Recapping "The Gunslinger" Jesse Leiby's Great 2015 Racing Season

Date: 11/24/2015 2:03:56 AM

West Milford, NJ -- Recapping "The Gunslinger" Jesse Leiby's Great 2015 Racing Season

By: Steve Pados, GA Motorsports Media


The 2015 racing season is complete for Jesse Leiby Racing and the lessons learned and the highlights gained all continue to be the strong building blocks for this budding young driving talent. Jesse spent his Saturday nights competing in two divisions during the 2015 racing season at the Orange County Fair Speedway in Middletown, New York and the Leiby racing resume has been good for Jesse and his family and friends who continue to support his driving efforts and work ethic in racing.


With each passing event the budding driving star gains more knowledge about who he is competing against while improving his statistics on the speedway. Jesse hit an initial milestone on July 18th when he captured his first career victory at the speedway in the Sportsman division. Not resting on his laurels of that great night, he took to the speedway on a Saturday night in August and reeled off his second win of the season in the Sportsman division.


The final event of the season at OCFS brought the Leiby Racing Team out to battle in the 54th running of the Eastern States Weekend in October. The team was pumped and ready to go and Jesse timed eleventh out of the eighty cars that went out for time trials for the Sportsman. Jesse began from second starting spot in his heat and went on to capture his heat race and would begin the feature event starting from third place. Jesse ran steady throughout the event, always very much aware of his track position and finished a solid fourth in his only long distance race of the season.


The team only had the Sportsman car at OCFS and decided to give it a go for the 358 portion of the weekend. Jesse timed 46th out 72 cars and didn't qualify through his heat and was forced into the Consolation event. Jesse gave it all he had and finished in the runner-up role but the rules for the weekend were only the winner was making the transfer into the main event and left Jesse as an alternate.


Overall, Jesse has enjoyed a great year at OCFS as he rolled a pair of sevens, finishing seventh in the 358 Modifieds and seventh in the Sportsman division. In the 358 Modifieds, Jesse had twelve starts and enjoyed two top five's, five top ten's and with a best finish of second. For his seventh place performance in the Sportsman, Jesse scored two wins with five top five's and eight top ten finishes.


Jesse Leiby is a third generation driver following in the footsteps of his grandfather Herb, who plied his trade at the now defunct Nazareth Speedway and his Dad John, who carved out his own success with a win at Orange County and adding five wins to his own racing resume while competing at the now shuttered Lake Mocatek facility which closed in 2004.  With twelve years of racing in his career and racing at such venues as Accord, Syracuse, Rolling Wheels and Canada, once Mocatek shut down, John Leiby purchased a Slingshot racer for his son Jesse to drive at the Hamlin Speedway and Jesse made the quick transition through the Hamlin, Borgers and Oakland Valley Speedways with second place points finishes coming at the latter two facilities.


Jesse Leiby continued his climb up through the racing rankings as the family made the switch to Accord Speedway in New York State and Jesse captured back to back championships at the Accord Speedway in 2009 and 2010 in the Junior Slingshots and dominating the racing action on the bigger quarter mile racing facility.  Jesse made the transition into the All Star Slingshots for the 2011 and 2012 racing seasons and with much the same results as Leiby rocketed to back to back championships in the All Star Slingshots at Accord, making him a four time titlist at the Catskill facility.


The purchase of a Crate Sportsman racer for Jesse to transition into with his next step up the racing ladder came in late 2012. The cylinder numbers changed significantly from two to eight with his new ride and Jesse took his time in familiarizing himself with the equipment and with his Dad mentoring him each step of the way.  Jesse took the bull by the horns for 2013 scoring the three wins necessary to move out of the rookie class distinction at OCFS and perform in the regular Crate Sportsman Division at the speedway.


The John and Dawn Leiby Family owned racer goes to battle in the Sportsman division with a 2007 Teo Chassis race car with a crate engine bolted between the rails. An extensive group of friends and sponsors have helped along the budget minded team throughout the season with Country Painter, Mullen Roofing, D&L Mobile Maintenance, Wholesale Auto Supply, Eastlake Party Rental, JBJ Electric, Eber's Automotive, Lakeland Auto Parts, Barnum Financial Group, 3Road Deli, CSIS Mobile Electronics, Highlander Deli, Accurate Collision and GA Motorsports Media all assisting the racing team.  Jesse's brother Jimmy, a fine racer in his own right known as "The Bounty Hunter", is the crew chief for the team with able assistance coming from John and Dawn Leiby, Jon Caputo, Dave Eastlake, Sean and Jon Adair, Harry Thomas, Doug and Patty Smith, James and Erin Valesio, Daryl Eastlake, Stan Baldwin, Billy Sherba and Jesse's older brother Sargeant John Leiby Jr, who is stationed with the US Marine Corps in Norfolk, Virginia after serving in Afghanistan.


Another added dimension came to the team for the 2014 and 2015 racing season when longtime sponsor Dave Eastlake purchased a 2006 Teo Pro car with a Precision Shops 358 motor providing the needed horsepower.


The Jesse Leiby Racing Team is seeking additional sponsors for the 2016 racing season to enable the team to travel a bit to some of the bigger paying shows for the new season ahead. Contact Steve Pados at: for the needed information.


The racing world continues to produce great young talent that will see the sport thrive for many years to come. Jesse Leiby is one of the stars I have been able to call races for and more than likely have called the biggest percentage of his fifty plus wins in the Slingshot wars. He is a student of the racing game and is highly identified with the "can't miss" label tagged to him with each of his transitional stages up the ladders of the racing world. While each step of the journey becomes a new challenge,  "The Gunslinger" Jesse Leiby has shown he has the talent and more than enough ammunition in his gun belt to complete his mission.





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