Editor’s Note: Ryan Robinson, 17, is the current Lucas Oil POWRi National Midget League points leader and one of six Keith Kunz Motorsports racers competing during POWRi’s annual Illinois Speed Week. From June 6-10, Robinson will be sharing his experiences with SPEED SPORT readers while competing during the five-race stretch. 

Robinson drives the No. 71 Abreu Vineyards Toyota-powered midget for Kunz. Below is his first diary entry. Illinois Speed Week begins tomorrow night at Belle-Clair Speedway in Belleville, Ill.

Ryan Robinson

FORESTHILL, Calif. – Hi, I’m Ryan Robinson. I’m 17 years old and I race national midgets for Keith Kunz Motorsports.

For those of you who don’t know me, I was pretty much born into racing. My dad raced sprint cars for about nine years in California and has a couple championships out there on the West Coast. My mom’s dad – my grandfather – worked on dragsters and built a lot of engines for dragsters.

I started my racing career in outlaw karts when I was five years old, with my dad’s support. We had a really good knack for it and started winning a lot of races. By the time I was 12, I was picked up by Abreu Vineyards Motorsports and started running outlaw karts for them, which was a big deal for me after Rico (Abreu’s) success in them and how he was able to move up the ladder in racing.

My last season for Abreu Vineyards Motorsports running outlaw karts, we won 22 races. After that, I came back east and started running midgets for Keith Kunz.

This will be my third year racing for Keith, and coming back here I’ve learned a ton each year. I’m just working really hard at it and making sure I’m prepared for every race.

This year has definitely been my best year so far – we’re leading the POWRi points right now by 80 over my teammate Tucker (Klaasmeyer) after the first 10 races, we haven’t finished outside the top 10 yet in POWRi and we’ve already got a win under our belts too.

Indiana Midget Week was definitely a tough one for me. We didn’t have the results we were looking for and those results don’t really show how good we’ve been this year as a team.

Other than that, we’ve been awesome, whether I’ve been driving in a winged sprint car or back in the midget.

After last week, my head’s still held high and we’ve got a lot of confidence going into Illinois Midget Week. We’re really good at all these tracks and have been this year.

I’m definitely looking forward to it and think it’s going to be a fun journey for us this week. Thanks for reading and following along and I’m looking forward to chasing some trophies and the Illinois Speed Week championship!