HAMILTON, ON – Short Track veteran Steve Book will unload for OSCAAR Hot Rod Series competition at Brighton Speedway this Saturday just 32-points out of the lead in the tour’s points standings.
Fortunately, for Book, Brighton Speedway was the site of his first career series win last season, and could absolutely provide the ideal backdrop for the well-travelled journeyman to close the points gap on current leader Tyler Hawn.
“I like racing everywhere but I’m especially excited for us to get back to Brighton,” smiles Book. “I’m just about the farthest thing from a (dirt track) ringer but we had a real good car under us last September. I think we can build on that run and do just fine this Saturday.”
When asked his thoughts on where he sees his team’s championship aspirations stacking up against the established heavyweights of the division – namely series original and multi-time winner Tyler Hawn – Book offers some veteran savvy on just when the standings truly matter.
“I’ve never looked at (the points standings) as much more than an ego boost at this time of the season,” laughs the likable veteran. “It’s nice to know that we’re up there with some of the top guys on the roster, but the last I checked they don’t hand out the championship to the guy that’s leading in July.”
“Tyler (Hawn) and his guys are some of the best I’ve ever raced with,” continues the journeyman. “They come prepared, they come organized and they have some of the best equipment you could ask for. They’re great to race against because they really do push you to be the best version of yourself.”
Although touring series are aplenty within Ontario’s short track scene, the OSCAAR Hot Rod Series is the only tour that follows a schedule comprised of both pavement and dirt tracks.
As far as Book is concerned, this is one of the many aspects the tour uses to put both engineering and ability back in the hands of the driver and team.
“There’s nothing else like this (tour) right now,” notes Book. “These cars don’t all look the same. They aren’t all built the same. They don’t all handle the same. It really brings back a lot of the old school thinking that guys my age probably grew up on.”
“You have to think on your feet from week to week with these cars because the setup that you have for Jukasa isn’t going to work at Peterborough. And the combination you ran at Delaware probably isn’t going to do much for you at Brighton.”
“Going from pavement to dirt in seven days is one of my favourite challenges about this entire schedule,” continues Book. “I like to think our team is pretty adaptable. We finished second with a real good car at Peterborough last Saturday and now we’re excited to see what we have to do to finish on top this weekend at Brighton.”