COMBINE, Texas – Casey Burkham spent his first IMCA RaceSaver Sprint Car season racing with the eventual national champion.
He believes those regular Friday and Saturday night tussles with Kevin Ramey made him a better driver and as a result the national Sprint Car rookie of the year.
“RaceSaver Sprint Cars are a very competitive division and I got to learn racing with Kevin and a lot of other good drivers here in Texas”, said Burkham, 17 years old and from Combine. “Then we went to Eagle for the RaceSaver Nationals and I ran second to him in the opening night qualifier. I told him I was going to beat him someday.”
Burkham started racing in a restrictor mini sprint class, then got a couple 360 starts in before seating up in the 305.
“We learned a lot this year. We were hoping to get maybe a top three so getting our first win (on May 12 at Kennedale Speedway Park) was really exciting,” he said. “That race was just meant for us to win. Our setup and the track conditions were perfect.”
Chassis builder Brian Schnee, shock builder Jason Martin and Mike Long provided technical support throughout the season. Defending race winner Martin was also among Burkham’s competition at the RaceSaver Nationals.
“Our main goal at RaceSaver Nationals was to make the main event. It was neat to race with Kevin and Jason and then start between them on the front row,” he said. “Getting to race against so many of the best RaceSaver drivers in the country was awesome.”
Third in point standings at RPM, Burkham ended with seven top five finishes in 23 starts.
“We had some ups and downs for sure. There were some rough nights but we always found the positives and did the best we could to be ready for the next weekend,” said Burkham, who graduated from high school early and works for his family’s construction business. “Racing has been in my family forever. It’s pretty cool to be able to do it with the help of family and friends.”
Wins-1 Top Five Finishes-7 Starts-23
HIS CREW: Father David and uncle Jeff.
HIS SPONSORS: Burkham Contracting and Jerry Armitage and Utility Trailers, both of Seagoville.