MOUNT BRYDGES, ON – With a Pro Late Model landscape that seems to be in constant flux in Ontario, the presence of a somewhat revolving door of top-level talent has kept headlines interesting throughout the 2018 season.
However, despite media coverage being at an all-time high for a division that is as hot as its ever been, one driver that has somehow flown under the radar this season – despite amassing a very impressive 2018 campaign – is second-generation star Jake Sheridan.
“I’m not sure our team has really even noticed what people have been saying – or not saying – about us,” shrugs the affable teenager with a smile. “Every week we’re just concerned with putting together a fast car and making sure we take advantage of every chance we have to get on the racetrack.”
“Our season is so short compared to teams in other parts of North America, so we really try and learn as much as we can every time we’re at the speedway,” adds Sheridan. “My Dad’s always told me that I can learn something from every guy on this (APC United Late Model Series) roster as long as I’m paying attention – so that’s what I work real hard at doing.”
The rising star made sure to take advantage of each opportunity presented to him this season, and the results were not far behind. By the time the dust had settled, Sheridan had secured 3rd place in the 2018 APC United Late Model Series championship standings – tallying the tour’s Rookie of the Year title in the process – registering a head-turning 5 top-5s with 8 top-10s in 9 series starts.
“I’m not sure we could ever have thought we’d hit the ground running the way we did,” admits the former Super Stock standout. “We looked at going out on tour as the best way to tackle the learning curve in these cars. Getting a different look in every race was a huge deal and going up against elite-level teams only made me better.”
In addition to his APC Series exploits, Sheridan further impressed in a pair of open-competition events to close out the season, finishing in the top-5 at Peterborough Speedway’s Autumn Colours Classic before winning the Grisdale Triple Crown portion of Flamboro Speedway’s Frostoberfest.
“It was important to us to show that we can run well even if it’s not a tour race,” explains Sheridan. “Peterborough and Flamboro are two of the toughest places we’re ever going to go. So, the fact that we could come up big in their biggest races of the year was a giant moment for me.”
“Right now, we’re just riding high off of how well we finished our year,” adds the likeable freshman. “We’re already putting together our plans for next year and I’m hoping we can announce that we’re coming back to the (APC United Late Model Series) tour fulltime. It’s all going to come down to sponsorship support – but fulltime on the tour is what we’re aiming for.”