Weedsport, NY — In 2009 class was in session for the High School Social Studies teacher and full-time Super DIRTcar Series driver Ryan Phelps as the 24 year old native from Fulton, NY schooled some of the biggest names in Modified racing with back-to-back wins at the DIRTcar All-Star Weekend cashing in on the $23,000 combined payday.
For Phelps, the 2009 season was his best season to date as the Big Red Towing no.99 modified managed a full schedule this year running at neighboring tracks Brewerton and Fulton Speedway on Friday and Saturday, ending his weekends at Cayuga County Fair Speedway on Sunday nights; in addition to following the Super DIRTcar Series tour.
For the “Rocket” Ryan Phelps, his greatest achievement to date would come the third weekend in July at the inaugural DIRTcar All-Star Weekend where his experience running weekly at Cayuga County Fair Speedway gave Phelps 23,000 reasons to smile.
“We had a few flat tires early in the season that really hurt our chances of winning a track championship at Cayuga County, so we started focusing all of our attention on getting our car hooked up on the slippery stuff. It paid off for sure,” replied Phelps.
So with slick track conditions just as Team Rocket had predicted prevalent the weekend of the All-Star, the second generation driver was dialed in and simply untouchable, winning two features in a whirl wind 24 hour period. His first ever career Super DIRTcar Series Big Block Modified 50-lap feature on Saturday night’s opener followed by the crown jewel, Sunday’s All-Star 100!
Over the course of the 2009 season, more than 560 laps were logged by Phelps around the 3/8 mile oval and in 14 feature starts at Weedsport; Phelps built an impressive resume with two feature wins, seven Top Five finishes, and ten Top Ten finishes. When asked to grade his overall performance on the season, Phelps aptly gave himself a well-deserved A-, “We won a huge race, and kept our equipment in pretty good shape all year long. There were certainly a few opportunities throughout the year that I didn’t capitalize on as a driver, and some mistakes I made along the way but we really had a solid year all around.”
With racing settling into the winter months, there won’t be much time for Phelps and Team Rocket to rest as the 2010 season is fast approaching. With all eyes on the rising star, Phelps is looking to make a name for himself in 2010, “It seems like the bar keeps raising for us, which is a good thing. Last year we had a bust out weekend and now we want to have a bust out year. I can’t thank guys like John Wight, Dave Miller, my Dad and Pat Macaulay enough. They and a lot of others give us the stuff we need to compete with a lot of teams that, frankly, have a lot more equipment, crew and money than we do.”
Look for the 2010 schedule in the coming weeks. Season Passes for Cayuga County Fair Speedway, Canandaigua Speedway, and Rolling Wheels Raceway are now available. For more information visit www.cayugacountyfairspeedway.com or call the DIRTcar NorthEast office at 315/834-6606.