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Real Name: Tony Velez
Hometown: Buffalo Grove, IL
Tracks Where I Race: Rockford Speedway, Grundy County Speedway, Madison International Speedway, Plymouth Speedway, Dells Raceway Park, and Illiana
Non-Racing Hobbies: Rock music and video games
Classes I've Raced: Yamaha senior supercan, mini cup cars, stock cars, and midgets
Classes I Currently Race: Mini cup cars
Racer's Forum: CLICK HERE for this racer’s forum board
Email Me: Send a Private Message to this User
Grundy Win - Illinois State Champ
My name is Tony James Velez. (a.k.a. TJ) I am a 20-year-old college student attending Triton College for my certificate in Automotive Technology. I was on the “B” honor roll almost every quarter in high school and I am currently ranked second in my college automotive class. I spent 4 years in go-karts and the last 3 years in Super Cups. I have driven a full size stock car and a midget. In go karts, I have a track championship and a track record. Since I started racing, I have never finished out of the top five in season points. I am a self-taught driver. I learn by watching and listening. My peers have told me I am fast and smooth behind the wheel and I drive a consistent line. I have consistent top five finishes, several wins and poles. (too many of those "missed the pole by 1,000's of a second") I can adapt to any track, any conditions, and any competition – quickly. I have the heart, desire, and determination to win. I never give up under any circumstances. If I could race 24/7, I would.
I WOULD LIKE TO GIVE A BIG SHOUT OUT TO MY PRIMARY SPONSOR SEGERDAHL GRAPHICS, A PRINTER AND FULFILLMENT COMPANY IN WHEELING, IL. THEY HAVE BEEN WITH ME SINCE I STARTED RACING AND THEIR WORK IS TOPS IN THE BUSINESS. CALL THEM FOR YOUR PRINTING AND FULFILLMENT NEEDS.
2004 (rookie year) raced club level/Jr Supercan Karts – 17 races, 0 poles, 0 wins, 0 – 2nds, 4 – 3rds, 9 other top 5’s, finished 3rd in overall points.
2005 raced club level/Jr. Supercan Karts – 20 races, 0 poles, 0 wins, 1 – 2nd, 9 – 3rds, 8 other top 5’s, finished 4th in overall points.
2006 raced club level/Sr. Supercan Karts – 9 races, 1 pole, 4 wins, 1 – 2nd, 3 – 3rds, finished season track champion and track record holder.
2006 Route 66 regional series/Sr. Supercan Karts – 5 races, 0 poles, 0 wins, 1 – 2nd, 2 – 3rds, 1 other top 5, finished the series 4th in overall points.
2007 Route 66 regional series/Sr. Supercan Karts – 6 races, 1 pole, 0 wins, 1 – 2nd, 2 – 3rds, 2 other top 5’s, finished 3rd in overall points.
2007 Midwest Sprint Series/Sr. Supercan Karts – 5 races, 0 poles, 1 win, 0 – 2nds, 1 – 3rd, finished 5th in overall points.
2008 (rookie year) CSR Super Cup Series and Tri-State Series (tri-state is a series within a series)/Super Cup Cars – 11 race days to include 1 heat race and 1 feature race each race day, 0 – poles, 1 – win, 0 – 2nds, 4 – 3rds, 9 other top 5’s, finished 7th in overall points in CSR Series and finished 3rd in overall points in Tri-State Series.
2009 CSR Super Cup Series/Super Cup Cars - 12 race days to include 1 heat race and 1 feature race each race day, 0 poles, 7 wins, 4 – 2nds, 2 – 3rds, 7 other top 5’s, finished 2nd in overall points and received the most improved driver award.
2010 CSR Super Cup Series/Super Cup Cars - 15 race days to include 1 heat race and 1 feature race each race day, 2 poles, 2 wins, 8 - 2nd's, 7 - 3rd's, 8 other top 5's, finished 3rd in overall points.
Mini cup car:
A Mini Cup race car is the same as a NASCAR cup car but exactly 1/2 the size. The cars come complete with a full tube chassis, rack & pinion steering, upper & lower control arms and fully adjustable coil over shocks both front and rear.
None entered yet.
View Schedule For:
2011 | 2010
No race results entered yet.
Buffalo Grove resident chases NASCAR dreams
BY RONNIE WACHTER | firstname.lastname@example.org October 11, 2012 8:04AM
BUFFALO GROVE — It all ma... Read More
Wisconsin Dells, WI (August 18, 2012) – Velez, driving the un-sponsored #88 super cup car, took to the track not knowing what was in store for him.... Read More
Concord, NC (June 19, 2012) - Tony (TJ) Velez, a Buffalo Grove, Illinois native, participated in the Lafferty Motorsports driver development test a... Read More
Will sell car and trailer separately.
Hi there, up for sale is a Super Cup or Mini Cup race car (half scale NASCAR) and a 6x12 trailer. The race car comes with plenty of extra parts and... Read More
CLICK HERE for more forum posts by this racer.
Buffalo Grove resident chases NASCAR dreams
BY RONNIE WACHTER | email@example.com October 11, 2012 8:04AM
BUFFALO GROVE — It all makes complete sense when you compare two of Tony Velez’s childhood interests with the career path he is now pushing to break into.
As a youth, two of the things the Buffalo Grove resident loved were toy cars and ceiling fans.
“I had more Hot Wheels than anybody else when I was a kid,” Velez said. “I still have buckets full.”
And besides that: “I have this weird obsession with ceiling fans, I don’t know why,” he added. “The circular motion just intrigued me.”
Both cars and machinery go around in circles, and work best when circling at fast speeds. From childhood, Velez was a natural fit for a NASCAR driver.
“I think it’s exhilarating,” the 21-year-old race car driver said of competitive racing. “You really have to have the mind-set, in order to handle a car at that rate of speed. You’re inches apart from the car in front of you, drafting, trying to get all the speed you can off the car in front of you. It’s all about car control.”
But what Velez, who attended an advanced school for prospective stock car drivers this summer, is now learning is that before one can have car control, one must have advertisers paying for the car.
“It boils down to being able to have a good sponsor,” he said.
Velez has spent the last four summers in the American Super Cup Series, a circuit in which drivers race vehicles that look like NASCAR stock cars, but are exactly half the size. The machines can reach up to 110 mph and require the same nine-point roll cages and five-point safety harnesses that Jimmie Johnson and Tony Stewart climb into.
To fit into their smaller rides, Super Cup drivers climb in from the top, and essentially lay on their backs, much like the luge.
And just like any professional racing team, there are plenty of technical specifics that Super Cup drivers and their mechanics must manage, including the single-drive centripetal clutches, the 390cc Honda GX motors and the suspension adjustments.
But these complexities don’t compare to the big cars, which is why none of the big NASCAR teams look to circuits like the Super Cup for talent.
“There really were no scouts looking at Super Cups,” Velez said. “They’re just not really there yet.”
So Velez spent this summer where the scouts might be, at Lafferty Motorsports’ driver-development school. Based at Hickory Motor Speedway in North Carolina, the track is one of the beloved but antiquated courses of NASCAR’S past.
Chris Lafferty, who owns and drives a truck in NASCAR’s truck competition and finished 49th this year, taught Velez and other participants about racing at higher levels.
Velez spent 80 laps behind the wheel of a late-model, NASCAR-legal stock racer, following lines up the banks and around the curves. He said he felt confident of the impression he made.
“Lafferty said he’s going to try to work with us as fast as he can,” Velez said.
Lafferty supported that view.
“I could see that in Tony, he was calm,” Lafferty said Tuesday. “The guy is just so easy to get along with. I would rather have a guy with good character and less talent, because I can build the talent into somebody. When you get a guy like Tony, it reminds you of why you’re doing a program like this.”
Velez still has much to learn about modern racing. Hickory’s tracks offers a .363-mile loop, a fraction of NASCAR distances, and with flatter banks in the turns. Lafferty said Velez would need to work on his control of the car at higher speeds.
“The question I can’t answer is ‘Will he freak out when there’s 40 other cars around him?’” Lafferty said.
But racing is Velez’s dream career, and he said he is intent on chasing it. He fell in love with the sport when he started watching it at age 9, learned the thrill of it when he raced his first go-kart at age 12, and has been working up to faster, heavier and more complicated machines since then.
But the trip to North Carolina ate most of the team’s budget for 2012, and Velez raced in only two Super Cup events this summer. At the finale in September in Slinger, Wis., his number 00 car finished sixth. To make it to another driving school, or to a circuit where he could be noticed by the big teams, Velez will also need more experience in the other side of competitive driving: fund-raising.
“Racing is based upon having money to compete,” he noted. “That really is the broad truth.”
On a side note, what this article failed to mention was, with the proper funding, we will be racing in the ARCA series under the Lafferty umbrella. To become a marketing partner, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
(PRESS RELEASE) Tony Velez has dominant run at the Dells Raceway Park
Wisconsin Dells, WI (August 18, 2012) – Velez, driving the un-sponsored #88 super cup car, took to the track not knowing what was in store for him. He had not raced all year and he had not raced with the American Super Cup Series before this race. All he knew was it was a perfect day for racing.
Velez adapted to the car and the track like he had been racing all year, posting the fastest lap times in both practices by nearly a half a second.
Velez was very optimistic about the rest of the day as he suited up for his qualifying run. Once again, Velez was nearly a half a second faster than the field and qualified on the pole. Because he was a newcomer to this series, he was placed in the back of the field for his heat and feature race.
Starting 8th in his 8 lap heat race, Velez methodically worked his way up through the field to take the win.
Velez had his work cut out for him in the 25 lap feature, starting in the back of the 16 car field. The green flag flew and it was time to go. In the first lap, he passed two cars and the caution came out for a spin in turn four. After a few more cautions for spins on the track, Velez knew he had to race hard as the caution laps counted down and left him only 15 laps to make it to the front. He passed car after car, lap after lap. Velez made it to second and was ready to make the pass for the top spot when the caution flew yet again to end the race.
The next race for Velez will be Sunday, September 9th @ Slinger Speedway in Slinger, WI.
This summer Tony was accepted into the driver development program of Lafferty Motorsports. Please join the group TJVRacing and Lafferty Motorsports on Facebook.
Tony is in need of marketing partners, contact Tony Velez at email@example.com and/or Chris Lafferty at firstname.lastname@example.org
(PRESS RELEASE) Local Super Cup racers dream of NASCAR comes one step closer.
Concord, NC (June 19, 2012) - Tony (TJ) Velez, a Buffalo Grove, Illinois native, participated in the Lafferty Motorsports driver development test at the famed Hickory Motor Speedway located in Newton, NC.
“Ever since I started in go karts at the age of 11, I have been passionate about racing. It’s where my heart is, it’s what I’ve been dreaming of. I finally get the opportunity to do what I love in front of a NASCAR team!” Those thoughts raced through Velez’s head as he and his Mom and Grandparents took the drive down to North Carolina.
Velez’s test consisted of 80 plus laps around the .363 mile asphalt oval. Driver instruction was given by Chris Lafferty, NASCAR team owner, driver and crew chief. The test determined Velez’s ability to handle the car, follow instructions, and consistency on the race track. This program also included an introduction to marketing, to create the well rounded driver.
With the conclusion of Lafferty Motorsports testing, Velez was accepted into their driver development program. It was determined that Velez would be placed in the NASCAR late model racing series. Velez will compete in this series once funding becomes available.
Velez has had racing experience in several types of vehicles. In the 9 years that he has been racing, he has racked up 24 race wins, a track record, a track championship and a state championship. Velez has seldom finished a race or a season out of the top five.
20 year old Velez will be balancing school, work and racing. His ultimate goal is NASCAR’s Sprint Cup series. “I am so thankful to everyone that has made this happen. I believe that taking it one step at a time, with the help of Chris Lafferty and the Lafferty Motorsports team, anything is possible,” Velez said.
Join the group TJV Racing and Lafferty Motorsports on face book.
Review from KIRL season 2010 -2011:
IT'S BEEN SEVEN YEARS SINCE THE PRO-KIRL CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS HAVE LISTED ANY NAME OTHER THAN BILL HARTWIG...WELL NOW THAT THE POINTS AUDIT HAS FINALLY BEEN COMPLETED, THE TIME HAS COME TO OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCE THAT THERE IS A NEW SHERIFF IN TOWN!
Tony Velez has etched his name in the racing history books forever...
Tony started racing in Ken's Indoor Racing League (KIRL) over four years ago as young teenager.
Initially he had to be cleared by Chicago Indoor Racing staff to race in the Pro-KIRL division since he was far below the minimum age of 18.
Tony passed his audition with high honors and has been flying behind the wheel ever since!
After Tony's first KIRL race, the other drivers were overheard asking each other "who is that kid?" "He's pretty fast." "Where did that kid come from?"
It wasn't long before everyone knew the mystery kid's name because it was on top of the scoreboard race after race, always a top 3 and regularly the fastest lap holder!
Many superstars have passed through the Pro-KIRL Series and alot still remain but none can say they don't know who Tony Velez is once they've raced him!
Tony has raced every single one of them the hardest they've ever been raced and each of them will easily admit Tony is by far one of the cleanest most respectable competitors they've challenged.
Bill Hartwig whose racing career has spanned 7 decades, a legend himself, stated early on after racing and watching Tony: "that kid's got IT!"
"IT" of course is what every racer strives for, what every parent dreams their kid has, "IT" is the stuff champions are made of and what TONY would need to topple the 6-Time Pro-KIRL champion BILL HARTWIG from his perch.
At the conclusion of the 2010-11 Pro-KIRL season in April at CHICAGO INDOOR RACING in BUFFALO GROVE, IL, Tony Velez earned the highly coveted Pro-KIRL Series Championship title proving that he has plenty of "IT!"
CONGRATULATIONS to TONY VELEZ for dominating the Pro-KIRL Series in the 2010-11 season and earning your CHAMPION status!
New this past season in PRO-KIRL, a tally of points was kept for finish position in all 6 PRO-KIRL Super FINAL races.
After 180 laps taking more than 90 minutes to run over 6 months, only 2 points or one finish position amazingly kept TONY from sweeping both PRO-KIRL titles!
Look for TONY VELEZ to return to indoor gokart racing in the Fall and defend his title after the conclusion of another successful outdoor season of Super-Cup racing on the high banks of Wisconsin.
Click this to read a random article about race results from DRP Dells Raceway Park just last week... note the authors reference to Tony Velez methodically picking through the field and "swiping" second from a veteran of the Central States Region Super Cup Association!
It won't be long before some scout from the big leagues spots the serious talent TONY VELEZ has been packing and sets him up with a "big time" ride!
Remember the kid's name: Tony Velez, you will be seeing it on the top of a Television leader board anyday now!
Review from KIRL season 2009-2010:
The final event for the 2009-2010 Pro-KIRL season was moved from the first Sunday of April to the last Sunday in March due to the Easter holiday.
All Season and for much of last season the headlines regarding Pro-Kirl events seemed to always have a Jones in them...well not for this season's final...for this final there was "a new sheriff in town!"
TONY VELEZ came to Ken's Indoor Racing League's final event of the season sporting a new haircut and a new attitude. Tony has been recognized as probably one of the most squeaky clean racers in the series. If there is not a hole his kart will pass through, out of respect to his fellow racers, he won't create one and in return he expects the same courtesy. Well this night he did more than expect it, he demanded it! Anyone can bump the kart in front of them in a turn and slow them up enough to make a pass. This tactic is not tolerated at Chicago Indoor Racing's two tracks. Unfortunately, it happens routinely and the guilty drivers are rarely penalized . Sometimes, the victims retalliate and they end up being the ones caught and penalized. Sometimes not. Well at Event 6 Tony Velez was nearly a victim, he was being overly pressured to say it nicely and would shortly have been forced out of his line had he not quickly remedied the brewing situation. Tony convincingly trounced through the field of Super Final racers and finished his last race of the season comfortably out front.
The Super Final began with rookie standout Danny Church leaping to the lead at the green. No one was sure what was going on with Danny but he took off and drove like an escaped convict! Chuch's lead would last about 15 laps until Tony Velez started his final pass of the event. Tony let Danny Church run his line and found an opportunity to make the most amazing pass exiting the track one hairpin. Church appeared stunned and lost his concentration and when 3rd place
Vern Fagerberg started knocking on Danny's door (bumper!) Danny appeared to overdrive the corners and Vern easily passed while Danny was crossed up. Fagerberg set his sights on Tony Velez who was working lapped traffic without the benefit of any move over flags. Velez was struggling with some side by side racing between lappers and Vern Fagerberg was capitalizing every lap. It wasn't long before Velez was clear of lapped traffic but now Vern was on his bumper over and over. There were about 2 laps to go and Velez had endured his last "hey i'm here tap" when he decided to school 2nd place Fagerberg about track etiquette! Fagerberg mysteriously lost about 30 feet and was now far behind Tony Velez who would easily finish out the last lap of the final event in the 7th season of Ken's Indoor Racing League comfortably in the lead!