LONDON, ON- Reigning Delaware Speedway champion Matt Pritiko has confirmed his Global Warranty-backed team will be forced to take a short hiatus from competition. An early-race incident in Round 4 of the APC United Late Model Series event at Flamboro Speedway that many fans had hoped would not prove severe has confirmed to be just that, and will require substantial repairs to Pritiko’s McColl Racing Enterprises chassis before he will be able to return to competition.
“We just have to hit the pause button right now,” confirmed a sullen Pritiko when reached for comment. “Completely destroying a racecar was most certainly not in our plans for the season. We hurt just about every corner and rail on that car at Flamboro, so it’s going to take some retooling for us to get this program back to the speedway”
The incident in question came as a result of brake failure on Pritiko’s No. 21 early on in Flamboro’s ‘Canada Day 100’. The mechanical problem resulted in Pritiko sailing into a group of cars that had already spun at near full speeds. The ensuing contact left his family-owned ride with significant damage.
“Flamboro was a nightmare from the moment the trailer gate came down,” explained Pritiko. “We had simultaneous clutch problems and brake issues that kept us from getting on track at all during practice – and the day just got worse from there”
“That was, by far, the worst wreck we’ve had since we started our Late Model team. We’ve been incredibly fortunate – as far as incurring damages is concerned – up until this point. But, our number came up”
“The hardest impact I’ve ever had in a race car of any kind, by far, “said Pritiko. “I’ve never wrecked before and had to just sit and catch my breath for a second. We hit hard. It was tough to go over the car the next morning, because the more we looked – the worse it was”
Pritiko and company have already started the repair and restoration process, and aim to be back in competition by late-Summer.
“So long as we don’t hit any snags or hiccups, we’re aiming to be back out for the APC Series race at Sunset on August 23rd,” noted Pritiko. “There’s a lot of work and effort going into this car though – so we’re excited to see how much better it is when it hits the track”
“That’s the only positive about something like this – you get to upgrade your ride and add all the things you would have otherwise had to wait until the off-season to do,” continued the oft-positive fan-favourite.
“We’re looking for the silver lining anywhere we can – believe me”
For the reigning Delaware Speedway champion and Grisdale Triple Crown winner, the 2015 season has been far from the strong follow-up he had anticipated. However, Pritiko knows that luck can swing back in his favour at a moment’s notice.
“This sport can knock you down just as quick as it builds you up,” mused the 26-year old. “Last year was the best season I’ve ever had in a stock car – and so far this year, it’s felt as though we’ve just had a hard time finding our rhythm”
“Luck is definitely a two way street. If you’re going to enjoy the good times, you just sort of have to brace yourself for when things aren’t so good. We’re in a bit of a rough patch right now. But, I’m surrounded by some incredible people and have the best team I could possibly ask for. We’ll fight our way out of this”
“We’re not done,” insisted Pritiko. “This is a timeout for us – but we aren’t finished. We’ll be back before these guys even have a chance to miss us. And we’ll be ready to win races again.”
Matt Pritiko’s program is powered by Global Warranty, Cadillac Industrial Cleaning, Palasad: London’s Best Entertainment & Eatery, NAPA Certified Body Shop, Burwell Auto Body, SellToWin.com, In2Communications.
Fans can follow along with Matt all season via his Matt Pritiko Motorsports page on Facebook, or on Twitter @MattPritiko and be sure to visit the official www.MattPritiko.com.
By Spencer Lewis (@itsspencerlewis)
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