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Meet the Drivers

Patrick M Passanise

_W4A0105 Eastbay raceway 2019

4th generation dirt track driver. Born and raised in Western New York. Started racing when I was 15. Ran 2 seasons in the spectator class at Stateline and Eriez speedway. Won a few features and finished in the top 10 in points my first 2 seasons. Shortly after my 2nd season my grandfather passed away unexpectedly (the one that got my dad and I into racing).

Needless to say racing kind of fell apart for us after that. Until about 15 years later in Tampa Florida. Now a 35 year old man I found racing again with the help of my 2 year old daughter. I decided one Saturday night to take my daughter Giana to the track. After seeing that excitement in her eyes the first time she heard a late model fire up in the pits. I knew it was time to get back involved in racing. Giana and I never missed a week of racing after that night. We were in the stands or pits at Eastbay and Bubba raceway religiously as on lookers for the next year and a half.

I didn't realize how much racing was a part of my life until I spent that year and a half in the stands watching others do the one thing I once loved doing so much. Well that newfound excitement was noticed my boss one day. Whose curiosity would eventually get him sucked right into the sport too. With a 5,000$ sponsorship from the boss man my dreams of racing again were coming to reality fast! I found a race ready Emod for sale for 5,500$ that night and was on my way to Tennessee to pick it up that weekend. Made the 20+ hour round trip drive to pick up on a Friday night made it back to Tampa just in time for a 50 lap event. Drove straight to the track, didn't even make it in time for hot laps or heats. Rolled onto the track and got 9th in an Emod in an Open Modified class. Not too shabby for the first time in a modified especially with a car that's 15 years old, a little 355 ci motor and 2 bbl carb.

I finished that season (2018) 10th in points and picked up a ton of knowledge along the way. Stumbled upon some good guys that helped me set my car up and taught me a ton of stuff, which was huge for this single dad with limited help and resources running in a class as competitive as the Modifieds.

Excited about the idea of getting a bunch of seat time, I registered for Winternationals this year at Eastbay. We got a good practice session in that Tuesday. Were battling for 5th in the Bmain on Wednesday until we caught the 2nd place car that had spun out on the turn 4 exist. I didn't see him in time and ended up flipping my car over. Fractured my shoulder and collar bone. Did some structural damage to the car but not enough to keep us down for more than a night. After some help by some really good guys, we got er back out there a night later and got 4th in the Bmain. I know it's a long ways from a 1st in an Amain but I'll take it. Broken shoulder and all. Haha I've got a few weeks to heal up and get the car back together before season starts in March. I'll be back out there trying to get it to the front.

That's the short version of how I got to where I'm at in my racing career. Hope you enjoyed the read. Thank you for the opportunity to share my story!

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