Brit Andersen Motorsports

 
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
Home Press Releases
Latest
A Connecticut Yankee in King Richard’s Court PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 01 October 2003 00:00

By Chris Romano

Count Brit Andersen among the young New England drivers who’ve heard the siren song of the South.

“My great uncle Gil Andersen,” Andy Andersen will tell you.  “He raced in the first Indy 500.  He was an engineer for Stutz and he raced their cars.  I heard some crazy things about him hanging onto the hood trying to fix something while the mechanic held the wheel, just nuts stuff.”

Uncle Gil qualified tenth for the inaugural 500 and finished eleventh.  He made the show every year but one until the Speedway closed for World War I.  Today, his great-great-great nephew, and Andy’s son, Brit hopes to return to the Speedway to continue crazy Uncle Gil’s legacy.  The road to the Brickyard, or Daytona, currently runs through Brit's hometown of Branford, Connecticut via the bullrings of the Carolinas.  Why, you may ask, with the gaggle of the tracks a short drive away from home, do the Andersen’s load up and race a Ford Focus Midget 800 miles away?

“Exposure,” says Brit’s dad.  “We race where we can get the most exposure.  I know a lot of people who race In New England, hundreds of them.  And nothing against them, they’re good racers, but up here you race as a hobby.”

“I want to do this for a career,” adds Brit.  “You get the exposure down there.  If I want to make this my career, I’ve got to be there or Indiana.”  

You may wonder if a 15 year-old really knows what he wants to do for a career, but Andersen started racing just shy of fiver years old and like most young drivers has a seriousness and maturity about him that doesn’t resonate any doubt.  His father agrees.  “We want this as a way of life,” he says.

Brit started his fledgling career in quarter midgets, where he racked up 84 wins and several championships.  He progressed to mini-cars racing in Seekonk Speedway’s Youth Racing Association in 2001, winning his first feature on July 4 and securing the Rookie of the Year title by season’s end.  The following year, he was at age 14, the youngest champion in the storied history of the 57 year-old Concrete Palace.  The defending champ was third in the title chase.

Brit and his father knew it was time for the next step but were unsure of what it might be.  NASCAR raised the competition age to 18 for its three premier divisions, Nextel Cup, Busch and the Craftsman trucks to 18 leaving the Andersens about three years shy of any aspirations of Truck, Busch or Cup despite the great sponsor they have in Citrix, the world’s premier provider of remote computer-networking solutions.  So they started looking at a return to their roots in open wheel.

“We looked at NEMA,” says Andy.  “We went to the last race of the season at Thompson.  They had a tough race, about eight cars finished.  At the end we looked at each other and said, “How much fun is this?”

“I still want him to race a NEMA midget.  I want him to get the experience of running a wing.  But we looked at the Focus Series and it just made sense for us.”

USAC’s Ford Focus midget series is, essentially, a spec-motor midget series aimed at giving young drivers experience in  an open wheel car as a stepping stone to other USAC national series.  The chassis is full midget chassis and the power-plant is a sealed Ford Focus motor producing around 175 horsepower. Hoosier provides the spec tires for the series.
    
The series’s Carolina expansion was the vision of Tracy Trotter, owner of Calico Coatings, which provides high-end coatings for rod bearings in racing motors. Trotter grew up in Houston watching A.J. Foyt wheel a midget, and wanted to bring that excitement to the Carolinas. USAC wasn’t quite ready to expand the series beyond Indiana and California, but Trotter convinced them, in part by agreeing to put up the first season’s points-fund and also book the shows.
    
The schedule produced a solid 16 dates in the Carolinas, Virginia, and Kentucky. The anchor track was the venerable South Boston Speedway in Virginia, which hosted the Focus cars six times.
    
From the beinning Andersen displayed the form that brought him so many mini-cup wins at the ‘Konk. However, as the season wound down he had doubts about his ability to pick up his first win. With a handful of races left the tour pulled into Hickory Speedway in September for twin 24-lap features. The tough 1/3 mile bullring had hosted the series’s debut in March.
    
Andersen made a good start and methodically worked his way to second behind Indiana native Aron Oakley. With seven laps to go he got under Oakley in turn three and went on to score his first win. Indiana’s 2003 champion Robbie Ray passed Oakley with three laps to go but didn’t have enough to get by Andersen.
    
“I knew he had it in him,” recalls proud dad Andy, “he just had to find it.”
    
“I was very satisfied to get a win in my first season,” says Brit, “This is such a different kind of racing compared to what I was used to. It’s very fast, very competitive.”
    
The top ten were inverted for the second feature and after being balked by slower traffic ndersen could only work his way to sixth. He still emerged the big winner of the evening, however, as series points were awarded only in the first feature.
    
“I’d be lying if I didn’t say Hickory was my favorite racetrack now,” says Brit.

“Andersen (in South Carolina) was pretty good for us too. You had to be real easy on equipment there, you had to find that fine line between running hard and easy every lap.”
    
The series wrapped up in October at South Boston for a 50-lap show. The day started with difficulty for Andersen, who nosed his car into the pit wall as it was pushed out of the midget pits off of turn three. A sheepish Andersen surveyed the minor damage and got ready for the feature. Twenty-four cars were in the field, including a number of invaders from the Midwest series.
    
Immediately Andersen’s day got worse. Working his way slowly to the top ten the power steering failed, and he was one spent race car driver when the checkers finally fell. It was still a good day, as he managed to avoid a three-car wreck and settle in for eighth place.
    
“That was like a marathon,” said an exhausted Andersen after the race, “I had to pace myself, but I had to run hard the last 25 laps.”
    
While series-champ Chase Scott ran away from the field, sixth through tenth positions finished under a blanket, and Andersen’s result was good enough to clinch seventh in the season points.
    
Primary sponsor Citrix will be back for next season, and the Andersens will continue to focus on Focus. “We’re talking to everyone,” declares Andy. “We’ve talked to Danny Drinan about running in Indiana, we’ve talked to some NEMA owners, but we’ll schedule everything around the Focus series.”
    
New England is next on USAC’s expansion list, and while you might see Andersen at Oswego the plan continues to be to gain as much exposure as possible in Nextel Cup’s back yard.
    
“If the road takes me to Cup or the IRL,” asserts Brit, “then I’ll go. If I can’t race then I’d like to learn how to be a spotter.”
    
But make no mistake about it; this kid is here to race.

 
Branford’s Andersen youngest to win at Seekonk PDF Print E-mail
Brit Andersen of Branford made a bit of history recently.

Andersen, 14, was honored as the youngest champion in the 57-year history of Seekonk (Mass.) Speedway at the track’s annual awards banquet.

Although he is the facility’s youngest champion, Andersen has been winning titles and breaking track records around the country since the age 5.

“Brit was 4 ½ years old when we first put him in a car, “said his father, Andy, a lifelong race fan.  “It had no motor in it and a bunch of us took turns pushing him along the track.”

Within a year, Andy acquired a Quarter Midget racer for his son to begin competing at the Little T at Thompson.

“I remember that the first time I ever raced, I came in second, “Brit recalled.  “The next time out, I won.”

During that 1994 season, Brit won the track championship rookie of the year award.  Over the next three seasons, Andersen repeated as track champion, amassing four regional crowns as well.  A visit to the Tangerine Invitational Quarter Midget event in Orlando, Florida, resulted in Brit setting one of the 14 track records he currently holds, bettering a mark established by Winston Cup star Jeff Gordon.  Switching from open-wheel competition to the full-bodied cars at Seekonk in 2001, Andersen was named rookie of the year.

This year’s Seekonk Youth Racing Association title is the eighth overall championship for Andersen, an eighth grader at Francis Walsh Intermediate School.  He has captured the checkered flag in 91 featured races.

This year, Andersen will test the waters as the youngest person ever to step into a TQ Midget in the American Three Quarter Midget Racing Association series in Pennsylvania.  The ATQMRA touring class, which has been in operation since 1956, is held at various racetracks in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania is the only one that will allow Brit to begin racing in open-wheel racers because of his age.  This summer, Brit and his parents expect to trek to the quarter-mile Mahoning Valley Speedway in Leighton for up to 10 TQ events.  The team will race the brand new Avenger chassis car a in the Seekonk Youth Racing Association.

“My main goal with the TQ car is just to learn this year,” Brit said.  “I expect that it will take some time for me to learn how to shift the car and get the feel of it.”

While the thought of going wheel to wheel with experienced adults may be daunting for some rookies, Brit is looking forward to learning, competing and having fun.

“I am really looking forward to getting into the open-wheel car again,” he said.

When he does return to Seekonk to compete, he will often be forced to start toward the rear of the field because of the limited schedule he will be running and his previous success at the track.  “It really forces you to be patient out there,” Brit said. “You have to just take whatever you can get.  Every race is a new race and my goal is to do the best I can out there and try to win it.”
 
Branford Teen Reigns As Seekonk Speedway’s Youngest-Ever Track Champ PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 04 April 2003 00:00
Seekonk Sentinel Feature
By Todd Baptista

Nearly 1,000 auto racing enthusiasts turned out at the Venus De Milo Restaurant in Swansea, MA on January 18 for the Annual Seekonk Speedway Awards Banquet and Dance. The NASCAR-sanctioned 1/3-mile oval, which is located on Route 6 in Seekonk, MA, hosts events every Saturday night between May and October with six different divisions making up the racing card. Over the past two years, the track’s Seekonk Youth Racking Association has given youngsters between the ages of 10 and 16 the opportunity to hone their skills in smaller-scale versions of Chevy, Pontiac, Dodge, and Ford stock cars. At this year’s banquet, Seekonk crowned their youngest-ever champion in their 57-year history in 14-year old Brit Andersen of Branford.
    
Although the serious-minded teenager is the facility’s youngest king, Andersen has been winning championships and breaking track records around the country since the tender age of 5. Brit’s passion for the sport was undoubtedly inherited from his father, Andy, a lifelong race fan. “Brit was four and a-half years old when we first put him in a car. It had no motor in it, and a bunch of us took turns pushing him around a track.” Within a year, Andy had gotten a Quarter Midget racer for his son to begin competing at the Little T at Thompson. “I remember that the first time I ever raced, I came in second,” Brit recalls. “The next time out, I won.” During that 1994 season, Brit not only won the Rookie of the Year award but the track championship as well.
    
Over the next three seasons, Andersen repeated as track champion, amassing four regional crowns as well. A visit to the Tangerine Invitational Quarter Midget event in Orlando, Florida resulted in Brit earning one of the 14 track records he currently holds, bettering a mark established by now Winston Cup star Jeff Gordon. Switching from open wheel competition to the full-bodied cars at Seekonk in 2001, Andersen was named Rookie of the Year at season’s end. This year’s Seekonk Youth Racing Association title is the Branford’s Francis Walsh Intermediate School 8th grader’s eighth overall championship. In total, he has captured the checkered flag in 91 feature races.
    
This year, Andersen will test the waters as the youngest person ever to step into a TQ Midget in the American Three Quarter Midget Racing Association series in Pennsylvania. The ATQMRA touring class, which has been in operation since 1956, competes at various racetracks in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.
    
Currently, the Keystone State is the only one that will allow Brit to begin racing the winged, open-wheel racers because of his age. This summer, Brit, Andy, and step-mom Leslie, expect to trek to the quarter-mile Mahoning Valley Speedway in Leighton for “TQ” events for 8 to 10 races. When not mounting an assault against the veteran adults at the 17-degree banked facility, the team will race a brand-new Avenger chassis car in the Seekonk Youth Racing Association.
    
Corporate America, whose sponsorship of auto racing has allowed the sport to ascend to the heights it currently enjoys, has not let the talented youngster’s efforts go unnoticed. Up until recently, crew chief and car owner Andy has solicited sponsorships from several local businesses, which has greatly reduced the financial burdens associated with competing. Nas-Karz Racing Collectibles, Goody’s Hardware, and Ferruci Signs will all return to the Andersen team as associate sponsors in 2003. “Mike and Danny Katz from Goody’s have a great family-owned hardware business and have been very generous in their support of Brit,” Andy adds.
    
Citrix Systems, Inc. has stepped up their previous involvement by offering the team a corporate sponsorship package for their upcoming efforts. “Brit has an aunt who works for Citrix, and she suggested speaking to the company about sponsorship. For the past two years, the company president did it out of his own pocket. This year, they became involved on a corporate level.” With headquarters in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Switzerland, and Australia, Citrix specializes in virtual workplace software. It is one of the world’s 50 largest independent software firms, serving some 120,000 customers and 34 million users daily. “We’re thrilled with our association with Citrix and hope that our partnership will go on indefinitely,” Andy reports.
    
Having resolved the significant financial burdens associated with fielding a race team affords the Andersens the opportunity to focus squarely on their own track goals. “My main goal with the TQ car is just to learn this year,” the driver explains. “I expect that it will take some time for me to learn how to shift the car and get the feel of it.” While the thought of going wheel to wheel with experienced adults may frighten some rookies, Andersen is looking forward to learning, competing, and having fun. “I’m really looking forward to getting into the open-wheel car again.”
    
The teenager also knows that when he does return to Seekonk to compete, he will often be forced to start toward the rear of the field, due to the limited schedule he will be running and his previous success at the track. Undoubtedly, these circumstances will keep the Andersens from becoming overconfident. “It really forces you to be patient out there,” Brit elaborates. “You have to just take whatever you can get. Every race is a new race and my goal is to do the best I can out there and try to win it.”
    
Despite the degree of success Brit Andersen has achieved, the family is wary of the dangers associated with concentrating all of their energies on such a competitive and unpredictable sport. The young driver himself is acutely aware of the need to acquire the skills that will sustain him outside the cockpit. “I know it’s important to have something to fall back on or to focus on besides racing,” he explains. “I’m interested in engineering. I’d like to be able to build engines and work on or build cars.”
    
“For right now, we’re just going to learn as much as we can,” Andy sums. “We’ve worked hard, and we’ve been lucky enough to earn this opportunity. We’re just going to try and make the most of it and see where the road leads us.”
 
Andersen Rockets to Third Win, Points Lead In SYRA Action PDF Print E-mail
Thirteen-year old Brit Andersen of Branford, CT rocketed to his third win of the season in the 15-lap Seekonk Youth Racing Association feature last Saturday and retook the lead in the tight battle for the championship crown. Alex Tucan, winner of the previous week’s feature, held off Andersen in the first 8-lap heat while Kyle Diamond finished first in the second race.
    
Dianne Murphy sat on the pole in the main and found herself involved in a four-wide battle for the top spot on the very first lap. The end result was a multi-car accident between turns three and four that affected the cars of Murphy, Tom Donahue, Rocco Carranzo, Justin Perry, Zach Tucan, Matthew Hudon, and three-time winner Rob Richardi, who had entered the race as the point leader but was forced ot the pits for the night with the aid of a tow truck.
    
When the action resumed, Lance Mortland’s Mortland Overhead Doors #15 Chevy and the #78 Dunkin’ Donuts mount of Danny Thibault squared off for the lead with Lance holding the advantage for five laps. Andersen, meanwhile, had moved his Citrix-Nax-Karz-Mickey D’s Tavern #70 Pontiac up from 13th to third by lap 4 and passed Danny for second one lap later. On the next go-around, the 2001 Rookie of the Year took command of the race, never wavering in his quest to return to Victory Lane. At the halfway signal, he led Mortland, Dave Richardi, who had inched ahead of Thibault, Steven Heroux, Alex Tucan, Chris Gifford, Chad Conlon, Justin Perry, and Mike Panciocco.
    
Andersen’s healthy lead was erased when the yellow waved for a spin on lap 9. On the restart, Thibault retook third from Dave Richardi while Conlon also tried to get around the Ace Auto Body #8 via his preferred high groove. On lap 13, the third and final yellow waved when Chris Gifford’s Carquest #5 got loose in turn four and was whacked from behind. This crash also collected Panciocco, Perry, Donahue, and Alec Kuhn. The Wareham, MA Rookie of the Year point leader, however, was able to return to action to try to accumulate valuable championship points.
    
The final three laps were run without incident as Brit Andersen sped off to take his third victory lap of the season, unofficially squeaking ahead of Rob Richardi by two points atop the standings. “I’d like to thank my dad, my step-mom, Leslie, and all my sponsors for their help and support,” the winner announced. “We spend a lot of hours on this car.”
    
Danny Thibault, who drove a clean and consistent race, finished second for the third time this season, followed by Lance Mortland, the highest finishing rookie in the field, two-time winner Alex Tucan, and Dave Richardi. Chad Conlon, Justin Travis, Zachary Tucan, Tommy McVay, and Alex Kuhn rounded out the top ten.
 
SYRA Championship Seekonk Event July 20 PDF Print E-mail
Syra ChampionshipSeekonk, MA: The second of six event in the Cumberland Farms-Providence Journal Mid-Season Championship Series will take the green flag at Seekonk Speedway on Saturday night, July 20 with the spotlight on the Seekonk Youth Racing Association. Extra distance, extra money, and extra excitement will be the order of the day at the NASCAR-sanctioned 1/3-mile oval as the 10-16 year old stars of tomorrow compete in a special 25-lap main event. The top three finishers in the race will be awarded $100 savings bond certificates. All of the competitors who start the event will receive $50 savings bonds.

SYRA, one of the fastest growing auto racing divisions in all of New England, allows youngsters to race ultra-safe smaller-scale versions of full-bodied racecars, complete with engine restrictor plates. Nearly two dozen boys and girls from three difference states compete in a 15-lap feature sponsored by the Local 51 Plumbers and Pipefitters Union in the Weekly Racing Series presented by Dodge program every Saturday night at the Route 6 Seekonk, MA facility.
    
Two qualifying heats and the current point standings will help determine the starting lineup for the race. Fourteen-year old Justin Travis of East Taunton, MA currently leads the championship points battle with top 10 finishes in all 8 events run to date, including four top fives. John Geremia III of Johnston, RI has visited Victory Lane on one occasion and sits a mere 20 points behind the leader, buoyed by seven top 10s. Brandford, CT’s Brit Andersen has captured two feature wins in 2002 and runs just 10 points behind Geremia. The division’s 2001 Rookie of the Year, Andersen has posted four top fives and seven top 10s in the first eight races.
    
By virtue of his two wins and five top five finishes, Easton, MA’s Rob Richardi has climbed to fourth in points and should also contend for the checkered flag. Defending track champ Steven Heroux of Johnston, RI and Bay State rookies Justin Perry of Somerset and Alex Tucan of Taunton have notched victories in the current campaign and are among those expected to contend. Veterans Danny Thibault of Fall River, MA, a four-time top five finisher, and Tommy Donahue, a three-time top five runner, will undoubtedly also figure into the mix. An impressive crop of rookies, including Chris Gifford of Wareham, MA, Matthew Sagar of Seekonk, MA.
 
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 Next > End >>

Page 4 of 6

Our Partners

Our Partners

Our Partners