Getting Up To Speed With…Brian Roden
By Ben Deatherage
(Photo Courtesy of Ken O’Neil)
With just one full season under his belt West Linn, Oregon driver Brian Roden is excited for 2014. Originally from Alturas, California, Roden is a second generation driver following in the footsteps of his father Johnny.
In 2013 he would drive a couple of races for James Simmeroff but once he got in his own equipment he would score three wins and seven top five finishes in eleven starts while ending the campaign third in Street Stock points. We got a chance to chat with Brian about the upcoming season, why he races the #14, and his background in the racing scene. Now let’s get up to speed with Brian Roden.
Driver: Brian Roden
Home Track: SSP
Hometown: West Linn, OR
Occupation: Owner/Operator of JNR Construction
Years Racing: 1
Classification: Street Stock
Chassis: 1978 Chevy Camaro
Sponsors: JNR Construction, Molecular Motion, Dockweiler Stainless Steel Tube Systems
Special Thanks: Elliott Hobson, Earl Claypool Jr., Jennifer Roden (Wife). James Simmerhoff
BD: Brian do have any specific plans for 2014?
BR: I’m going to try and race the full schedule at Sunset in the Street Sticks. On off weekends I might go to a couple of different tracks like Lebanon and maybe St. Helens.
BD: Is there a story behind you racing the #14?
BR: I’m a big Tony Stewart fan. But when I first got the #14 it was because it was available at the track and I decided to put it on the car.
BD: How exactly did you get your start in racing?
BR: I’ve always been a race fan. Growing up my dad raced at Modoc Speedway and Cedarville Speedway in Stock Cars down in Northern California. Over the years I wanted to drive but never got the chance. I pitted for Earl Claypool Jr. in the early 1990’s at Portland Speedway and I had an opportunity to run a car several years ago as a part-time deal. Once I got the bug I was hooked so I built my own car over the winter of 2012-13.
BD: How fun has the Street Stock class been?
BR: I think it’s a blast. Everybody sticks together and helps anyone out that needs it. It seems like anyone is willing to give you pointers which is nice for new drivers. But someone I really got to thank is my wife because without her I wouldn’t be able to do this.
BD: Do you have any goals that you have set for yourself either this season or in the future?
BR: Not really anything specific at this time. This year I just want to be consistent and try to not have any mechanical failures. I really haven’t thought about the future much but maybe eventually in a year or two I might go to the Modifieds. I just want to get some more experience in the Street Stock.
Sunset Speedway Park is expected to open the 2014 season this Saturday May 3rd. Classes in action include the Northwest Extreme Sprints, IMCA Modifieds, Street Stocks, Pure Stocks, 4-Bees, 600cc Restricted Micros, and 600cc Open Micros. For more information log on to www.sunsetspeedwaypark.com.