SIX NATIONS, Ontario, Canada – An abbreviated season due to COVID-19 restrictions failed to hinder Alex Hill’s improvement on the track.
Although she only participated in about half as many races as normal, Hill was pleased with her racing season, which primarily consisted of competing with the Lucas Oil ASCS National Tour.
“I was really happy with how our season went,” the 20-year-old said. “I felt like we came a long way from one year ago, even though we only raced about half as much as usual. I felt I improved a lot as a driver. While my crew chief, Daryl, and I have always worked well together, it seemed like we really clicked this year. I was happy with our results.”
Hill recalled several weekends during the season as major highlights.
“Merced Speedway, [the] 360 Nationals and Short Track Nationals were all races where we did really well,” she noted.
After a disappointing opening weekend with ASCS in Arizona in February, Hill rallied the following weekend to kick off March with a confidence-boosting top-10 finish among a stout field of more than 50 drivers in her first-ever appearance at Merced (Calif.) Speedway.
Hill enjoyed her best-ever 360 Knoxville Nationals in August, when she posted a top-five qualifying time during her preliminary night prior to scoring an exciting win in the B-main that transferred her into the A-main.
She also experienced her best Short Track Nationals run in October when she qualified for the A-main both nights and advanced each time she was on the track, all while competing with more than 75 drivers.
The year wasn’t without trouble, as Hill and her team had to overcome some challenges due to COVID-19 restrictions because of their Canadian residencies.
“I was gone from home for three months during the racing season because of COVID,” she said. “That was the longest time in my life that I’ve been away from home. I could cross the border, but if I returned to Canada I had to quarantine for two weeks and that didn’t work with racing.
“The quarantine kept my dad away from racing. He’s usually at all my races, but this year he only went to the 360 Nationals. My mom wasn’t able to come to any races. We also had some difficulty getting Daryl back across the border.”
A frustration for Hill was falling just short of finishing in the top 10 in the championship standings with the ASCS National Tour.
However, her 11th-place result tied a career-best mark.
“It was disappointing to finish 11th in points when our goal was to be in the top 10,” she said. “We were in 10th going into the final weekend when a number of things just went against us and it cost us.”
With her college classes in Los Angeles moving to online instruction, Hill will return home to Canada for the offseason.
“I plan to finish my senior year online and then graduate in the spring,” she said. “I’m looking forward to what I hope will be a full year of racing in 2021.”