In this week’s installment of 15 Questions we chat with young up and comer, Jake Shelley. Driving the endurance rounds this year with his father, Steve, Jake showed great promise and speed as a Production Touring Car driver. In 2013 he’ll be moving into his own drive in the Deputy.com team, and the big question is can he find the consistency needed to challenge for the title? Well, DGB Media sat down with Jake to find out what Production Touring racing means to Jake and where he thinks he can go in the future.
Q1) What do you do for a living?
I recently graduated from University and now I work full time at Deputy.com. I manage the Customer Support for all of Deputy’s clients.
Q2) How did you enjoy your first season with PTC?
My experience in racing and differing racing clubs does not stem that far, but from what I have seen I think that PTC is one of the best, if not the best racing series growing at the moment. Everyone in the club is great to race with, the competition is hard, but everyone still gets along has a great time. We had a few mechanical mishaps last year, but for the races that we finished, we did well.
Q3) This year you’ve got your own car, can you reveal to us what it is?
This year I will be racing the same Deputy Evo, but it will be upgraded to a Evo 9 from the original Evo 8. Hopefully this gives me that extra edge I need to take the lead every now and then!
Q4) Will it have the same colour scheme as the Deputy car had this year?
The car’s colours will not change, we like the Americanised Cop car feel. I have a feeling our future race cars will keep the same colour scheme too.
Q5) Do you think you can beat this year’s champion, Gerry, to the 2013 title?
Gerry is a great driver, but ill give him my best shot. I gain more experience every time I race, so hopefully I can use what I know to try and win this years champion position.
Q6) At the Winton 300 you drove from 6th to 2nd in the last few minutes. Do you think a drive like this is possible in the PTC?
I would like to think that if I needed to move quickly through the pack in PTC I could do so, but PTC cars evenly balanced in performance so it wouldn’t be as easy to get through the pack as I did in the Winton 300.
Q7) You made an app last year, to help students navigate the University of Wollongong campus. Do you have any plans to make a similar one for race tracks?
I have never thought about expanding the App into motor racing, but the ability to do so is there. If it was needed and a race track wanted it, I would have no problem in fixing them up.
Q8) What is it that you love about motor racing?
The thing I love the most is that when you start a race, there is not one thing that you can think about apart from racing. Your brain is 100% focused on racing, you have one goal and thats it, you can’t think about anything else. I don’t think there is any other sport that takes so much attention, its exhilarating.
Q9) Bathurst is rapidly approaching, are you excited?
I can’t wait for Bathurst. As a kid with video games, I think I would have lapped Bathurst virtually 100’s of times. It’s going to be an amazing feeling to be there to race.
Q10) When you are not at the track, how do you keep yourself entertained?
When I am not at the track, I’m usually hanging out with my girlfriend, friends and family. I also enjoy working on our race cars, and playing with around with different styles of photography.
Q11) It was pretty special for you last year to race the endurance season with your dad. Will it mean more to beat him this year?
It won’t mean more to beat him, but I guarantee the racing between us will be very exciting to watch, thats a given.
Q12) You’re quite active on twitter. Any thought of using the social network during a race, like NASCAR driver Brad Keselowski did last year?
Seeing Brad got fined $25,000 for that stunt, I’ll think I stay focused on the track.
Q13) Will we see a Deputy Racing Team Facebook page next year? If so, will you let us all join it?
I think that we will definitely start to increase Deputy’s racing status more this year, which could mean a lot of social interaction. This could include Facebook and twitter etc, and we would love everyone from PTC to like and follow us.
Q14) If you could race on any track in the world, what one would it be?
I have driven fast around Nürburgring, but I would love to race around it. I drove on it before I had ever raced, with minimal experience. I would love to go back and give it another shot in a faster car, that track is simply amazing.
Q15) Where do you want this motorsport career to take you?
Hopefully far. I don’t put a lot of effort into my own racing portfolio in terms of winnings and trying to get external sponsors, but if I prove that I have the ability to be a competitive race car driver, I wouldn’t mind racing for a team at all.
Jake Shelley is proudly sponsored by http://www.deputy.com.au .