Cole Jones: Winning the Race and Respect

Cole Jones: Winning the Race and Respect

Third-year IMCA modified driver Cole Jones won his first feature on July 2 at Winnemucca Regional Raceway in Nevada. After taking the checkers, Jones said his competitors lined up to congratulate him.

“It was a good feeling,” Jones, 19, a diesel mechanic from Winnemucca, Nevada, said of his competitors’ gesture. “The competition level is so high in this division — it makes my first win even more rewarding.”

Jones turned heads, including perhaps his own, with his performance last month. When he visited Desert Thunder Raceway in Price, Utah, for the first time, he finished third after starting last. He then took second- and third-place finishes at Summit Raceway in Elko, Nevada, and The Battle Mountain Raceway in Nevada, respectively.

“I felt we were on the cusp of winning,” said Jones. “At Winnemucca, the car was fast. It was on rails.”

A tight-knit group of racers tour the IMCA-sanctioned tracks of the West. Many tracks run two-night shows on a staggered schedule with other facilities. This enables teams to tow hundreds of miles to race twice in a weekend. Jones said he plans to compete in 30 to 40 races this season.

“We all race together just about every weekend as we travel through Nevada and to Utah and California,” Jones said. “The first thing I learned was how important it is that we race clean together. There is no need to tear up equipment.”

Jones races a 2017 chassis from Shaw Race Cars. His father, Jeff; older sister, Alyssa; and friend Trevor Evasovic serve as his crew members.

“My dad never drove [a race car], but he took us to the track to cheer on his friends,” said Jones. “My racing career began when the kids of my dad’s friends started racing karts. I wanted one, too. So, here we are today.”

With one feature win under his belt, Cole Jones is ready for more.

“We finally got the monkey off our backs,” Jones said. “[I’m going to] try my best to keep winning.”