Murrell Claims First Victory And Driver of the Week

By Clayton Johns

IMG_7775BRIGHTON (August 7, 2015) – Not often does a sophomore driver with no prior racing experience get to park in victory lane, but Brandon Murrell accomplished the feat for the first time last Saturday night. Murrell won the Brighton Automotive Pro Stock make-up feature from July 25 to earn Driver of the Week.

Murrell had an impressive weekend: he earned a win and fifth-place finishes in double features at Brighton on Saturday night before setting fast time and finishing fifth in Humberstone Speedway’s All-Canadian Championships, also the first race of the Duel on the Dirt series.

“It’s a lot different racing down there than it is at Brighton. To come out with a top-10 is a victory for us. We’re only in our second year and a lot of those guys are running three nights a week. When we ended up getting fast time, I couldn’t believe it,” said Murrell.

IMG_8134Murrell is a lifetime racing fan whose career started just three years ago. Growing up in St. Catharines, Ont., Murrell was a weekly attendee at Ransomville, Merrittville and Humberstone Speedways. In 2013, he made a brief stint in a four-cylinder before taking a full swing at the Pro Stock division last year.

Now a native of Gores Landing, Ont., The 22 year-old bought and pair for both the car and trailer himself. He receives some help from his father, Terry, during the week and at the racetrack, but does the majority of the work himself. The long hours made the win that much sweeter.

“It just feels like all of the hard work and all of the late nights we put in to the shop – it makes it worth it. You start to get down after all the bad luck we’ve had this year, it just makes it all worth while,” Murrell said.

The year didn’t start well for Murrell. He was involved in a wreck on opening night and suffered a neck injury that forced him to sit out a week. A blow transmission and other misfortune made the first two months of the season grueling. Murrell’s luck has started to turn, however, and he now sits 8th in the standings.

“We’re huge in the learning stage right now. A lot of the guys, the experience they have over us is crazy,” Murrell said. “We feel like we’re playing catch-up most of the time.”

Saturday’s at the racetrack have continued to be a family affair for the Murrells. With Brandon on the racetrack, his mother Lori is a ticket seller. Both Terry Murrell and Brandon’s brother, Ryan, turn wrenches on the Hannah Motors/Champion Oil sponsored No. 19.

“My dad helped me out quite a bit. He cleaned out the garage so I have a spot to work on it and that’s where I keep it. He tries to help me out anyway he can. He knows that when he was younger and trying to do it, he didn’t get any help so he didn’t want me to be in the same spot,” Murrell explained.

Long term, Murrell hopes he can end up in the seat of a 358 or Sportsman Modified, but also has a significant interest in Sprint Car racing. Following the Southern Ontario Sprints tour is also an option, Murrell said, if sponsorship was in place. Until then, Murrell will continue to improve his craft behind the wheel of the Pro Stock divisions.

“I need as much seat time as I can. We’re going to try and run Humberstone as much as we can because that track’s pretty similar. It gives me a little more understanding on different ways to set the car up,” Murrell said.

Certainly, Murrell is on the right track and the future appears to be bright.

2015 Drivers Of The Month

May – Doug Anderson / Justin Ramsay

June – Andrew Hennessy

July – Justin Ramsay

2015 Drivers Of The Week

May 9 – Wade Purchase (Pro Stock)

May 16 – Tyler French (Comp 4)

May 23 – Kyle Sopaz (Pro Late Model)

June 6 – Mike Lucas (Canadian Modified)

June 13 – Adam Turner (Pro Late Model)

June 20 – Andrew Hennessy (Canadian Modified)

July 4 – Dan Ferguson (Canadian Modified)

July 11 – Curtis King (Canadian Modified)

July 18 – Shelby Mills (Comp 4)

July 25 – Brandon Murrell (Pro Stock)

August 1 – Austin Reid (Comp 4)

2015 Winners to Date

Southern Ontario Sprints: 3 – 0 Glenn Styres (July 11 – Brighton Speedway, July 3 – Ohsweken Speedway, June 20 – Brighton Speedway); 2 – 10B Mitch Brown (July 4 – South Buxton Raceway, May 16 – Brighton Speedway); 1 – 11J Chris Jones (June 6 – South Buxton), 1 – 77M Parker Price-Miller (May 17 – Humberstone Speedway).

Vanderlaan Building Products RUSH Pro Late Models: 6 – Charlie Sandercock (July 25, July 11, July 4, June 6, May 16, May 9); 2 – Kyle Sopaz (July 18, May 23); 1 – Adam Turner (June 13); 1 – Corey Earl (May 3).

OilGARD Anti-Rust Canadian Modifieds: 4 – Dan Ferguson (August 1, July 18, July 4, June 13); 2 – Doug O’Blenis (July 25, May 23); 2 – Curtis King (July 11, May 9); 2 – Andrew Hennessy (June 20, May 3); 1- Mike Lucas (June 6).

Brighton Automotive Pro Stocks: 7 – Justin Ramsay (August 1, July 18, July 4, June 13, June 6, May 16, May 3); 2 – Doug Anderson (July 11, May 23); 1 – 19 Brandon Murrell (July 25); 1 – 53 Wade Purchase (May 9).

Bill’s Johns Comp 4s: 6 – Tyler French (July 25, July 4, June 13, May 16, May 9, May 3);2 – Shelby Mills (July 18, May 23); 1 – 85 Austin Reid (August 1); 1 – Brady Greer (June 6).

Quinte Septic Super Stingers: 2 – Del MacGregor (July 4, May 9); 1 – Adam Flieler (July 18); 1 – Chris Lammle (June 6), 1- Gary Taylor (May 23);

Quinte Septic Junior Stingers: 1 – Chantel Golden (July 18).

About Rapid Rad: Located in Bayside, Ont. between Belleville and Trenton, Rapid Rad supplies products and services to local automotive repair shops. Rapid Rad specializes in cooling systems, fuel systems, and automotive heating and air conditioning. All work is satisfaction guaranteed at competitive prices. For more information, visit

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About RUSH Late Model Racing: The RUSH Dirt Late Model Series sanctions weekly crate late model racing at 14 dirt tracks in five U.S. states (Maryland, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia) and one Canadian province (Ontario). The weekly series boasts a points fund of over $27,000. The Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Late Model Touring Series boasts two separate tours, north and south, that compete from April to October. The two touring series will combine for 24 events across the Northeast in 2015 with an annual points fund in excess of $30,000.

RUSH Late Model marketing partners include: Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, Bazell Race Fuels, MSD Ignition, Maxima Racing Oil, Jones Racing Products, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, ARbodies, The Brake Man, K&N Filters, Lincoln Electric, TurboStart, Beyea Headers, FK Rod Ends, Bobby Lake Motorsports, Crate Innovations Inc., Velocita-USA, High Gear Speed Shop,, B.R.A.K.E.S.,, and Valley Fashions. 

Brighton Speedway’s 2015 season is proudly supported by the following corporate sponsors: ABC Taxi, Adecco, AeCON, Bay Marine, Belleville Bulls, Bellevue Fabricating Ltd., Benson Auto Parts, Bill’s Johns, Breeze 107.9, Brighton Automotive, Brighton Recycling, Campbellford Chrysler, Canadian National Autism Foundation, Coca-Cola, Comfort Zone Heating & Air Conditioning, Cool 100, Deerhaven Farm and Garden, Dibbits Excavating, Electro Cables, Excel Tower Service, Extreme Rush Adventures, Gord’s Water, Greig Truck & Trailer, Humber Nurseries, Hotch’s Auto Parts, Hoosier Racing Tire, Motorsport Designs, Investor’s Group, John’s Equipment, JJ Stewart Motors, Kellogg Belleville, Lange & Fetter Ford, Lucas Oil, McDougall Insurance and Financial, Monster Energy, Mystical Distributing, NOCO Fuels, OilGARD Anti-Rust, Owasco RV, Part Source, Quinte Septic, Rapid Rad, Rock 107, Rona Trenton, Sanderson Tire and Automotive, Small Engine Fuels, Star 93.3, Stoneridge Specialty Insurance, Town and Country Liquidation, TRS Communications, 95.5 Hits FM, UCB Radio Canada, Ultramar CST, Workman’s OK Tire, Vanderlaan Building Products. VanZuylen Tire, and VP Racing Fuels. 

About Brighton Speedway: Brighton Speedway is a 1/3-mile clay stock car racing oval located on the shores of Lake Ontario in Brighton, Ont. The speedway hosts five weekly stock car divisions on Saturday nights from May to September. The weekly Pro Late Model division competes under RUSH Late Model Series sanctioning.

Brighton Speedway mailing address: 775 County Road 64, Brighton, ON, K0K 1H0.

Media Contact: Clayton Johns

Photo Credit: Rod Henderson