Duane LaFleur Builds on Positives Heading into 2012 With His K&N '67 Camaro Roadster

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For me and every vehicle I race or drive, there is only one choice and that's K&N filters.
For me and every vehicle I race or drive, there is only one choice and that's K&N filters.
Racers that are considered to be good drivers never stop learning, reaching for more and for the most part, never dwell on the negatives. One such racer is Clarence Center, New York's Duane LaFleur and as he heads into his sixteenth year of competition. He continues to look for the positives from each of his events during the season to use as building blocks for the year ahead.

2011 was full of exciting moments for LaFleur and his K&N sponsored 1967 Camaro Roadster, with one of the more notable ones happening for him during the NHRA SuperNationals at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park. "The Englishtown national event was one of the highlights of my season, where I went to the semi-finals before getting beat by Mike Sawyer," said LaFleur. "The car had a little malfunction that round, but instead of making a negative out of that race, it really was a positive for me because it was a good outing and I feel like I did very well there. I went four rounds at Maple Grove's points race, I left there went to Englishtown and made it to the semi-finals and that was all good," he added. "So those were the highlights of my season."

Every racer has an event or facility that they look forward to on their schedule every season and for LaFleur it would be the NHRA Div 3 event in late August, capped off with a trip to Indy. "Yeah, I really look forward to going to the Bowling Green-U.S. Nationals swing each year," he admitted. "The divisional race prior to Indy really brings a lot of folks out that I wouldn't normally get to race with. I really enjoy seeing the racers at Bowling Green because they come from all over the country on their way to the U.S. Nationals. I've made it to the semi-finals at Indy for the U.S. Nationals and if I'm able to win a big one [NHRA National Event], that's the one I want to win," he continued. "I strive to make that one every year and it's kinda like my ultimate goal- to win Indy."
New York's Duane LaFleur heads into his sixteenth year of competition.
New York's Duane LaFleur heads into his sixteenth year of competition.

There are some competitors that race just to race while there are others who look to count every point they can obtain over the season, with obtaining a championship as their goal. "I approach each season as not really chasing the points," LaFleur explained of his annual strategy. "I let the points lay where they are and if I need to chase it at the end of the year, I will. I usually try to do six to seven points races a year as well as six to eight national events."

"I enjoy running division 3 events. The people are great and it's a lot of fun and the tracks are nice, but I'm just not a points chaser," he continued. "After I put my schedule together and I go out there and [later in the year] if I'm doing well, that's different. The only time I ever went out there and really chased something was two seasons ago when I was just four points behind Connolly for the JEGS All-Stars, so I had to chase it. I had to go to extra races, ones that even rained out and then I had to go back. I just don't like to be forced to going to a place and if I say that I'm going to chase the points and then go somewhere and it rains out, then I'm obligated to go back. But if I should do well during my schedule, I will go chase it. Really, I don't need to have a certain number on my car at the end of the year. That part just isn't that important to me."

Folks who are familiar with LaFleur from racing or from his work at Jiffy-Tite may find it hard to believe that he considers himself as a fairly quiet kinda guy. "I'm actually a pretty laid back person," he pointed out, "a quiet, family-type individual. I say that because when folks see me at the races or tradeshows or working the midway, I talk a hundred miles-a-minute and I never shut up. When I'm home, I'm an outdoors type of person. I don't like to be around a lot of people. It's just me and my quiet time."

Although LaFleur always has a very busy schedule, certain times of the year put him into maximum overdrive and he's looking forward to taking a breather. "You finish up the race season, then you have three trade shows that you work, plus the holidays tossed in and all the follow up from the shows on top of trying to get the team ready for the next race season. It's fairly hectic," he confessed, "but there won't be much of a break when we will start our race season very soon."
I enjoy running division 3 events. The people are great and it's a lot of fun and the tracks are nice.
I enjoy running division 3 events. The people are great and it's a lot of fun and the tracks are nice.

"We are busy trying to get everything ready for our February/March outing," he explained. "We are going down south to run the four races which include three NHRA Div 2 races at Orlando, Gainesville and SGMP and a national event at the GatorNationals. So we don't have much time to get everything torn apart, rebuilt and ready to go again. We only make what we call our 'southern swing' every other year, and this is our year to do it. We will be continuing to claim division 3 and we are just getting started early this year."

While LaFleur's race schedule may change a little from one season to the next, how he prepares and maintains his race operation stays consistent right down to the K&N filters that you will always find on his Camaro Roadster. "For me and every vehicle I race or drive, there is only one choice and that's K&N filters," said LaFleur. "The product works. It does exactly what they say it's supposed to do and the results I have had over the years speaks for the extremely high quality K&N puts into everything they manufacture. K&N puts a lot into their R&D, whether it's for a new air or oil filter for a daily driver to the line of filters that are available for motorsports. The wrench-off oil filters, for example, are fantastic inside and out. You get the assurance and comfort of knowing that your engine's oil is being filtered by the world's best filter along with the ease of removing the filter when it's time to change it without a big mess or crushed filter."

"I'm really looking forward to the 2012 season and representing K&N," he added. "I thoroughly enjoy working with a company like K&N who are constantly listening to the racers, working with them to develop products that are not only protecting their large investments but helping to keeping them out there round after round. We all know the harsh conditions that we racers put our power plants through, but with the many ways that the K&N products protect from air filter to oil filters; it's one less thing that we just don't have to worry about."

Find K&N products for your vehicle using the K&N application search then use the K&N dealer search to find a K&N dealer in your part of the world.

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