It goes without saying that each season at any track is memorable for it’s own reasons as there’s things that will always stand out in the mind of each driver, crew member, official and fan. Sometimes people will share the same moments, and sometimes people won’t. Regardless, there are always reasons to remember a year of racing.
Earlier this month, four of those memorable moments were shared, which can be read by clicking here. Though with that in mind, here are some other moments that could be included.
Fan Submitted Memory: I also believe it was June 13th second LLM feature that was an incredible race that Brandon Watson won – Kyle Sedan
With other plans, Dwayne Baker could not be in attendance on June 13 at Sunset Speedway for the night of competition. Sunset Speedway rules allow for a driver to have a sub for a pair of nights, gaining points for the driver that could not be in attendance. With Baker unable to attend, he got one of the top late model competitors in the province to fill-in for the night, 2013 OSCAAR Super Late Model Champion and full-time APC Auto Parts United Late Models of Ontario Tour Presented by Grisdales Auto Parts competitor Brandon Watson.
With a solid practice session under his belt, Watson kicked off the night on a solid note, time trialing third quickest, followed by a fourth place finish in the first 35-lap feature on the night. As a result, he would start 11th in the second feature as a result of the 14-car invert.
Watson would make his way to the front throughout the feature, taking the lead in the second half of the feature. As the laps closed nearer to the close of the feature, things would get more interesting at the front with eventual division champion Taylor Holdaway making his way to the front of the field, chasing down Watson. Fans, as Sedan stated, would be treated to a battle at the front of the field between the pair, with Watson picking up the win.
For those who were not in attendance that night, or just want to relive the action, here’s the video courtesy of the track on youtube.
The Big Wreck on the Backstretch
While the highs of the season are memorable, the lows of the season are also memorable in not so much a good way. For three drivers, July 25 will always be remembered as a big hump on the season.
Paul Maltese would get into the wall a little, getting sideways. Thayne Hallyburton would make the move to avoid the wreck, but caught a bit, getting spun sideways and ripping the door of of his car. Kyle Passer would then make contact with Maltese’s car after the effect, unable to slow down in time for the wreck.
The result would be heavy damage to all three cars involved. Fortunately, all of the drivers were uninjured in the wreck and both Maltese and Hallyburton were able to return to the track the following weekend. For Hallyburton, he closed out the season on a strong note with a third place feature finish and scoring the Most Improved Driver Award. For Maltese, unfortunately the bad luck would continue to close out the season. Hopefully for both drivers, things go more smoothly in 2016.
Fan Submitted Memory: The Mess of Turn One and Two at Velocity 250 – Karlie Wilman
Another one of the big wrecks of the season came during the final weekend of racing in 2015 at the Velocity 250 in September. Billy Zardo came into the event with excitement as he had bought a new ride that he was hoping to debut with a solid run ahead next season. Unfortunately though, going into the corner – the motor would blow with Zardo getting up in the wall. It’d also result in oil spilled across the surface, resulting in other drivers getting caught up in the incident, including to add insult to injury, Billy’s brother Lane. Certainly not the weekend that the brothers were looking for.
Though on a brighter note, Lane did cap off the season in a strong way, finishing second in the Autumn Colours Classic at Peterborough Speedway.
Travis Hallyburton’s First Career Sunset Speedway Victory
It seems this year was the break-out year for Travis Hallyburton as he showed the world that he could compete – scoring seven top-fives and 14 top-10s. It seemed that it started mid-summer when he went to Peterborough Speedway, scoring a victory there. In returning to Sunset, the weeks that followed would see the driver of the No. 39 run up front on a weekly basis.
September 5, though, everything would come together as he would take the lead on lap 11 ahead of Jordan Latimer. He would then lead the rest of the way, including holding off Cayden Lapcevich on a final late-race restart, en route to scoring the victory. The smile in victory lane – very bright.
The positive momentum continued for Hallyburton in closing out the season as he finished second in the season finale feature on September 13, before scoring the Autumn Colours Classic feature victory. Going into 2016, a lot of eyes will be on him as a possible threat for the championship.
Pink/Orange Sky on September 12
The racing on track is always exciting at Sunset Speedway – we discovered that in the early stages of these memorable moment articles. However, the racing on track was made even prettier on September 12 when the sky formed a pinkish-orange hue with the threat of rain on the horizon as the championship late model feature got set to begin.
Cue the most beautiful photos that we have had all year on the biggest night of racing, and with that said – here are a couple highlights.
Jordan Latimer’s Wall Ride
Sometimes at Sunset Speedway, you get to experience something that you didn’t think was possible or ever seen there before – car flipping over (ask super stock competitor Jade Franklin), and a car riding the backstretch wall, which Jordan Latimer can attest to. On August 1, contact down the backstretch would get Latimer on the wall for a split second. Rather than re-describing, here’s an excerpt from the race report, as well as Latimer’s on-board video.
As a result of finishing ninth in the first feature, he would start sixth in the second feature. It would start off with a dramatic start as on lap two, Marcus Keeler didn’t realize Latimer was to his outside, and pushed Latimer up against the backstretch wall, causing Latimer to get all the way up on the wall before coming down. He would continue on, battling for position, with a pair of drivers going for a spin behind him.
Beyond the moments thus far, there are certainly many more that I could’ve talked about. So please do comment with your favourite memorable moments from the season. What is something that perhaps has slipped my mind that you can’t seem to forget?