MILGROVE, Ontario --- As the days continue to count down until spring with dreams of the snow melting soon, that hasn’t slowed work at Flamboro Speedway. The staff is currently busy putting together pieces for a successful 2019 race season.
At the end of January, the 2019 schedule was released, showcasing weekly racing beginning on Saturday, May 5 all the way until Sunday, October 19. The track’s core divisions are back on the calendar for 2019 – Late Models, Super Stocks, Mini Stocks, Pure Stocks, and Pro 4 Modifieds, each ready to offer their own dish of entertainment. With over 120 different competitors across the five divisions last year, fans were thrilled by door-to-door side-by-side racing on a weekly basis, producing over 35 different individual race winners.
Between the current upgrades to the facility in the pits and grandstands, to the competition on-track, several drivers have already announced their intentions on returning this season in addition to several new faces.
Here are just a couple of the stars to keep an eye on this summer.
Tyler Di Venanzo
After success on the OSCAAR Modified tour, Tyler Di Venanzo will be calling Flamboro Speedway home in 2019 as he moves into the ever-competitive Pro Late Model division. Being his rookie campaign, the teenager is hoping to run steadily in the top-10 this season.
“I don’t think the Pro Late Model class has ever been stronger,” Tyler’s father Rob Di Venanzo noted. “There are so many drivers that are coming into the Pro Late Model ranks this year – a lot of rookies, a lot of experience drivers coming from other series much like our team. I mean, I’ve been around a long time and to get into Pro Late Models is honestly a bit of a dream come true for us. I didn’t expect it would happen this year. So the state of the Pro Late Model division in Ontario is stronger than it’s ever been, and 2019 is going to be a really great year for that class of racers.”
After picking up some wins in Bone Stock competition, Dylan Sharpe will be making the jump up to the Mini Stock division for 2019. Sharpe got his first chance behind the wheel of the car at Frostoberfest, scoring a seventh-place finish overall in the year-end invitational.
“I had some good confidence in it thanks to some testing the day before with Rino Montanari (original builder of the car) and I felt good,” he commented. “I was a bit unprepared and unfortunately had a low fuel situation that really hosed me in the first heat. I thought I had it in the second, which was a wreck/caution fest; however I unfortunately got into it with Wayde Thorne and we drew the checkered caution and put us to the back as I was the “spinner” and he was the “spinee.” “We both agreed we “won” and shook hands after. I just over corrected trying to get around some lapped cars that were in the middle of 3/4 and got into Wayde. Luckily neither of us got roughed up from it, I cut my tire and got a nice kiss, Wayde went for a 360!”
Third-generation racer Jake Watson was able to put together a memorable season at Flamboro Speedway last year, with multiple wins in both the Mini Stock and Super Stock class.
“2018 was definitely a season to remember for sure,” he said. “There were a lot of ups and downs throughout the season. Capturing four feature wins in the Mini Stock and four in the Super Stock is what made the season so memorable.”
He will return to the Milgrove, Ontario oval in 2019, running all of the Mini Stock events this year as he looks to take home his first career track championship.
Wendy Adams will be one of the several females battling for wins at Flamboro Speedway this year as she makes her return to the facility for the second year in a row.
“We are going back to Flamboro Speedway for our second season and looking for an improvement from where we left off,” she said. “We made a lot of changes during the 2018 season that made us better. Since last year was my first time ever on this track, it was an adjustment in learning the track and trusting how far we could push the car.”
Erik Dalla Riva and Rich Schwartzenburg
Spira Racing teammates Erik Dalla Riva and Rich Schwartzenburg have teamed up to share driving duties behind the wheel of the team’s mustang. It is a partnership that both drivers feel will benefit them as they were both looking to take a step back this year.
Dalla Riva made a name for himself in his first season at Flamboro Speedway, scoring his first career feature victory on August 4 to go with 12 top-five’s and 20 top-10’s to take home the prestigious Rookie of the Year Award. He then capped the year off in victory lane by winning Frostoberfest.
Schwartzenburg is also coming off a successful campaign in 2018 that saw him pick up four top-five’s and 20 top-10’s throughout the season at Flamboro Speedway.