Column By: ADAM CORNELL / RPW – LAFARGEVILLE, NY – The McCreadie name is synonymous with dirt track racing, and has been for the last forty-plus years.
“Barefoot” Bob McCreadie hails from Watertown, New York and his sons Tim and Jordan have taken up the family tradition of racing on the dirt surfaces locally and throughout the country.
Jordan has been making his way through the DIRTcar modified scene, with a recent stop at the Nasty Track of the North, Can-Am Speedway on Friday night.
The night began well enough with McCreadie moving up a position from his third-place start in the Whitesboro Plow Shop DIRTcar 358 modified heat race. This put McCreadie in the fourth spot to start the twenty-five-lap feature, with twenty-one other competitors; a field comprised of local top-tier drivers like Ryan Bartlett, Tim Fuller, Billy Dunn, Derek Webb and more.
Whereas last year Dunn and Fuller rose to the top in a seeming two-driver battle all season, 2022 has been a different story. In six previous races, five different drivers ended the night as the victor. Only Tim Fuller, of Watertown, NY has recorded multiple wins at Can-Am Speedway during the 2022 season. The competition has been an open battle with plenty of opportunities for challengers to unseat 2021 track champion, Fuller.
Friday night Jordan McCreadie took his fourth-place feature starting position and parlayed it into a hard-fought victory.
Drivers Jeff Sykes and Jordan Kelly started in positions one and two, respectively, with Sykes moving into the lead with the drop of the green. McCreadie began battling with Kelly immediately for second place. Ryan Bartlett, looking to add to his victory total for the year, moved up from sixth position to give Kelly and McCreadie another challenge to overcome. Bartlett liked the high line around the track and moved past both Kelly and McCreadie for second place. But one lap later, McCreadie took back the position and set about challenging the leader, Sykes.
On lap thirteen, McCreadie made his move and took over the lead from Sykes. Just two laps later, a caution came out when Mike Maresca came to a stop on the back stretch after taking a wild ride off an infield tire two laps earlier. The single-file restart opened up the opportunity for Sykes to retake the lead, but after a less than stellar restart, Sykes gave up second position to Bartlett and faded back into the field, while McCreadie retained the lead.
Another caution in lap seventeen would put McCreadie to the test once again, with Bartlett now right on his bumper for the restart. At the drop of the green McCreadie got a great jump on the field and darted out ahead. McCreadie looked well on his way to victory, but Billy Dunn of Watertown, NY was charging hard through the field, moving up from a thirteenth position start to third with three laps to go. Dunn looked like he had the fastest car on the track, or at the very least had found the fastest lane around the track for the moment. There would be no late-race heroics for Dunn, however, as McCreadie’s lead was extensive and the number of laps too few for Dunn to catch up. Jordan McCreadie crossed the finish line, welcoming the checkered flag from the flagstand as it signaled his first victory of the year.
McCreadie had come close to victory the previous week at Mohawk International Raceway with a second place finish and he’d also notched a third-place finish at Can-Am Speedway back in early May, but other than those races, there had been much frustration and futility for McCreadie in 2022.
“Our guys worked pretty hard to get us back to feeling good here,” McCreadie said from victory lane, following his win. “We’ve been struggling a bit this year, so we’re sure going to enjoy this one.”
With the victory, McCreadie moved up into contention for the track championship at Can-Am, trailing Tim Fuller, Ryan Bartlett and Derek Webb. As the season nears the halfway point, any of the top drivers could pull away with a few more victories. With the second-place finish at Mohawk and the victory a week later at Can-Am, McCreadie looks to be peaking right at the perfect moment to make a run for a track championship at Can-Am. He’ll look to continue his quest Friday, July 15th when racing returns to Can-Am Speedway with a full program of racing.