The APC United Late Model Series will be bringing their exciting brand of Pro Late Model racing to race tracks throughout the province of Ontario once again in 2018. This season, the series will be making a handful of changes in hopes of creating even better racing than what they had before.
Luke Ramsay, the President of the APC United Late Model Series, gave Speed51.com some insight on the upcoming season and the changes made to keep the series fresh and popular.
“We’ve changed the starting format, the top ten is going to be inverted based on points with all of the guys that have 100-percent attendance. So, if they qualify in the top ten, they’ll start in the top ten,” Ramsay explained.
“We’ve got a new shock rule, as well as a new tire program for those that run 100-percent. They’ll receive up to eight free tires throughout the year. After the first race, anyone that’s run the first three races will receive a free tire from that race on. In the last race, if they have 100-percent attendance they’ll receive two free tires. So, I would say these are the three major changes this year.”
With the changes, Ramsay is very confident in the continuing popularity of the series.
“We’re fairly confident we will have full fields, 20-plus cars for all the races and 24 to 26 for some of the other shows.”
As reported previously on Speed51.com, the inaugural Canadian Short Track Nationals at Jukasa Motor Speedway is thought to be the most popular event among the APC drivers. But before that big race, the series will kick off their 2018 campaign May 19 at Sunset Speedway and the drivers are more than ready to get to it.
Jr. Farrelly, driver of the No. 72 car, is one of those drivers who has a lot to be excited for.
“We feel pretty confident. We purchased a new car off Mike McColl, it was a house car,” Farrelly explained. “It’s obviously a really good piece, it was a top-five car every time it went out. We’re looking to definitely improve on last year’s efforts and hopefully battle for some wins.”
Coming out of the gates with a new car, Farrelly has decided to honor a dominant short track racer from way back.
“This year we came out with a special tribute paint scheme for Junior Hanley. I’m named after him,” he explained. “I’ve been a long-time follower and friend. We went back with one of his early paint schemes from the early 80’s, when he dominated the short era. It’s a good way to throw a tribute out to a legend.”
A common word used to describe the APC series is “professional.” Among drivers, teams and fans the APC series is highly praised for the way they present the series.
“I think it’s the best run series right now in Canada,” Farrelly claimed. “They’re very professional, the way they run everything, the sponsorships, their teching, it’s just professionally run all the way through. Its growing every year in popularity and more people want to be a part of it and it’s just the place to be and race right now.”
Not only is the series growing in popularity with drivers, but with the fans as well. Fans are traveling from Southern Ontario to follow the series because the environment at the race track when the APC Series is present is unlike any other.
“I think it definitely brings a certain excitement to the race track. It’s getting quiet a following, people are not only going to their home tracks to watch it but you see the different fans from week to week so they’re obviously traveling with the series.”
Billy Schwartzenburg has been with the series since its inception. Now going into the fourth year, he has some new expectations for himself, as well as the season ahead.
“For the past few years we’ve been in contention for running at the front and racing for wins. We’ve had a couple top threes but more than anything I’d really like to park this thing in victory lane,” he said. “In 2018, fourth year in Late Models, I feel like it’s really time for us to step it up and show that we deserve to be at the front.”
The APC series is doused in talent and holds some of the most competitive and tight racing Ontario offers. APC is often praised by the fans and the drivers of the series for its incredible structure and unique qualities.
“The series is great and it feels extremely professional,” Schwartzenburg said. “Everybody is on top of their game. You have the best of the best, the best drivers with the best equipment. It’s tough, its challenging, and I look forward to that every time I go onto the track.”
The APC Series is hosting a total of nine races this season and will visit the following race track: Sunset Speedway (twice), Flamboro Speedway (twice), Peterborough Speedway, Delaware Speedway (twice), Sauble Speedway and Jukasa Motor Speedway.
The traveling series will enter their fourth year stronger than ever before, with new strategies, new rewards for drivers, and a lot of support flowing their way.
-By Kendra Adams, Speed51.com Correspondent
-Photo credit: APC