Thirty Four year old Mark Laakso is a rookie at Laird Raceway. It is his first year racing and he has started out in the Laird Modified division. Mark said, “I ran Dan Byrnes car two nights last year. I got the bug and that was it, I couldn’t just sit and watch any more. Lots of people said to me, ‘Don’t start with the Modifieds, start with a Four Banger or a Factory Stock.’ Once I drove the Modified though I wanted to get one. ”
Mark purchased his car off track owner Donnie Varcoe. The car was previously run by Kevin Oicle last year, and Jamie Johnson a few years back, both had good results with the machine. Mark said, “I like the car, it’s good. There’s lots to know and learn. I just started. I ran the back of the pack the first couple nights. This is the second night I ran my spot.”
Our sixth racenight of the season got started with warm weather and overcast skies. We held a full show, including Prouse Motors Super Late Models; it was our midseason championships with trophies awarded to winners of the features in all four divisions. The largest crowd of the season was out to watch some great action. The Maitland Motors Factory Stocks, Dynatype Motorsports Laird Modifieds, and Northern Fencing Factory Fours each ran an Autrailian Pursuit, two heats, and a feature. The Super Late Models ran a single heat and a feature.
It was Halloween in August, with a candy toss for kids during intermission. Kids were also invited to dress up in their Halloween costumes and go trick or treating in the pits at the end of the race night.
The track timing system was not working at the beginning of the night due to a broken cable, so qualifying was cancelled and drivers ran their race orders for the night according to their points standings.
After opening ceremonies the night got started with Australian Pursuits in the Modified, Factory Stock, and Factory Four divisions.
Maverick MacDonald Jr. is the driver of the #86 Laird Modified car. Mav got interested in racing through his dad, Mav Sr. who has raced on and off at Laird since the track opened and his grandfather Angus MacDonald. Mav Jr. started racing in go-karts when he was about 10. The young man is now 22 years of age and is demonstrating his racing experience this season by currently leading the points battle in his division.
Mav started racing at Laird in the Stock Four division in the 2007 season at the age of 14. Long time fans will remember his station wagon, nicknamed the “Grocery Getter” by then track announcer Greg Brazeau. The car was driven previously by Cody MacLean. Mav said, “I think some guy has that car, just rotting in a barn now.” Mav then got into a modified in the 2009 season for a race or two at Laird.
Thursday July 16th marked the 5th racenight of the 2015 season. We had “Young Bloods Night” featuring interviews of some of our teenaged drivers by track announcer Spanky Robinson on the frontstretch at intermission.
The night got started under clear skies and warm weather. The Canadian national anthem was sung by guest Brent Royer, then cars fired up and our racenight began with Australian Pursuits in the Maitland Motors Factory Stock, Dynatype Motorsports Modified, and Northern Fencing Factory Four divisions. Prouse Motors Super Late models were also running during the evening.