BIXBY, Okla. — Ace McCarthy will contest the POWRi Lucas Oil National Midget League schedule this season, pursuing the series championship with Dave Mac Motorsports.
McCarthy, from Tahlequah, Okla., joins forces with team owner Dave McIntosh for an all-Oklahoma assault on the POWRi trail, fresh off a year where the “Oklahoma Cowboy” finished eighth in points.
The only driver to make all 31 completed POWRi national midget features in 2019, McCarthy earned one win, which came at Valley Speedway in Grain Valley, Mo., on July 13.
McCarthy is hoping to improve considerably on that mark this year, leaning on the skills and resources of perhaps the fastest-rising team in the pit area for support in his pursuit of a maiden championship.
“Believe it or not, we actually started talking about this almost a year ago,” McCarthy said. “I ended up going and driving for the Neumans for a year, which was a really good deal for me. They gave me great equipment all year, but Cody (Cordell) just kind of kept prying at me and Dave (McIntosh) kept prying … really just every chance they got. They just kept throwing it out there. So probably around October or November of last year, we got everything done and worked out and made it happen.
“I couldn’t be more excited to make this jump with Dave and Cody, Cannon (McIntosh) and all the supporters that help make Dave Mac Motorsports run,” added McCarthy, whose cars will carry his familiar No. 28. “It takes a lot of great folks to make a touring deal like this go and I’m looking forward to being part of it and, hopefully, doing my part to deliver them a championship this season.”
Crew chief Cody Cordell will call the shots for the 29-year-old McCarthy, and is excited for the breath of fresh air he feels the fellow Sooner State native will bring to the organization.
“Man, you’re talking about two different ends of the spectrum, for sure,” Cordell noted. “Where Cannon (McIntosh) is quiet and doesn’t talk about very much, but he’s still very emotional … talking with Ace, he’s very emotional, but in a different way. He’s older and has that maturity that just comes with age and life experience, but he also understands and has more experience with what it’s going to take to be racing for championships and competing at the national level like we want to as a team.
“As a crew chief, I think that anytime you can bring in different vibes, that opens up the data and information you can receive as a team and makes the whole unit stronger,” Cordell added. “Ace is trying to fine tune his skills at this level, and I think that’s something that we’ll be able to help him do. It’ll be fun for me to get somebody new and try more things because every driver is different. I’m excited for that challenge this season.”
McCarthy was quick to note that one of the things that drew him to the McIntosh team was the squad’s proximity to his home, making it easier for him to help work on the cars on a more regular basis.
“That (the location) was a big part of it. With both of us being from Oklahoma, their shop is only an hour from my house, so I can go work on the cars or go help if I want to,” McCarthy noted. “Hanging out in the shop will be fun, I think, and if Cannon ends up staying with Dave Mac Motorsports for next year, I think we’re going to be a team to beat. Either way, though, I’m confident we’ll be really strong.”
After a breakout year with 17-year-old Cannon McIntosh at the controls last season, McCarthy believe the timing is right for him to make the move and that Dave Mac Motorsports is poised to take the next step and contend for a national championship for the first time.
“Just after watching Cannon all of last year and seeing the cars that they’ve already put together, I think everyone knows that they have good equipment and can run right at the front pretty much every night,” McCarthy said. “Dave’s a great guy and Cody’s a good guy too. We’re going to have some fun this year.
“A championship is definitely the goal. That’s what we’re going to be going for next year, is a POWRi national championship,” he continued. “That’s what we’ve got our eyes set on and I think we’d be selling ourselves short if we didn’t aim for it because this team is capable and we’re ready to go out and prove what we can do.”