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CAN AM SUMMER STARTER RETURN TO LANCE WILLIX OVER

CAN AM SUMMER STARTER RETURN TO LANCE WILLIX OVER

LAFARGEVILLE, NY - May 25, 1998 was the last time the popular Summer Starter had been run and during the Golden Jubilee Season at the Can-Am Speedway, staff and management decided to bring it back. The race and finish did not disappoint.

THIS WEEK AT CAN-AM

THIS WEEK AT CAN-AM

LAFARGEVILLE, NY - The Golden Jubilee Season has been one for the history books and this coming Friday night a long time favorite will make its return to the speedway, after 26 years of sitting on the sidelines. May 25th 1998, a budding superstar named Tim McCreadie took the checkered flag in the Summer Starter

In The Dirt with Tim Baltz

In The Dirt with Tim Baltz

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Can-Am Speedway 2024! Article 10/50

Can-Am Speedway 2024! Article 10/50

LAFARGEVILLE, NY - One of those drivers that kept fans on the edge of their seat every week was Joyceville Ontario’s Rick Wilson, who thrilled crowds weekly at the speedway with his fast pace and aggressive style, that made him a star over the years.

Golden Jubilee: The Joyceville Jet Rick Wilson
865
5/1/2024

5/1/2024

Can-Am Speedway


Golden Jubilee: The Joyceville Jet Rick Wilson

The 2024 Golden Jubilee season is underway at the Can Am Speedway in Lafargeville New York and we continue to look back at some of the past races, drivers and moments that we all remember from the past 50 years.

One of those drivers that kept fans on the edge of their seat every week was Joyceville Ontario’s Rick Wilson, who thrilled crowds weekly at the speedway with his fast pace and aggressive style, that made him a star over the years.

He won races, made fans cheer and got them on their feet and always gave them something to talk about, that man was known as the Joyceville Jet Rick Wilson. The first time Rick came to Can-Am, was in the late 70s watching great drivers like Bob McCreadie, Ovide Doiron and Marcel Lafrance win races. Rick had one thought about the track itself.

“I was there in the late 70s and holy crap it was huge!” Wilson said with a smile as he reflected on his earliest memories of Can-Am.

“When I turned my first laps on the track in a modified, my opinion didn’t change either, this place is really big and really fast!” He added.

After getting over how big and fast the track was, Wilson became instantly comfortable with the high speeds and worked his way to the front on many occasions, coming close to victory lane.

In 1989 that all changed as he went to victory lane for the first of his 27 career modified wins at Can-Am. Sadly it was also the day, where he lost his grandmother.

“I went in to see her that day and I wanted to stay with her, she said no no you go over there and win it, I’ll be right there with you!” Wilson said.

“I got word she had passed when we were on the way to the race track, well we went out and won the feature,” He added.

In victory lane Wilson was emotional, saying to the late Track Announcer John Burr, “I dunno how you handle something like this” John simply replied, “You’re handling it perfectly Ricky”

Wilson also has some great memories of winning the prestigious Pabst Shootout in 1993 with a last lap pass over fellow Canadian driver Danny O’Brien. Wilson also won another big event, that being the 1993 Skoal 358 Modified Series race in September.

Not only has he seen success behind the wheel of a 358 Modified, but also has a pair of wins with the Empire Super Sprints in 2004.

Reflecting on his first one.

“We had a penalty early in the night and had to start last in the feature, but we got to second and passed John Karklin for the lead off turn 2 and ended up winning the feature on the final lap.” Wilson said.

Fellow Modified driver Lee Gill told him after that race, “Can-Am could have charged admission on the way out of the track if they wanted to after seeing that!” Hell of a race man!” Wilson said with a bit of a chuckle, as I said earlier, he is known to get the fans on their feet and get excited.

Although Wilson has not turned many laps at Can-Am recently, he still as a special place in his heart for the Nasty Track of the North.

“The place means so much to me” Wilson said.

“I have so many memories and friends there you know. The Thurston’s were great, Caprara’s were awesome and I remember having some great battles with Dave Bartlett and many other drivers there also.” He adds.

These days Wilson still gets behind the wheel of a 360 and Crate Sprint Car at many Canadian tracks when he gets time. He spends much of his time mentoring his daughter April and Son in Law Dan Deyo, who compete in Crate Sprint Car events in Canada.

Wilson’s Career at Can-Am includes 27 358 Modified wins which is tied for 9th on the all time list. Wilson also has a DIRTCar 358 Modified Series win along with the 1993 Pabst Shootout, plus a pair of Empire Super Sprint wins in 2004.

The Golden Jubilee season is underway and the next event will take place on Friday, May 3rd, featuring the Whitesboro Plowshop DIRTCar 358 Modifieds, the Bob Johnson Auto Group DIRTar Sportsman, Donath Motorworx Limited Sportsman, Panther Frameworx Crate Sprints and the Sundance Leisure Thundercars.

Stay tuned to our website at racecanam.com and the track Facebook page for more feature stories on drivers, special events and historical moments that have all been part of the 50 years at Can Am Speedway in Lafargeville New York.


Article Credit: Tim Baltz

Submitted By: Tyler & Michelle Bartlett

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