by Sylvain Lauwers, Review Contributor
Vankleek Hill stock car racer James Clarke has announced he will be moving back to the Mini Stock division for the 2023 DIRT racing season.
Clarke achieved immediate success when he debuted in the local world of DIRT racing in May 2019 and quickly established himself as one of the rising figures in the Mini Stock class in Ontario. From 2019 to 2021 – including two seasons shortened due to the COVID-19 pandemic – winning a total of 18 Mini Stock features at Cornwall Motor Speedway, Brockville Ontario Speedway and Mohawk International Raceway. Halfway through the 2021 season, Clarke decided to move up to a faster and more competitive class: the Pro Stock division.
The 30-year-old driver said that last autumn he realized he would rather spend quality time with his family, instead of spending all his weeknights working on the Pro Stock machine. That is why the local mechanic and tow truck operator made the decision to move back to the Mini Stock division for 2023. To ensure he is competitive in the class, Clarke has built a 2004 Honda Civic hatchback and was working on the new car over the last few months.
The Cornwall Motor Speedway DIRT racing season opening night is scheduled for Sunday, May 21. Clarke and his Mini Stock rivals will be in action, battling it out in the first of four Eastern Ontario Mini Stock Showdown 25-lap events.