We let him take some time to let it sink in…he is the 2021 Can-Am Midget champion!
We talked to Jeff Blackburn about his championship run. Where he came from and what it took to claim his first Qwick Wick Can-Am Midget presented by Miller Office Trailers title.
Jeff started his racing career at the young age of 7 when his dad put him into a go kart. “I was hooked.” Blackburn won 2 karting championships and a Canadian national race. Jeff wanted to make his way up the ranks. He found himself in the hurricane midgets, now known as the outlaw midget series. Jeff made his name known there for a few years and winning a championship. All of this now leading Blackburn into the Can-Am Midgets.
The chance came up to purchase Andy Mackareth’s car that won all those championships recently with Mack Deman behind the wheel. “I had a choice to make. Run my newly built car with barely any testing on it whatsoever, or purchase the Mackareth car,” Blackburn responded. What would you do? I think Jeff responded what anyone would answer with…”That’s a no brainer for any race car driver, I went with the Mackareth car.” Blackburn acquired the car and quickly got it to Daniel Hawn at HMCW for any changes to be done to make him comfortable when it came to race time. “First time on the track, I never felt such a well handling car,” Jeff mentioned. “It was then I knew we had a top contender of a car compared to my others in the past years.”
Rolling into the season with a feature win on night #1, Jeff had one thing to do…to win the championship and nothing less! We asked Jeff if there was any doubt at any point of the season that he was out of contention in the very tight championship battle. “We found ourselves in a big wreck halfway through the season at Sauble Speedway. I wasn’t sure at that point about the championship and if I would continue the season. Thank you to Daniel Hawn and HMCW. If it wasn’t for them stepping up and getting the car back together, I would have quit.” Blackburn took it one race at a time after that in the tightest title battle in his racing career.
We asked Jeff what his strengths were and what got him to win the 2021 championship and he responded with, “A championship is a hard thing to accomplish. It consists of a team with consistent hard work. Team means family, the people who are there for you day in and day out. The friends that help you get something fixed or buy parts off of.” When we asked him what his plans were for the 2022 season, Jeff responded with a short sentence…”We will be returning to defend.”
“Thank you to all who made this championship happen…Mom, Dad, Dan Hawn (HMCW), Ken Beattie from Beattie Distilleries, Carter and Kim from Lloyd Auto & Truck Clinic, Eric and Teresa Wagner from Wagner Painting, Austin Senkerik, Brian Flynn, Aurora Tire Craft – Adam Carrothers, FCR – Adam Hagen, DJD Graphics – Darren Dryden, Rich Kenworthy, SSR Suspension – Sly Szaban.” Qwick Wick Fire Starter, Miller Office Trailers, Flamboro Machine Shop LTD, Epic Racewear, Neely Auto, Grisdale Racing. Big thanks goes out to all of the club officials…Albert Banyard, Terry Watts, Kim Banyard, Amanda Powley, Rachel Munsie, Jeff Smith, Cameron Thomson, Mike Brittain, Elliott Munsie, Luc Munsie, Austin Senkerik.