AURORA, ON – Multi-time Late Model feature winner Amanda Balson will roll off for her first start of the 2017 season this Saturday, as her GTA Racing Design-backed No. 16 readies for Peterborough Speedway’s ‘Fan Appreciation Night’ this Saturday, June 3rd.
Balson acquired a McColl Racing Enterprises chassis from fellow Peterborough Speedway standout Ryan Kimball over the winter, with this Saturday’s ‘toonie night’ marking her first start behind the wheel of her new ride.
“I’d like to think that we have a piece that’s going to be tough to beat anytime we roll in the pits”, smiles Balson. “This team really has worked tirelessly all off-season to turn this program into the best we’ve ever had. I’m more excited now than I have been in a really, really long time”.
“This car looks fast just sitting still,” adds the former Peterborough Speedway champion. Every time I walk in the shop I’ve been counting down the days until we can have it on track. With this car and this team, I feel as though we have as good a chance – or better – than anyone else in the Peterborough pit area”.
For Balson, a busy work climate is likely to result in a compacted racing schedule in 2017, meaning the Aurora, ON competitor will work twice as hard to enjoy each and every appearance this season.
“We come back year after year because we want to have fun,” explains the fan-favourite. “I’m past the point in my life where I’m working to endear myself to NASCAR teams. Racing for me, these days, is about having a great time with my team and putting together a performance that my family and my sponsors can be proud of. That will be our goal every single time you see our trailer door come down”.
Peterborough’s headline class has been a hot topic as of late, with competitors and industry insiders praising the speedway for its compelling blend of talent – both old and new. Balson, to her credit, is no different when asked her opinion.
“There aren’t a lot of weak links on the roster these days,” says the AJK Racing representative on the current state of the division. “The veterans are still there getting the job done and all of the young guys that have been watching and learning for a few years have gotten awfully tough to handle. It makes for an interesting dynamic whether you’re a competitor or a fan”.
While Balson remains coy in regards to how many races her team has planned for 2017, she maintains their approach will be the same in each one.
“We’re approaching every start like it’s a one-off appearance,” says the veteran. “We aren’t racing for a championship, so we’re more-so just looking to take this car to the front every chance we get”.
“I’m not sure how many more seasons I have left doing this – I think there are a lot of drivers that don’t,” adds Balson. “I just want to take advantage of the opportunity that’s right in front of me, while it’s in front of me. This season, I have the chance to come out and win a few races, and that’s exactly what I’m going to try and do”.
” Tomorrow would not even be made possible, without all the great work, support and sponsors I have. Especially, Cochrane Automotive, London Recreational, Bennett Gm and Castrol”.