By Larissa Spencer / OntarioOval.com – When your last name is Collison, racing is in your blood. When most Canadian kids are young they dream of being hockey players, not Justin Collison. He knew from the day he was born that he loved the sport of racing. Justin is a third generation, young aspiring racer from Cambridge, Ontario. Being exposed to racing his entire life, Justin couldn’t wait to start racing himself. At the age of 7, he began racing karts at Bingeman’s Park. To Justin, racing is a family sport, something everyone can enjoy. He also believes it’s a hands on sport that all members of the family can be involved in. The Collison family has been instrumental in the success of the Waterloo Regional Kart Club. Justin is a kart veteran now, his grandpa Jim is very involved with the club as well as Jake Collison who has been a mainstay and a multi-time club champion along with his daughter Ciarra who is a very good up and coming karter in her own right. Away from the track Justin enjoys spending time with his friends and family, but most of all he loves sim racing. Justin is of the same opinion of his dad and grandpa when it comes to making work. He understands the need to promote your sponsors and raise awareness in the community about stock car racing. His future plans are to race a Thunder Car against his dad and see where that takes him. The quote, “Live to race, race to live” couldn’t be more true about Justin. He loves what he does and has great potential and a bright future. I had a chance to catch up with Justin in this edition of ‘Fast Futures’.
Hometown: Cambridge, Ontario
Birthdate: October 21st
Years Racing: 8
First thing you ever raced: Go Karts when I was 7
First track you ever raced at: Bingeman’s Park Kart track in Kitchener
Driver you most look up to: The driver I look up to most is my dad
Your favorite Ontario Oval track: Flamboro Speedway
Racing goals (hobby or career): Win a championship in the 2012 Jr. heavy class with the Waterloo Regional Kart Club
Favorite things to do away from the track: Sim racing and hanging out with family and friends
Educational aspirations: Graduate high school and get a trade
How did you and your family get your start in racing?
I got my start in racing through my Grandpa (Jim) and Dad (Brad). My Grandpa is a well known hobby car racer. He started his racing career in 1962 winning $50 in a demolition derby. The next year he raced Jalopies at Flamboro and was also the Canadian Vintage Modified mid-season champion in 1984, 1985 and 1986. My dad got his start in racing 30 years ago. Unlike today when lots of new cars are handed over to young drivers, Jim purchased an old hobby car with a blown motor and severely damaged front end. “First you fix it, then you race it.” The lesson seemed to work because I’ve seen how smart my dad is with race cars and I hope to learn the ropes from him next year. I’m going to absorb all the info I can about the Thunder Car class in 2012 so when I begin I will have some good knowledge to be successful in that series.
What are your future plans in racing?
Race in the Thunder car class. Will I go any higher? I don’t know. We’ll have to see how much fun I have in that class.
If you could race a car, which class would you choose and why?
Thunder Cars. It’s the best racing in all of Ontario. No matter what track you go to, if you ask the fans the highlight of the night would be the prestigious Thunder Car feature.
Who is your favorite Nascar driver?
Jimmie Johnson or Tony Stewart.
What is your perspective on Ontario short track racing today, where do you think it’s at and how would you improve it?
Ontario short track racing today is in a slump. Half the people don’t know it’s out there. If I could change it, I would be get out there and promote it and pump it up as much as I could! Get racers to take their cars to local gas stations, bars, fairs… any place there is a constant flow of people. Just get the sport out there and get fans!
What is your favorite thing about racing?
My favorite thing about racing is that it is a family sport. You hear of families that are into hockey where one kid has a game in Barrie and the other kid’s game is in Windsor. That just doesn’t make sense to me. In racing, it’s one place and everyone is there and it’s fun all around. One thing about this sport is you can’t forget to have fun at what you’re doing!
Who is your favorite person to race against and why?
My favorite person to race against would have to be Brandon Hauck. I’ve been racing against him for 7 years. We race against each other harder than anyone else on the track. There have been times that we’ve wanted to kill each other after a race, but we know the next day we’ll be laughing about it. He is a clean and talented driver and we both respect each other on and off the track and will continue to do so!
Stay tuned for the next edition of “Fast Futures”. If you are a young, up and coming driver and would like to be considered for an upcoming edition of “Fast Futures” please CLICK HERE to contact us.