WATERLOO, ON- Fresh off of two straight top-15 finishes in Sunset Speedway weekly competition, third-year Mini Stock competitor Jake Watson has confirmed he will enter May 17th’s 35-lap Spring Velocity invitational.
The event will mark the first opportunity ‘The Derringer’ has had this season to test his family-run team in extended distance competition.
“I love any chance I get to be on track with the drivers in this division. I feel like our team is at the point where we’re learning more about our program every single week”
“The competition here is so tough – you have to make sure you’re on your A-Game every single lap,” observes the third-generation driver. “When I look at how much we’ve improved in a year – it’s hard not to be proud of my team. Any gains we’ve made haven’t come from a huge investment of money or any kind of setup magic. It’s just been hundreds of laps on track and hours of work in the shop. That’s what makes it feel so special”
For Watson, as a Sunset regular, Sunday’s event will be as much about representing his hometrack as it will be about making a push for the front of the field.
“”I look forward to racing against some of the drivers that we don’t see here on a regular basis,” offers Watson with a grin. “I think it’s going to be tough for anyone to come from out of town and beat any of our top-level teams”
“In my opinion, we have the best Mini Stock division anywhere. If someone were to try and come from another track and steal a win away from our regulars – I think they’ll have their work cut out for them”
With Sunday’s invitational adding an additional 10-laps to the Mini Stocks routine format, Watson is quick to explain that a change in strategy will likely be necessary.
“You have to conserve your stuff a little more in a 35-lap race, as opposed to a 25-lap race. But, at the end of the day, the goal is still to get to the front,” shrugs the well-spoken teenager.
“We’ve had a lot of invitationals that have gone flag to flag in the last few seasons. Knowing that, I’m not sure how many guys are going to wait around before making a move. If you try and play things too conservative, the rest of the field will leave you behind. If that happens, and you don’t get a late-race caution, you’re really a sitting duck”
With a number of top-level teams from across Ontario expected to file entry for Sunday’s event, Watson is well aware of the task ahead. Though, despite the step up in competition, is looking forward to continuing his early-season hot streak.
“We’ve had back-to-back top-10s already this season and that’s a streak I want to continue this weekend. It won’t be easy, but I think we have the package to make it happen.”
‘The Derringer’s 2015 season is made possible thanks to the support of Spira Fire Protection, Race2way.ca, Hype Energy Drink, London Recreational Racing, GUNK, Wix Filters, The Landing Strip of Toronto, Academy Construction, TSS Top Shops, SMG Motorsports, OKTANE Productions, Fast Eddie Racewear, Glencoe Automotive, For Your Eyes Only, Protein2O, AquaHydrate, Stewarts Root Beer, AR Bodies, Falken Tire, Artik Ice, Dominion Sure Seal, Chetty’s Hot Sauce, Cloverleaf Farms, Lucas Oil and Expressway Ford.
Fans can stay up to date with Jake via his official ‘Jake Watson – WWR’ Facebook page and on Twitter @JakertWatson.
Details, including gate times and ticket prices, for Sunday’s event can be found at www.SunsetSpeedway.ca.
By Spencer Lewis (@itsspencerlewis)