CONCORD, NC- The first contender for the 2023 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Award has arrived, and his name is Robbie Price.
After contesting a partial season with the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series in 2022, the Cobble Hill, British Columbia native officially announced today his intent to return to the tour full-time in 2023 aboard the Sides Motorsports #7S.
“I’m really excited to do the full deal finally,” Price told SPEED SPORT. “It’s been a while since someone from the Northwest has been out on the tour. I want to be able to run the whole deal and nobody from where I’m from has run the tour, let alone 90% of the tracks we go to, so Jason is the perfect fit for us. I’ve always wanted to run the Outlaws deal and that’s something I can finally put on my resume now.”
“We’re excited to have Robbie back with the team and look forward to him taking another step forward as we return to some tracks that he saw for the first time last year,” Jason Sides said to SPEED SPORT. “It’s tough to show up to a new track and be competitive right off the bat against the World of Outlaws. We saw improvement on some of the tracks we went back to compared to his debut, so we’re focused on continuing that development.”
Qualifying for 34 NOS Energy Drink Features in 2022, Price continually improved throughout the year with his first career top-five finishes coming in back-to-back weeks at North Dakota’s Red River Valley Speedway and Washington’s Skagit Speedway.
“Seat time is the biggest thing and one thing that is the hardest to get,” Price continued. “I had a lot of fun last year and I felt like we started to piece together some solid runs. I’m hoping that we start the year off with the momentum we had toward the end. I’m really focused on getting better on the big tracks and focusing on running well on smaller tracks where I’m naturally more comfortable.”
Fresh off winning the Crew Chief of the Year Award, “Double Down” Jason Sides himself confirmed he won’t return to full-time racing in 2023, but does plan to get back behind the wheel for a few races. His primary focus will be continuing to assist in Price’s learning curve with The Greatest Show on Dirt.
“It’s been tough being out of the seat since May,” Sides added. “I’m not planning on running full-time next year, but I’ll be there for some events. I’m excited for this role as a car owner watching an up-and-coming driver like Robbie embark on his first full season with the Outlaws. I’ll log some laps here and there, too.”
Price will be trying to join Series regulars Spencer Bayston (2022), James McFadden (2021), Carson Macedo (2019), Sheldon Haudenschild (2017), Brad Sweet (2014), David Gravel (2013), Kraig Kinser (2004), and Donny Schatz (1997) as the newest Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year. His car owner, Jason Sides, also won the award in 2003, 20 years prior to Price’s attempt in Sides’ own #7S.
His rookie campaign with the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series will officially begin on February 9-11, 2023 with the 52nd DIRTcar Nationals at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, FL – another new track for the 24-year-old gasser. Tickets are available for purchase HERE.
If you can’t make it to the event, the entire 2023 season will be live on DIRTVision – available either online or through the DIRTVision App.
Photo – Chris Owens