TULSA, Okla. – Blaine Baxter is excited to be competing in his first Lucas Oil Tulsa Shootout this week.
The 11-year-old plans to race in the winged outlaw, winged ‘A’ class and stock non-wing divisions during the four-day event, which kicked off on Wednesday and runs through Saturday inside the River Spirit Expo Center.
Baxter’s heat races for the three classes he’ll compete in take place throughout the day on Thursday.
“This is definitely the biggest race of my career,” said Baxter, who has been racing since he was four years old. “I’ve always wanted to race here and we felt the time was right to do it this year.
“We had thought about racing the Shootout last year, but when the time came we decided we weren’t quite ready for it then. So I got another year of racing under my belt and I feel we made a lot of progress in the last year. That makes me feel better about racing it this year.”
Baxter and his family made the long haul from California and arrived in Tulsa, Okla., last weekend. Baxter was able to check out the track for the first time prior to this week’s festivities.
“It looks really awesome,” he said. “I have iRacing at home and it looks just like it does on there.”
Baxter hopes his time spent racing on the computer will give him some familiarity with the track.
“This is the first time that I’ve raced a track on iRacing before racing on it in person,” he said. “I’m anxious to see how similar it is. I’m hoping that it will at least give me a feel for the track.”
Baxter is also hopeful for a week of competitive racing, free of mechanical woes.
“My main goal for this week is to make the A Main,” he said. “I think that would be a big accomplishment for us our first time here and with so many entries.”