What better way to spend your birthday than zooming around a track during one of the largest quarter midget and junior sprint racing events in North America.
That’s exactly how Langley’s Brody Ferguson celebrated his ninth birthday.
Brody’s big day was Dec. 3, which just so happened to be day three of the Silver State Winter Nationals that ran Dec. 1 to 4 in Las Vegas.
This marks the second year Brody has competed at the nationals in Vegas.
Next year, Brody will be slotted into the much tougher nine-to-16 age group so his dad Corey decided, “why not go (to Las Vegas) again this year?”
Even at his young age, Brody is a veteran of the track.
He’s going into his fifth full season of racing, a hobby that Corey admits is “incredibly expensive.”
“It’s what I spend my money on,” Corey said.
“We started with one car in his first year and we keep adding cars.”
In fact, the Fergusons now have four racers that they transport to tracks around the Pacific Northwest.
But Corey, who said he “grew up drag racing” and noted that his son is a third generation race car driver, said it’s well worth the expense.
“It’s just a good family sport,” he said.
“It’s the most exciting racing you’ll ever watch in your life.”
Brody’s interest in the sport is purely visceral. “I like to go fast and pass cars,” he said.
And that’s exactly what he did at the track set up in front of Sin City’s Rio Hotel, in ideal 15º C weather.
Brody — who raced two quarter midgets in Vegas — was excited to claim second in Vegas in the Jr. Stock event.
The Langley Quarter Midget Association (LMQA) 2016 Junior Animal track champion, Brody related, “I was in fourth place, then two cars got connected together and I got second.”
The family travels to six tracks in Washington, Oregon, and the LQMA track in Aldergrove, and since Brody started, there has been the odd mash up.
“He’s had tumbles,” Corey said.
“Some kids are cautious but Brody says, ‘Get me back out there!’”
And there’s more to quarter midget and junior sprint racing than getting behind the wheel and pushing your foot on the accelerator.
“It’s a 40-lap race,” Corey said.
“By the end, they’re pretty worn out.
“It’s gruelling on a kid.”
After a short break, the junior sprint races on larger dirt tracks start the indoors series in Salem, Ore. starting on Jan. 7 and running until March.