No matter the surface, no matter the track, it seemed Cody Wilds was fast across the province of Ontario in 2018 and it paid off as he won multiple championships this year.
“I think it was a dream season,” Cody Wilds told SHORT TRACK MUSINGS. “It’s not something that everybody can brag out in winning four championships in one season. It was the best season by far that I’ve had in my racing career, and I’m very glad for it.”
In a season that included 46 different trips to victory lane and 61 podium finishes, he won the following championships – Delaware Speedway Jr. Late Model Champion, Grand Bend Speedway Jr. Late Model Champion, Grand Bend Speedway Mini Truck Champion, and Traveling Series Jr. Late Model Champion.
“The most memorable moment was probably when I won at every track on every surface, everywhere that I’ve raced, that I’ve ran in my entire life,” he commented, adding his favorite track to have ran was Sunset Speedway.
The success hasn’t come without hard work, though, as the team spent many late nights in the shop, with Wilds working right alongside his parents.
“It means the world to me,” Wilds spoke of their support. “If I didn’t have my parents helping me, I would’ve never been racing. My mom and my dad, even my sister, they cheer me on and every time I hear them cheering me on, it makes me want to win more and that’s what I go out and do for them.”
After a successful campaign, the questions have already began to rise about his future in racing. Wilds isn’t committing to running for a championship once again next year, but rather focusing on having fun behind the wheel. He also plans to get his feet with the next step of racing career – a Legend.
“Next year, we’re getting a Legend and we’re going to practice it for a year,” he revealed. “Then the next year, we’re going to get into Legends and race them for a couple years. Then I’m 16, 17, we’re going to try and get me into a NASCAR truck race. Then if I do good, then hopefully they pick me up and if they don’t, they don’t.”
For Wilds, his interest in racing began by watching his friend Kenny McNicol compete.
“As soon as I seen him race, I knew I wanted to race,” he said. “So I asked my dad and he said, ‘Nope, not right now. You’re not allowed to race.’ The next day, he was on the phone with somebody and I go, ‘Dad, who are you on the phone with?’ He tells me to hop in the truck as we’re going to go see some cousins. I hopped in the truck, went 10 minutes down the road to my cousins and there’s my sprint car, the first ever race that I raced, sitting right there. My dad goes, ‘Cody, hop in it, it’s yours,’ and I get in and I knew it was mine. I knew that I had a passion for racing.”
While admitting Tony Stewart would be his NASCAR racing hero, the racers closer to home have had a bigger touch on his career, with McNicol on the list alongside the likes of Shawn Thompson, Trevor Collver, and Jesse Kennedy. Being able to speak with these drivers who’ve had their own level of success has been an awesome experience for the 12-year-old.
“Kenny, Trevor, Shawn, Jesse, I’ve looked up to them my entire life,” he commented. “They have advice for me no matter what I do. They help me to learn more and more about racing.”