Four-time and defending NASCAR Pinty’s Series champion Scott Steckly isn’t quite sure what his plans are for the race season, but he knows even if he isn’t running the full schedule as a driver, he’ll still be busy in the shop as an owner.
The 44-year-old from Milverton, Ont. won three races last year en route to his fourth series championship. One of those three wins came at Riverside International Speedway where he lapped nearly the entire field with exception of Marc-Antoine Camirand.
Steckly’s been running with Canadian Tire as a primary sponsor since 2009, but the company split from NASCAR in Canada as the series’ title sponsor at the end of the 2015 season, and they split with Steckly too. Steckly’s team is now left without a primary sponsor despite the first race of the season being just over a month away.
“We’ve got cars that are ready to go, and a team that’s ready to go – and that’s about it,” Steckly said at the Motorama Custom Car and Motorsports Show last month. “Our plan is definitely still up in the air for 2016.”
In addition to fielding his own team and racing, Steckly has been preparing cars for former full-time Verizon IndyCar Series competitor Alex Tagliani. He said that the 22 Racing Team will continue to do that for 2016.
“We’re doing Alex’s cars. A new rookie (Brett Taylor) from Calgary is driving the four road courses so we’re looking forward to that.”
Tagliani made series history last year with a dominating race win that saw him lap the field in a Steckly prepared car, something that was special for the entire 22 Racing Team.
“It’s very good and satisfying to see,” he said. “Last year at Sunset, Alex lapped the field in one of our cars and we do a lot, as much as we can to come out with a win. To get that win is really rewarding.”
With the season a little more than a month out, the pressure will be on Steckly to find the funding to run the full season and defend his championship. Whether he can or can’t, Steckly and his team are going to continue to work on their cars.
“We’ll see what happens,” he said. “I’m working to try and build our racing program up. We’ll see what happens and if something comes along, that’ll be great.”