Tuesday, 25 April 2017
alt Hometown: Waterloo, N.Y.
Born: July 12, 1982
Team: JB Motorsports
Entry: No. 9s Xtreme Lubricants/Bicknell
Owner: Jeff Brownell Sr.

2012: In his tenth full season campaigning a Big-Block Modified, Central New York standout Sheppard made history, becoming the first driver to ever claim three consecutive Super DIRTcar Series championships. With two wins at Rolling Wheels Raceway Park, one at Autodrome Drummond, a total of eight top-five finishes and 12 top-ten finishes out of 13 starts, Sheppard bested the best.

 

Sheppard’s season started strong, with a fifth-place finish at his home track, Canandaigua Motorsports Park, and followed it up with his first win of the series at Rolling Wheels Raceway Park.

 

An upset at Cornwall Motor Speedway took small block star Chris Raabe to victory lane, leaving Sheppard in sixth.

 

Rolling into The Big Show 4 at Albany-Saratoga Speedway, promoter and driver Brett Hearn powered ahead to finish second in the race and first in points.

 

It didn’t take “Super Matt” Sheppard long to catch up; a win at Autodrome Drummond rocketed him ahead in points, but, with challengers Hearn and Jimmy Phelps within shooting distance of the lead, the battle wasn’t over yet.

 

Sheppard stayed strong, with a second-place finish at Merrittville Speedway, and third at I-96 Speedway. However, seven-time series champion Hearn was ready for a comeback as the series invaded Lebanon Valley Speedway, and motored his way from 23rd in the starting grid to first at the checkered flag. Sheppard finished ninth, and stepped up his game for Rolling Wheels Raceway Park’s Stars & Stripes 100, steering his way to victory lane.

 

Hearn continued his fight for the series lead, winning the VP Small Engine Fuels 200 during NAPA Auto Parts Super DIRT Week XLI, but Sheppard took a strong second. Orange County Fair Speedway’s Eastern States 200 brought victory again for Hearn, leaving Sheppard sixth and chipping away at his lead.

 

Hearn even went on to win the series finale at The Dirt Track at Charlotte, but Sheppard’s strong finishes and home track championship from Canandaigua Motorsports Park gave him the edge he needed to clinch his historic third consecutive Super DIRTcar Series title. 


2012 Super DIRTcar Series Stats 

Rank No. Driver Total Series Bonus Diff Home Track Wins Top 5 Top 10 Starts
1. 9s Matt Sheppard 2,439 1,439 1000 0 Canandaigua 3 8 12 13


Series History: Since garnering his first-ever Super Series victory at Autodrome Drummond (Que.) in July of 2004, Sheppard further solidified his status in the Modified mainstream with a lucrative 2009 triumph at the Moody Mile to cap off the Northeast’s most prestigious event --- Super DIRT Week, in between pulling off a thrilling last turn-last lap pass of veteran Jimmy Horton at New Egypt Speedway in ’05 and authoring a late-race charge to overtake Duane Howard in the ‘08 Series thriller at Virginia Motor Speedway. Partnership with the Albany, New York-based Ross Motorsports operation helped him figure into the top-10 of the overall Mr. DIRTcar Big-Block point standings four straight years while the most recent affiliation with JB Motorsports has maintained his stature among top teams following DIRTcar racing Northeast’s premier traveling show. Sheppard has also earned 15 career Integra Shocks Fast Time awards, three of which stand as track records heading into DIRTcar Racing’s 35th successive season of speed. Sheppard claimed his first Super DIRTcar Series Championship title in 2010, going on to become the first driver to take three in a row with championship titles in 2011 and 2012.

Fun Facts: Sheppard and ’08 Super Bowl Champion New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin share in common the same hometown of Waterloo, New York, and a collegiate experience at the Rochester (NY) Institute of Technology, with each taking full advantage of a career opportunity that came their way in 2004 --- Coughlin’s hiring by the Giants’ front office as well as Sheppard’s inaugural season behind the wheel of owner Randy Ross’ high-profile entry to officially launch his Big-Block career. ‘Super Matt’ earned his Mechanical Engineering Technology degree from RIT in 2006.

Official website: www.Matt-Sheppard.com

 

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