Throughout the course of a season, there are always a series of highlights that fans will remember for good reasons, and others for not so good reasons. With the OSCAAR banquet scheduled for Saturday night, here are five good memorable moments from the 2014 OSCAAR Hanover Holiday Modified season.
First Time Winners: Strawn, Jobs, Baker, Lapcevich, Beyore
To be able to witness a driver winning their first is certainly a special moment as there is a pure joy and sense of accomplishment that can’t be duplicated by any of the following wins. For five drivers, they got to experience this feeling in style during the course of 2014. Actually, in the span of six races, there were five different first-time winners reaching victory lane.
Chad Strawn kicked off the first-time winner feeling right out of the gate at Sunset Speedway as he would win the season opener in a dominating style. The feeling of domination carried forward to Kawartha Speedway as Kevin Jobs would dominate en route to scoring the victory. It seemed that the No. 26 had a special knack for first-time winners as Job’s win at Kawartha would be the first of three first-time winners to get their win in the Baker Performance ride.
Returning to Sunset Speedway at the end of June, the modifieds would produce a pair of first-time winners over the course of the Don Biederman Memorial weekend. On Saturday night, Terry Baker would take the lead early and held off Davey Terry as Terry tried every move possible to get by, but was unable to. Then on Sunday night, Terry would dominate the feature – but it’d be Cayden Lapcevich making the late race pass to grab the lead and victory in his first career OSCAAR start.
The five-some was then completed a week later when Max Beyore would finally break through for his first career victory at Capital City Speedway after a slew of podium finishes.
The first-win magic was certainly special throughout the year, but it is something that could be produced again in 2015. Many followers of the series are looking for Terry and Gary Elliott to be the next drivers to break through after posting some runner-up finishes throughout last season.
First Trip To Capital City Speedway
The inaugural trip to any track is always special, and this year marked OSCAAR’s inaugural trip to Capital City Speedway. A decent size field showed up for the event, offering the fans in Ottawa a good taste of the OSCAAR racing product. From close racing throughout the field, to a pair of different winners, it was certainly proven that the fans got shown why the series is the top division in Ontario right now.
Unfortunately, CCS will not return as part of the 2015 season, but that doesn’t mean it is out of the picture for years to come.
Rick Woolner Memorial
The staple event of the season, the Rick Woolner Memorial pays tribute to one of the all-time greats of modified racing. This is an event that drivers look forward to each year, with record car counts always in attendance to pay their respective tribute. Even with the event moved to a new venue – Sauble Speedway, the same could be said for this year. The competition was top-notch on track with a couple different drivers winning heats, and a full field for the feature.
In the end, though, it was Gary McLean picking up his second straight Rick Woolner Memorial victory in true dominating fashion after taking the lead early. Knowing the meaning of the race and having known Rick Woolner, this is an event that McLean always come out with a staple on to win so it’s no surprise to see the No. 8 team put in a top-notch effort.
With the event returning to Full Throttle Motor Speedway in 2015, you can expect the tradition to even grow stronger as more people learn about the event, the history behind it and the man that bares its name.
Cookies and Cupcakes
It’s a small gesture, but it’s something that has turned to mean a lot to the drivers and teams.
Every event for OSCAAR features a pre-race technical inspection, where officials go over the cars to make sure that they meet the required rules before hitting the track. They may not check everything, but the list covers the basis in the name of safety and fair competition. Now going through technical inspection can sometimes be a bit of a pain in the butt and isn’t always a happy period. However, no fear – OSCAAR has something for you. For each event, Donna Rossiter bakes a batch of cookies and hands them out, one to each person that comes through, to put a smile on their face. Beyond just a simple gesture, they’re also very tasty.
Though for the August event at Sunset Speedway, there was an added bonus. The race fell on the weekend of Davey Terry’s birthday. So rather than give him a simple cookie, the officials handed him a cupcake instead.
Autumn Colors Classic
“I was sick to my stomach in what could happen. I just wanted it over with our luck for this year. I didn’t know what way it’d go. I may have run him a little high, but it’s the Classic and I wanted it badly.” – Brent McLean
The Autumn Colors Classic is an event that means a lot to any driver, no matter the division or series, just due to the history of the event in how it has built up over the years at Peterborough Speedway. Being the last event of the season, it holds all the bragging rights if you can win it for the entire off-season. Though known as the super bowl, there’s also big reason to celebrate as you know that you have beaten the best of the best.
Following a late race duel with Terry Baker, Brent McLean would pick up his first career Autumn Colors Classic victory, capping off a great season with a great race to the checkered flag.
With the usual suspects coming back for 2015, along with some new faces, the new season promises to be even better.