Archive | Hurricane Midgets

Hurricane Midgets Set To Make First Ever Appearance At The Canadian Motorsports Expo

Hurricane Midgets Set To Make First Ever Appearance At The Canadian Motorsports Expo

The Canadian Racing Season Begins February 7, 8, & 9, 2014 at Toronto’s International Centre 

(TORONTO, ON // JANUARY 20, 2014) In 2009, Charles Priestly was declared the Hurricane Midgets series champion. Shortly thereafter, Priestly hung up his helmet and assumed the mantle of club president for the Southern Ontario-based touring series.

Throwing himself into the process of growing and promoting the long-running division, Priestly has seen his dedication rewarded with overflowing grids, and close, wheel-to-wheel racing action throughout the field.

As part of their efforts to promote their exciting series, Priestly, Race Director Jackie Francis and a strong supporting crew will be part of the tour’s first ever appearance at the Canadian Motorsports Expo Powered by Inside Track Motorsport News. The show takes place February 7, 8 & 9 at Toronto’s International Centre.

“The Canadian Motorsports Expo is one of those places where we feel we need to be,” explains Priestly. “We want to promote our series, but we also feel responsible for promoting the tracks that host us, and the sponsors that keep us running.”

In 2013, 38 Hurricane Midgets drivers scored points towards the season championship. The title was ultimately claimed by Cookstown, Ontario’s Robin McLean. For virtually all of the 18 scheduled race events, the field had to be narrowed to 24 starters through qualifying heat races, with an unfortunate few going home before the features.

Despite the overwhelming support of the series’ current participants, Priestly admits he’s looking forward to enticing fresh talent to join the Hurricane Midget fraternity.

“We always have room for more people; we need new faces in order for the series to continue to grow,” stated Priestly. “And I truly believe the cream rises to the top of the talent pool. The larger the pool we have to draw from, the better the racing, and the better the show we can put on.”

At the CME, the Hurricane Midgets display will feature McLean’s championship winning #97 mount, as well as Rob McCall’s Midget, which secured Best Appearing Car honours in 2013. Both racers will be on hand, as will Priestly and Francis, to answer questions about the series.

Concludes Priestly, “By the time the CME rolls around, we will have our 2014 schedule finalized, and I’m really hoping that we can confirm a new title sponsor for the series at the show. 2014 is looking like another exceptional year for the Hurricane Midgets, and the year starts for us at the Canadian Motorsports Expo.”

ABOUT THE HURRICANE MIDGETS: Starting out as an American-based Quarter-Midget club, the Hurricane Midgets moved into Southern Ontario over two decades ago, and have grown into a premiere touring division. The 450 pound, winged mini-sprint cars are powered by a 440 c.c. snowmobile engine pushing out approximately 85 horsepower. On some of the larger tracks, these nimble open-wheelers can attain speeds approaching 100 miles per hour. Further information, including scheduling, race results and technical details can be found on their website at Fans can also follow daily updates on Facebook/ Hurricane Midgets Racing Club.

ABOUT THE CME: The 8th Annual Canadian Motorsports Expo Powered by Inside Track Motorsport News takes place February 7, 8 & 9, 2014 at Toronto’s International Centre, adjacent to Pearson International Airport. The show features motorsport content geared to racers, fans and automotive enthusiasts. NASCAR Sprint Cup racer Ryan Newman will be at the CME on Saturday, February 8. For information about the show, including news, exhibitor and sponsorship opportunities, call (416) 962-7223, or email The CME’s website is located at

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Hurricanes To Hit Grand Bend!

Hurricanes To Hit Grand Bend!

Weekend Preview-Grand Bend Speedway-Hurricane Mudgets/Weekly Divisions
July 27, 2013
Submitted by Jared Doxtator, @JARED_Announcer

(Grand Bend, ON) The Annual Shipway Memorial race at Grand Bend Speedway usually draws a number of competitors. This year the Cars and Stars of the Hurricane Midget Club will be featured in this $500 to win Spectacular. Competitors from all over Ontario are anticipated to compete in the race Saturday night, and expect some ringers from various disciplines to make it exciting.

Former Grand Bend Speedway competitor, and 2 Time Wonderland Speedway Champion, Brent Kemps will make his return to the Bull Ring by the Beach. Kemps, a very decorated dirt standout brings his knowledge and skill Saturday night. A 3 time winner of the Bill Davis Memorial at Wonderland Speedway, Brent Kemps is no stranger to big feature wins, his most recent big trophy was from Wonderland Speedways 100 Lap Fall Classic, Kemps should be a serious threat.

Michelle Koricina, a driver with experience in various types of motorsports gets the call to drive the #21 RPM car Midget this weekend. Koricina, a 3 time Grand Bend Speedway Champion will be a contender with such powerhouse equipment and her intimate knowledge of the speedway. With experience in full sized vehicles at Delaware Speedway, and a standout in snow-cross, a race win by Koricina is more than possible

The 11th stop of the Hurricane Midgets at Grand Bend Speedway will be accompanied by the regular weekly divisions. With racing scheduled to start at 6:00pm

Weekly Divisions

• OK Tire London South Jr.B Mini Sprints
• London Drive Systems Jr, A Mini Sprints
• Broadway Service Jurnior Late Model
• Tommy’s Motors 9hp Winged Sprints
• Mike & Terri’s Mini Trucks

Race fans are encouraged to make an entire weekend out of the action this weekend. Spend a day in the famous beach town of Grand Bend, spend the afternoon at the beach, then enjoy racing in the evening, and wrap up the night in the campground with other fans and competitors

Visit our website for schedules, results and photos or follow us on Twitter @GBSUpdates

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Hurricane Midgets Announce Exciting 2013 Schedule

Hurricane Midgets Announce Exciting 2013 Schedule

From the Hurricane Midgets – As you know our club has expanded substantially over the last 3 years, and if things keep going the way they are, its going to be another record breaking year !

The 2013 schedule for The Hurricane Midgets Racing Club has been confirmed!

We are looking at 16 races over 14 weekends, and our drivers are chomping at the bit for spring!

May 11 – Flamboro Speedway

May 18 & 19 – Varney Speedway – Double Header Weekend !

May 25 – Peterborough Speedway

June 1 – Varney Speedway

June 15 – Varney Speedway

June 29 – Sauble Speedway

June 30 – Varney Speedway – for our second Double Header Weekend!

July 13 – Flamboro Speedway for an Open Wheel Extravaganza!

July 20 – Peterborough Speedway

July 27 – Grand Bend Speedway for our “Shipway Memorial 30″ – Double Points Night & $500 Purse to the Feature Winner !

August 3 – Sauble Speedway

August 10 – Peterborough Speedway

August 17 – Barrie Speedway – our only appearance at this track yearly, and a favourite for our drivers !

September 14 – Varney Speedway

October 5 – Flamboro Speedway for OKTOBERFEST Weekend !

October 12 – Peterborough Speedway for AUTUMN COLOURS Weekend !

We have lots of exciting changes in store for our fans this year!

We already have 43 registered drivers for the 2013 season, and max out our Features at 24 cars, so every race is guaranteed to be exciting for qualifications nightly !

Jackie Francis


Hurricane Midgets Racing Club


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Open Wheel Extravaganza Invades Flamboro Speedway

Open Wheel Extravaganza Invades Flamboro Speedway

By Randy Spencer for – Flamboro Speedway switched it up Saturday night as the Grisdale Late Models and the Ponderosa Nature Resort Mini Stocks had the night off. It was the second Open Wheel Extravaganza of the year featuring the Lucas Oil Can-AM TQ Midgets, the Lucas Oil Canadian Vintage Modifieds, F4 Modifieds, Hurricane Midgets and are joined by the Ray’s Auto Center & Towing Thunder Cars.

The Hurricane Midgets have been growing by leaps and bounds lately and they had 27 cars on hand. A couple had problems in practice but still had 24 make the show. Brian Woodland and Amanda McCall won the heats. The F4 Modifieds heat was one by Rob Divenanzo. Rob normally races the #14 TQ Midget and looked good in his first race in the F4. Ray’s Auto Center & Towing Thunder Cars heat winners were Rob Istead and Gary Slama. The Lucas Oil Can-AM TQ Midgets heat wins went to Rob Neely and current points leader Darren McLennan. Lucas Oil Canadian Vintage Modifieds heat winners were Jason Keen and John Karley. Two consis or B features were required. Connor Carrothers took the Hurricane Midget race while Greg Smulders picked up the checkers in the Can AM Midget B main.

Intermission saw the #67 two seater Late Model driven by Gord Bennett take a few lucky ticket holders out for a few laps around Flamboro Speedway. Young or old, everyone exits the car smiling from ear to ear, a great experience you don’t want to miss!! Visit for more information!!

Feature racing got under way with the Hurricane Midgets starting 24 cars for the first annual Jack Swanston memorial. Jack, a pioneer of Hurricane Midget racing passed away last July. Former racer and club president, a nice to tribute to a great supporter of the club. Rob McCall led the first three laps but was overtaken on lap four by Brian Woodland. Amanda McCall ran away with it and picked up the feature victory. In the F4 Modified feature Shannon Morris led the first three laps but Rob Divenanzo got by in the 36 rocket. John Verney and Divenanzo swapped the lead back and forth for several laps but Divenanzo led the last 5 laps and picked up the feature win for a perfect night in the F4. A couple cautions early in the Can AM Midget feature gave way to some clean fast racing with some great battles  up front with James Gray holding off Mack Deman and Rob Neely. Ray’s Auto Center & Towing Thunder Cars ran their usual exciting feature with Shawn Chenoweth picking up the checkered flag. The Burbridge brothers didn’t have a good night, Mark had engine problems in practice and didn’t make the races and Rick got mixed up with the a car on the back stretch in the feature and his night ended with quite a bit of damage up against the wall. The final race of the night was for the Lucas Oil Canadian Vintage Modifieds with Corey Jones picking up the checkered flag.

That brought an end to another spectacular night of racing.  Make sure you join us next Saturday night for BRANTFORD & BRANT COUNTY 2-for-1 NIGHT featuring the Grisdale Late Models, Ray’s Auto Center & Towing Thunder Cars, Ponderosa Nature Resort Mini Stocks and the Pure Stocks. Pit Gates Open at 4pm, Grandstand Opens at 5pm, Qualifying starts at 6:30pm with Main Events getting under way at 8pm. And in two weeks time it’s the Northern Border Challenge, a 35 lap invitational for F4 Modifieds of USA and Canada plus Late Models, Thunder Cars ane Mini Stocks. Pit Gates Open at 4pm, Grandstand Opens at 5pm, Qualifying gets under way at 6:30pm with Main Events starting at 8pm. Don’t forget to plan on joining us this Tuesday and every Tuesday, weather permitting, and sign up for a ride in the Full Throttle Marketing and Promotions two seat Late Model race car during track practice day. It’s an amazing ride, I loved it!! Also every Thursday night, the race car Cruise night from 5-8pm at the RONA store parking lot on Pinebush Road Cambridge location where you can get up close and meet the racers and see the cars and get an autograph and pictures. See you all at the track!!

Results (scored finish, not official)

Hurricane Midget Heat #1: #48 Brian Woodland, #91 Mike Westwood, #77 Richard Woodland, #94 Ryan Fraser, #83 Jamie Bound, #23 Ivan Cole, #31 Kelly Summers, #18 Paul Draganac, #00 Brad Holmes, #43 Randy Hiusser,  #98 Kevin Spiesz, #97 Robin McLean, #7x Brent Vincent

Hurricane Midget Heat #2: #22 Amanda McCall, #10 A.J. Emms, #62 Rob McCall, #1 Mark Whittam, #42 Brian MacDonald, #8 Larry McClintock, #93 Connor Carrothers, #88 Jesse Brown, #85 Rob Summers Sr., #3 Lorne VanDusen, #21 Larry Westwood (DNF)

Hurricane Midget B main: #93 Connor Carrothers, #21 Larry Westwood, #00 Brad Holmes, #97 Robin McLean, #43 Randy Hiusser, #99 Adam Tyo, #51 Shawn Gardner, #98 Kevin Spiesz, #14 Rob Summers Jr., #85 Rob Summers Sr., #96 Jaike Haywood (DNF), #7x Brent Vincent (DNF), #7 Larry Lawson (DNF)

Hurricane Midget Feature: #22 Amanda McCall, #48 Brian Woodland, #10 A.J. Emms, #93 Connor Carrothers, #62 Rob McCall, #42 Brian MacDonald, #97 Robin McLean, #77 Richard Woodland, #00 Brad Holmes, #8 Larry McClintock, #94 Ryan Fraser, #31 Kelly Summers, #18 Paul Dragananc, #88 Jesse Brown, #99 Adam Tyo, #83 Jamie Bound, #3 Lorne VanDusen, #98 Kevin Spiesz, #23 Ivan Cole (DNF), #21 Larry Westwood (DNF), #51 Shawn Gardner (DNF), #43 Randy Hiusser (DNF), #1 Mark Whittam (DNF), #91 Mike Westwood (DNF)

Thunder Car Heat #1: #14 Rob Istead, #2 Rick Burbridge, #7 Bobby Mercer, #88 Scott Laporte, #5 Linda Dean, #89 Bill Watson, #10 Dennis Cybalski (DNF), #55 Chris Howse (DNF), #02 Mark Burbridge (DNS)

Thunder Car Heat #2: #4 Gary Slama, #27 Kevin Albers, #13 Brad Collison, #8 Shawn Chenoweth, #9 Dave Silverthorn Jr., #31 Kevin Gallant, #81 Chris VanDusen (DNF), #73 Nick Troback (DNF), #17 Tristan Gill (DNF)

Thunder Car Feature: #8 Shawn Chenoweth, #9 Dave Silverthorn Jr., #13 Brad Collison, #14 Rob Istead, #27 Kevin Albers, #73 Nick Troback, #7 BobbyMercer, #4 Gary Slama, #81 Chris VanDusen, #55 Chris Howse, #89 Bill Watson, #5 Linda Dean, #31 Kevin Gallant, #17 Tristan Gill (DNF), #2 Rick Burbridge (DNF), #88 Scott Laporte (DNF), #10 Dennis Cybalski (DNF)

Can Am Midget Heat #1: #74 Rob Neely, #3 Todd Cresswell, #7 Jeff Blackburn, #44 Tom Kyle, #43 Adrian Stahle, #00 Greg Smulders, #46 Mike Westwood, #64 Dave Hickson, #14 Rob Divenanzo

Can Am Midget Heat #2: #48 Darren McLennan, #12 David Balych, #40 Mack Deman, #82 James Gray, #39 Corey Moesker, #16 Chris Holman, #20 Dave McKnight Jr., #22 Chris Bauman, #63 Jim Hickson

Can Am Midget B main: #00 Greg Smulders, #16 Chris Holman, #22 Chris Bauman, #14 Rob Divenanzo, #64 Dave Hickson, #20 Dave McKnight Jr., #63 Jim Hickson, #46 Mike Westwood

Can Am Midget Feature: #82 James Gray, #40 Mack Deman, #74 Rob Neely, #7 Jeff Blackburn, #48 Darren McLennan, #16 Chris Holman, #43 Adrian Stahle, #44 Tom Kyle, #00 Greg Smulders, #39 Corey Moesker, #20 Dave McKnight Jr., #22 Chris Bauman, #14 Rob Divenanzo, #46 Mike Westwood, #3 Todd Cresswell (DNF), #63 Jim Hickson (DNF), #12 David Balych (DNF), #64 Dave Hickson (DNF)

F4 Modified Heat: #36 Rob Divenanzo, #43 John Verney, #9 Brian Nanticoke, #8 Craig Shaver, #24 Blake Bomberry, #69 Aaron Turkey, #93 Dan Petit (DNS), #3 Shannon Morris, #63 Mark Lucas (DNF), #91 Robert Mercer (DNF), #37 Dan Nanticoke (DNF)

F4 Modified Feature: #36 Rob Divenanzo, #43 John Verney, #24 Blake Bomberry, #9 Brian Nanticoke, #8 Craig Shaver, #93 Dan Petit, #3 Shannon Morris, #68 Aaron Turkey (DNS), #37 Dan Nanticoke (DNS), #91 Robert Mercer (DNS), #63 Mark Lucas (DNS)

Canadian Vintage Modified Heat #1: #18 Jason Keen, #6 Adrain Donkers,
#82 Corey Jones, #57 Steve Trendell, #5 Mike Podd, #81 Jeff Shaw, #9 Jason Woolsey, #09 Nick Lees

Canadian Vintage Modified Heat #2: #19 John Karley, #39 Shane Stickel,
#99 Rick Jones, #50 Joe Atkinson, #00 Ron Easton, #46 Mike Klotz, #36 Derek Mehlenbacher, #27 Kevin Busher

Canadian Vintage Modified Feature: #82 Corey Jones, #6 Adrian Donkers,
#00 Ron Easton, #39 Shane Stickel, #18 Jason Keen, #57 Steve Trendell,
#5 Mike Podd, #36 Derek Mehlenbacher, #99 Rick Jones, #81 Jeff Shaw,
#50 Joe Atkinson, #19 John Karley, #09 Nick Lees, #27 Kevin Busher (DNF), #9 Jason Woolsey (DNF), #46 Mike Klotz (DNF)

Photos by Randy Spencer

Posted in Flamboro Speedway, Hurricane Midgets, Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets, Lucas Oil Vintage Modifieds0 Comments

One Perfect Night As Hurricanes Take Grand Bend By Storm

One Perfect Night As Hurricanes Take Grand Bend By Storm

By Jared Doxtator - Grand Bend Speedway June 23, 20

Hurricane Midgets visit Grand Bend Speedway

Over 24 Hurricane Midgets paid visit to the Bull Ring by the Beach on Saturday for their first of two appearances in 2012.   After two rounds of qualifying heat races, the field was set for a very fast paced 25 lap feature.

Brian Woodland led flag to flag, with A.J, Emmes followed close behind for the duration.  It was third place on back that kept changing hands.  Paul Dragonac, Rob McCall and Ryan Fraser all took their turns, but when the dust settled, Brian McDonald wound up as the third place finisher.

Perfect Night For Christie – OK Tire (London South) r B Micro Sprints

Beachville ON, driver DJ Christie was going for an incredible feat.  His goal was to win everything in one night.  The race program was started with a Feature race from a previous rain-out.  DJ Christie started near the front, but chased Cooper Aubertin for a  bulk of the 25 lapper.  Lap after lap, Christie would use tne outside groove and could only get half way up beside Aubertins machine.  When the duo caught lap traffic late in the going. the two youngsters made contact on the front straightaway, and both nearly lost control.  When  they gathered it back  up. DJ Christie was in the lead.   He held off the brothers Aubertin, Cooper and Jaxon to win the first feature.

After winning a heat race earlier, DJ Christie continued his bid for a perfect night  in the second, regularly scheduled feature race.  Sneaking by Cooper Aubertin early in the race, Christie cruised to his fourth feature race of the season and the second win on the night.

Mike & Terri’s No Frills Mini Trucks

The first 26 laps of racing were gruelling. to say the least.  Shawn Thompson and Brandon Thurlby had set themselves apart from the pack in an attempt to fight the finish out on their own.   The fight for third was  the race to watch. Scott Schloendorf Justin Collver, Bailey Nethercott,  Wes Tanner and Michael Bennetaeu all were fighting for a podiium finish.

When the leaders approached lapped traffic, Thurlby made his move to the inside..  Thurlby got a great run down the banking off turn 2 and dove down into turn 3 and attempted the pass for the lead.  Shawn Thompson fought back, and when Thurlby got by, tried the cross over move , then they got together. Thurlby’s car hooked and turned across the nose of Thompsons truck and into the grass.  Thompson was sent to the rear for the restart, handing the lead to Justin Collver.  9 laps of racing remained and a fight for the win ensued with Collver, Schloendorf and Nethercott. The running order didn’t change and for the first time in 2012, Justin Collver captures the checkered flag.  Being in the right place at the right time  awarded the 19 year old from Lucan with a win.

Tyler Fortey wins 2 feature races as well, one rainout make up and the regularly scheduled Jr A Mirco Sprint race.

Dawson Nethercott made it 4 consecutive feature wins in the Junior Late Models

Michelle Korcina has been adjusting on her 9hp Sprint and was finally rewarded with a feature race win.

Racing Every Saturday Night at 6pm

Next Event June 30 and Includes a Mini Truck 50 lap Invitational

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Hurricane Midgets Set To Touch Down At Grand Bend Speedway

Hurricane Midgets Set To Touch Down At Grand Bend Speedway

Grand Bend ON,  The hot summer nights in Grand Bend will be hightlighted this weekend by the return of the Hurricane Midgets.  Making their first of two scheduled appearances, the Hurricane Club will without a doubt, be as exciting as it has been in previous visits. Grand Bend Speedway marks race number four on the Hurrican Midget 2012 Schedule.

Mini Trucks

Brandon Thurlby leads Multi-time track Champion Shawn Thompson by 27 points in the Mike & Terri’s No Frills Mini Trucks. Thurlby has won two feature races thus far in the 2012 season and his consistency has awarded his team with the Champiopnship Point lead after 3 races in the season.

Jr B Sprints

Bothwell driver Cooper Aubertin holds a slim 12 point lead over DJ Christie after 3 races in the OK Tire [London South] Jr B Sprints.  Aubertin has scored one feature win, while Christie has crossed the finishline first twice this year.  The points shortfall came on a night when Christie was involved in an accident in heat race competition and damage to his car kept him from netting a good finish.  Jaxon Aubertin, and Matt Thompson have also been knocking on the door for victory in 2012.

Also competing are the London Drive Systems Jr A Sprints, Broadway Services Junior Late Model, and the Tommy’s Motors 9hp Sprints.

Racing begins at 6pm.

For more information visit and

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Lyons, DeMan, Fraser & Boughton Take Flamboro Wins

Lyons, DeMan, Fraser & Boughton Take Flamboro Wins

By Randy Spencer – Flamboro Speedway welcomed the first appearance of the season for the winged warriors of speed, the Can-Am TQ Midgets, along with Canada’s longest running open wheel division, the Canadian Vintage Modifieds. They were joined by the Hurricane Midgets, a great touring club that has grown in leaps and bounds and had a car count of over 30 cars. The new division at Flamboro this year, the Pure Stocks were also on hand after a week off.

The Hurricane Midgets got the night under way with a couple of heat races. Brian Woodland and Rob McCall battled early and broke away from the rest of the pack and were a half track ahead of the rest of the field by race end. The two swapped the lead and at the checkered flag it was Woodland winning the first race of the year. In heat number two, Mark Whittam sat on the pole and veteran Larry Westwood started fourth. By lap 2, Westwood had found his way to the front and held onto the end to win his first heat race of 2012.

The Lucas Oil Canadian Vintage Modifieds with 18 cars in the pits, sponsored by Waterdown Car Show and Swap Meet. Patrick Reulens and last year’s Rookie of the Year, Rick Schurr were on the front row. Reulens shot out to a quick lead but by lap 5, Steve Lyons tracked him down and got passed and the two broke away from the rest of the pack. Lyons took the checkered flag. Last year’s runner-up to points champion Jason Keen, Shane Stickel, was up front for the second heat along side Steve Trendell. Stickel led all 10 laps to pick up the victory.

The Pure Stocks were up next for their heat race. The “Wild Thing” Davey Boughton sat on the pole along side Ashley Holmes. Boughton battled Derek Martin and Rodney Rutherford but managed to hold them off and picked up his first career win.

The Lucas Oil Can Am Midgets rolled out their 47th season with Dave Hickson and Chris Baumann leading the field to green. Jeff Blackburn started third and as they came around to complete lap one, the second year driver from Toronto had moved into first and held the lead and took the first TQ heat of 2012. In heat number two, Tom Kyle and Chris Holman led the field to green. Starting on the inside of row two, Mack Deman had what he called a fast car in practice. Prior to the race he tweeted that he would win the first heat, just like Babe Ruth called a home-run in game three of the 1932 World Series. Well just like Ruth, Deman came through and held off 2011 champ Darren McLennan to pickup the win.

The Hurricane Midgets, with such a large field of cars, had double qualifying heats and as in the first heat Brian Woodland and Rob McCall battled back and forth and Woodland got by McCall on the last lap to win his second heat race of the night. In heat number four, Kelly Summers and Ryan Brown started up front but Mike Westwood, who started way back in the field, made his way to the front and took the checkered flag. Fresh off that win, Westwood rushed back to his pit, jumped from the Hurricane Midget and into his Can AM Midget and managed to make it out for the Can Am Midget B main. Todd Cresswell, who started on the pole, picked up the win. The Hurricane Midgets were right back at it for their B main. An exciting battle between Ryan Brown and Brad Holmes ensued and they swapped the lead back and forth. Holmes was faster on the straights but couldn’t hold off Brown in the corners. Going into turn one of the last lap, Holmes made the move and got by Brown and held the lead on the last lap and took the checkered flag.

The Hurricane Midgets had little time to rest. After a brief intermission, they were lined up and ready to roll for their 20 lap feature. A four car pack that included McColl, Woodland, Adam Tyo and Paul Draganac broke away from the rest of the pack. By lap five, the leaders caught the slower cars and it seemed to cause some problems and on lap six, Tyo and Brown spun in turn three and it brought out the caution. As the field reached the half way mark Ryan Fraser and Rob McColl were running away in an exciting battle. The 15 year old Fraser ran just three times with the Hurricane Midgets in 2011 and this being his rookie season is showing a lot of promise. As the checkered flag dropped it was Fraser winning his first feature and the start of a very promising career.

Up next was the annual Hank Franks Memorial race for the Canadian Vintage Modifieds. Track photographer Dave Franks presents the trophy to the winner of the first CVM race every season in honor of his late father. On the pole were the winners of the first two heat races, Steve Lyons and Shane Stickel. A few early cautions kept the field close but they got on a run and the two pole sitters battled with Steve Lyons leading flag to flag for the victory. In the Pure Stock feature, front runner Derek Martin took a hit to back end of his race car early and didn’t make it back. Rodney Rutherford and Davey Boughton broke away and at the checkered flag it was Rodney Rutherford winning his second straight feature.

The final race of the night was the Can Am Midget 25 lap feature. Over social media on the Twitterverse, Flamboro track announcer Josh Paxton re-tweeted Mack Deman’s earlier post and asked, Hope your ready to say my name after this heat win. – “Did That! Can you repeat in the Main?” Deman started third behind Chris Holman and Jeff Blackburn. Holman and Deman raced side by side for several laps and by lap 10 Deman was starting to pull away. On lap 18, Mike Westwood spun out between turns one and two and it tightened the field up. On the re-start Deman got on the gas quick out of turn four and managed to hold the lead till the end and was one happy driver. He stood a top his car waving the checkered flag to a crowd of family, crew and supporters and thanked everyone for all their hard work in building the car while he was away at school. Once again, he called his shot and picked up the victory. He told me after the race the car felt great in practice and allowed him to believe in his car and ability to take the checkered flag.

That brought to an end another great of mostly open wheel racing. Join us next weekend, it is the Victoria Day Long weekend spectacular with two days of racing. Saturday the Late Models, Thunder Cars, Mini Stocks and F4 Modifieds will be in the house and we’ll be back the next afternoon for the first Redneck Racing Showdown which includes a 25 laps Mini Stock Invitational Event plus FWD Pure Stocks, Junk Car Duels, Figure 8 Demolition and Boat Racing!!! Check out the website,, for more details on this exciting new event to the 2012 Flamboro Speedway racing program. See you at the races!!

Results (scored finish, not official)

Hurricane Midget Heat #1: #48 Brian Woodland, #62 Rob McCall, #99 Adam Tyo, #97 Robin McLean, #94 Ryan Fraser,  #66 Chris Whittam, #31 Kelly Summers, #24 Ryan Brown, #85 Rob Summers Sr., #7 Larry Lawson, #43 Randy Huisser, #23 Ivan Cole (DNS), #42 Brian Macdonald (DNS), #3 Lorne Van Dusen (DNS), #58 Kevin Howard (DNS)

Hurricane Midget Heat #2: #21 Larry Westwood, #18 Paul Draganac, #68 Adam Carrothers, #10 A.J. Emms, #77 Richard Woodland, #51 Mark Whittam, #7x Brent Vincent, #88 Jesse Brown, #00 Brad Holmes, #8 Larry McClintock, #9 Shaun Gardiner, #14 Rob Summers Jr., #91 Mike Westwood (DNF), #98 Kevin Spiesz (DNF), #55 Cory Whittam (DNS)

Hurricane Midget Heat #3: #48 Brian Woodland, #62 Rob McColl, #21 Larry Westwood, #18 Paul Draganac, #99 Adam Tyo, #10 A.J. Emms, #97 Robin McLean, #51 Mark Whittam, #94 Ryan Fraser, #66 Chris Whittam (DNF), #68 Adam Carrothers (DNS), #77 Richard Woodland (DNS)

Hurricane Midget Heat #4: #91 Mike Westwood, #31 Kelly Summers, #7 Larry Lawson, #8 Larry McClintock, #7x Brent Vincent, #43 Randy Huisser, #24 Ryan Brown, #14 Rob Summers Jr., #85 Rob Summers Sr., #9 Shaun Gardiner, #00 Brad Holmes (DNF), #88 Jesse Brown (DNF), #98 Kevin Spiesz (DNF), #58 Kevin Howard (DNF)

Hurricane Midget B Feature: #00 Brad Holmes, #24 Ryan Brown, #9 Shaun Gardiner, #14 Rob Summers Jr., #55 Cory Whittam, #47 Trevor Small (DNF), #85 Rob Summers Sr. (DNS), #88 Jesse Brown (DNS), #42 Brian Macdonald (DNS), #98 Kevin Spiesz (DNS), #58 Kevin Howard (DNS)

Hurricane Midget Feature: #94 Ryan Fraser, #62 Rob McColl, #21 Larry Westwood, #10 A.J. Emms (J), #97 Robin McLean, #43 Randy Huisser, #24 Ryan Brown, #7 Larry Lawson (J), #31 Kelly Summers, #51 Mark Whittam, #8 Larry McClintock, #9 Shaun Gardiner, #00 Brad Holmes, #85 Rob Summers Sr., #18 Paul Draganac (DNF), #68 Adam Carrothers (DNF), #48 Brian Woodland (DNF), #24 Ryan Brown (DNF), #14 Rob Summers Jr. (DNF), #66 Chris Whittam (DNF), #91 Mike Westwood (DNF), #77 Richard Woodland (DNS), #55 Cory Whittam (DNS)

Canadian Vintage Modified Heat #1: #9 Steve Lyons, #47 Patrick Reulens, #92 Brian Atkinson, #5 Mike Podd, #6 Adrain Donkers, #99 Rick Jones,
#36 Rick Schurr, #81 Jeff Shaw (DNF), #00 Ron Easton (DNF)

Canadian Vintage Modified Heat #2: #39 Shane Stickel, #82 Corey Jones, #57 Steve Trendell, #29 Daryl Henwood, #19 John Karley, #21 Chris Milwain, #18 Jason Keen, #50 Joe Atkinson, #46 Mike Klotz

Canadian Vintage Modified Feature: #9 Steve Lyons, #39 Shane Stickel,
#57 Steve Trendell, #92 Brian Atkinson, #5 Mike Podd, #18 Jason Keen,
#21 Chris Milwain, #47 Patrick Reulens, #82 Corey Jones, #81 Jeff Shaw, #46 Mike Klotz, #50 Joe Atkinson, #99 Rick Jones, #29 Daryl Henwood (DNF), #36 Rick Schurr (DNF), #6 Adrian Donkers (DNF), #19 John Karley (DNF), #00 Ron Easton (DNF)

Pure Stock Heat: #18 Davey Boughton, #38 Rodney Rutherford, #08 Derek Martin, #1 Tyler Martin, #25 Kevin Nichol, #22 Ashley Holmes

Pure Stock Feature: #38 Rodney Rutherford, #1 Tyler Martin, #25 Kevin Nichol, #22 Ashley Holmes, #18 Davey Boughton (P), #08 Derek martin (DNF)

Can Am Midget Heat #1: #7 Jeff Blackburn, #24 Barry Dunn, #00 Greg Smulders, #82 James Gray, #3 Todd Cresswell, #46 Mike Westwood, #64 Dave Hickson, #22 Chris Baumann

Can Am Midget Heat #2: #40 Mack Deman, #48 Darren McLennan, #16 Chris Holman, #74 Rob Neely, #12 David Balych, #39 Corey Moesker, #44 Tom Kyle, #14 Rob Divenanzo, #69 Earl Caine

Can Am Midget B Feature: #3 Todd Cresswell, #44 Tom Kyle, #39 Corey Moesker, #46 Mike Westwood, #64 Dave Hickson, #14 Rob Divenanzo, #22 Chris Baumann, #69 Earl Caine

Can Am Midget Feature: #40 Mack Deman, #48Darren McLennan, #82 James Gray, #20 Dave McKnight Jr., #12 David Balych, #00 Greg Smulders, #16 Chris Holman, #74 Rob Neely, #7 Jeff Blackburn, #39 Corey Moesker, #24 Barry Dunn, #3 Todd Cresswell, #4 Andy Mackereth, #44 Tom Kyle,
#22 Chris Bauman, #46 Mike Westwood, #64 Dave Hickson, #69 Earl Caine, #43 Adrian Stahle, #14 Rob DiVenanzo (DNF)

Photos by Randy Spencer

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Hurricane Midgets Announce New Corporate Sponsor For 2012

Hurricane Midgets Announce New Corporate Sponsor For 2012

From the Hurricane Midget Racing Club - The Hurricane Midgets are very pleased to announce the joining of forces with a new Corporate Sponsor for the 2012 Season.
We would like to welcome AMSOIL & Sustainable Dynamics as the new official Club sponsors starting in 2012, and we hope for many years to come.
Tim & Lori Rutkevich, owners of  Amsoil Distributorships & Sustainable Dynamics, spent the 2011 season with us at almost every race, as they supported the #99 Car of Adam Tyo this past season. 
They quickly developed an outstanding relationship with the current Management of the Club, and we are now excited to announce they will be supporting all our drivers, and the promotion of our entire club next year.
Their passion for racing is clearly the motivating factor behind the decision to promote our club, along with the fact that our club is very family oriented, and they fit right in.
AMSOIL was the first manufacturer of synthetic oil in 1972, and although they have been supporting all types of racing in the USA for many years, and more recently, Snowmobile Racing in Canada, this is a whole new venture for them, and we welcome them to Canadian Midget Sprint Car Racing !
With the continued growth of our club, already adding 10 additional cars over this winter for the 2012 season, we welcome the financial and promotional support this amazing relationship will provide.
Our Club has already moved to purchase a transponder system which will be used at most of our tracks in 2012, and have also, thanks to Norm MacDonald, Hurricane Midgets Vice President and owner of Brownsville Towing in Orangeville Ontario,  added a 2nd push vehicle, for track assistance during cautions, in order to keep the shows running smoothly for our hosting tracks.
Also, with the addition of so many new cars already, we are guaranteed to have great turnouts at all our tracks, and will now be running B-Mains to qualify for a 24 Car, A-Main Feature, which will provide one of the best shows in Midget racing in Southern Ontario.
We look forward to seeing you all in the Spring of 2012, and we hope you like the show !
Charles Priestley & Jackie Francis
Hurricane Midgets Racing Club 
Photo: (Far left) Adam Tyo & Alicia Reed, (far right) Tim & Lori Rutkevich of AMSOIL

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AJ Emms Joins Westwood Racing Team For 2012

AJ Emms Joins Westwood Racing Team For 2012

By – After finishing second overall in the 2011 Hurricane Midget points standings, AJ Emms has been tabbed as the newest driver for Mike Westwood Fabrication and Stryker Chassis for the 2012 season. The Brechin, Ontario native will run the entire campaign along with full-time teammate Larry Westwood as well as a few guest drivers in a third team car.

Emms will maintain his familiar #10 and will be backed by Mike Westwood Fabrication, Stryker Chassis, Electric Monkey, Klotz Synthetic Lubricants Canada, TXM Racing Engines and Davenport Subaru.

“He is a multi-time go-kart champion and a top runner with the Hurricane Midgets” said team owner Mike Westwood. “I am happy to have AJ driving for me”.   

For more information on Mike Westwood Fabrication or Stryker Chassis visit

Photos by Dale Calnan /

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Race For The Cure At Peterborough Speedway This Saturday

Race For The Cure At Peterborough Speedway This Saturday

From Alicia Reed – Come out and support the “Team Pink Panthers” a group of woman that are participating in the Toronto CIBC Run for the Cure on October 2, 2011. Come watch the Hurricane Midgets as they compete for the Race for the Cure. Check out our table that will be set up at the entrance of the grandstands for a bunch of items that can be purchased. Any donation is greatly appreciated and all money raised will be donated to the Canadian Breast Cancer foundation.
When: Saturday, September 24th, 2011
Where: Peterborough Speedway
Grandstands open at: 5:00pm
Racing starts are: 6:00pm

Make sure you come all dressed in pink to support this cause!

To make online donations you can go to Click “Donate”. Search under teams and type in “Pink Panthers”. The team captain’s name is “Alicia Reed”. Once you find that feel free to make your donation

Also racing that night: 4F, MS, RT, LM, & 100 LAP ENDURANCE RACE 4/6 CYL. & 8 CLY.

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Adam Tyo Continues Hot Streak At The Beach

Adam Tyo Continues Hot Streak At The Beach

By Jackie Francis / Hurricane Midgets - It was Hot & Steamy at Sauble Beach Speedway this past Saturday Night, but it didn’t slow down the tidal wave of Adam Tyo in his awesome performance, taking both his heat races and the Feature Win in a clean sweep for the night.

Heat 1 for the evening saw Zero Cautions, as young Amanda McCall in her Flower Powered # 22 took the lead position on the first lap, from her 4th place start.  Mike Westwood in the #21 and AJ Emms in his #10 tried their best, but they just could not catch this girl, who by the looks of it, was born to drive!   The final finish saw Amanda MCCall take the win, Mike Westwood take the 2nd, AJ Emms take 3rd, and Adam Carrothers in the #68 take 4th.

Heat 2 also ended with Zero Cautions, as Adam Tyo took his first win for the evening holding on to his lead every lap of the heat.  He was followed closely by #62 of Rob McCall, and Brian Woodland in his #48, then right behind Larry Lawson in his #7, who has been performing very well over his last couple of races.

As amazing as this sounds…Especially for Hurricane Racing…Heats 3 & 4 also went off without a single caution in each heat.  And, if you know anything about Hurricane Racing, this is virtually unheard of !

Adam Tyo proved he was in it for the big win by stepping up and taking his next win in Heat 3 followed closely by Amanda McCall in her super powered #22.  Brian Woodland pulled in a close 3rd and Rob McCall in the #62 took the 4th spot.

Then in Heat 4, right out of the 4th place starting position, Paul Draganac in his #18 stepped it up a notch in the final Heat race for the evening by taking the lead position right in the first lap.  #47 of Trevor Small took up second while the #11 of Paul Dermo & the #43 of Randy Hiusser battled it out for third.  In the end, we saw #18 of Paul Draganac roll across the start-finish line with his 2nd Heat Win of the season, #47 of Trevor Small take a well deserved second, Paul Dermo in #11 take a third place, and Randy Hiusser in #43 take a very close fourth.

The racing was clean, and every finishing spot was well earned on this hot evening.

Our Feature Race for the evening saw 21 cars take to the field.  As a scoring person, this is where a bit of terror sets in, knowing your eyes have to move faster than you thought humanly possible, as cars dart past that start-finish line with incredible speed!

Our second lap in saw the first Caution of the night with #42 rolling off the field with mechanical issues, then the #24 of Ryan Brown spun out, casuing the #43 of Randy Hiusser take a hit that would also end his racing for the night.  We briefly lost the #47 of Trevor Small for a few laps, but his issues were resolved, and he came back on to finish the race, although several laps down.
The racing was very fast, and drivers were giving it everything they had to hold their positions.

Car # 18 of Paul Draganac, managed to hold the lead position for 2 laps before the #99 of Adam Tyo stepped in and stole it away.  But this was not going to discourage the #18 car, who held on tight and gave it everything he had to take that 2nd place spot right to the checker flag this night.  The third, fourth and fifth place spots were fought for with every ounce of speed these cars could muster in this humid and muggy weather.  We saw the #48 of Brian Woodland hold 3rd for 12 laps, before giving it up to the #22 of Amanda McCall just 5 laps from the end.  AJ Emms who had been a contender in the 5th place spot for most of the race also lost a bit of speed with just one lap to go, giving up his finishing spot to Rob McCall in the #62.

This was fast clean racing, and every driver performed exceptionally well. Congratulations everyone!

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Hurricane Midgets Enjoy A Weekend At The Beach

Hurricane Midgets Enjoy A Weekend At The Beach

Sauble Speedway – Saturday July 2nd, 2011 – Where, oh where, OH WHERE do I even start?!  Saturday night at Sauble Speedway was the Annual OPEN WHEEL EXTRAVAGANZA, and that big ten dollar word does nothing to describe what happened on that hot, humid evening that will surely go down as one of the most action packed Hurricane races of all time.

If you wanted fast, good looking Sprint Cars…You got ‘em.
If you wanted LOTS of Sprint Cars…….You got ‘em.
If you wanted crashes & cautions, including Ambulance AND Firemen…You got ‘em.
And, if you wanted 3 & 4 wide cars battling it out for 1st place…You got that too!

23 Cars took to the field on Saturday night, and first of all, let me say, that is a sight to behold from the announcer’s tower.  The sheer thought of having to keep track of all those “wild things” was daunting to say the least.  The cars all looked great, and the sound of 23 Hurricane motors buzzing along was almost deafening.

The first lap saw our 1st Caution for the evening, as cars bunched up on the straight away between corners 2 and 3.  A full restart was called…But, this was just a sign of things to come…..

During the 4th full lap we saw the #97 of Robin McLean, #84 of Richard Woodland,  and the #21 car driven by Larry Westwood, all go for a full force hit & spin.  The Ambulance was called out for its first time for the night.  Both Robin McLean and Richard Woodland had to take that dreaded ride back to the pits where the damage to their own bodies was assessed as well as the bodies of their cars.  We are glad to say that other than bumps and a few bruises, both drivers will be okay, but they will both be busy this week prepping their cars for next Saturday’s outing to Grand Bend Speedway.

During the course of this Caution, we also lost rookie driver Kyle Durnin for several laps, who joined us in the #51 car,  and #93 Amanda McCall lost her chain in the pile up, and was out for the race for the evening.

The pack was thinning out, and the cars were getting some what easier to count…

We saw 3 more cautions before the 17th lap…and then it happened…..Car
#24 looked as though the brakes were getting hot as he drove by the tower.  By the time the car made it around the track just one more time, the entire back end was aglow with flames and burning metal!  A call for an immediate Red Flag Stop, saw Ryan Brown turning in to the infield and trying to escape his car and the heat of the flames creeping up his seat.  Although he got out quickly, and the emergency crews were fast on hand with extinguishers, it was not quick enough for Ryan “Fireball” Brown, who by that time, had sustained 2nd degree burns to his lower back, between the jacket and pants of his fire suit.  Ryan received immediate medical attention, and we are glad to say he is doing much better now.  We hope Ryan has a quick recovery, and that MacDonald Motorsports can pull this car together for next weekend.
So now there are just 2 laps left, and the crowd can feel the tension as our top 5 contenders are getting ready to battle neck and neck for that oh so coveted Black & White Checker Flag…. The green flag drops and the racing is wild with cars taking the corners 3 and 4 wide!  And although we had cars 48, 62, 10, 99 & 7 all running consistently in the top 5 positions, it could have been anyone’s win.  The last 2 laps were fierce with competition, and excellent driving skills.  Rounding the final corner heading for the Start/Finish line, the #62 of Rob McCall passed the #48 of Brian Woodland, and it looked as though Rob would take his first win of the season.  Then, taking the 4th turn too deep, Rob momentarily lost control of his newly rebuilt car, and #48 stole his position back once again.

When the final black & white flag flew, we saw Brian Woodland in his car #48 keep hold of his front running position with just a second to spare before the #62 of Rob McCall crossed the Finish Line behind him.
 Then came A.J. Emms in his Red Hot #10 Car, Adam Tyo in his Blue Ice Rocket #99, and the Screamin’ #7 of Larry Lawson round out our top five spots.

Brian Woodland in now officially holding the first winning streak of the year, with his second Feature win in a row for the season. Excellent work Brian!

On a different note, this Saturday also saw many other things happen that we just wanted to make special note of.

First, Chuck & I would like to thank all the guys that came to help us offload our trailer and get our tents etc. set up on Saturday.
Dealing with a broken weld on our trailer really put us behind the 8 Ball on the drive up on Saturday afternoon, and we appreciate all the help you gave us to get up and running so quickly once we were on site.

Second, we would like to thank Richard Woodland, driver of car # 84 who offered his welding services to Car #18 over the course of the heat races and help get him back together, to ensure all our drivers who were in attendance, actually got a chance to make it to the Feature race.

The support our team members provide to each other cannot be surpassed anywhere.  It is such an honour to help run a club for drivers that take their racing seriously, but are also willing to stop and help out a fellow driver to make sure everyone at least gets a shot at racing that day.  It makes going to the track a joy – every single time.
Next weekend we will be at Grand Bend Speedway – its one of the smallest and fastest tracks we race at – Kind of like Bristol is for Nascar!  It’s sure to be exciting racing, and we look forward to seeing you all there.

Jackie Francis – Hurricane Midgets Racing Club

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Former Hurricane Midget Driver & President Jack Swanston Passes Away

Former Hurricane Midget Driver & President Jack Swanston Passes Away

It is with regret, The Hurricane Midgets Racing Club announces that Jack Swanston, former Club President and long time Driver, passed away on the evening of Sunday, July 3rd.

Our heartfelt thoughts go to Nancy Dingman, his long time partner & best freind, who has been at Jack’s side for as long as we all can remember.

Rest in Peace Jack – May you find freedom from your pain on that great paved oval in the sky….

On Behalf of All The Hurricane Midgets

Charles Priestley, President
Jackie Francis, Secretary/Treausrer


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Woodland Dominates Hurricane Midget Feature At Peterborough

Woodland Dominates Hurricane Midget Feature At Peterborough

Commentary by Jackie Francis – Hurricane Midgets Peterborough Speedway, June 18, 2011 – I usually write the race results commentary about our top 3 drivers from Saturday nights show, and how tight the race was… or how tough the competition was for that prized 1st Place Winner’s Position, but this past Saturday Night at Peterborough Speedway was just not the same. There was nothing “typical” about this nights feature. It was OWNED by veteran Hurricane Driver,  #48 Brian Woodland.

Starting in 5th place position for the evenings Feature Race, it was very clear from the first completed lap that Brian was in this for the “Big Win”.  He took over the lead position so quickly no one stood a chance, and by 5 laps in, the gap between his car and the 2nd & 3rd place positioned cars was almost 1/2 a track long…and he had already lapped the last place position.

This was also one of the cleanest features we have seen run in as long as I can remember, and although we had a few cars spin, and 1 car pull off with a DNF, there were no yellow flags dropped in the entire race!
It was truly one of the quickest shows I have ever seen our team run.

Congratulations Brian – that was OUTSTANDING.

Evenings Results for June 18, 2011 – Peterborough Speedway

Heat 1 -  99 Adam Tyo, 10 AJ Emms, 21 Larry Westwood, 43 Randy Hiusser, 58 Mark Whittam, 84 Richard Woodland, 9 Shawn Gardner, 24 Ryan Brown

Heat 2 -  48 Brian Woodland, 18 Paul Draganac, 8 Mike Kohout, 42 Brian MacDonald, 97 Robin McLean, 3 Mike Westwood, 13 Nathan Meneely

Heat 3 -  99 Adam Tyo, 10 AJ Emms, 48 Brian Woodland, 8 Mike Kohout, 21 Mike Westwood, 18 Paul Draganac

Heat 4 -  84 Richard Woodland, 42 Brian MacDonals, 24 Ryan Brown, 43 Randy Hiusser, 58 Mark Whittam

Feature – 48 Brian Woodland, 10 AJ Emms, 99 Adam Tyo, 24 Ryan Brown, 84 Richard Woodland, 8 Mike Kphout, 21 Mike Westwood, 18 Paul Draganac, 42 Brian MacDonald, 43 Randy Hiusser, 58 Mark Whittam

*58 Driven by Mark Whittam for this date only
*3 Driven by Mike Westwood for this date only – Heat 2
*21 Driven by Mike Westwood for Heat 3 & Feature for this date only

2011 Points Standings as of June 18, 2011

1st #99 @ 502pts Adam Tyo  
2nd #84 @ 496pts Richard Woodland 
 3rd #48 @ 496pts Brian Woodland  
4th #10 @ 485pts AJ Emms
5th #8 @ 444pts Mike Kohout  
6th #42 @ 433pts Brian MacDonald   
7th # 43 @ 422pts  Randy Hiusser  
8th #24 @ 414pts Ryan Brown
9th #18 @ 344pts Paul Draganac  
10th #97 @ 336pts Robin McLean
11th #7 @ 318pts Larry Lawson  
12th #21 @ 266pts Larry Westwood
13th # 41 @ 255pts Ivan Cole  
14th #00 @ 238pts Bradley Holmes
15th #47 @ 232pts Trevor Small   
16th #58  @ 194pts Wayne McKibbon
17th #5 @135pts Dave Carson 
18th #9 @ 134pts Shawn Gardner 
19th #91 @ 113pts Mike Westwood   
20th #1 @ 99pts Mark Whittam
21st #11 @ 94pts Paul Dermo  
22nd #62 @ 94pts Rob McCall  
23rd #3 @ 73pts Lorne Van Dusen

For more information visit:

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Question Session: Hurricane Midgets Charles Priestly

Question Session: Hurricane Midgets Charles Priestly

By – Part way through the 2010 racing season the Hurricane Midgets made a change to its management team. Former competitor Charles Priestly took over the reigns as club President. With his passion for the sport and a dedication to growing the product, positive growth has already been made to this exciting series. We managed to catch up with Charles during his busy off-season schedule for this edition of “Question Session”.

The Basics
Hometown:  Brantford, ON
Career:  Extreme Gravel Hauler
Years involved in motorsports:  10

You recently took over as club President for the Hurricane Midgets. How has the experience been and are you happy with the decision to move into this position?
Jumping in mid season last year was kind of like “Baptism by Fire”. You do what you think is right, and you hope for the best. We had a bit of a lead-in last spring from previous management, but we knew the club needed things shaken up a bit, and so far our we’ve had no complaints. We have no regrets and have actually really enjoyed making some necessary changes and seeing the club prosper like never before.

Where did you get your passion for the sport and how did that lead you to where you are now? 
My passion for almost anything with a motor in it has been in my blood as long as I can remember. I’m sure I got that trait from my dad. It started when I was a kid and he used to take me to the stock car races and has never stopped. Over the years I have stripped an rebuilt a lot of cars, including many Ford Mustang’s. And, prior to getting involved with The Hurricane Midgets I was building and racing drag cars. Racing can get expensive and when a buddy first introduced me to a 1/4 scale sprint car at a fraction of the price involved in racing drags, I knew it couldn’t be anything but pure fun. So, I sold the drag car and jumped in to race a Hurricane Midget about 7 years ago. By the 2009 season, I had won the points championship and had initially decided to build myself a new car for 2010.  But, as is life… things changed… and when the opportunity came up to take over the club, I took it, and put my own car on the back burner eventually selling it to another club member.

The series had a successful 2010 season with the championship coming down to the wire. What were some of the highlights for you personally from the season past?
Wow…there were actually many highlights this year! One of our first races as new team management in June was at Varney Motor Speedway. We had obtained a cash sponsorship for the nights purse, which made it extra competitive for our drivers. We had some local drivers at the track that night, and it was a great battle for the lead position. The crowd went nuts and the cheering and applause were amazing to hear.  That was one of the first indicators we knew this club had a lot of potential, and we have been trying to re-create that atmosphere at every track we go to ever since.  We were over the moon with the nights results and so were the owners of the track. That speaks volumes.
We were also able to obtain many “bikes for kids” sponsorships this past year and were able to get directly involved with the fans at each of the tracks we attended. It’s great to know we are developing a following, and that the spectators acknowledge our club as “the show to see”.
Lastly, and probably one of the biggest highlights in 2010 was the… lets call it… “The Paparazzi Finish” of our season at Peterborough Speedway on the Saturday night of Autumn Colours Weekend. J.P., the owner of Peterborough Speedway, has been a big supporter of our club this past year, and by him allowing us to have camera crews, photographers, trophy presentations, and popping champagne bottles in the winners circle on such a busy race weekend was something we can never thank him enough for. It not only put the race winner, and the season points champion in the spotlight, but also our club… which was a first. We had asked J.P. only for the time to present driver, Jeff Blackburn with his points championship trophy that night, but when he said “we can do better than that” and everyone jumped into action, it changed everything. The Hurricane Midgets were raised to a whole new level that night, and we’re not looking back.

What are the plans and goals for the Hurricane Midgets in 2011?
I think the best way of putting it is “exposure & expansion”.  We want to be not only the “show to be seen”, but also the “team to be joined”. When I started out as a driver 7 years ago, we had almost 30 cars and drivers registered. Over the years membership waned and our shows were a little “lack lustre” with sometimes only 10 or 11 cars starting a feature race. Last year when we initially took over, we were averaging 10 – 12 cars a night, and then, by the end of the season 18 cars a night with Autumn Colours a showing of 20 cars for the final nights race. 

With 1/4 scale sprints you need volume to put on your best show. And that’s where the “expansion” plans come in.  As of right now… are you sitting down? We already have 30+ cars registered for next season and we haven’t even hit April yet. The new registrants are coming from many sources, including past drivers that had left, drivers moving up the ranks from karting and also some fans who have been following us, but always felt reserved about making the move to join our team. We are welcoming them all and it will surely make for a very exciting 2011 season.

As for the Exposure…we have started relationships with groups not only like yourselves at, but also with articles & stats submissions to Inside Track magazine to make sure we are published. And, we are also entering a couple of car shows this year, including the upcoming Canadian Motorsports Expo in Toronto at the end of this month. Our new website seems to have become quite popular also. With its fresh re-design this year and ever changing content, we seemed to have developed quite a following and are always getting comments on how much people enjoy the site.

As President what goes into preparing a new season and how many hours do you spend putting the schedule together?
Only one word required for both those answers… LOTS !  We are really trying hard to renew relationships with tracks that had decided not to put us in their lineups over the last few years. There were many reasons why, but that was the past and we are after all the “new & improved” version of ourselves. We have so much more to offer our tracks and fans and we are self sufficient in terms of on-track and off-track support crew / techs now. Plus, lots of cars on the track and fan appreciation equals excitement. That works for everyone, we think. Honestly, we spend at least 12 – 15 hours a week right now in digging up sponsorships, dealing with tracks, maintaining our website, and talking to members, new and old. Some weeks probably more, but who’s counting?  When its fun, it doesn’t really seem like work.

As is the case with any club our series there are many people behind the scenes that help a race night be successful. Who are some of the people that make the Hurricane Midgets what they are today?
My Vice-President this year is Norm MacDonald. Norm is also a former driver, who now owns several cars, but no longer races himself. He either leases out cars for drivers who have not yet bought their own, or sponsors his family members under the name MacDonald Motorsports. Norm is my right hand man. We discuss everything from soup to nuts when it comes to the Hurricanes and no decision is made until the two of us are in agreement about it. He also supports the team by driving the ATV and mini car hauler trailer we designed for car removal from the track. We also have a tech & team support crew. Those folks for 2011 season are: Larry McLean, & Rob Summers Sr. – Tech Crew , Don Blackburn – Driver Support, and Dawn Carrothers – Team Management Support.

And our drivers – WOW – we have some top notch drivers on the track, of all ages, and this has become a family affair for a lot of them.  The support their families provide to each other off the track is amazing. No team is left to fend for themselves when a car wrecks, or breaks down. Everyone makes it a responsibility to do what they can to make sure all the drivers get on the track for every feature race. Parts are lent out, tools, welders… what ever is needed. It’s an amazing site to see five separate teams all working on one car to make sure the driver has a fair shot to finish a race.

Last, but not least is Jackie Francis. She is our Secretary/Treasurer.  But it goes a lot further than that. She designs and maintains all the record keeping systems we use and keeps us all in check at each race.  She is full of ideas that constantly put our racing series out there for everyone to see and she thinks BIG. At every race we go to, every announcers tower now has all the info on our drivers, including their individual sponsors and all our large team sponsors, and information on anything we are promoting that evening for fan appreciation. It’s kind of like a “No Man Left Behind” kind of leadership quality. She wants to make sure everyone else looks good. She is my partner in life and my partner in helping run the Hurricanes.

For a person looking to get into racing, why should they consider the Hurricane Midgets and how cost effective is it?
There are many reason someone might want to join the Hurricanes.

#1 – Cost.  The overall cost of buying a 1/4 scale sprint car is very fair.  For about $5,000 you can get yourself in to a used car, most likely on an open wheel trailer, and still have money left over for all your safety gear requirements.  Not bad when you compare it to almost any other type of racing out there.  You CAN spend a lot more if you want, but its not necessary to get your foot in the door.

#2 – We are a full disclosure racing series. We run by a rule book that governs all the cars the same. You do have some options, but basically, the motors all start at the same size, the chassis are built to spec and tires are usually a personal choice. After that, we will always help out our drivers if they are experiencing performance issues and give advice when ever necessary. We don’t leave people to fend for themselves. The “tweaking” of their cars they learn themselves with experience and eventually, you get a very strong performer.

#3 – Club atmosphere. As I mentioned previously, this has become a huge family type event most weekends. People are happy to see each other on race day. At one point last year we had a 5 week break. When we all showed up for the next race, only for it to be rained out… everyone stuck around for hours after the race was called just to “hang out”. It was like a family reunion of sorts. You sure don’t see that very often in racing. Being competitive on the track is one thing, and none of these drivers will let anyone walk away with a win, but off the track, family time resumes, and everyone feels comfortable.  Once people realize they are there for fun & recreation, and not because of obligation, it changes the way you think about competition.

With many racing fans all across Ontario, what would you say to someone who has never seen the series race to entice them to come to an event?
Watching the Hurricane Midgets race is incomparable to most other types of racing. The motors sound like a raging bee hive, or a zillion mosquitoes, as these cars go by. When you see an open wheeled car 100″ long and 2″ off the ground going almost a  hundred miles an hour all you can say is… “Those guys must be nuts”.  And, almost inevitably, you will see a wreck at some point during the evening. It’s just a matter of how big and how bad it’s going to be. Last year we had one car land square on top of another. Both drivers walked away completely unscathed. That’s a testament to how safe our cars are built and how exciting our racing can be. Lastly, it ain’t over til it’s over. Every race goes down to the wire. Sure some people think a certain car will walk away with a race, but its times like that a 4th corner will take you out, and the game starts all over again.

Stay tuned for the next edition of “Question Session”. If you are a driver, team member or track official and would like to be considered for an upcoming edition of “Question Session” please CLICK HERE to contact us.

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