When last year finished up, everybody was asking the question – could Gary McLean be beat? The question was answered with certainty in 2013 as McLean once again won the championship, scoring his second in a row. The competition did get tougher this year, as there were seven different feature winners across the races this season.
Gary McLean would start the season where he ended it off with a win at Sunset Speedway in the season opener. McLean would get the lead on lap 12 and never look back as he grabbed the win. Brent McLean would finish second for a McLean 1-2, a sight that is common for many fans, while Matt Barton finished third. Barton would be a strong runner throughout the season, though missed some races due to mechanical issues. Davey Terry started his sophomore season off with a solid fourth with David McCullough rounding out the top five.
Heat winners were Gary McLean with a pair, Barton and Terry.
Duty Noted: Sunset Speedway Super Stock driver Lane Zardo made his first Modified start, though failed to finish the feature due to mechanical problems. Ryan Dick attempted to make his first Modified start this weekend as well, though suffered heavy front suspension damage in his second heat.
The McLeans would keep winning in the family when the series headed to Barrie Speedway as it was Brent McLean picking up the victory. Brent took the lead one and never looked back as he led the rest of the way. Gary McLean kept the 1-2 theme going as he finished second, followed by Brad Pearsall, McCullough and Barton.
Heat wins went to Gary McLean and Brent McLean each with a pair of heat wins.
Delaware Speedway regular Jamie Cox broke the McLean hold on victory lane as he took the win at Delaware Speedway with a pass on Justin Demelo with two laps to go. Demelo finished second, followed by Gary McLean, Barry Newman and Shawn Thompson. For purposes of following the top three finishers in points, Brent finished eighth with Davey in 10th. The pair of drivers could tell a story from the night.
Gary McLean won the first heat, while Newman won the second heat.
Duty Noted: John Harper debuted a new chassis but would suffer heavy damage during his heat after getting in the marbles and hitting the wall.
Brent McLean returned to victory lane when the series headed back to Sunset Speedway at the end of June. McLean would pass Brandon Watson for the lead on lap four and led the rest of the way on his way to victory. Pearsall finished second followed by Newman, Gary McLean and Demelo.
Heat wins went to Brent McLean, Gary McLean, Brandon Watson and Branden Bullen.
Duty Noted: Davey Terry would pull off early during the feature due to carburetor issues.
On the second night of Don Biederman Memorial weekend, Justin Demelo would pick up his first career OSCAAR Modified win after grabbing the lead on lap 10 from Brent McLean. Brent McLean finished second followed by Watson, Bullen and Dean Scott. In post-race technical inspection, Dean Scott was disqualified so he dropped to the bottom of the running order, bumping Pearsall up to sixth.
The last lap saw some fire works as there was contact made between Bullen, Stickle, Strawn, Pearsall and Tolton in turn four, resulting in significant damage for each of them.
Heat wins went to Pearsall, Gary McLean, Brent McLean (x2), Terry and Demelo.
Duty Noted: The Biederman weekend was one of that Terry would like to forget. after having the carb issues on night one, contact between him and Brian Mclean resulted in Terry making heavy contact with the inside retaining wall.
David McCullough would make it five different winners on the season and fourth straight different winner when he headed to victory lane at Sauble Speedway. McCullough would lead flag-to-flag after starting on pole. Gary McLean finished second followed by Brent McLean, Osbourne and Terry.
Heat wins went to Barton, Gary McLean, Terry and Brent McLean.
Gary McLean returned to victory lane when the series headed back to Sunset Speedway at the end of July after taking the lead in the early going ahead of his nephew Brent. Max Beyore ended up finishing second in his first career OSCAAR Modified start with Branden Bullen third. For Bullen, it marks his first career Modified podium finish. Terry and Pearsall rounded out the top five.
Heat wins went to Terry, Gary McLean, Brent McLean and Shane Stickel.
Gary McLean made it two in a row when he won the Chase for the Colours event at Peterborough Speedway and locked in the pole for the Autumn Colours Classic. Rookie Shane Stickel scored his first career OSCAAR podium with a second place finish followed by Brent McLean, Bullen and John Harper.
Heat wins went to Brent McLean, Josh Gruntz, Pearsall and Stickel.
Duty Noted: On a restart, a chain reaction crash would result in Josh Gruntz making heavy contact with the outside front stretch wall. The damage was enough to bend the chassis and Gruntz hasn’t been back out since…..Terry ran into more motor problems as he had to pull off early.
Darren Kearnan became the sixth different winner of the year when he scored the win at Kawartha Speedway after taking the lead from Gary McLean on lap 10. Demelo finished second followed by Beyore, Gary McLean and Brent McLean. Terry bounced back from his problems at Peterborough to finish sixth.
Heat wins went to Chad Strawn, Gary McLean, Brent McLean, Ryan Dick, Kearnan and Beyore.
Justin Demelo went back to victory lane for the second time during the season at Delaware Speedway. Demelo led flag to flag at his home track on the way to victory. Gary McLean finished second followed by Barry Newman, David McCullough and Davey Terry.
Heats were won by Gary McLean and Demelo
Note: Brent McLean would suffer a DNF after breaking a rear-end…..Barton failed to finish due to overheating problems.
Brian McLean became the seventh different winner of the season when he picked up his second career win at Flamboro Speedway. Dave Osbourne finished second followed by Dick, Stickel and Demelo.
The race was one full of wrecks as all three championship contenders – Gary McLean, Brent McLean and Davey Terry suffered damage – with Gary receiving the most of the bunch. Brent finished seventh with Gary 11th and Davey 15th.
Heat were won by Brian McLean, Matt Barton and Gary McLean.
Rick Woolner Memorial qualifying started at Varney Motor Speedway with Gary McLean timing in the quickest with Davey Terry second. They also ran the first 30 lapper (Gary McLean won ahead of Brian McLean, Brent McLean and Terry) on Saturday September 14th. However, when it came time to run the heats and the 50 lapper on the Sunday, the skies opened up and cut the night short.
As a result, the event was moved to Sunset Speedway to be part of the Velocity 250 weekend, with the main feature shortened to 40 laps.
In the end, it was Gary McLean taking the event win as he’d lead all 40 laps on the way to the victory. Max Beyore used the final restart to his advantage to grab second ahead of Davey Terry. Justin Jones and Andy Jankamak rounded out the top five. Jones was making his first start with the series. Jankamak also was making his first start with the series and became the first American to start in the series; he hauls from New York. Speaking of the points deal, Brent McLean finished seventh.
Heats were won by Gary McLean and Davey Terry.
Duty Noted: Monty Kelly had a real bad weekend. Kelly suffered heavy front end damage during Saturday’s qualifying and had to spend hours fixing his ride to get be able to come back on the Sunday. Then on Sunday, Kelly would make contact with the backstretch wall, resulting in more damage.
Capping off a season of success, Gary McLean would win the Autumn Colours Classic for the second year in a row. McLean led flag-to-flag on his way to victory. Brent McLean finished second followed by Barton, Shane Stickel and Tommy Robb. This marked Robb’s first OSCAAR start.
Heat wins went to Nick Kozak, Gary McLean, Matt Barton and Brad Stevenson.
Duty Noted: Davey Terry capped off the year in an eventful way, going off the turn one edge after hitting the tractor tire
With 35 laps to go, Dave Osbourne, Ryan Dick and Dustin Jackson found themselves stuck together in turns three and four, with Jackson on top of Dick and Osbourne. All drivers were okay and Jackson was the only driver that would have to pull in the pits following the incident. Jackson made history this season, becoming the youngest driver to make a start in the series at the age of 13. Jackson made his OSCAAR debut at Sunset Speedway after winning the Factory Stock Championship at Laird International Raceway.
Not mentioned much in the article, Bobby Tolton had a rough year as he found himself at the bad end of some wrecks and mechanical problems. When the Tolton Motorsports team was able to get things running in the right direction though, he did reasonably well for a rookie competitor.
As we wrap up the season, with straight honesty, I can say this was one of the most competitive series in 2013 as far as diversity of drivers and race winners. Heading into 2014 and the series’ third year, you can only hope that this will continue to grow. Though once again we ask ourselves this one question – can Gary McLean be beat?