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PEI’s “Mr. Feature” is right at home in’ the Geary Woods

(June 28, 2017) The Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour comes to Speedway 660 on Canada Day for the Cummins 150. There will be lots of competition and fans will be treated to an exciting night of action. Dylan Gosbee, who won a RE/MAX Group Four Realty Pro Stock feature here back in May, is confident heading into this weekend’s race.

 

A Conversation with Dylan Gosbee

 

Wade: Hello Dylan, the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour is headed here this weekend. How is your season going so far?

Dylan: Hi Wade, thanks for giving me the opportunity to take part in your weekly Conversation series. I check the 660 web site every week to keep up with what’s happening over there. Tim Terry, from Tim’s Corner Motorsports, Jeremy McDonald, over here on the Island and you do a great job promoting racing. I know the fans, sponsors and drivers appreciate the work all of you guys do for our sport.

Compared to this time last year our season is 100 percent better. Last year we were all over the map trying out two different types of chassis and really spent a lot of time chasing our tail in circles. But we’ve seen a big improvement so far this year and coming into this weekend’s race at 660 we’re third in points on the tour.McCarthyPhoto_170618-8865Dylan runs side by side with Josh Collins (#56) from Newfoundland at a Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour race earlier this season at Riverside International Speedway. Gosbee, who is third in tour points, would love to crack the win column this weekend at Speedway 660. (photo by McCarthy Photographic) 

Wade: You work for a living through the week and spend a lot of time in the shop and weekends at the track.That’s got to be tough.

Dylan: At times it is tough, especially if you are struggling at the race track.  Being a full time electrician on the road working all over the Maritimes, makes it difficult to find enough time in the shop and to get out and test relentlessly like some of the other guys do.  We tried a lot of different things last year on race days and learned a lot about what doesn’t work, more than finding out what does work. It was frustrating at times, but certainly taught us a lot and made us better this year.

Over the winter we completely over-hauled our older car and made a lot of changes to it. When we unloaded for the first time this year, at Oxford Plains Speedway back in April, the car was a rocket. That trend has continued at every track and series we’ve been to this season.

We’ve been really good on the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour leading laps at most of the races and having a podium capable car on most occasions. And on an off-weekend from the tour we stopped by 660 for a test session for the PASS race and came out of there with a RE/MAX Group Four Realty Pro Stock feature win! So our 2017 season is off to a amazing start, especially compared to last year.Dylan Gosbee Pro Stock heat winner May 28, 2017Dylan had a perfect day on May 28th. He won his heat race and then rocketed back to victory lane in the RE/MAX Group Four Realty Pro Stock 50 lap feature. 

Wade: That was an impressive win here at 660 back in May. Even though we use a different tire and shock package than the tour, the win must give you a bit of confidence heading into the Cummins 150 this weekend.

Dylan:  I love racing at Speedway 660 and I’d have to say it’s my favourite track in the Maritimes. It’s like racing at my home track and for some reason you are always able to get around your “home track” better than other places. I seem to always be pretty good at 660. Heading into that weekend in May we wanted to learn about the shocks and tires, like you mentioned, and figured a top five would be pretty good.Pro Stock action 2017Dylan (#91) loves coming to Speedway 660. Back in May he went door-to-door with Brent Roy our current Pro Stock points leader. Gosbee made that inside pass and went on to win the feature.

You guys have got a great weekly Pro Stock series and the competition is really tough. So winning that race really had us stoked for the PASS race up there and we were really disappointed it was cancelled because of bad weather. But that test run will hopefully help us prepare for this weekend’s race as well as the McLaughlin Roof Trusses 250 on SpeedWeekend.

I’m pumped for this weekend’s race and know it’s gonna be a tough because there are a lot of fast guys on the tour this year and hopefully we’ll see a few of your Pro Stock guys come out. That will make for stiffer competition than our usual tour races, but having said that, I’m coming to 660 with an extra bit of confidence. This is one of the races I always look forward to because we should have a shot at the win and that’s what we’d like to do on Canada Day in the Cummins 150!Dylan Gosbee has raced against the best short-track drivers in our region including the legendary Shawn Tucker (#52). Dylan hopes his experience facing guys like Tucker will help him get to victory lane this Saturday night. (photo by McCarthy Photographic)

Wade: The tour races this year are 150 laps to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. And that’s 150 laps without a mid-race break. So how will you approach this race in terms of strategy?

Dylan: It definitely changes the way you approach the race. It’s easy to go out hard and use up your gear early. But it’s really all about having enough car left at the end of the race to go for the win.  The longer races make it harder on both car and driver, especially if there are a lot of cautions. The heat, exhaust fumes and dehydration all take their toll on your body and mess with your ability to stay focussed, hit your marks and make smart decisions. I won’t go into the Cummins 150 with a strategy of leading every lap, but want to put myself in a position to make a run to the front any time after the half way mark._DSC8234Dylan had a pretty good battle with fellow Islander Greg Proude(#29) at last year’s Parts for Trucks Tour race at Speedway 660. Greg won the race, while Dylan settled for 8th. Gosbee figures to do a lot better this time around. 

Wade: I know you started racing back home on the Island and eventually moved up to the PEI Modified Division and had so much success that they called you “Mr. Feature”. Tell us a little bit about how you got into our sport and how you ended up on the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour?

Dylan: “Mr. Feature”, I haven’t heard that one in a while but I like how it sounds! It all started when I was 15 and ran a Hobby Stock at Raceway Park, which is now Oyster Bed Speedway. My Father, Rae MacFarlane, was definitely the driving force getting me into racing, then helping me move up to Street Stock and then Modified. We were pretty low budget and never had the best of gear or the latest and greatest stuff. We always bought cheap cars that someone else had given up on and did what we could to make them competitive.dylan 2Dylan Gosbee started racing at his local track at Oyster Bed, Prince Edward Island. Like many racers, just starting out, Dylan didn’t have loads of cash, but he did have a lot of fun!  This is his Hobby Stock ride.

In the early 2000’s I took a few years off from driving and helped Kent Livingston, David Mutch, Robert H. Neilsen and Robbie Mclean fellow Islanders who were running the Maritime Pro Stock Tour. I wanted to learn more about race cars, racing strategies, setups and all that stuff with the hopes of returning to Oyster Bed Speedway and being more competitive in the Modified division, their top class.

Taking time off was a great decision because I learned more helping those guys out and watching champions like Shawn Tucker, Wayne Smith and John Flemming then I would have in a life time of driving around in circles at the local track. I also got to travel to all the best tracks in the Maritimes and met a lot of great people along the way.dylan 3Here’s another shot from the Gosbee racing photo archives. Dylan started as a 15 year old driving a Hobby Stock and moved his way up the ranks to become one of the top Pro Stock drivers in eastern North America! This “red & white beast” is his Street Stock ride.

When David Mutch moved to Ottawa for work, I figured it was time to go back racing myself and picked up an old modified and that’s when I got the name “Mr, Feature”. I won a pile of races in that old car over two seasons and Kent and I actually won the 2010 modified championship when he had to drive the final six races after I broke my wrist and thumb in a racing accident. The next winter Kent and David bought an old Pro Stock and asked if I wanted to give it a try. “Heck ya” was my response!dylan 1This is Dylan’s PEI Modified Championship car. From there, with the help of his good friends, Gosbee moved up to the Parts forTtrucks Pro Stock Tour.

Wade: You’ve got a lot of support back home on the Island. Tell us about your crew and sponsors who help you out every week?

Dylan: A lot of support is a big of an understatement Wade. I could write a novel about my racing career and all of the people who helped me out. My Dad, who passed away about five years ago, first and foremost got this whole racing thing started for me when I was a teenager. My first Pro Stock car owner and good friend David Mutch, who passed away a couple of years ago, was also instrumental in my development as a driver. 141002_davemutch-750x400David Mutch, pictured here with wife Jeni and sons Luke and Jack, passed away in 2015 at the age of 41. Dylan will never forget how his friend supported his racing career and helped him get where he is in racing today.   

Ryan Hynes is another good friend and long time sponsor. A few years ago Ryan came to me and said “We’re going racing”.  If you ever meet Ryan, you’ll soon find out that if he says something is gonna happen….he will make it happen! Ryan and David are two of the hardest working guys I ever met and if it wasn’t for those two guys and my Dad I would be sitting in the stands or crawling underneath someone else’s race car helping them out.

Our current crew members are Joel Hickox, Stephen Scully, Jody MacKenzie, Bobby Neilsen and Tom Powelle. I can’t forget Chris Wonnacott who does a terrific job on the race radio as my spotter. And our sponsors are Hynes Racing (Ryan and Britney Hynes), Greenfield Enterprises and Terravisa Seafood.Dylan Gosbee in the pits 2017Dylan is more than just a great driver. His time crewing for fellow Islanders on the Pro Stock Tour has given him lots of experience working on race cars and getting the set-up just right on race day.

Wade: Most drivers like running the three big races in the Martimes. The Atlantic Cat 250, the IWK 250 and the McLaughlin Roof Trusses 250. What is it about those races that gets you excited?

Dylan: The level of competition that shows up for those races is huge. It’s the best drivers from around the Maritimes and northeastern United States. If you can win one of those races your name is solidified as being one of those guys who are considered to the best at what we do. dylan gosbeeDylan Gosbee is focused on this weekend’s Cummins 150 at Speedway 660.  He really wants to get another Parts for Trucks Pro Stock win. Later this summer he’ll compete in the IWK 250, Atlantic Cat 250 and the McLaughlin Roof Trusses 250 – the three biggest races in our region.

Wade: Thanks a lot Dylan and good luck this weekend.

Dylan: Thank-you Wade. I look forward to coming to 660 this weekend for the Cummins 150. You’ve got great fans over there as well as great owners and staff at the track. I feel pretty confident heading your way this weekend and hopefully we can go back to the Riverview Ford Victory Lane on Canada Day!

 

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