Saturday, September 18, 2021

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OSCAAR SLM Preview: Summer Rush presented by Knightworks Design Race No. 1

There’s no doubt that Kawartha Speedway holds a special place in the heart of many drivers and fans. There were the days that threatened to see no more racing at Kawartha any longer – the threat passed through last year. Some played the last hurrah music for the 2013 event.

Well guess what? We’re back! The OSCAAR Super Late Models will not only get one shot at Kawartha this summer – but two shots as Summer Rush presented by Knightworks Design takes off.

Last year’s rendition saw a dominating performance by Andrew Gresel as he led all 50 laps on the way to victory. Now entering his sophomore season, the Sauble Beach native will be looking for his fourth career OSCAAR victory after posting a solid fourth place finish in the season opener at Sunset Speedway.

Another driver to watch will be Dwayne Baker as he is coming off of a second place finish to start the season. Baker is running a partial schedule this year to go with Sunset Speedway’s full Limited Late Model schedule, but is one to watch in each race that he runs.  In his last three starts at Kawartha, Baker has posted a pair of top-four finishes and a sixth.

When you think of Kawartha, one of the names that comes to mind is Glenn Watson. Watson is a four-time race winner at the Speedway and a four-time series champion. However, the performance that he is known for hasn’t been there as late with a sixth place finish at Sunset’s season opener. Last year’s Kawartha race marked one of Watson’s best finishes of the season as he finished fourth so perhaps the magic will be there in 2014.

If you’re not thinking about Watson and Kawartha, then you’re thinking about Jeff Hanley and Kawartha. Jeff Hanley has won a pair of races at Kawartha along with a second and a third, and coming off a win at Sunset Speedway, he will be looking to keep that tradition going.

After running a partial schedule last year, Jesse Kennedy has committed to the full OSCAAR schedule in 2014. Coming off a fifth place finish at Sunset Speedway, the potential for Kennedy to be strong this weekend is there following a fifth last year.

Derrike Tiemersma came every which way close to winning over the past year in competition, but has yet to win. The theory played true at Sunset’s season opener with a third place finish. Last year, Tiemersma didn’t get lucky at Kawartha with the rear-end giving out on him. However, besides that, Tiemera’s record at Kawartha is stellar. In eight starts at Kawartha, Tiemersma has a win, six top-fives and seven top-10s. Could this weekend be Tiemersma’s weekend?

Despite heading into his third year of OSCAAR competition, Rob Poole has yet to experience Kawartha Speedway behind the wheel. He missed the event last year due to an engine failure mid-sesaon, and missed the 2012 event in his rookie year due to having to work. In 2012, he got NASCAR Canadian Tire Series driver Mark Dilley to drive the car, in which Mark finished seventh with it. Coming off a seventh place finish at Sunset’s season opener, Poole is hoping to have some success.

After running into engine issues before the season opener at Sunset Speedway, Kevin Cornelius would run a pro late model in the season opener to at least garner some points. It was a successful run as he’d get a eighth place finish. If Cornelius has a new motor in his super late for this weekend, look for him to be a front running contender despite it being his first shot at Kawartha.

Rookie Kelly Balson is coming off a ninth place finish in his debut at Sunset Speedway. Balson will be one to watch as Dan McHattie will be helping him set up the car and McHattie is known for his numerous late model wins at Kawartha.

Following a 12th place finish in the season opener, Rudy Oppersma is hoping for better luck this weekend and a possible top 10 finish. Odds could be in his favor, following an 11th place finish in 2012.

Todd Campbell didn’t have the best of luck at Sunset Speedway as he was posted a DNF. However, Kawartha could help turn that around as he posted a solid sixth place finish in 2011.

John Owen was not in attendance at the Sunset Speedway season opener, however if he does show-up at Kawartha, he will be one to watch following a third place finish in 2012. Other drivers who had strong runs in 2012 that could possibly mix it up with an appearance this year are Roy Passer, Kyle Passer and Mike Beyore.

One of the surprising no-shows at Sunset Speedway was Brad Corcoran. Corcoran has shown speed across the OSCAAR universe before and that should continue at Kawartha as his ultra-strong horsepower would show its head. His 2012 run didn’t come out as successful as perhaps hoped, with a 13th place finish.

Dave Taylor should be debuting his new ride this weekend after also being a no-show for Sunset. Taylor hasn’t had the best of luck at Kawartha though, only scoring a 21st place finish in 2012. However, other years have worked out well for him, including a third place finish in 2011.

Lloyd Ritchie ran a real limited schedule last year – only making a couple of appearances. If Ritchie ends up at Kawartha, success could be had following a runner-up finish in 2011.

Be sure to join us at Kawartha Speedway this weekend to take in some of the hottest action this summer has to offer. Along with the Super Lates, the OSCAAR Modifieds and Hurricane Midgets will be present, while OSCAAR presents the first ever “Mini Stock Nationals”.


Pit gates open 8:30am
Main gates open 11:30am
Practice 12:00pm
Racing 2:30am


Pit Pass 35.00 adult
15.00 kids 14 and younger
20.00 per person with a hot rod

Main Gate 25.00 adult
10.00 kids 12 and younger
60.00 family (2adults 2 kids)

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