ALGER — Travis Jacobson didn’t expect to race at Skagit Speedway this season.
But after an inquiry from a car owner and a prod from his son, Jacobson is enjoying a resurgent season with a limited budget but a lot of savvy.
Jacobson has raced recently with his son, Jesson, at Deming Speedway, a track where Jesson got his first feature win this season.
That was as far as Jacobson’s ambition went — until Blake Cook called.
Jacobson had raced a few times for Cook in the past, and the combination had led to some big wins. But he wasn’t sure he wanted to get behind the wheel again until Jesson spoke up.
“My kid talked me into it,” Jacobson said.
In Cook, who also serves as crew chief, Jacobson found a canny veteran who helped him race more strategically.
“He’s serious, he likes my driving and he brings a lot of knowledge to the table,” Jacobson said. “A lot of times I’d run in the fastest lane — every time — and he asked, ‘What good will that do if there are a bunch of cars there you’ve got to pass?’ Blake’s got me moving around, getting me better at my weaknesses.”
While the season has seen a few mechanical issues, there have also been two top-four finishes, including a second-place finish in Elma in a race Jacobson said he nearly won.
Jacobson is often competing with better-funded race teams, although he said he appreciates the help he’s gotten from sponsors such as Absolute Plumbing, Cook’s Contracting and Jet City Equipment.
He hopes to bring more on board to help him go toe-to-toe with larger teams, just as he has for much of the season.
“It feels good; it’s been motivating and encouraging,” he said. “I can’t count how many teams out there have more money, but we’ve stayed positive the whole time.”