2021 Short Track Draft Third Round: Picks #26-51

With the first two rounds of the 2021 Short Track Draft presented by Ryno Classifieds in the books, we turn our focus to the third round.  In this round, we announce the rest of the drivers who made the top 51 picks as determined by the large group of industry experts who voted in this year’s draft.

 

If you missed Wednesday’s top 10 picks, you can catch up now by clicking here or by watching the free Short Track Draft Show on Speed51.TV. You can see the second round (picks #11-15) by clicking here.


Pick #26
Carson Macedo
Age: 24
Hometown: Leemore, CA
Current Level: Sprint Cars
Twitter: @carson_macedo
Last Year’s Pick: 24th

 

Macedo scored seven wins between Sprint Cars in the USA and Midgets in Australia.  Having returned to Jason Johnson Racing for the 2021 season, Macedo has already surpassed his win total with the World of Outlaws from last year with two wins.

 

Pros: He has shown the consistency needed to compete for championships on the Outlaw trail.

Cons: Though he has been consistent, wins with the series haven’t come in droves.

 

Pick #27
Cole Williams
Age:
25
Hometown: Sellersburg, IN
Current Level: Pro Late Models
Twitter: @ColeWilliams46
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

Williams once again figured in the title picture in Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway’s Pro Late Model division, returning to victory lane at the famed venue.  With COVID-19 shaking up schedules, Williams made a few more touring appearances in 2020 as well, taking full advantage of JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour events at tracks such as Nashville and another of his old stomping grounds, Lebanon I-44 Speedway.

 

Pros: Whenever Williams shows up at a Pro Late Model race, he will compete for the win.

Cons: At 25 years old in his final year of Short Track Draft eligibility, Williams appears content to make a livelihood in the short track world, limiting his prospects of moving up the ladder in the eyes of voters.

 

Pick #28
Zeb Wise
Age: 18
Hometown: Angola, IN
Current Level: Sprint Cars
Twitter: @Zeb_Wise01
Last Year’s Pick: 16th

 

 

Wise moved up to Sprint Cars full-time in 2020 chasing the All Star Circuit of Champions with Sam McGhee Motorsports, finishing third in series points.  He formed his own team alongside Wayne Priddy and has already won a weekly show at Attica Raceway Park.

 

Pros: With one year of 410 Sprint Car experience under his belt, he has looked strong so far in 2021.

Cons: He has yet to get that first major Sprint Car win with either the All Stars or World of Outlaws.

 

Pick #29
Christopher Tullis
Age: 
21
Hometown: Dacula, GA
Current Level: Pro Late Models
Twitter: @_christullis24_
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

 

Tullis has emerged on the draft radars in the past year, winning the Show Me The Money Pro Late Model Series championship at Montgomery Motor Speedway before kicking off 2021 with an Alabama 200 triumph.  He also won the Pro Late Model portion of the Georgia Spring Nationals and finished second to Stephen Nasse in the 2021 Baby Rattler.

 

Pros: Tullis has picked up a series of big wins and strong runs in Pro Late Model competition in rapid succession over the past six months.

Cons: Tullis was a relative unknown in the Short Track Draft prior to his recent success, and will need to keep that momentum rolling to continue rising up the board.

 

Pick #30
Jett Noland
Age: 18
Hometown: Orlando, FL
Current Level: Late Models/Trans-Am
Twitter: @jettnoland50
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

In his home state of Florida, Noland has turned many heads for his Pro Late Model performances, especially at New Smyrna Speedway. The Super Late Model side continues to be a work in progress, with greater emphasis on races outside of Florida. Noland has also diversified his racing background quickly, running Trans-Am TA2 in 2020, while in 2021 making debuts in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and Robby Gordon’s Stadium Super Trucks.

 

Pros: Learning to drive many different motorsports at a young age, and even knocking on the door of success.

Cons: Still looking for first win outside Florida PLM’s. Interview and social media interactions still a work in progress.

 

Pick #31
Taylor Gray
Age: 
16
Hometown: Denver, NC
Current Level: ARCA Menards Series
Twitter: @TaylorGray17_
Last Year’s Pick: 22nd

 

Gray made the move to stock cars in 2020, winning an ARCA Menards Series West event at Kern County Raceway Park and finishing eighth in ARCA Menards Series East points.  Gray was also seventh in ARCA Showdown points, with eight top-five finishes over the course of the 2021 ARCA Menards Series season.

 

Pros: Gray had numerous strong runs over the course of his first season in the various divisions of the ARCA Menards Series.

Cons: Injuries sustained in a highway incident have currently sidelined Gray, preventing him from putting in more strong performances to impress judges and postponing his NASCAR Truck Series debut.  We wish Gray a continued speedy recovery and hope to see him back on track soon.

 

Pick #32
Kyle Plott
Age:
 25
Hometown: Marietta, GA
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: @KylePlott
Last Year’s Pick: 47th

 

While Plott is still searching for that return to victory lane, Plott had several strong runs during the 2020 season.  The most notable was perhaps a nail biting second-place finish to this year’s second overall pick, Corey Heim, at CRA SpeedFest that year.

 

Pros: Plott continues to flex his muscle with strong showings in both Pro and Super Late Models throughout the Southeast.

Cons: In his last year of Short Track Draft eligibility, Plott is on a bit of a winning drought and doesn’t travel as much as some of his southeastern counterparts to catch the eyes of voters outside the region.

 

Pick #33
Haeden Plybon
Age: 17
Hometown: Spokane, WA
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: N/A
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

 

Hailing from Spokane, Plybon may be an unknown to many racing enthusiasts back east. But in the Northwest, he has caught a lot of eyes. Moving from Legends to Late Models from 2019 on, Plybon has competed mainly at Stateline Speedway in Idaho, where he has tasted victory. Just a few weeks ago, he broke through for his first Northwest Super Late Model Series victory in the Leonard Evans 150 at Wenatchee Valley Super Oval.

 

Pros: He is making steady progress in Late Models to mix it up and beat the best in his region on some intense bullrings.

Cons: Plybon is a bit of an unknown outside the Pacific Northwest.

 

Pick #34
Daison Pursley
Age: 16
Hometown: Locust Grove, OK
Current Level: Midgets
Twitter: @DaisonPursley
Last Year’s Pick: 40th

 

 

The Oklahoma teenager earned Rookie of the Year honors at the 35th Chili Bowl Nationals back in January, just missing the A-Main in the process.  After several near misses, Pursley earned his first Midget win with Keith Kunz Motorsports in a POWRi event at I-44 Riverside Speedway and has since added a second one at Valley Speedway.

 

Pros: At just 16 years old, Pursley is already in a premier ride in all of Midget racing.

 

Cons: Coming with that premier ride are hefty expectations.  It’s win and win now for Pursley.

 

Pick #35
Kole Raz
Age: 17
Hometown: Lake Oswego, OR
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: @RazKole
Last Year’s Pick: 45th

 

This Oregon youngster has not been afraid to travel across the Wild West since moving to Super Late Models. With a win in the Leonard Evans 150 in 2019 at Washington’s Wenatchee Valley, to beating out Brandon Farrington for the Tucson track title in 2020, Raz is proving himself on the track. His efforts have earned him nationwide recognition with selection to the 2021 Kulwicki Driver Development Program, he’s also competing on the 2021 SRL Southwest Tour Series.

 

Pros: Raz is showing an ability to win at different racetracks, while showing he can make connections with the right people across the country.

Cons: Still looking for that first signature, national attention win. No experience outside of SLM or Legends at current time.

 

Pick #36
Gavan Boschele

Age: 13
Hometown: Mooresville, NC
Current Level: Micro Sprints
Twitter: @WatchGavanRace
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

 

Boschele made the most of Millbridge Speedway’s addition of Micro Sprints to their weekly lineup, winning the track’s first Wednesday Micro Sprint championship.  The young gun held his own against some of the top dirt racers to pass through Millbridge in both weekly events and marquee shows such as the KKM Giveback Classic.

 

Pros: Boschele already shows the savvy of a proven veteran, winning on the track and attracting marquee sponsors off of it.

Cons: While major events such as the Tulsa Shootout and KKM Giveback Classic have raised the profile of Micro Sprint racing considerably, Boschele will have to climb the ladder as he gets older and continue to perform to move up the boards.

 

Pick #37
Daniel Dye
Age: 17
Hometown: DeLand, FL
Current Level: Late Models/ARCA East
Twitter: @danieldye43
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

Dye has transitioned into Super Late Models and ARCA well with Ben Kennedy Racing since the start of 2020.  He qualified sixth and finished a respectable 14th in his first Snowball Derby attempt last December, and has also finished second in the Florida Governor’s Cup and third in the Rattler 250.

 

Pros: Dye is very active on social media through various sources, and is a very marketable driver.

Cons: He is still searching for that first noteworthy win.

 

Pick #38
Jake Johnson
Age:
18
Hometown: Rehoboth, MA
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: N/A
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

While Jake Johnson’s rise to the Top 51 appeared to happen overnight, it is a process that took a little more time than that. While successfully winning in both Late Models and Pro Stocks at his home track Seekonk Speedway straight out of Legends, his team made the bold choice to compete at the Snowflake 100 in 2017 & 2018 at Five Flags Speedway. Despite struggles both those times, Johnson learned towards the future, finishing Top 10 in 2019 and then coming through the field to win in 2020.

 

Pros: Mellow and level headed for his age, Johnson has proven he’s got what it takes to compete nationally.

Cons: Media skills are work in progress. Ironically, he’s still looking for his first touring win in New England competition.

 

Pick #39
Ronnie Williams
Age: 24
Hometown: Tolland, CT
Current Level: Modifieds
Twitter: @ronniewilliams_
Last Year’s Pick: 31st

The top fulltime Modified driver 25 and under currently, Williams has become a tremendous duel-threat driver in New England. Weekly, he has won two SK Modified titles at Stafford and is always a threat to win at all three Connecticut tracks when he shows up. In the Open ranks, wins in Stafford, Modified Racing Series, and Tri-Track Open Modified Series competition are all there, including the 2019 Tri-Track title.

 

Pros: Never mincing his words out of the car, he never eases up on keeping himself from falling behind on the track.

Cons: No full-body racing experience and has yet to win on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, a considered prerequisite for Mod drivers looking to go to the next level.

 

Pick #40
Austin Beers
Age: 17
Hometown: Northampton, PA
Current Level: Tour-type Modifieds
Twitter: @AustinBeers_19
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

Continuing this Pennsylvania racing lineage, Beers has shown signs of potential as he continues to build himself up in the Modified ranks. Winning Sportsman Modified titles at both Evergreen Raceway and Mahoning Valley, Beers is continuing his growth with the Race of Champions Modified Series. Winning Rookie of the Year in 2019, he followed it up with runner-up in the championship in an abbreviated 2020 season.

 

Pros: He is not afraid to mix things up against more experienced drivers, while also having dad Eric Beers as well as Matt Hirschman as your mentors can be of help.

Cons: Exclusively a Modified driver currently and still looking for the first major victory.

 

Pick #41
Jake Finch
Age: 15
Hometown: Lynn Haven, FL
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: @jamessfinch
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

 

Finch makes his first appearance in the Short Track Draft after multiple Outlaw Stock wins at Five Flags Speedway and a runner-up in the Snowflake 100.  He is making the jump to Super Late Models for the 2021 season.

 

Pros: He has shown promise in his limited starts in a Late Model.

Cons: Seat time – he has less than 15 starts in a Pro or Super Late Model.

 

Pick #42
Gracie Trotter
Age: 19
Hometown: Denver, NC
Current Level: ARCA Menards Series
Twitter: @gracietrotter11
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

Riding momentum after an ARCA Menards Series West win at The Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in 2020, Trotter makes her first appearance in the top 51 of the Short Track Draft.  Trotter made history with that victory, becoming the first female driver to win under the ARCA banner.

 

Pros: Trotter put her name in the record books with last year’s win in Las Vegas.

Cons: We didn’t see much of Trotter outside of ARCA West in 2020, and she’s off to a sluggish start in the ARCA Menards Series in 2021.

 

Pick #43
Cayden Lapcevich
Age: 21
Hometown: Grimsby, Ontario
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: @CaydenLapcevich
Last Year’s Pick: 46th

 

Charging to the top up in Canada in 2016 with the NASCAR Pinty’s Series title, Lapcevich has also shown his mettle in the U.S.A. Competing in both standard and Outlaw Super Late Models, he scored a major in the latter at Toledo Speedway in the Glass City 200. When he does compete with the template body, there’s a good chance he’ll be in the middle of the action, like when he sat on the pole in the 2020 Winchester 400.

 

Pros: A steady hand in all manner of full body cars, Lapcevich has been in the bright spotlight before, knowing what to expect.

Cons: That said, since 2017 he has not competed enough to be in a title hunt, making a smattering of starts in various races since 2018.

 

Pick #44
Justin Mondeik
Age: 24
Hometown: Gleason, WI
Current Level: Super Late Models
Twitter: @JustinMondeik44
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

 

The driver of the No. 44 goes 44th after winning 14 races last season, more than any other driver in the state of Wisconsin.  Mondeik also added track championships at State Park Speedway and Golden Sands Speedway.

 

Pros: Under the watchful eye of Toby Nuttleman, Mondeik has become a favorite anytime he shows up to the track.

Cons: Aside from a pair of trips to the World Series, Mondeik has preferred to stay close to home.

 

Pick #45
Matt Swanson
Age: 21
Hometown: Acton, MA
Current Level: Modifieds
Twitter: @mattswanson89
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

 

At the ripe age of 14, Swanson jumped into the draft mix by winning the Star Speedway championship in their former Modified division. From 2015 on, he has slowly risen to become a great mark of consistency to this day. He also took on the responsibility of driving the famous Bohler Racing Ole Blue 3 in mid-2018, earning the fulltime nod in 2019.

 

Pros: It is extremely rare to see Swanson in the back of the field, scoring top five points finishes in both the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and Tri-Track Open Modified Series.

Cons: The wins have escaped Swanson’s grasp in the touring ranks, with Swanson finally earning his first in the Modified Racing Series in Gary Casella’s No. 25 in 2020.

 

Pick #46
Kyle Crump
Age: 25
Hometown: Brighton, MI
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: @KyleCrumpRacing
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

After narrowly making the top 100 last year, Crump makes a big jump up the draft boards in 2021 after a runner-up finish in the Winchester 400.  Crump has been seen dabbling in the Outlaw Super Late Model world in recent years, with a best finish of second in the 2019 Glass City 200.

 

Pros: Crump is making the most of his starts behind the wheel of both a Template and Outlaw-bodied Super Late Model.

Cons: With this being his last draft-eligible year, the clock is ticking.

 

Pick #47
Brittney Zamora

Age: 21
Hometown: Kennewick, WA
Current Level: ARCA/Late Models
Twitter: @brittneyz52
Last Year’s Pick: 
42nd

 

Zamora performed well when she raced in 2020, including top-five finishes with the Northwest Super Late Model Series at South Sound Speedway and Wenatchee Valley Super Oval and nearly cracking the top 10 in the Pro Late Model portion of the All American 400 after starting 24th.  However, it was a considerable step back in her racing schedule from years prior.

 

Pros: Zamora continues to shine whenever she is on track, especially in Late Model competition, and she’s using her platform for plenty of charity work away from the racetrack

Cons: She didn’t see much seat time in 2020, dropping a few spots on the draft board as a result.

 

Pick #48
Kaylee Bryson
Age: 20
Hometown: Muskogee, OK
Current Level: Midgets/Late Models
Twitter: @kaylee11b
Last Year’s Pick: Undrafted

 

A former Tulsa Shootout champion in Micro Sprints, Bryson showcased her talent in a big way in her first full season in a Midget with Keith Kunz Motorsports.  She already has two wins on asphalt in a Pro Late Model in a short period of time, both coming at South Sound Speedway.

 

Pros: Bryson has taken to asphalt quickly with two wins.

Cons: She has yet to win in a Midget.

 

Pick #49
Zack Mitchell
Age: 25
Hometown: Enoree, SC
Current Level: Dirt Late Models
Twitter: @Zack_Mitchell57
Last Year’s Pick: 37th

Entering Dirt Late Models at age 15, Zack Mitchell competed hard to establish his footing. Since 2017, he has not looked back, winning the Carolina Clash Series title that year, then following up with three-straight ULTIMATE Super Late Model Series titles in 2018, 2019 & 2020. The national spotlight was upon Mitchell in 2020, with his first World of Outlaws Late Model win at Volunteer Speedway.

 

Pros: He has established a great championship reputation in the Southeast. Now, he is working to better his national image.

Cons: While competing in national tour races, he has not done so outside of the Southeast much to this point.

 

Pick #50
Caden Kvapil

Age: 13
Hometown: Mooresville, NC
Current Level: Late Models/Micro Sprints/Outlaw Karts
Twitter: @CadenKvapil
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

Just like his older brother Carson, who was selected early in the second round of the 2021 Short Track Draft, Caden Kvapil has proven he can win on both pavement and dirt.  He was the first to win a feature in all four of Millbridge Speedway’s Outlaw Kart classes, and has now moved up to the Micro Sprints there.  Last fall, Kvapil also won his first Pro Late Model race at Florence Motor Speedway as part of the South Carolina 400.

 

Pros: Caden comes from a strong racing lineage and has already proven to be a capable racer in his own right.

Cons: The competition will only get tougher for Kvapil as he works his way up the racing ladder.

 

Pick #51
Ryan Kuhn
Age: 20
Hometown: East Bridgewater, MA
Current Level: Late Models
Twitter: @RyanKuhnRacing
Last Year’s Pick: Outside Top 51

 

Not skipping a beat out of Legend Cars, Kuhn has taken to full size racecars, winning Seekonk Speedway’s 2018 Late Model title in his second go of it. He has gone on to compete two full tours with the American Canadian Tour, winning rookie honors win 2019, and finishing third in points the past two seasons. He has also shown promise in Super Late Models, even winning the pole in the 2019 Oxford 250. In 2021, his potential caught the eyes of the Kulwicki Driver Development Program, as they named him a finalist for the year.

 

Pros: Kuhn has also gained national attention on iRacing, especially in the pandemic lockdown. His real world accomplishments have helped him to already make valuable connections.

Cons: He’s another consistent driver still in search of that first breakout win.

 

-Text by Speed51 Staff

2021 Short Track Draft Third Round: Picks #26-51