NEWCOMER: SPRINT CAR ACE DANNY VARIN EYES ‘SUNSHINE SWING’ DEBUT
Written by Chris Moore
FONDA, NY – A newcomer.
Sprint Car ace Danny Varin ventures to All-Tech Raceway in Lake City, Fla., for the first time in his career to compete in the ‘Sunshine Swing’ presented by Capitol Custom Trailers & Coaches Feb. 6-10.
The Fonda, N.Y., resident straps into the renumbered BDR Speed No. 01 for four nights in the Sunshine State with the Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series (STSS) Fueled By Sunoco.
The versatile driver claimed the most prolific victory of his career last August, winning a breakthrough national 410 Sprint Car event at Utica-Rome Speedway in Vernon, N.Y., against the All-Star Circuit of Champions.
Varin roars into the 2024 season with a brand-new Bicknell racecar around him and a fresh Bill Schlieper-built Pro Power engine under the hood.
“I’ve always watched All-Tech,” Varin said. “If there’s Sprint Cars or Modifieds on, we’re watching FloRacing so I’ve definitely watched.
“From what I can see on Flo, it looks like a place that has a really fine line between being fast and being way too tight,” he continued.
“I’ve been doing my homework watching every video I can.”
As All-Tech newcomers, Varin and crew chief Mason Olmstead relied on a friend for some ‘Sunshine Swing’ direction.
“Mason and Michael Maresca (a past All-Tech winner) are pretty good friends,” he explained. “Michael gave us some pointers on where we need to be and what we need to look for.”
The importance of Tuesday night’s (Feb. 6) Open Practice isn’t lost on Varin.
“I think it’s going to determine how our week goes,” he proclaimed. “I’m hoping we can get it right and be fast right out of the box to set us up for a good week.
“We have a game plan for things we want to try. Bicknell gives us a good baseline, but I think finding the right spring and shock package will be the major factor for how our week goes.”
What would Varin consider a “good” week?
“Realistically we need to walk out of there with top-five finishes,” he stated. “In order to make the trip worth it for everything that goes into it, we need to run in the top five and just have a good overall racecar all week.”
Varin kicks off his first full season with team owner Brett Deyo after making a handful of late-season starts for BDR in '23.
“I’m really excited, it’s a huge opportunity for me,” he said. “Brett went out on a limb for me, and I really hope I don’t disappoint him.”
Despite top-10 finishes in autumn Delaware starts at Georgetown and Delaware International, Varin sees plenty of room for improvement from last year.
“We struggled some after the Fonda 200,” he explained. “We’ve put a lot into fixing the problems we had at the end of the year.
“Mason has been working on the car almost every day this winter to make sure we’re in good shape and I have really high hopes.”
Learning Modified setups versus Sprint Cars remains a goal for Varin.
“I’m learning more about setting up these Modifieds, I don’t know if I’m just not smart enough or what,” he laughed.
Varin will head into the new year with a new team and high expectations from the moment he hits the track in Florida.
To learn more about the Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco, visit www.shorttracksuperseries.com, e-mail email@example.com, check out ‘Short Track Super Series’ on Facebook, @ShortTrack_SS on Twitter or @ShortTrackSS on Instagram.