(Stafford Springs, CT)—For over 10 years at Stafford Speedway, the Monday night Wild Thing Kart Series has been providing young driver talent and that trend will continue in 2017 with 14-year old Travis Hydar moving from the Junior Outlaw division into the DARE Stock division.
Hydar began his racing career at age 10 driving go karts in league competition at On Track Karting where he set track records in all three divisions he raced in. From there, Hydar moved up to the Junior Outlaw division at age 12 where he recorded a best finish of fourth. Now for the 2017 season, Hydar will have his eyes set on racing for Rookie of the Year honors in the DARE Stock division at Stafford.
“I’m very excited about joining the DARE Stock division at Stafford,” said Hydar. “I feel like I’m a pretty quick learner and I think I’ll be able to get the hang of the DARE Stocks pretty quickly. I’d like to think that a top-10 finish could be a pretty achievable goal for us and I’d like to win Rookie of the Year. In my racing career so far, each time I’ve gone into a new division I’ve been able to win Rookie of the Year so I’d like to be able to continue that streak. I’m sure there’s going to be some good competition between rookie drivers in the DARE Stock division this season so I’m sure it’s going to be a tough challenge.”
The Wild Thing Kart Series has not only provided young driver talent to the various ranks at Stafford, but the drivers who have moved up from the WTK Series have found a great deal of success early on in their Stafford careers. Ronnie Williams has won races in both the SK Modified® and SK Light divisions, Daniel Wesson has been a multiple feature winner in the SK Lights, Paul Arute, Austin Bessette, and Bryan Narducci have won races in the Limited Late Model division, and Alexandra and Ryan Fearn have both won multiple feature events in the DARE Stock division. There have also been several drivers who have won races in multiple divisions that came from Wild Thing Karts. David Arute has won in both SK Lights and Limited Late Models, Marcello Rufrano has won in both the SK Lights and DARE Stocks, while Frank L’Etoile has won in both Limited Late Models and DARE Stocks as well as being a 2-time DARE Stock track champion. With WTK drivers finding a high level of success, Hydar is confident that he too can find NAPA Victory Lane.
“Wade Gagner runs a really good program on Monday nights helping kids get their feet wet in racing and seeing some of the drivers who have moved up it gives me some confidence that I can have some of the same success that they’ve enjoyed at Stafford,” said Hydar.
As Hydar embarks on his rookie campaign, he will will also find a boost of confidence behind the wheel of a potent car. Hydar and his family purchased the #11 machine that Tyler Trott drove for the past three seasons in Stafford’s DARE Stock division and collected a total of 6 wins and a pair of top-3 finishes in the points.
“It gives me a lot of extra confidence knowing that the car that I’ll be driving has won a bunch of races at Stafford,” said Hydar. “With this being a whole new ballgame for us, it’s nice to have a decent car to start out with so we can focus more on learning to drive the car and setting it up rather than worrying about if we have a good car or not. We’ve been working hard on the car and going through it like a normal off season. The Trott’s said that they’d help us out with the car so that’s another positive for us. Going from the karts with little to no suspension is going to be a big step moving up to the DARE Stock cars with a lot of suspension travel.”
With Hydar just getting started racing on the ½ mile at Stafford, he has dreams of one day racing in the track’s premier SK Modified® division. With his karting background, Hydar thinks that would be a natural fit for himself after first gaining some experience in the DARE Stock division.
“I’d like to one day race in the SK Modified® division,” said Hydar. “If I can get around the track pretty well in the DARE Stock, that would be a great accomplishment and I can use it as a nice stepping stone to one day hopefully race in the SK Modifieds®.”
Hydar will get his first taste of racing at Stafford Speedway as part of the 46th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler on April 28-30. Tickets for the “Greatest Race in the History of Spring” are on sale now at the Speedway Box Office. Tickets are priced at $40.00 for adult general admission tickets, $5.00 for children ages 6-14, and children ages 5 and under are admitted free of charge when accompanied by an adult. Reserved seating is priced at $42.00 for all ages. As always, Stafford Motor Speedway offers free parking with overnight parking available. All tickets are good for both Saturday and Sunday admission. All ticket prices include 10% CT Admission Tax.
For more information on the 46th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler, or to order tickets, contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at 860-684-2783 or visit us on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.