Story By: RYAN HILL / RPW – WESTFIELD, MA – Sportsman Modified driver Nikki Ouellette from Westfield, MA straps in for today’s installment of RPW’s “ THE TEN.”
Nikki’s car is housed in East Granby, CT and her home track is Lebanon Valley. This season ,however, she is beginning to travel around more. Here is how she answered our ten questions.
1- WHY ARE YOU # 16
I am number 16 because although I wanted to be number 14 after AJ Foyt when I first began racing on dirt, the number was currently in use and we wanted to have our own number. We chose 16 as a team, but went to 14 when we began racing asphalt. When we came back to dirt, we decided to go back to the number 16, as it was my original number.
2- WHAT TYPE OF CAR WOULD YOU LIKE TO RACE?
I’ve always wanted to drive a World of Outlaws sprint car.
3- WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST RACING MOMENT?
My proudest racing moment was when I won my first ever feature in the 750A mini sprint class, after moving up from Sportsman that year.
4- WHAT IS YOUR MOST EMBARRAISNG RACING MOMENT?
My most embarrassing racing moment was when I was running in the top 5 at Thompson Speedway in an SK Modified and I ran out of gas with three to go. That would have been my best finish in an SK Modified.
5- WHAT ONE RACE WOULD YOU LIKE TO WIN?
I think I’m in the same boat with everyone else saying that I’d want to win at Super Dirt Week or Eastern States Weekend, but I’d also like to win the KOD race on Mr. Dirt night at Lebanon Valley being that it’s a big race at my home track.
6- HOW DID YOU START RACING?
I started racing because of my dad, who was a drag racer when he was young. When I was four years old, he took me to a quarter midget track and asked me if that looked like something I wanted to do. I was hooked. I started racing at five, and made the transition to dirt at 13. When my home track, Whip City, closed down, we went back to asphalt, but quickly came back to dirt, as I realized that I enjoyed it more.
7- WHAT IS A BUCKET LIST TRACK FOR YOU TO RACE AT?
A bucket list track for me would be Eldora or Rolling Wheels.
8- WHAT ARE YOUR STRENGTHS AS A DRIVER?
I think that my strongest traits as a driver are that I’m unafraid of trying new things with my car if I think that they will work, and I am cautious while also being aggressive, which I think has saved us from some sticky situations, and helped us avoid damages.
9- WHAT ARE YOUR WEAKNESSES AS A DRIVER ?
My weaknesses are that I can be my own biggest critic and sometimes I get in my own head when things aren’t going right.
10- DO YOU HAVE ANY RACE DAY RITUALS?
Yes, I have race day rituals. I consider green bad luck, so we can’t wear green things to the track. My family and crew (my dad, mostly) like to tease me by threatening to show up wearing green, knowing how superstitious I am about it. I also like to take a walk around the pits before I race my feature; it gives me a little time to think about the race and get myself in the right mindset.
Nikki would like to thank her sponsors, FK Rod Ends, Spacefitters, Incorporated Industries, Affordable Disposal Services, Maynard Saucier Ceramic Tile, and C&G Electric. She would also like to thank her dad and mom, her sister Casey, her boyfriend Kyle and his family, and her crew Mark and Maynard because her racing wouldn’t be possible without them and all of their help and support!