For the second straight season in the OSCAAR Super Late Models, Brandon Watson would win the championship. Watson won four races and was consistent the rest of the way on the way to capturing the crown.
He started the year off on a strong note as he won the opening event of the season – the Lucie Alywin Memorial – at Sunset Speedway. Watson battled for the lead early with Derrike Tiemersma, though came out the victor in the end. The first race of the season was a sign of things to come in many ways for the series. Tiemersma and Watson would battle a lot as the year went on as it’d be Tiemersma finishing third in points behind Watson and rookie Andrew Gresel.
Glenn Watson finished second at Sunset in that first race, showcasing the fact that he would come close many times, though fail to win a feature in 2013. Tiemersma ended up third followed by Dwayne Baker and Rob Poole. This marked the first race for Baker with his new chassis and as he figured the car out on his part-time schedule, you saw improvement. For Poole, it marked a solid start to 2013 after finishing off 2012. However, the year wouldn’t go as Poole planned. More on that later.
Brandon Watson kept his string of success going as he headed to Barrie, scoring the victory once again. Watson led flag-to-flag as he started on pole after a stellar qualifying effort and never looked back. Tiermersma once again finished second, which would be a story throughout the year as like Glenn Watson, Tiemersma was unable to find victory lane. Gresel would score his first top five finish of the year with a third. Gresel struggled at Sunset, though was running his old car. With his new car at Barrie, Gresel impressed everyone with a solid run. Glenn Watson finished fourth for another solid finish while rookie Kevin Cornelius scored his first fop five with a fifth.
Watson’s string of success would be broken when the series returned to Sunset for the Don Biederman Memorial weekend as it was Dwayne Baker timing in quickest (13.503 seconds) and picking up the victory in the first of the two features. Kevin Cornelius finished second as he continued to get quicker. Brandon Watson still held up his deal of consistency, though, finishing third. Gresel and Tiemersma rounded out the top five.
One note to make: Charlie Gallant suffered a hard wreck during the feature, resulting in heavy damage to his super late. He was done for the season.
The second night of the Don Biederman Memorial weekend saw Brandon Watson return to victory lane after taking the lead with 10 laps to go. Cornelius would once again finish second after leading a good size chunk of the race. Baker would finish third and be crowned Don Biederman Memorial Champion in a tie breaker as a result of winning the Saturday event to kick off the weekend. Tiemersma and Jeff Hanley rounded out the top five. Hanley made a couple of starts this year, though was unable to find the speed and success that we’re so custom to him having. Gresel finished sixth after a late race incident, followed by George Wilson and Poole. Poole would lock down a solid finish, though found himself with bigger trouble. The motor would blow up on the final lap and result in Poole not being able to run anymore races this season.
Sauble Speedway was the weekend for a first time winner as Andrew Gresel would pick up his first career OSCAAR Super Late Model victory with a dominating performance at his home track. It marked no surprise as Gresel had been improving each week and grew up running Sauble so knew the track really well. Tiemersma, once again, finished second. Same song different week, right? Cornelius finished third followed by a consistent Brandon Watson and Glenn Watson. The fifth place effort for the elder Watson marked a solid finish as he had a hard crash during the second Don Biederman Memorial feature.
Duty Noted: Brandon Vanderwel would ride the wall in one of the heats, resulting in heavy damage to his super late and he would not make it back out for any more races during the season.
A return to the Innisfil, Ontario 3/8 mile (Sunset) saw Dwayne Baker return to the series once again after missing Sauble due to running Sunset’s weekly program and once again hit victory lane. It marked a thrilling battle throughout the race to the end between Baker and Shane Maginnis. Speaking of Maginnis, he’d scored his first top five of the year, finishing third as Hanley grabbed second. The Watsons – Glenn and Brandon – rounded out the top five. Front runners Tiemersma and Gresel finished sixth and eighth, respectively. Each found their fair share of trouble throughout the race.
Now you couldn’t keep Brandon Watson from getting back to victory lane as he’d return to victory lane at Peterborough Speedway with the Chase for the Colors event. Gresel would finish second in another stellar performance for the rookie. With their first and second place finishes, Watson and Gresel locked in the front row for the Autumn Colours Classic. Tiemersma, a man of consistency in his own right, finished third. Glenn Watson finished fourth to keep his string of success going while John Owen grabbed his first top five of the year.
Duty noted: Cornelius would finish eighth after a tough night. This would mark his final race of the season as he’d miss the next four races due to a work related injury.
Gresel also found his way back to victory lane, capturing the victory at Kawartha Speedway with a another dominating performance. Rob Clarke would finish second in his first start with the series since his problems at Barrie Speedway back in June. Baker finished third, followed by Glenn Watson and Jesse Kennedy.
Both championship front runners Brandon Watson and Derrike Tiemersma ran into problems. Watson’s car would stall and he would bring it down pit road and then behind the wall for repairs. Meanwhile, Tiemersma would fall out of the race with a broken rear-end.
Brandon Watson got his season back on track as he picked up another win at Peterborough Speedway when the series went there on August 24th. Glenn Watson finished second followed by Brad Corcoran, Andrew Gresel and Todd Campbell. Corcoran was debuting his new outlaw-bodied car that he had been working on getting tuned up for the series.
Gresel would return to victory lane a week later at Flamboro Speedway in the series’ first visit to the Millgrove, Ontario track since 2009. Brandon Watson finished second followed by Shane Maginnis, Derrike Tiemersma and Glenn Watson.
The Watson-Gresel trade on victories continued when the series headed back to Sunset Speedway for the Velocity 250 as Brandon Watson grabbed the win “unofficially”. The race would not be counted as official as only 20 of the 50 laps were completed before the rain fell. Due to the race not being halfway before the call to end it early, everybody got a flat 50 points in the standings rather than the points for their position. For the record, Tiemersma got second followed by Glenn Watson, Hanley and Gary Passer. Gresel had fallen back in the running order due to having to pit to fix damage after getting involved in a front stretch incident.
Gresel would win the final event of the season at Peterborough Speedway – but not as simple as it may seem.
Brandon Watson crossed the finish line first, but was stripped of the win due to running unregistered tires. Under a lap 33 yellow, Watson came down pit road to fix back bumper damage. While on pit road, Watson’s team elected to change tires. Watson then drove through the field, took the lead and the win. However, it was discovered post-race the set of tires on the car were unregistered and therefore he was stripped of the win. Watson still won the championship as he had a big enough lead coming into the event and just had to start the race to win his second straight title.
Andrew Gresel, meanwhile, picked up his fourth victory on his way to finishing second in points in his rookie year. It’s no doubt that Gresel impressed many fans this year and will be one to watch in 2014.
Glenn Watson would get credited with a second at Peterborough followed by Dwayne Baker, Gary Passer and Todd Campbell. It marked Campbell’s first and only top five of 2013. With rumors that Baker is going full-time OSCAAR in 2014, look for the level of competition just to increase considering how Baker did during his limited schedule.
Derrike Tiemersma finished the year off with a 10th place finish, clearly not conclusive to his season. He would finish third in points, though. Consider Tiemersma to be a factor once again next year as well.
- J.R. Fitzpatrick ran some races in the No. 27 for Passer Racing. Fitzpatrick showed speed and promise, including a solid finish at Peterborough, however ran into his share of mechanical problems. He has the talent so if he can get the car to work for him, magic could happen.
- Tyler Hawn was consistant all year with seven top 10s this year and as a result, finished top five in points. Each week, improvement was shown and no doubt credit should be given where it’s due.
- Jim Bowman showed speed, though found himself in a couple different incidents throughout the year. Improvement was seen as the year went on with some solid finishes so kudos to Power To Go Motorsports
While the 2013 season was supposed to make headlines and impress people, it certainly lived up to that expectation. However, it can only grow from here and with that I say look out for 2014.