The just past 2014 drag racing season continued an impressive habit for Canada’s Jason Kenny — that being winning…..
The Kingston Ontario-based driver was one of four Canadian racers during 2014 to win a Championship points title at the NHRA Lucas Oil Divisional level — Jason doing it in Super Gas for NHRA’s Northeast Division.
Kenny who campaigns a pair of LODRS Sportsman cars; a Super Comp dragster and a Super Gas Corvette has risen to and has maintained his status as arguably Canada’s best Sportsman driver — and he has the trophy hardware to prove it.
Jason’s 2014 Division title came driving his very tried and true S&W Corvette Roadster which he has raced very competitively for 12 seasons dating back to 2003. His previous best points finishes with the Corvette had been 2nd in 2009 and 3rd in both 2006 & 2012.
With that car, not only did he win the Northeast, he also scored at the NHRA national event level — winning at the St. Louis race last September.
“This was my first Super Gas divisional championship,” Jason revealed. “I had won my division twice before but that was in Super Comp. They count your best 5 of 8 races. I had 3 Divisional runner-ups, plus 1 semi-final finish, plus a 4th round finish. The 4th rounder was the worst score on my 2014 division-winning scorecard so that was a big improvement from the previous year — because in 2013, I did not get past the 3rd round at any divisional I attended.”
Kenny confined that he clinched the title on the last day of the last divisional race he could claim – which happened out at Las Vegas in October.
“Our division has some really tough competitors,” he added. “It came down to Mike Sawyer, Tom Stalba and myself. Mike and Tom both had to go rounds at the Vegas LODRS but when Tom lost 1st round and Mike lost in round four – I was declared the division champ.”
“Overall — at least divisionally, the breaks seemed to go my way. I like to say I did a good job of pulling into the lanes for random pairing 1st round. Often not only did I win that 1st round, but by doing so, I put myself into some favouralbe spots in the ladder. There was a stretch of 3 races where a ladder position got me a bye run and I capitalized.”
Jason who is a quiet spoken and quite reserved racer was quick to cite all the behind the scene support he receives.
“Huge thanks to Mom and Dad (Al and Carol), sister Samantha and brother-in-law Jeg,” he continued. “Thanks my favorite travel agency, Jackie and Shawn at Accelerated Travel, Jegs and K&N who are our our biggest supporters. We also get great help from associates Hoosier Tires and Moroso. A special acknowledge however goes to Scott Weney, our chassis builder, who recently passed away. Not only did they build the car, but Scott pointed us in the right direction when it came to the set-up of the car as well. He saved us years of testing, and the car absolutely wouldn’t be as good as it is today without his help.”
Jason Kenny along with his father Al have once again set the bar high for themselves for the upcoming 2015 season.
Jason will continue on with both his Corvette and Dan Page-built dragster following some scheduled off-season upgrades to their motor programs prior to the start of their campaign.
“I find it’s easy to stay motivated in this sport — whether I’m 1st in the points or last, every time I light that stage bulb, I’m trying to win,” he affirmed. “I have some specific goals — the first being to qualify both cars for the 2015 Jegs All Stars race (in Chicago). As a driver I’d like to win the JEGS All Stars race in both cars and I’d like to then double at that Chicago national event as well and become the first person to ever quadruple at an NHRA national event. I’d like to double at Indy and of course chase both the divisional and national points championships again. Other then that I’ll try to keep my expectations low (he laughed!)”
In recent times Jason Kenny’s presence in and round the Top Alcohol Dragster circuit being involved with and helping out some of it’s racers has been rather prevalent. That has let to some speculation about his racing future ventures – but Jason is downplaying that — at least for the time being.
“I used to dream about driving a TAD – it’s all I ever wanted to do as a kid,” he added. “With my Dad racing in TAD earlier in his career — I pretty much grew up in around the class.”
“Right now, I’m living that dream through my friend Jackie Fricke who won her 1st divisional championship driving for Joe Cantrell and John Finke last season. That was fun sharing the stage with her at the Division One banquet. But quite honestly, I’m thrilled with my current situation — I love the competition in Super Comp and Super Gas, and maybe more importantly, I love the fun of the class too. TAD takes a much bigger commitment — not just financially, but time-wise as well.”
Post and photos by: Bruce Biegler