Southwest Speedway racer Casey Vernon was last season’s 2019 track champion, earning his first ever championship in his 10 years of racing. Like most champions, he was ready and eager to defend it. After two races this season, Vernon has proved he has the potential to be the best racer again this season.
At ‘BURN THE BOOKS’ night on Sat. May 30 and the 3rd Annual Richard Jordan Memorial Race on Sat. June 20, Vernon has placed first and continued his dominance from last season. Earlier this year, Vernon stated he was eager to hit the track once again, his performances have proved it up to this point.
“It’s actually going a lot better than I thought that it was going to be,” Vernon said. “We got two feature wins and the car is running great, the track has been good … so far it’s been a great year. But there’s definitely still some good competition out there, so that’s good.”
As seen throughout the country, sporting events have been heavily targeted due to the coronavirus, including the Southwest Speedway. For racers like Vernon, being able to race has helped them, and the fans, get through these unprecedented times. Vernon mentioned car counts have been smaller in some areas, as seen on May 23, but did increase going into the second race.
“I’m just glad that we got the opportunity to get the season going,” Vernon said. “For us to be able to race during this time has really been great, and I think everyone has just got to keep social distancing and if you’re not feeling good, don’t go to the event. But besides that, it’s just awesome that we got back on track.
“The fans, for both nights, they’ve had a good count of fans … which is good,” he added. “But there’s a little bit of a difference, I mean people are kind of … staying in their pit more. It’s still a little different. Hopefully normal comes back, but I don’t know if there will be a normal again. This might be the new normal, you never know.”
Goal wise, Vernon stated with the start of the season, he would love to add another championship to his resume at the end of the season. But he said he will not change his style to obtain another championship.
“I just go out there and keep driving like I have, keep relaxed, focused and competitive … any night anyone can win, there’s a bunch of good drivers out there,” he said. “I just go out there and just (take it) one lap at a time.”
While it is early in the season, Vernon stated out of the two first-place finishes, one sticks out more than the other, for personal reasons.
“My favorite part of the season so far has been winning the Richard Jordan Memorial,” he said. “That’s the first year I won that … that was awesome because I knew Richard pretty well. He is a well-missed man in my family.”
Vernon looks on to defending his back-to-back first place streaks in the upcoming races, including the ‘LADIES NIGHT’ on Sat. June 27 at 6 p.m.