Thursday, October 21, 2021

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ST/DIRT: 2014 Mini Stock Champion Brandon McFerran Looking for Continued Success

Last season, Brandon McFerran would have the “picture perfect” season, winning a total of nine features – eight regular nights and an invitational – en route to scoring his first career Sunset Speedway Mini Stock Championship.

“Last year was a really good year,” he commented. “It was a picture perfect year for me and my team. We worked really hard to get the championship. Running for a championship, it takes a team effort and then some. Can’t thank my team enough, and what they did for me. I think we got, including heat races, 36 wins last year, and that’s almost unheard of. Well, not quite unheard of because Shawn Chenoweth got 21 feature wins last year, including the thunder car and the late model. It was pretty cool to get nine feature wins for myself and the team last year. So last year was definitely a success.”

The season didn’t start off as he would’ve hoped, and about three weeks in, McFerran admitted that he was honestly questioning how well they were going to make out for the year.

“The first three weeks – man, looking back now, I thought I wasn’t going to make the top 10 in points,” he commented. “A friend of ours, Tim Ellas, started wrenching on the car and got it turning and it really came alive. Just never looked back and it’s a team effort for sure. Got to thank my team and my sponsors – I wouldn’t be where I am today without my mom and dad and my sponsors; they’re all great people.

McFerran will return to Sunset Speedway in 2015, looking to once again win the championship behind his No. 64 Peter D. Laird Transport, Sauble Falls Tent & Trailer Park, Road Ranger, East End Car Wash, Creative Edge Graphics, Finish Line Painting & Restoration, DS McClure Farms, AMD Electric, Ultimate Finishes and Matalco Mustang.

McFerran says the keys will be trying “to be consistent and look at the big picture, and not get ahead of myself and go week by week and just have fun. Having fun is the main key”. He also knows that it will take another top notch effort, with the amount of talent that is in the Mini Stock division.

“It’s unreal,” he commented. “It’s come along away in the last few years. I know when I started breaking into the division, it was just started taking the next step. Once we built our new car, that’s when things really started taking another turn and it’s not really a beginner division anymore. You’ve got people like Jordan Howse, Andy Kamrath, Samantha Shaw, Warren Paxton, Billy Schwartzenburg – there’s so many that I probably missed another handful of people. When you see those haulers pull into the track, you know you have to bring your A-game and those guys are defiantly hard to beat and the talent is just unreal.”

There’s also the change in scenery at Sunset Speedway as the track will be under the NASCAR banner beginning with this season, with their drivers eligible for points in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series.

“There’s definitely some pros and cons about it, but I think it’s cool to say that we’re NASCAR drivers,” McFerran said. “I think it’s going to be good for the track, and I think it’s going to be a real cool experience for everyone for sure.”

On top of the Sunset Speedway schedule, though, he will also be trying out dirt for the first time in his first career. Racing a car for Steve Perry, he will compete in the Thunder Stock division at Ohsweken Speedway on Friday nights.

“Him (Steve Perry) and Lane Zardo have been working real hard on it this winter,” he commented. “Sadly, I haven’t been able to make it up as much as I’d like to because trying to get my car ready for the car show. Hopefully, get up there during the March Break and turn some wrenches on it, and get it closer to being ready.”

McFerran said that the deal came together following discussions after plans to run Perry’s car on asphalt never materialized.

“Through the winter, we got talking about maybe going to Delaware or Full Throttle,” he shared. “We went to the shop and checked out the car and he said, ‘We could go to Ohsweken’ and I said, “Yeah, let’s go to Ohsweken. I want to try dirt’. I’ve always wanted to try dirt, so that’s where I’m at next year hopefully full-time if we can work around our Sunset Speedway schedule.”

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