SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Mother Nature is often the toughest competitor in dirt track racing. Taylor Ferns has had to battle rain and inclement weather the last several weeks, which have prevented her from climbing aboard her 410-winged sprint car. She looks to put all of that behind her this weekend, as she heads to Northwest Ohio for a night of racing at Attica Raceway Park.
Ferns will be in action with the Fremont Attica Sprint Title (F.A.S.T.) on Saturday, August 16 in the Jimmy’s Towing/Indy Race Parts Maxim. The racing program will begin with hot laps, followed by time trials, heat races and a 30-lap A-Feature.
“I’ve been at the race shop helping out every day, so that keeps me focused on it, even if we haven’t been on the track for a few weeks,” said Ferns. “I’ve used a GoPro camera every race this year, so I’ve been going back and watching a lot of the races from earlier this year the last few weeks. Always thinking about racing and having it fresh in your mind is a good way to stay focused.”
The 18-year-old has raced three times at Attica Raceway Park in 2014. She led laps in her debut at the third-mile on May 9, before a spin relegated her to a 14th-place finish. She finished third in her heat race that night. Ferns returned to Attica on the Fourth of July and came home 16th in the A-Feature. On July 18, at the high-banked bullring, she crossed the finish line 13th. She opened the night by recording the eight-fastest lap in time trials of the 28 entries and then finished third in the second heat race.
“Last time we were at Attica we were fast in qualifying, even though we went out later in the order,” she shared. “Attica is a tricky track and every time we have gone back, we have improved. Hopefully we’ll make an even bigger improvement this weekend. If we can start up front and run up front and get a solid finish, we’ll call it a good day.”
Ferns most recently raced on July 19 at Butler Motor Speedway in Michigan, where she finished sixth. After getting upside in her heat race, she lined up 17th and powered her way through the field, passing the most cars of any driver in attendance.
“At the smaller tracks we’ve been running like Attica and Fremont, if you start up front, you definitely want to keep your nose clean,” Ferns said. “The best way to do that is to start at the front and take the lead right away. If you start more towards the back, you can’t waste any time and have to work your way through there. Your approach in the feature usually depends on where you start, which is dictated by where you qualify, so time trials plays a major role each night.”
Last weekend, the 2011 USAC D1 Midget Series champion was scheduled to compete in a pair of races with the OVSCA in West Virginia, but was sidelined by inclement weather.
Ferns has one win this season in a 410-winged sprint car, with that coming in an OVSCA event at Southern Ohio Speedway on June 6. Along with winning the main event, she also set a new track record in qualifying that night. Ferns has earned seven top-10 finishes this season, in her return to 410-winged sprint cars for the first time in nearly four seasons, after competing in a variety of racing machines over the last few years.
The winningest female driver in USAC history will continue to compete in 410-winged sprint car races in the Ohio Valley region for the remainder of the season.
Taylor Ferns and Ferns Racing would like to thank their valued partners: Jimmy’s Towing Recovery & Transport, Indy Race Parts, Motor City Auto Transport Inc., National Auto Placement, Project Podium, Women’s Sports Foundation, Lyn St. James Women in the Winner’s Circle Foundation, FK Rod Ends, Lucas Oil, K&N Filters, Lansing Sanitary Supply (LSS), Simpson Race Products, ButlerBuilt, Allstar Performance, Stanton Racing Engines, Hoosier Tire Midwest, Race4Girls and Racing2Cure.
Keep up to date
For the latest news, results and information on Taylor Ferns and Ferns Racing and to view a full 2014 schedule, visit TaylorFerns.com. Follow Taylor on Twitter at @TaylorFerns and like her on Facebook.