After two successful seasons focusing on cross-border competition, Stayner, ON youngster Brandon Watson will return home for the 2012 race season. The 19-year will tackle the entirety of the 2012 OSCAAR Super Late Model tour, for the first time in his career, with hopes of breaking his uncle Glenn’s 4-year championship streak.
The 3rd generation pilot will enter 2012 in search of his second career OSCAAR victory, after capturing the checkered flag at the 2010 edition of the famed Autumn Colours Classic. In addition to his Super Late Model commitments, Watson’s team will also spearhead an aggressive Pro Late Model touring schedule that will be profiled later in the week. With his 2012 plans now in place, Brandon joins Rob Clarke, Jesse Kennedy, George Wilson, Shawn Chenoweth and Derrick Tiemersma on the growing list of elite level short trackers looking to put a halt to Glenn Watson’s championship dynasty.
WILLIE REYNS: Two-time Kawartha Speedway Thunder Car champion ‘Fast Time’ Willie Reyns put his abilities on full display at Rockingham Speedway on Saturday afternoon. In only his second career Street Stock Nationals appearance, Reyns advanced from his 6th row starting position to finish 4th in the 35-car field. To date, Reyns’ performance is the most successful of any Ontario native to have taken part in a Street Stock Nationals event. Perennial SSN competitor Andy Ford also made the trip to Rockingham, finishing a respectable 21st.
EARL IRELAND: Here’s our first glimpse at Kawartha Speedway Late Model regular Earl Ireland’s ride for 2012. The Peterborough, ON veteran will once again return to the Fraserville, ON oval for a full 10-race schedule. A former Super Late Model regular, Ireland returned to fulltime competition during the 2010 season, placing 14th overall in the final Late Model point standings. He would improve on his performance throughout 2011, advancing to 7th in the point standings at year-end. For the 2012 season, Ireland will once again welcome Earl Ireland Auto Sales, Benson Auto Parts, Kawartha Consulting, Klotz Fuels and Dent Dynamics as marketing partners.
KELLY BALSON: Five-time Peterborough Speedway champion Kelly Balson has announced a return to the Limited Late Model division for the 2012 season. ‘The Crowd Pleaser’ spent the last several years competing with the Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup tour, securing 5th overall in the series’ final 2011 point standings.
Balson will step behind the wheel of a new Dan McHattie Racecars chassis, designed in-house by the 7-time Kawartha Speedway champion. Long time crew chief Graham Flett will once again return to Balson’s operation, and the Hampton, ON veteran has signed International Freight Systems (www.ifstrucking.com) as the team’s primary sponsor for the entirety of the 2012 campaign.
Balson will run select Limited Late Model events throughout Ontario, balancing his schedule around that of his teammate Amanda Connolly’s Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup title bid. The team’s schedule is tentative, though we’ve posted the select dates that Balson’s #10 is anticipated to compete at. Additional dates are expected to be added.
May 19th Peterborough Speedway Opening Night 2012
June 2nd Mosport Speedway LLM Invitational
July 1st Peterborough Speedway 4th Annual Chase for the Colours
August 5th Sunset Speedway 75-lap LLM Invitational
October 5th–7th Peterborough Speedway Autumn Colours Classic
ACT: Williston, VT’s Brian Hoar kicked off the 2012 ACT Tour in victory lane at Lee USA Speedway this past Sunday. Hoar survived a late-race battle with home-track favourite Wayne Helliwell Jr. to claim his second straight Governor’s Cup 150 victory. A pair of Ontario representatives made the 7+ hour haul to the New Hampshire oval, with Warkworth’s Derek Lynch managing a 26th place finish, and Carleton Place’s Spencer MacPherson suffering a DNQ after a brutal practice incident that badly damaged the rear of his NAPA Chevrolet.
By Spencer Lewis