It took more than a year for Derek Lacey to break through with a win in Legends Cars. He spent his rookie season in 2010 racing at The Orange Show in San Bernardino and could do no better than a runner-up finish.
Legend Car Driver Derek Lacey
Derek Lacey spent his rookie season racing at The Orange Show in San Bernardino
In his first race of 2011, Lacey won a Legends Cars race at Willow Spring International Raceway in Rosamond, Calif., the first of his brief Legends Cars career.
As satisfying as it was to win at Willow Springs, Lacey said he is still hungry for a win at The Orange Show.
"One of my goals every year is to finish every race. You can't win unless you finish," said Lacey, a 28-year-old from Santa Ana, Calif. "That's one of my goals every year. I would like to get a win at a different track, either Orange Show or Irwindale. I would like to get one win there."
Lacey is undecided about where he wants to race full time in 2011. He would like to return to The Orange Show and take a shot at winning the Legends Cars championship. But there is a chance The Orange Show might not run any races.
Lacey won his first Legends Cars race at Willow Spring International Raceway in 2010
He is also considering racing at Toyota Speedway at Irwindale. The fields at Irwindale are much larger than The Orange Show. The level of competition at Irwindale is a little higher than The Orange Show too.
"There's a lot more cars at Irwindale," Lacey said. "We've been going back and forth whether we want to go Orange Show or Irwindale. It will be one of those two full time."
He also wants to race a Willow Springs on a part-time basis. Willow Springs has been the site of a couple milestone wins for Lacey. In addition to winning his first main event race at Willow Springs, Lacey won a trophy dash at Willow Springs last year.
He won the first Legends Cars race of his career on Jan. 15. He started fourth and had to work his way through the field. He made the pass for the lead on the last corner of the last lap.
"I got him by about two feet at the finish line," Lacey said. "That was pretty cool."
It will be a while before Lacey can get his car out for another race. It will either be at Irwindale on April 2 or The Orange Show on April 9.
While Lacey might not have much experience at Irwindale, if he decides to race there, his car was once owned by a seasoned veteran and champion driver. Lacey bought his car two years ago from Tom Landreth, a five-time Irwindale track champion in the Legends Cars class.
Lacey said his team is starting to feel more comfortable and confident with the race car. The win at Willow Springs, he said, is hopefully that start of better things to come.
"I sure hope so," Lacey said. "We know a lot more about the car now. We know how to set it up a lot better. The Legends car has been real hard to drive, but we're finally figuring it out. I think we're in a lot better position to start the season this year than we were last year. My driving has definitely improved and we hope to get more wins this year. We're confident going into this year that we can do better than we did last year."
One of the improvements in the car is the use of K&N oil and air filters. K&N provides product support for Lacey's race team.
"That helped us out a lot," Lacey said. "The car was fast and never had any problems on any level."
With his first career win in the books, Lacey wants to continue to put his car in victory lane.
"It felt really good to get the first feature out of the way," Lacey said. "I won a trophy dash, but it's nice to get the first main event win out of the way. Hopefully we can continue that when start at either Irwindale or Orange Show."
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