(Stafford Springs, CT)—As Amanda West prepares for her fifth full season of SK Light racing at Stafford Speedway, she has a multitude of reasons to be excited to get back behind the wheel of her #15 McKinney Construction car. West comes into the 2023 season fresh off of her best season finishing 6th in the points standings thanks to career high 5 top-5 and 12 top-10 finishes. But perhaps most importantly, West has armed herself with a championship winning car after she and her team purchased Todd Owen’s modified that won the last 2 SK Modified® championships.
“I’m more excited than I’ve ever been for a season,” said West. “I would say definitely we’re more prepared than we’ve ever been and that’s all due to the sponsorship from McKinney Construction and getting the car from Todd Owen. We have exciting things ahead of us and with us joining forces with Todd and his Chassis Pro team, I think it’s going to be a strong season and I’m looking forward to it. I didn’t really know Todd that well before we bought the car from him but now I’ve been to his shop a few times and Todd is knowledgeable, organized, and all of his guys are extremely dedicated to what they do. A bonus of working with Todd is that he seems to be pretty laid back so there hasn’t been any extra pressure, it’s just put a good car together and go out and have some fun. Todd is coming off of back to back championships so he knows his stuff and his Chassis Pro cars always seem to run up front in the SK Lights, so I have high hopes for that and now it’s all up to me as the driver to see what we can do. I have to thank Larry McKinney and McKinney Construction, we wouldn’t have been able to put all this together without his help and support and also thanks to our other sponsors Soucy’s Concrete, Sign Pro, NAPA Steve of Vernon, Ceric Fabrication, Tick Mike, Buzzy for the transmission, Sullivan Landscaping, and FK Rod Ends.”
While West set career highs in top-5 and top-10 finishes last season, she remains in search of her first feature victory at Stafford. West’s best career finish has been a 2nd place she achieved in the second race of the 2020 season but her new car has filled her with confidence that she can finally earn that breakthrough victory.
“My goal is to chase my first win and hopefully get more than one win,” said West. “After 5 full seasons, I think that first win is overdue for us and I’m ready to get my first win, so we’ll see what happens. More than ever before we have good equipment and I know I can get the job done and hopefully we can come out of the gate strong to start the season. I’ve always dreamed of winning a race but it’s not something that I’ve really played out in my head yet. I would be excited for my crew, especially for my Dad because we’ve been working at this for a long time now and Larry McKinney because of all his help getting prepared for this season.”
A first victory is not the only thing that West has on her mind for the 2023 season. She is hoping that not only will she claim her first win this season, but that her first win might open the door for more wins to follow which would lead to being in contention for the 2023 SK Light championship.
“With Todd’s car being a back to back championship winning car, we’re also hoping we can chase after the championship or at least be in the running for it,” said West. “Last year I learned a lot and I feel like I improved as a driver. I’m not really a points racer and Todd is also not much of a points racer so we’re here to have fun and go after wins. With the good equipment we have underneath us, I hope we can get the job done.”
West’s first opportunity to capture a feature victory will come on Sunday, April 30 as part of NAPA Spring Sizzler® Weekend. The NAPA Spring Sizzler® kicks off on Saturday, April 29, and will consist of two 40-lap NAPA Duel qualifying races for the Open Modified division. The 40-lap races will each pay $3,500 to win and will set the field for Sunday’s NAPA Spring Sizzler®. The American Canadian Tour (ACT) Late Models will also make their return to Stafford Speedway on April 29th with a 75-lap feature with over 40 cars expected for the race. Limited Late Model, Street Stock, and Vintage All-Star divisions will complete Saturday’s racing program.
Sunday, April 30th will play host to the $20,000 to win 51st NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler®. Filling out Sunday’s racing card will be qualifying and feature racing for the SK Modified®, SK Light Modified, and Late Model divisions along with last chance qualifiers for the Spring Sizzler®.
For more information, visit staffordspeedway.com, follow Stafford Speedway on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or contact the track office at 860-684-2783.