Interviews

Andy Kamrath Ready To Grow Checkered Flag Collection In 2022

No matter what track on the tour that Andy Kamrath unloads at, he has proven to be one of the fastest cars on-track each week.

It is why last year alone, the veteran added another six victories to his collection.

“I would say out of all of my victories of 2021, I would say the victory at Delaware would have been my favourite,” he commented. “At this stage in my life, I look for things that we have not accomplished and getting a win at Delaware is the last piece of the puzzle for tracks to win at.”

The success for the driver of the No. 35 Modified hasn’t come overnight, though, as evident by the work ethic behind the scenes each week leading up to race day.

“I feel as a team, there isn’t anyone out there that is going to outwork us,” he shared. “I rely very heavily on Shawn Chenoweth for team support and the proofs in the pudding, We had two part failures in 2021 and still finished second in points and capitalized on every other event we got to finish. We just have to keep to the grind and keep this program heading in the right direction.”

With the victory total continuing to grow within the OSCAAR ranks, a lot of people have pegged Kamrath as the man to beat for the championship. However, it doesn’t mean it will come easy, with the competitive nature of the series growing each year.

“When I look at guys to watch, I look for the guys that have some sort of support as well as a well put together program,” he explained. “Names that come to mind would be A.J Emms, TJ Edwards, Dale Reinhart – the competition looks to increase again in 2022 with guys upgrading and refabbing cars or buying new ones south of border so we will see where we stack up come the first event.

“(The) price of tires and fuel may win the championship in 2022 because it’s simply may not make financial sense for a lot of guys to run the whole tour including this team.”

One of the tracks for certain that you will see Kamrath at for 2022 will be Sauble Speedway, as it’s circle on his calendar being where began his racing career from 1999 to 2012.

Everything began in Jr Late Models for “The Instant Classic,” which is still one of the core divisions helping mold the next generation of racers. Looking back on that time, Kamrath notes the lesson learned in relation to work ethic, culture, and the drive stand out.

“That probably had a lot to do with my Dad because if the car didn’t get worked on, it didn’t go to the racetrack,” he explained. “That same thing applies today which I feel a lot of kids are missing these days.”
From there, Kamrath moved up to the Limited Late Model class in 2008, and has since driven a variety of racecars ranging from mini stocks and modifieds, to super stocks and pro late models.

“Over the years that kept me going was just aligning yourself with good people that you have fun with,” he commented. “In my Mini stock days, I had a ton of fun with my brother in law Warren Paxton and now I have a ton of fun with Shawn Chenoweth, Mike Schmidt and the whole crew of guys. When you stop having fun, then that’s when you need to reevaluate what you’re doing.”

There has also been a lot of success through the years, including a memorable battle for an APC Auto Parts United Late Model Series victory at Flamboro Speedway in 2017.

“That was a race that was bar down the whole race and never got a chance to breathe,” he recalled. “Really proud of that one, I look back at guys that have raced in the series for years and never ever nabbed one so proud that we got one.”

It hasn’t all been sunshine and roses, though, with some tough moments including the worst crash of his career which came at Flamboro in 2020, after sliding in fluid with significant contact with the outside wall while leading.

“That one rung my bell pretty good and I think actually slowed me down a bit behind the wheel,” he commented.

Even though admitting it has affected him since, you could not tell virtue of the trips to victory lane in 2021, a trend he will hope to continue in the season ahead.

By: Ashley McCubbin

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