheeling and attending car shows in his time away from the track and would like to see a NASCAR event at Bristol Motor Speedway – lists winning races and being a front-runner on a regular basis as his biggest thrills in racing and says he feels fortunate to have accomplished nearly every goal he set-out for his career.
During his 13 years in action, he’s had his name engraved on division championship trophies in 2005 and 2008. Along the way, he also captured the Danny Reid Memorial event and the Can-Am Challenge Series title, while running at Brockville, Can Am, Evans Mills and Fulton Speedways, in addition to defending the home turf at Brighton. A positive attitude, good sense of humour and the ability to adapt to changing situations have been a benefit throughout his career.
“I moved from Street Stocks into the Canadian Modified division to start the 2007 season,” said Hennessy. “To that point, my car number had always been 02, but that number had already been picked by another driver, ironically Chris Taylor, who helps out on my car. My favourite hockey player has always been Pittsburgh Penguins’ star Sidney Crosby, so in his honour, my new car number became 87.”
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Prepared by: Jim Clarke – Clarke Motorsports Communications/First Draft Media
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