COLDWATER, ON – First-generation racer Jade Franklin became the fourth first-time winner of the 2017 Sunset Speedway season on Saturday night. Having struggled through the first half of the season, the head-turning trip to victory lane served as a coronation of sorts for a driver who hopes to become the next ‘can’t miss’ prospect on the Super Stock roster.
“We’ve worked for this feeling every single week for the last three years,” said Franklin upon clearing post-race technical inspection. “This is awesome. It’s tough to explain just how good it feels to win here. It’s a relief as much as it is anything else, because we’ve put so much time and effort into this program”.
“This team has never stopped digging. We never stopped working. I can’t thank these guys enough for standing with me. They knew we could win as a group and I couldn’t be happier to bring this back for them”.
Franklin credited his Duivenvoorden Haulage-backed outfit’s inaugural win to a new setup provided by longtime Simcoe County racer and team member Kevin Reynolds who stepped in to help the fledgling team work through their difficulties.
“We’ve had a couple months where it felt like we’ve been banging our heads against the wall,” admits the Coldwater, ON driver. “We had a setup that just didn’t agree with this car. No matter what we did – we couldn’t get it to work. It wasn’t right for us”.
“We made the change to something that Kevin put together for us and it brought the car to life right away,” added Franklin. “It’s given us new life this season. I’m definitely grateful for Kevin and the direction he’s taking us in right now”.
The NASCAR Super Stock division will return to Sunset Speedway on July 29th for double features – a pair of races that Franklin hopes will play host to a repeat performance of Saturday’s win.
“It’s taken us a couple of years to get here and now I’m ready to do anything I can to make sure it’s not a couple more years before we get to do it again,” remarked Franklin when asked of a possible follow-up to his first career win. “We don’t want to just be a one-hit wonder. I’m positive in what our team can accomplish moving forward”.
“This car felt so good tonight – I can’t wait to jump back in it again. This is the kind of package we’ve been looking for a long time now and I know that we’re good enough to give this division the same kind of challenge next Saturday that we did tonight”.