This past season, Barrie Speedway played host to one of the most dramatic championship battles for the entire province of Ontario. At the end of the season, the championship had to be decided on a tie-breaker as both Rick Walt and Dave Doucette tied.
Though on top of that, there was a thrilling feature to close out the season to boot. For Walt, the last lap of this feature stood out amongst the whole season.
“The moment that stood out the most was riding an entire lap on top of Dave Doucette to the finish – neither one of us wanting to give an inch,” he said.
Below is the video of it as captured by camera on board Walt’s thunder car (courtesy of Ridge Road Racing).
The tiebreaker came down to who had the most wins – well, both Walt and Doucette had five feature wins a piece for the year. It then came down to who had the most second place finishes, which gave the championship to Rick Walt and his team.
“The Championship was hard earned this year,” Walt said. “Competition was crazy with St. Onge, Doucette, Halliburton – was a fun competitive year.”
For Walt, it marked his second straight championship in a row after dominating in 2012.
“The level of competition at Barrie is growing every year,” he commented. “My first championship seemed easy; the car was just ahead of the rest. Now everyone has done their homework and this year, there were five of us that could have won that championship.”
When it comes to winning the championship, Walt says his biggest lesson surrounded his attitude.
“Biggest lesson I learned is my temper and attitude were getting me nowhere until I changed and I thank Ridge Road Racing for this,” he said. “They gave me the chance and father Ray Shepherd and Gord Shepherd have kept me calm. I have gained sponsors and many fans!!”
Like many others, Walt got started in racing through his family – most specifically, his grandfather.
“He dragged us to the track every week and when I turned 13, we built my first car – a four cylinder mustang which I did very well in,” he said.
From there, he kept moved up to the Thunder Car division and come 2014, he will take another big step. Walt purchased the late model that Ron Quesnelle has driven the last couple of years, including to a championship.
“I’m hoping for a couple wins and a top 5 in points,” he said. “We are moving up looking for more success I have one late model feature win to my name and would love more!”
For his sucess this past season, Walt would like to thanks his sponsors…..
“Thanks to Cookstown Auto Centre, Abstract The Salon, Highway 400 Transmission, RRR Chassis and Setup, Shepherd Trucking, and of course my smoking hot wife!!”