Since the beginning of the Queenston Chevrolet Buick GMC OSCAAR Modifieds, Gary McLean has been a threat to win races. That’s something that will not change in 2019.
“We are not running a full schedule with the mod but hope to come out to play at a few select events,” he said. “We took some time off from the series for various reasons and now with a second car in Greg (Gibson)’s stable, the schedule and the budget won’t allow full-time in the mod.
“The series seems to have gained some serious traction since we challenged for the title last and I am really happy that Modifieds are finally getting the recognition they deserve. It will be awesome to go to an event with so many cars that there is potential of cars not making the A-main – unless it is me that is, then maybe not so cool.”
Although McLean has yet to release his finalized schedule for the upcoming season, you can expect it to include a variety of speedways as he says he doesn’t have one particular favourite track on the schedule.
“Some guys say one or two that they don’t like for various reasons, but realistically there is one sentient part of the equation in racing- and it is not the car or the race track,” he commented. “So the real problem with a given race track not being a favorite is the driver’s attitude towards it. We go to every track with the intention of loving racing so they are all my favorite.
“I really enjoyed Jukasa last year for the first time. I went there with my grandpa when I was a kid and it was larger than life. I would never have dreamt that one day we would have the opportunity to race on that hallowed asphalt.”
Although McLean has won five championships and 38 features through his OSCAAR career, he knows it won’t be easy to add more victories to the total.
“There are quite a few who can win on a given night,” he said. “You have the usual culprits from the last couple of years such as Cory Horner, Luke Gignac, John Harper, and A.J. Emms, along with a couple of guys with lots of experience from other classes or series that can be there for sure such as Kelly Balson, Shawn Chenoweth, Stu Robinson Jr. to name a few. Then you have some up and comers such as Dale (Reinhart) who are the real deal and will make waves sooner than later.
“All in all, the field is as deep as it has ever been and maybe on a given night a top-ten would be a good run for us being old and rusty like I am. I am not as old as Gary Elliot mind you, but still I have been racing a mod for 26 years.”
For McLean, racing is something that has been a family affair all of his life, as his dad began racing at Full Throttle Motor Speedway (then Varney Motor Speedway) when the track initially opened.
“I started there when I was 15,” McLean recalled. “Back then, it was a huge family affair; somehow an uncle or a cousin would get the car to the track for me along with a few other cars also from the same farm and we would race and socialize till morning. Great times!”
By: Ashley McCubbin