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Fast Talk: A Few Minutes With Drag And Oval Champ Jaren Mott

As if racing a Top Alcohol dragster weren’t enough, Jaren Mott became a licensed Jet Car racer in 2011. And as if that weren’t enough, last summer, at the urging of Rocky Mountain Raceways’ oval legend Jimmy Waters, Mott took up crate motor Sprint car racing on the America First Credit Union Super Oval. Clearly, growing up around racing and spending so much time at RMR – and Bonneville Raceway before that – has instilled in Jaren an insatiable need for speed … either that or the man simply likes the comfortable feel of a fire suit. Either way, he is always welcome on the Young Kia Drag Strip or the America First Credit Union Super Oval. Jaren recently had a conversation with RMR Marketing Communications Director Jim Burton.  

When did you know you wanted to drive a race car/dragster?

I grew up at the track. I was out there from the time was born. My dad, Dave Mott, has been racing since before I was born. He started in Sand Drags and then to NHRA Asphalt racing so I have spent my entire life at the race tracks so it was second nature to me to want to drive a dragster. I was fortunate enough, when I was old enough, to help my dad when he was running his Super Pro dragster to seven straight Super Pro championships at Bonneville Raceway starting in 1987. When NHRA introduced the Jr. Dragster program we built me a Jr car and just kept climbing the ladder from there.

How did you get involved in the racing business

My dad has owned and operated Utah Chassis & Machine since before I was born. When I was young I would always go down to the shop and hang out and as I got older learned more and more about building engines and dragster chassis. That led to me working there and building engines and chassis. I also have had the opportunity to run a few racing retail stores as well. I ran Silver King Power Sports which was a high performance racing kart shop for a number of years. I also had the opportunity to manage Strange Performance for years which specialized in high performance racing and street rod components. Now I am still building engines and chassis at Utah Chassis and Machine, and also Dyno Tuning cars at UCM Dyno Shop.

Who has had the biggest influence on your racing career and why?

Hands down my dad has had the biggest influence on my racing career!! If it wasn’t for him I defiantly would not be where I am today. He has taught me everything about racing, how to build and maintain race cars, how to drive, how to tune just everything has came through him. Without him, none of my 18 season championships would have been possible.

Jaren Mott drives his winged Sprint on to the infield of the America First Credit Union Super Oval after winning a feature race on July 4, 2015.

Jaren Mott drives his winged Sprint on to the infield of the America First Credit Union Super Oval after winning a feature race on July 4, 2015.

Last summer you began driving a Sprint car, what went into your decision to try oval racing?

Last spring I was out at RMR and Jimmy Waters and I got talking and he brought up if I had “ever thought about driving a Sprint car?” I told him I have always liked to watch the winged Sprint cars run at RMR but I was so into drag racing I never really thought about driving one. Well, less than a week later I was in one of his winged Sprint cars running laps around RMR’s Super Oval. One thing led to another and I ended up running quite a few races in one of Jimmy’s cars. To this day I can’t thank Jimmy enough for giving me the opportunity to drive his cars.

What was it like racing on the oval as well as the drag strip?

It has been really fun being able to run on both sides of the hill at RMR. When we started the year in the sprint car it was fun just being able to compete on both sides of the hill. As the year went on and we ended up winning the big oval race on the 4th of July in the crate Sprint class and started looking at season points and decided to do everything we could to win the season points title in the crate Sprint class. It came down to the last race on the RMR Super Oval to do it but we did it. I can’t thank everyone enough that helped make the 2015 crate Sprint championship happen!

Jimmy Waters (left) and Jaren Mott (right) pose together after Mott drove Waters' winged Sprint to a victory on July 4, 2015 on the America First Credit Union Super Oval.

Jimmy Waters (left) and Jaren Mott (right) pose together after Mott drove Waters’ winged Sprint to a victory on July 4, 2015 on the America First Credit Union Super Oval.

For you, what’s the biggest difference between driving a Jet Car, and a Sprint?

That’s a tough question. The Jet Car I drive and the Sprint car are so much different from each other. About the only similarities between them I can think of is they both have four wheels and race at RMR!!!  In the Jet Car you have a hand throttle and buttons to light the burner, and two brake pedals, compared to the Sprint where you have to more conventional throttle pedal and what not. The Jet Car requires a lot of focus for a short period of time to make sure you don’t make a mistake, where the sprint car requires you to stay focused for a lot longer period of time with the potential of a few rest breaks in there (yellow flags) throughout the race.  That being said, I have been fortunate to have driven quite a few different types of race cars.  I have so much respect for anyone that can drive any type of car at the top of the cars capabilities. I have been asked so much last year what is better, drag or oval? My only response is it takes so much to drive either at the top of your game. I have tremendous respect for both the drag strip and oval track.

What’s your favorite thing about Rocky Mountain Raceways? 

I don’t know that I have one favorite thing about RMR. RMR is my home from March through October. I have so many favorite things out there. I have had the opportunity to drive every race car I have driven down or around one of the tracks at RMR. Last season I started working on the best safety team in the World at RMR. So even if I am not racing I am working safety at RMR so it is truly the place I enjoy spending my summers at. From the people and teams I race against to all the RMR staff that makes all the races happen out there, to everyone on my team that helps Mott Motorsports week in and week out, to everyone that helps us on Jimmy Waters Motorsports. All of that is my favorite thing about RMR.

Jaren Mott fires up his Jet Car Tow Mater during a 2015 event on the Young Kia Drag Strip.

Jaren Mott fires up his Jet Car Tow Mater during a 2015 event on the Young Kia Drag Strip.

What is you favorite racing movie?

I think I have three favorite race movies. Growing up I would watch “Heart like a Wheel.” It is an older movie about Shirley Muldowney and her racing career. I also like “Days of Thunder.”  I got the opportunity to be a technical advisor and was a “stunt guy” (didn’t know driving a dragster was a stunt) in the Disney movie “Right on Track.” This is a movie about Erica and Courtney Enders’ Jr Dragster career and was filmed right here at RMR.

Who is your favorite musical artist?

I’m a big Nickelback fan. I like all their stuff from their older songs to their newest album.

2016 Rules And Registration Meetings

Rocky Mountain Raceways has announced the dates and times for its 2016 drivers meetings.

  • The Oval Track meeting will be held on Thursday, March 10. Doors will open for registration at 6 p.m.. The meeting will begin at 7 p.m.
  • The Drag Strip meeting will be held on Tuesday, March 15. Doors will open for registration at 5 p.m.. The meeting will get underway at 6:30 p.m.
  • The Motocross meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 16. Doors will open for registration at 6 p.m.. The meeting will begin at 6:45 p.m.

For additional information, contact Rocky Mountain Raceways at (801) 252-9557.

NOW HIRING

We are now hiring for the following positions…

SAFETY TEAM – Contact: Tom Pyles, Safety Director
EMT-B, Advanced or Paramedic Levels. All new students that have not completed their courses or State exams will still be honored and applications will be taken. Safety Team members are responsible for the safety and basic medical needs of all our staff, racers and spectators on the Oval Track, Drag Strip and Motocross Track. We include on sight training in Medical, Fire Suppression and Extrication. Training will also include classroom knowledge and understanding of several types of fuels as well as many types of cars, trucks, motorcycles, etc. Training will be credited for your EMS hours. Airmed Staff will also be available for several credited classes given.

MOTOCROSS TRACK – Contact: Curt Stewart, Motocross Manager
Positions open for Managers Assistant, On Track Flaggers and Scorekeepers.
Managers Assistant responsible for MX facility prep for daily events, keeping signage/banners looking nice, checking lighting, watering track, gate and equipment clean up, event prep as needed for sign ups, event help with flagging and other misc jobs as assigned by manager. Availability during the events and during the week. Must be a fast learner and not afraid to work in the dirt.
On Track Flaggers are responsible for monitoring the bikes on track and watching for safety incidents, cautions, etc. Also responsible for keeping the track watered when needed. Must be able to lift 50-75 lbs, be able to work in the dirt and all weather conditions, as well as be available on event days.
Scorekeepers are responsible for keeping track of the bike numbers as they come across the finish line during a race. Also responsible for keeping track of track cutting, and those who do not complete the course.

OVAL TRACK – Contact: Dan Breach, Oval Track Manager
Positions open for Pit Stewards, Tech and Scorekeepers.

DRAG STRIP STAFF – Contact: Ron Craft, Drag Strip Manager
Positions open for Vehicle Tech, Staging Area Personnel, Timing Shed and Tower Help.

EVENT STAFF – Contact: Scott Green, Event Staff Manager
Responsibilities: Provide the primary level of guest assistance for the facility. Required to have a thorough knowledge of building policies, procedures and event requirements. Provide access control, crowd management and ensure the venue is safe for guests. Provide guests with directions or other venue information. Act upon all comments/complaints in a prompt and friendly manner. Ensure a safe and fun environment for all guests, staff and participants .
Qualifications: 18 years of age or older, Friendly and personable. Excellent customer service skills required! A team player. Must work well with others. Must be available nights and weekends.

TICKETING – Contact: Zeidy Jeffery, Ticketing Manager
Cashiers and Ticket Takers needed. Excellent customer service skills required.

MAINTENANCE – Contact: Bob Carpenter, Facilities & Maintenance Manager at (801) 252-9557
Responsibilities include: Prepping the facility for daily events, collecting garbage after events, keeping the restrooms stocked with paper products, cleaning spills throughout the facility.

CONCESSIONS – Contact: Doug Binstock, Food and Beverage Manager
All positions open: Cooks, Back Line help, Food Prep, Cashiers and Beer Servers.
All Food Service workers are required to have a Food Handlers Permit prior to working. All Beer service employees are required to have a Serve Safe Permit and a WVC Work Card prior to working.

PROMOTION STAFF – Contact: Jim Burton, Marketing Communications Director
The Promotion Team is responsible for Mascot assistance, downtime entertainment, off site promotions and fan interaction. Must be very energetic and dependable.

AUDITING – Contact: Cathy Strickling, Controller

 

 

Download Application or apply in person at:

Rocky Mountain Raceways
6555 West 2100 South
West Valley City, Utah 84128