ORILLIA, ON – With an inordinate spate of rain-outs keeping Sunset Speedway’s Ltd. Late Model division on the proverbial shelf for much of the first two months of the season, drivers up and down the roster are readying themselves for a big return this Sunday night.
The division will serve as the evening’s headliner for the back half of Sunset’s Canada Day weekend double-shot, with twin 35-lap features expected to draw a healthy field of competitors to the Innisfil, ON oval.
Among those competitors counting the hours until race night is Rookie of the Year contender Robbie Sikes, who hopes for the chance to tighten his grip on his newly formed Limited Late Model program.
“It’s just about impossible to get better as a driver when your car is sitting in the shop,” shrugs Sikes in reference to the number of shows Sunset has been forced to rain out this season.
“I’m sure every guy on the roster is frustrated right now, but it’s especially rough for a program like ours because we really do need every single lap to try and find our feet.”
Sikes’ step-up from the Super Stock division – a class he had called home on and off for the better part of a decade – was the result of a venture spearheaded by longtime friend Rick Spencer- Walt and Car Owner Eldon Wallis to give Sikes the opportunity to take his racing to the next level.
“I really can’t thank Rick and Eldon for helping to put this deal together,” says Sikes. “We have all of the pieces we would need to be really successful in this division. This is a really good car and I’m able to lean on Rick – who’s one of the best racers in the country right now.”
Sikes’ start this Sunday will mark his third night behind the wheel of the team’s Limited Late Model, and ‘Ruthless’ is intent on employing the lessons picked up through the team’s first two starts.
“Every second you’re on track with these teams you end up learning more than you ever thought possible,” explains the ORILLIA, ON native. “I’m coming back to the pits and we’re filling up notepads and going over strategy to make sure our next start is even better.”
“All season I can promise you we’ll be faster every single Saturday. Because, every time that window net goes up, I’m working with more information and more confidence in myself and my team.”