By Larissa Spencer / OntarioOval.com –”I think Ontario Short Track racing is some of the most exciting racing around.” Shane Stickel was introduced to racing when he was just a baby. His father would take him to various short tracks around Ontario, and there was no doubt that the passion for racing would be passed down to Shane. At the age of 7, Shane started racing with the Waterloo Regional Kart Club and won the championship in his very first year. Shane and his dad would race karts in the morning then head to Flamboro Speedway for the stock cars at night. To Shane, racing is the most thrilling and intense sport around, “it almost becomes a life style, but it’s worth it.” This season Shane is continuing to race with the Canadian Vintage Modifieds. He hopes to win more races, and hopefully win his first championship with the club. I had the chance to speak with Shane about his racing career in this edition of Question Session.
Hometown: Kitchener, ON
Birthdate: July 13,1989
Career: Manufacturing Manager
Years in racing: 8 Karts/2 Vintage Modifieds
How did you get your start in racing?
My Dad got me started in racing. He has always been an avid race fan, so even as a baby I was already hanging out at all the Ontario short tracks. It was obvious that his passion would become mine at a young age.
How, when and where did you get into karting?
I started racing go karts when I was 7 with the Waterloo Regional Kart Club. My dad made sure to have me in a kart as soon as I was old enough. I won the championship my first year racing.
You grew up around racing as your dad raced here at Flamboro. What division did he run and when?
My dad raced Thunder cars at Flamboro for a few years when I first started racing karts in 1997. He couldn’t let me have all the fun, so we raced karts in the morning in Kitchener, and then went right to Flamboro for the Thunder cars. It wore us both out after a few seasons.
Who is your favourite racer to race against and why?
Corey Jones – Corey and I started out by racing Karts against each other, and then went on to race Vintage Modifieds at the same time. It was a learning curve for both of us so we definitely helped each other out. No matter where or what we are racing it always seems like we cannot get away from each other on the track. This has made for some great racing between the two of us, but also some quiet rides home. It’s always a lot of fun competing against one of you buddies.
What is your perspective on Ontario Short Track racing today and where do you think it’s at and how would you improve it?
I think Ontario Short Track racing is some of the most exciting racing around. It doesn’t matter if I’m racing myself or there as a spectator its always a great night out. Some things that would help improve the whole short track racing scene would be higher car and fan counts. Those two things have really been affected over that past few years. I think tracks and drivers need to really promote there tracks and clubs so the word spreads and the younger generations can slowly become more interested.
What’s your favourite thing about racing?
The butterflies you get in your stomach right before a race starts. I’ve been racing for a long time and I still get them every time. Its the most thrilling and intense sport around.
What is your least favourite thing about racing?
The amount of work and time invested can be overwhelming. It almost becomes a life style, but its worth it.
If you could race any other class of cars which would you choose and why?
I would love to have a shot at running a late model or OSCAAR. I grew up following the OSCAAR series and its always been a dream of mine.
Who are your sponsors and who would you like to thank?
MSD Machine Tool, Shelane Properties, Huron Fasteners, Abtech CAD/CAM, Paragon Collision Center, Creative Edge Signs & Graphics, BkReinhart.com, Speedway Photos
What are your plans for the 2012 season, and what are your future plans in racing?
I will be running a full Vintage Modified schedule. I hope to win some more races and hopefully win my first Vintage Modified Championship.
Photos by Randy Spencer and the Shane Stickel Collection.
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