HOLLY, Mich. – Troy DeCaire will make his homecoming to the Must See Racing Sprint Car Series presented by Engine Pro on Friday night when the tour visits Michigan’s Birch Run Speedway and Event Center.
DeCaire, who won the first two points championships in series history, will drive for veteran owner Wayne Stickney in the iconic, white-and-orange No. 99s at the four-tenths-mile oval as he chases his seventh-career series victory and first since Berlin Raceway in August of 2014.
The Tampa, Fla., driver and current Southern Sprint Car Shootout Series point leader will fill in behind the wheel of Stickney’s mount for Tyler Roahrig, who piloted the car during the season opener at Anderson (Ind.) Speedway in May but has late model obligations keeping him from racing at Birch Run.
It’s a reunion of a pairing that has produced two victories in DeCaire’s prior two starts for Stickney.
“I drove for Wayne in 2014 at Sandusky (Ohio) Speedway – the last race of the season, actually, when I was living up in the Midwest still – and we sat on the pole, won the race and he won the championship,” DeCaire recalled. “We all said after that one that if we ever got the chance again, we’d get back together and go racing. He tried to have me come race for him a couple of times after that, but I was always busy doing stuff … and it just seemed like we could never get things to quite line up how they needed to.
“Last year, he finally got me back up to run at Kalamazoo (Speedway) and Toledo (Speedway), and we won at Kalamazoo, but broke the motor and couldn’t even start at Toledo,” DeCaire added. “We figured now, we’re undefeated in races that we’ve run together, so when he called me this year and offered me the races in his car that Tyler (Roahrig) couldn’t run, I figured it was a no-brainer to go ahead and do it.”
DeCaire is riding a six-race win streak in asphalt sprint car competition, encompassing three different regions of the United States, in his first season back regularly behind the wheel in several years. His day job consists of selling RVs in his home state of Florida.
“My current car owner in Florida kind of forced me back into racing, because I was pretty much content with taking time off, building shocks and not being so eaten up with racing,” DeCaire noted. “We struggled at the start, but once we put a new motor in, things really took off and we started winning a bunch. I went out to Seattle and won a race out there, too. It’s been a lot of fun lately.
“I don’t ever go to the race track to run second. If I’m showing up, it’s because I feel confident that I have a chance to win,” said DeCaire. “We know we’re capable; we’ve done it before. I just have to shake the rust off as far as running on the American Racer tires and see if I can’t keep this run going.”
To extend his run of success to seven-straight victories, DeCaire will have to top a field that includes Canadian star Ryan Litt, National Sprint Car Hall of Famer Jeff Bloom and four-time defending series champion Jimmy McCune, who won the season opener on May 4 and has 30 Must See Racing victories.
With their decorated asphalt resumes, a battle between DeCaire and McCune at the front of the field at Birch Run appears imminent, and it’s one that DeCaire is eagerly looking forward to.
“Jimmy knows how I race and I know how Jimmy races. He’s obviously on a pretty good run himself, right now, but I think there’s a lot of mutual respect between the two of us,” explained DeCaire. “I’m looking forward to racing him, just like I am everyone else at the front of the field. It’s going to be fun.
“I believe we can win,” DeCaire noted. “It’s all about seeing how it shakes out Friday, now.”
In addition to the Must See Racing sprint cars, the Midwest Compact Touring Series, VROA modifieds and Birch Run Pure Stocks will also be on the racing card. The night will also include a fireworks show in celebration of the Fourth of July holiday.
Pit gates at Birch Run are scheduled to open at 2 p.m. on July 5, with hot laps starting at 4 p.m., qualifying beginning at 6 p.m. and racing kicking off promptly at 7:30 p.m.
A rain date of Saturday, July 6 has been established, if necessary.