by Alex Goudreau
Special to the Standard
It’s not every day that someone goes to school in the morning and later works on a race car for a professional racing team, but that is exactly what Woodstock Union High School senior Tyler Audsley does every week.
“I love racing and working on stuff,” said Audsley, who for two years has been a pit crew member on the #11, which is a Bicknell dirt modified car driven by Josh Sunn. “We race on dirt (not asphalt),” explained Audsley. The team regularly races at Bear Ridge Speedway in Bradford, Vermont and will start racing at Canaan Dirt Speedway in Canaan, New Hampshire this year.
When working on the #11 at the team’s race shop in Woodstock, which he does four nights a week, Audsley does a number of different tasks. He removes the panels that comprise the car’s body, washes them, puts them back on the car, and does any other maintenance the car may need, such as replacing the car’s gears.
On race day, the team packs up the car and normally heads to Bear Ridge Speedway. Once at the speedway, the #11 driver practices for awhile on the track and later qualifies. Audsley and the team work on the car after qualifying, so it is ready for the race.
Once the race starts, it might be an easy or hard day as a pit crew member on the #11 depending on what happens in the race. “If something goes wrong we help. If nothing goes wrong it’s a smooth ride,” said Audsley. “It can get stressful at points (being a pit crew member),” he added.
Audsley and the rest of the #11 team are very active at Bear Ridge Speedway. “I go to all the races,” said Audsley.
When he’s in school, Audsley is part of a very unique program where he leaves WUHS for about half the day and goes to Hartford High School to participate in the Vocational Technology program, which he began his junior year. Audsley is part of the natural resources program at Hartford, where he spends most of his time outside in the woods. Audsley chose to participate in a Hartford program, “Because it was something hands on and outside (and I enjoy that kind of learning environment).”
While at Hartford, Audsley learned how to use a chainsaw to cut down trees safely and other skills needed in the logging profession. “I’m certified to run a chainsaw and am in the process of becoming a certified logger,” said Audsley. As a second year member of the natural resources program, Audsley is in charge of first year members when they are outside doing an activity such as logging.
Hartford also allowed Audsley to further gain the knowledge he needed for his chosen career.
In his future, Audsley does not plan to go to college, but instead plans to continue being outdoors. “I’m going to be working full time for Gary Corsi Property maintenance,” stated Audsley.
Whether working on the pit crew or tending someone’s property, Audsley is sure to get his hands dirty doing the things that he loves.