Class of 2019

Welcome to the Jr Late Model Challenge Camp Website

The camp was designed to give young racers between the ages of 10 and 15 the opportunity to apply for a chance to drive a Late Model Stock Car at Madera Speedway. The camp will give 12 drivers an opportunity, free of charge, to compete for the chance to drive a Naake-Klauer Motorsports-prepared junior late model during the 51FIFTY Championship Weekend at Madera in October.

The Junior Late Model Challenge Camp is an extension of the highly-successful 51FIFTY Junior Late Model Series, which was created by Madera Speedway owner Kenny Shepherd in 2016 to give younger drivers the chance to grow their skills in full-size race cars, with national television exposure on MAVTV.

The 12 drivers selected each year will have the chance to have 90 minutes of on-track time, as well as participate in off-track training seminars during their time at the camp. The 12 finalists will be graded on both on-track and off-track potential, and on-track speed will not be used as a deciding factor.

The Junior Late Model Challenge Camp will be filmed for broadcast on MAVTV as a one-hour special, as an offshoot of the successful Junior Late Model Series television package on the network.


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On Track Experience

Each driver will have the opportunity to get behind the wheel of a Naake-Klauer prepared Jr Late Model for approximately 90 minutes of on-track time. The on-track experience starts with a ride-along with Mike Naake to cover the basics including the correct race line, acceleration, braking, steering input just to name a few. Drivers will be graded on their ability to listen, communicate and run the correct line consistently at a realistic speed. Fast times are not the deciding factor.


Understanding the Chassis and Tires

Basic chassis set up techniques. Basic vehicle prep and maintenance techniques. How to pick out, stagger, stretching and the use of basic tire tools. The basic crew chief language on explaining what the car is doing and what the driver wants in a given scenario.


Radio Communications

Radio communications are one of the key factors in having a solid strategy on race day. Teaching the language the driver will hear from a spotter, driver coach, and crew chief while on track is an essential part of the communication process. Drivers are constantly having to make split-second decisions based on feedback they are getting but also must be able to communicate back to their team the correct information needed to make adjustments to be competitive. 


Keys to Sponsorship

The nearly six billion-dollar world of motorsports marketing is a challenging, rich and intensely exciting realm to operate in. Some of the largest brands in the world have built their presence from simple grassroots programs to dynamic, multi-series dynasties. From the outside looking in, they make it look easy. But for drivers, parents, marketing managers, executives, and those interested in working with motorsports sponsorship programs to market their business it can quickly become overwhelming without the right know-how and support in your corner. We provide key techniques on how to get your marketing partnerships started and what is needed to build a long-lasting relationship. 


How to Conduct an Interview

Drivers will learn how to mentally prepare for and then execute high-quality media interviews. Drivers are given preparation tips on how to articulate their racing experiences for an interview format. Participants will learn how to positively represent themselves, their sponsors, and their team, whether they had a good race or not. Drivers will then put the tips into practice with televised interviews, serving as the voice-overs for the televised special about the camp.


Branding and Marketing

Drivers and parents participate in the Branding and Marketing seminar where we cover the basics on how to prepare the driver to present themselves as a professional ambassador to a potential marketing partner. We touch base on all facets of how to create a brand including social media, visual branding, video content, web development, mainstream media and much more. 

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