ORILLIA , ON – After a 2017 OSCAAR Modified Series season full of impressive performances, rising star AJ Emms will roll into the final round of the tour at Peterborough’s Autumn Colours Classic within reach of his first career Open Wheel Modified championship.
Emms – a former Midget standout – will sit 3rd in the series’ points standings entering ‘the Classic’ and will need a near-perfect weekend to topple fellow championship hopefuls Luke Gignac and Chris Milwain.
“This is exactly what we’ve been dreaming off since the day we brought this car home,” says Emms. “It’s something we’ve always believed we could do. We knew we could contend on this tour if we worked at it and that’s exactly what we’ve done.”
A lot of effort,” continues the Orillia , ON racer. “A lot of hours. We’ve tried more setup combinations than I could ever remember – but it was all to put us in this position.”
A protege of longtime Ontario racer Mike Westwood, Emms has showcased undeniable improvement since breaking into the Modified ranks in 2015, and has quickly become one of the most exciting prospects on the OSCAAR roster.
“We’ve been getting better with every start for the last two years,” explains the second-generation standout. “We know that we have a program strong enough to be OSCAAR champions. This has been our life for two years.”
“This is just about the only thing my Dad and I have talked about,” smiles Emms. “It’s an awesome feeling to be this close – but now we need to find a way to clinch.”
For Emms, an Autumn Colours Classic strategy sounds relatively simple: get to the front and stay there.
“I don’t want to even pretend that I’ll be out there doing math in the middle of the feature,” says Emms. “Our plan is to swing for the fences and win the race. That’s all we can do. Win and hope that the points will sort themselves out.”
“It’s easier said than done, though,” adds the up-and-comer. “This field just gets tougher and tougher every race. And, ‘the Classic’ is the event that has a way of bringing out the best in everyone. It’s going to be a war from start to finish. But, we’ll be ready for it.”