AJAX, Ontario – OSCAAR is pleased to announce that Jesse Kennedy will be making his first appearance in an OSCAAR Super Late Model this Saturday, July 9 at Sauble Speedway in Owen Sound, Ontario. Kennedy has a long history of racing, primarily at the Delaware Speedway outside London, Ontario. This season marks Kennedy’s 27th season in stock car racing which began at the Delaware in a street stock at the age of fifteen. Kennedy spent time in the street stock division before one year in Delaware’s truck division and then moving on to the then CASCAR Sportsman Series and participating in some CASCAR Super Series events. Jesse began racing a late model at Delaware Speedway full time in 2006 and one year later he won the track championship. Jesse and his team have won two APC 300 races at Delaware Speedway with each paying out $10,000 to the winner. Even through his tenure at Delaware Speedway, Kennedy has raced at multiple short tracks in Ontario, including Sauble Speedway.
Kennedy, from Oneida Nation, Ontario, will be driving the #10 Kerry’s Brothers Wholesalers/Cameron Crane and Riggers Ltd. Cadillac STS on Saturday. Kennedy has always wanted to be a part of OSCAAR and Super Late Model racing.
“I grew up watching the likes of Jr. Hanley and Don Beiderman plus several others. I guess I never really thought I would be in a situation to be part of this series as a young kid. So I am glad I am fortunate enough to do so.”
The tough competition presented by OSCAAR also attracted Kennedy to the series. Kennedy acknowledged that his crew would only benefit from the challenge of a transition and of the highly competitive series because of the hard work and dedication they have demonstrated since partnering with Jesse in 2006.
“Good competition brings your own team up. They know their jobs and do it well, so in short their routines and engagement involved in racing will only change for the better. You need to be at your best in the shop and on the track. If you take for granted the competition, you become slack and then you’re behind.”
OSCAAR regular Lloyd Ritchie has stated on numerous occasions that tires can make the difference in a Super Late Model race as OSCAAR only allows teams to have one new set of tires every race. However, Kennedy is used to conserving his tires. Delaware Speedway only allows its weekly drivers one new tire per week.
“Because of my history in long races, I have learned to manage my tires well” explained Kennedy.
Kennedy is excited not only for the upcoming Sauble race, but for several upcoming events, including OSCAAR’s return to his home track at Delaware.
“I love Sauble. I had fun there last time out for a Late Model invitational. Delaware of course because of how many laps I have had around there. I’m also excited to run Kawartha again. It has been since CASCAR racing that I’ve been there.”
For any rookie or newcomer there are transitional challenges and Kennedy will face those same challenges. While Kennedy will compete this season, it will be a learning curve for his first full season in 2012, which will be his rookie season, much the same way Tyler Hawn competed in select events last season prior to joining the tour full time in 2011. One of the challenges for Kennedy lies in converting his 2007 McColl Racing built late model in to an Outlaw Super Late Model. Switching to a new series also poses a certain road block. Racing in a weekly series allows drivers to familiarize themselves with one another and learn each others tendencies, but Kennedy is faced with learning an entirely new set of drivers.
“I think learning the other driver’s habits and driving techniques (will be the biggest challenge). There will be some challenging set up stuff as we slowly convert our car to a full blown Outlaw. I need some time to organize and prepare for my rookie campaign next season” said Kennedy.
OSCAAR is Ontario’s top touring series and is excited to add another strong competitor to one of the most competitive fields of cars in Canada. This Saturday, July 9 at Sauble Speedway promises a show you won’t want to miss as Jesse Kennedy makes his OSCAAR debut. The field of Outlaws will try to oust Glenn Watson from Knightworks Design victory lane after he has won the first four feature events to start the season. Racing begins at 7:00pm.
By Clayton Johns