Dalen Martin One of Several Vying for OSCAAR Hot Rod Rookie of the Year

Dalen Martin

While there are several returning drivers on the roster for the Knightworks Design OSCAAR Hot Rod Series, there could be a possible 17 competitors vying for the Ohsweken Speedway Rookie of the Year Award.

One of new faces heading into the 2019 campaign is Dalen Martin.

“Being part of the OSCAAR hot rods has got us pretty excited to get back to the track,” he said. “Being in the class with the most badass looking cars in the province, I’m eager to show what we’re able to do in a tough division. The plan is to come out swinging at Sunset (Speedway) and see where we stack up against these teams.”

Heading into the rookie campaign, Martin admits that the focus will be on running as many events as he can, trying to score the best possible finish each week.

“Of course we’d love to go out and compete for wins every weekend, which is always the plan,” he added. “But we’re hoping to show speed week in and week out to start. As long as we can keep it in one piece and learn at every track, that is a key goal throughout the season for future success.

“Most importantly we’re going to try to put a show on for the fans.”

With the schedule including tracks from across the province, including the dirt event at Brighton Speedway, Martin admits that he is excited for each of the speedways due to having never raced on any of them before.

“But the one that has my eyes on it is Jukasa (Motor Speedway), hearing how smooth, fast and how much room there is,” he admitted. “It’s pretty exciting to be able to run there this summer.”

Martin and his team will be fielding a 1971 Ford Mustang Fastback.

“I’ve been a ford guy my life,” he commented. “We were in need of a body to put on the chassis. So one day my dad came across it, and we decided pretty quick to go pick it up. We were hoping to be the only mustang and one of few Fords out there. We wanted to be different then everyone else, something that could stand out in a full field of amazing looking cars.”

Standing out in a crowd is certainly not going to be easy this summer, given the number of drivers registered to compete this season.

“With the rumors I’ve heard about how many cars are being built and already done, but yet how many teams are still at the same stage as us to still finishing the car, is pretty amazing,” he commented. “It sounds like there will be a full field and possibly a chance of some cars being sent home not making the show. It is definitely one of the series to keep an eye on as it seems to keep on getting bigger.”

In looking at his competitors, Martin says one of the drivers you have to keep an eye on is Tyler Hawn, as he’s been fast every season thus far.

“But going into this season, I know Paul Senior, Brandon Robertson, Billy Alderson and Steve Book are ones to watch for,” he added. “After watching them race last year and seeing the speed they showed, I know they’ll be up front searching for the checkers.”

For Martin, his family has always been involved in racing, with his dad, aunt and uncle racing at Full Throttle Motor Speedway (then Varney).

“Most recently when I got into racing, my cousin was in a street stock at Varney when I started in a Jr. B sprint car at Gend Bend Speedway in 2009,” he explained.

Martin has worked his way up the ranks from there, winning a Jr. A Sprint Championship in 2010, followed by a Sauble Speedway Jr Late Model title three years ago. He would make the jump into the street stock division, scoring a feature win in 2014, before recently running Limited Late Model at Sauble Speedway.

Obviously the success he’s had has given him several memorable moments, so choosing one to stands out is tough.

“It’s tight between a few occasions, but the most memorable moment would be when I won Father’s Day weekend at Sauble Speedway back in 2013 in the Jr Late Model,” he commented. “To be able to win a heat race and the feature that weekend for my father was something special I’ll never forget.”

By: Ashley McCubbin

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