Team Kendall Racer of the Month - June 2014 - Ray Russiani
Ray Russiani of Ontario, Canada spent most of his life fulfilling his passion for cars by restoring and repairing vintage muscle cars. In the early 1980s, he transitioned from working behind the scenes to living his dream as a racer after inheriting his first race car - a 1966 Pontiac Acadian. Since then, Russiani has spent the past 30 years working tirelessly to become a top competitor, and we're thrilled to name him as our Team Kendall Racer of the Month for June.
During the first 20 years of his bracket racing career, Russiani competed with the Pontiac Acadian and worked on improving his reaction time. "Your reaction time is extremely important in drag racing," Russiani explained. "The goal is to keep as close to ':000' - which is exactly when the green light comes on - without red-lighting it. Ideally, you want to be within the ':005 to :.015' of the green light.
After that, Russiani decided to retire the Acadian because he was regularly exceeding the vehicle's speed certification. Now racing with a 1967 Chevy Nova, Russiani is a frequent competitor at the Grand Bend Motorplex in Ontario - his favorite track. "I love the atmosphere, because it's a warm and friendly environment and a place the whole family can enjoy," shared Russiani.
"Ray and his wife, Ruth Ann, have been loyal Kendall Motor Oil customers for years. The entire family in involved with his racing team -it's really great to see," said Marketer Dan Currie of Crescent Oil Co. in Ontario, Canada.
Ruth Ann and their daughters, Kourtney, Kandace and Kayla-Rae, visit the track nearly every weekend to watch Russiani compete for points in the Extreme 32 Series, which holds the fastest 32 cars that show up that day. All 32 vehicles (half dragsters and half door cars) compete until the competition is narrowed down to the fastest car in each group; then, the fastest door car and dragster run against each other to determine the overall winner.
In 2012, Russiani finished third in points while grabbing the number six spot the following year. This year, he kicked off the first race of the season with his quickest time to-date (8.36) and took home the championship title for door cars. "My 2014 season started off awesome, and I'm really looking forward to the upcoming races. My goal is to win the points championship title' he shared.
Congratulations, Ray on being named our June Racer of the Month! We wish you the best of luck in the remainder of your season. If one of your Team Kendall racers would like to submit themselves as the next Racer of the Month, they can share a photo of themselves with their vehicle - that clearly displays a Team Kendall decal - to the Kendall Motor Oil Facebook page, along with a brief reason of why they should win this honor. You may also post on their behalf.