In his young career, 25-year-old Late Model standout Joey Polewarczyk, Jr. has accomplished more than many veterans of the sport have been able to accomplish in their many years of short track racing. An Oxford 250 victory, Milk Bowl victory and ACT Invitational win highlight some of the biggest accomplishments for the Hudson, New Hampshire driver.
Despite all of the big trophies and large paychecks, Polewarczyk is still chasing after his first career major touring series championship. After coming up just short of that championship during the 2013 ACT season, Polewarczyk plans to run full-time and compete for his first career ACT title in 2014.
“Their schedule makes it so that it’s kind of easy to you,” Polewarczyk said. “You only have nine races, so it leaves plenty of room for other things. We’ve always been loyal to (series promoter) Tom Curley. I think he has a lot of passion for what he does. You listen to his drivers meeting and you will see the passion that he has.”
ACT will open their season with the Governor’s Cup 150 at New Hampshire's Lee USA Speedway in April. After having struggled in the earlier parts of the season in previous years, Polewarczyk and his team are hoping for a strong start to jumpstart their run at the 2014 ACT championship.
“We’ve definitely got to come out strong,” said Polewarczyk . “That was our low point last year, the opening race at Lee. If things went different there, we could have been looking at the championship last year. We’ve got to come out strong and start the season off strong, especially when there are only nine point races. You can’t really have any mistakes.”
Patience is another factor that Polewarczyk believes will come into play for him in 2014. He’s hoping he can use the same patience that he learned last season and turn that into solid finishes that will put him in a position to compete for a championship.
“I really just waited and didn’t really abuse the car until the last 50 laps,” Polewarczyk said about the difference between the start and finish to his 2013 season. “I’ve been trying to do that my whole career, but it’s easier said than done. That’s what I really started doing, really saving the equipment. That’s what we need to do right out of the gate.”
With the recent news that two-time ACT champion Wayne Helliwell, Jr. will not compete with the series full-time in 2014 and the status of six-time champion Brian Hoar still up in the air, at the young age of 25 Polewarczyk will be looked at as one of the veterans in the ACT garage area.
After being the young 20-year-old kid looking up to other drivers such as Jean-Paul Cyr and Patrick Laperle just a few years ago, Polewarczyk looks forward to his new role as one of the more experienced drivers on the ACT roster.
“It’s crazy to think that, isn’t it?” Polewarczyk said when questioned about being an ACT veteran at 25-years-old. “I like being that guy that people look up to or come to for advice. It’s really cool and it’s crazy to think. I’m going to be 25 in May, but I’m still kind of young. ACT put a stat pack out a couple months ago and it’s crazy to think I’ve made one-hundred career starts so far.”
In addition to running full-time with the American-Canadian Tour in 2014, “Joey Pole” also plans on being a lot more active with his Super Late Model. Polewarczyk plans to race his Super Late Model at select Granite State Pro Stock Series and PASS North events.
“As far as Granite State races, they have a race at Lee this year that we definitely want to go to that. They also have a race at White Mountain (Motorsports Park) this year and I would like to go there. PASS, I’d like to do some races at Beech Ridge (Motor Speedway) and Oxford (Plains Speedway) with that car. Anywhere we can race, really.”
Although Polewarczyk doesn’t plan to make the trip to Florida for New Smyrna Speedweeks, he does hope to do more racing in the southern parts of the country in 2014.
“We won’t be doing Speedweeks this year, but I definitely want to do a few more races down south,” Polewarczyk said. “Our goal this year is to run in the Snowflake at Pensacola in December. We definitely want to be there for that. That’s why we want to do quite a few races with that car. We just want to get more comfortable with it and figure it out more with all the shocks and that stuff.”
Prior to settling in the cockpit of any sort of stock car, Polewarczyk will be strapping into a 200 CC, 6.5 horsepower go-kart at Maine Indoor Karting in Scarborough, Maine on March 1 for the 6th Annual DT 100 to benefit Make-A-Wish.
“The DT 100 will be really cool to go to and support a good cause. Other than that, I don’t have any plans except to focus on our two cars and getting them as good as they can be for the start of the season. “