Super Late Model sophomore Corey Jones has confirmed he will once again follow the OSCAAR Super Late Model Tour across Ontario in 2015.
The Baden, ON native worked tirelessly through a rookie campaign wrought with a pair of blown motors and a dramatic late-season accident that threatened to end his year prematurely. Still, despite his nightmare 2014 season, Jones is brimming with optimism entering his sophomore run.
“I’ve decided just to chalk that entire season up to one big, long, tough learning curve,” laughs the affable youngster when asked about the difficulties his family-run team encountered.
“Our rookie season wasn’t all bad, though,” continues Jones. “Being on the road with the tour was a phenomenal experience. Rubbing elbows with drivers that I’ve looked up to since I was in a Go-Kart is something I wouldn’t trade for the world. These guys are masters of their craft, and being around them was like going to college for my racing career. It felt as though we picked up more knowledge every time the trailer door swung open.”
Jones is quick to admit that the team went over their budget fairly early in the season, and credits his volunteer crew for instilling in him the resolve to return to competition.
“After we blew two motors to start the season, I was positive we were done,” smiles the first-generation competitor. “Then, when we destroyed the front end of our car at Sunset [Speedway] in August, I thought the same thing. But, these guys just wouldn’t let me give up. It’s an awesome feeling to be surrounded by people that want it just as bad as you do. These people don’t have to be here. I don’t have the money to pay them – they volunteer their time. And when I saw the drive and determination that they had to get back out there, I knew I’d be letting them down if I packed it in for the year.”
When looking ahead to 2015, it’s clear that while Jones respects his competition, he believes his J Star Motorsports team has what it takes to ascend to the top of the tour.
“The drivers on the OSCAAR tour are some of the best in the province, without question,” offers Jones. “I admire any driver that can run up front on this tour, because there is no such thing as an easy week with these guys.
“I have zero doubt that our team has the fundamentals to make a name for ourselves this season,” continues Jones. “We’ve been working all winter to make our program better. I don’t think we’ve had more than three weekends away from the shop all off-season. Finding a way to be better is all I think about.
“2015 is going to be a big season for us. I won’t be satisfied until I feel as though our program has reached its potential. We have great equipment, incredible sponsors and a top flight team. Now, we just have to put it all together.”
-By Spencer Lewis, Speed51.com Canadian Editor – Twitter: @itsspencerlewis
-Photo credit: Thompson Photography