Driver: Vince Quenneville, Jr.
Nicknames: VQ2, The Mayor
Hometown: Brandon, VT
Residence: Brandon, VT
Date of Birth: 1/11/66
Family: Wife – Brandie; Daughters – Alexis, Madison
Favorite Food: Steak
Hobbies: “Is there anything besides racing?”
Years Racing: 30
Accomplishments: Three-time Devil’s Bowl Speedway Champion (Dirt ½-Mile – 2003, Asphalt ½-Mile – 2015, 2017); Three-time Bear Ridge Speedway Champion (1999, 2004, 2005); Two-time NASCAR Vermont State Champion (2015, 2016); Vince Quenneville Sr. Memorial race winner (1990)
Division: Sportsman Modified
Car No.: 78
Car Owner: John Danyow
Co-Crew Chiefs: Vince Quenneville Jr. & John Danyow
Team Members: Matt Bilodeau, Kevin Smith, Nate Palmer, Brian Thomas, Dave Snow
Sponsors: Black Diamond Builders, Champlain Construction, G. Stone Motors, Port Henry Service, Uptown Salon
“I was born and bred into it, but my first car was actually from C.J. Richards, just after my father passed away. To this day I still don’t know all the details of how it happened, but C.J. dropped off a car at the house and told me to go racing. It had been the Richardsdale Farms No. 75 car that Gene Munger drove for C.J.’s brother Mike. C.J. gave it to me, and that winter my crew and friends and I stripped it down and we went racing in 1988.”
Did you have a favorite driver before you started racing?
“My father, Vince, was obviously a pretty big deal to me. But growing up I also liked to watch Brett Hearn and Jimmy Horton, and every year when we went out to Syracuse I loved to watch Jack Johnson and Dick Tobias. Those guys were my favorites out at Syracuse. They were so much fun to watch.”
What was your favorite moment of your racing career?
“Winning my father’s memorial race was pretty special to me. I think I had won a couple races at Bear Ridge and Canaan before that, but that was my first win at my home track, Devil’s Bowl, and it meant so much that it was my dad’s race. That one happened with the help of Larry Gallipo after Gibby Fountain got done driving for him. We had a Troyer car and Larry had an Andy Costello motor that he let me use, and I ended up working with Andy for a long time. I’ve basically been with Troyer and Andy ever since.”
What was your most embarrassing moment?
“Being found illegal at Airborne was no fun. It was a big 100-lapper on the pavement (in 2010) and we showed up with our car that was legal under CVRA rules, but the rules were slightly different at Airborne and the heads we were running on the motor didn’t pass tech. That was a tough deal. I’m still bothered by that one a little.”
“I’ve never had a lot of rivals, really – I just want to beat everybody. Mike Ricci and I had some confrontations at Albany-Saratoga. I like him, and we’ve been friends, but we always seemed to find each other and wreck. Timmy LaDuc is definitely a rival here at Devil’s Bowl, and Jimmy Ryan is the same deal, but it’s like the deal with Ricci. We’re all friends off the track, but we’re all hard racers and we beat and bang nerf bars sometimes. We’re all having fun out there, though.”
If you couldn’t drive your car, who would you want to be your substitute?
“Probably Todd Stone. He has the talent, he has the respect for the equipment, and he’s a good guy and a friend besides. I guess you could put him in the rival category, too. For 25 years we’ve always talked on Monday morning at work about the races, and I always enjoyed beating him, simply because of the difference in the equipment that our teams had. I’d say the same about Dave Camara, too. They had good cars, but they can drive, too.”
Are you looking forward to the new ½-mile dirt track at Devil’s Bowl?
“Oh, absolutely, yes. Now, I think that no matter whose track it is, it’s probably going to be a challenge for the first six or eight weeks with the new clay being put down on the asphalt. Look at Oswego, at Airborne, no matter where it is or the equipment they have, it’s a big learning curve at the beginning. But I hope it’s good and I think the new track is going to produce some really good racing.”
What are your racing goals for 2018?
“I’d like to win the track and state championships again. I really enjoy the NASCAR money, but I like the recognition that they give us short track guys, too. To be the first guy to win the championship on the new track would be cool. I did it on the paved track, I did it on the old dirt track, and I would’ve liked to do it on the little track, but to be the first guy to be the champion on the new track would be pretty cool.”