Jesse Love is the youngest driver to ever dawn a fire suit, in the SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour Series. As we continue our journey to the top 10 in the series standings, the 14-year-old driver finds himself 13th in the championship standings, after six of nine events. The Toyota Driver Development Program chauffer entered the season with multiple Junior Late Model Championships at Madera Speedway and was the youngest ever winner and champion of the BCRA Midget Series, turning the trick at the age of 13.

When the season began, “The Hammer” was considered to be one of the favorites for the Rookie of the Year Title. Love will have his work cut out for him in the final three events, however, if he hopes to achieve that goal. But the young driver from Atherton, CA has shown the skill, speed and has the team to make a serious charge for that title, and a finish in the top 10 overall.

Love began the season at Irwindale Speedwaywith a 22nd place finish. A late race DNF sidelined the personable young driver in the 33-car field. The rookie would follow with four additional DNF’s, experiencing a string of bad luck finishes. Those finishes did not represent his strength however, as the rookie looked very strong in several of those events. He showed the teams potential by qualifying in the top five in events two through five, with an overall qualifying average of 8.8. It is a result that impressive for a rookie, with fields averaging over 26 cars per event.

Love’s season took a turn for the positive, with a return to Irwindale Speedway two weeks ago. Jessie mixed it up with part-time NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series drivers Dylan Lupton and Chris Eggleston, coming out on top with an eighth-place finish. It is a finish that has the young driver encouraged, that his season is ready to get rolling.

“During the first two-thirds of the season, we have had a ton of speed”, Love told the SPEARS Southwest Tour Series. “We have qualified in the top 5 multiple times, as well as led practice sessions, being at the top of the boards. The Naake – Klauer Motorsports Toyota Camry was fast. However, we’ve just had some trouble getting the ball rolling and picking up some momentum. However, after our solid run at Irwindale we definitely have got the ball rolling, and I know that we are going to have a great rest of the season!”

With his success at Irwindale, Love is heading to the perfect track for the 2018 INEX Road Course World Champion to continue that momentum. His asphalt hometrack of Madera Speedway is next on the series schedule, and Love will be looking to get his first top five SRL finish.

“I’m looking forward to the next race at Madera as it’s one of my favorite tracks to race at, and I know we will have a strong run there.”

Despite his position of 13th in the standings, he sits only nine points out of 11th and 30 out of the top 10. With a strong run at Madera, Love can position himself into the that top 10 and close on Tyler Fabozzi, Jace Hansen and Eric Nascimento Jr.. in the rookie chase. To finish off his goals for the season, Love is thankful for the opportunity to participate with a strong team and the support of his sponsors.

“I can’t thank Toyota Racing Development (TRD)and Naake-Klauer Motorsports enough for giving me this opportunity. I’d also like to thank Mobile One and 51 FIFTY LTM, for helping me Live the Dream!”