CLEAR LAKE – At 13 years old, Kody King has his whole life ahead of him – and a very clear set of goals he would like to achieve as a racer.
Like a lot of young up-and-coming hot shoes, the asphalt late model racer got his start in go-karts. In his case, he started racing at the age of 6:
“My family has always been around racing, whether it be driving, sponsoring, or owning cars, so naturally I ended up coming to love the sport and wanted to try it out for myself. I love the extreme competitiveness of the sport, also the feeling of working so hard on something and it coming together for me to compete for wins.”
Moving up from go-karts, Kody has also competed in INEX bandoleros and legend cars. In his current division, he hits the track on a regular basis at Hawkeye Downs Speedway in Cedar Rapids, as well as Elko Speedway in Minnesota.
Over the course of the past six years of racing, he’s hit the pavement on some of the most noteable tracks in all of motorsports, including Charlotte Motor Speedway, Atlanta Motor Speedway, Slinger Super Speedway, and Texas Motor Speedway. But for 2021, he has plans to hit even more famous tracks, including:
- Tri-County Motor Speedway in Hudson, NC;
- Hickory Motor Speedway in Hickory, NC;
- Florence Motor Speedway in Florence, SC;
- LaCrosse Speedway in LaCrosse, WI;
- Madison International Speedway in Madison, WI; and
- The Milwaukee Mile in Milwaukee, WI.
In 2017, after trying for three years to no avail, Kody finally won the slot machine trophy which comes with winning a division at the O’Reilly National Indoor Karting Championship. He did so in the Pro Jr 1 division, and he says that’s been the happiest moment of his career so far.
On the other hand, the scariest moment came in a slightly bigger racing machine:
“My scariest moment was in a Bandolero at State Park Speedway in Wausau, Wisconsin. During the feature, I was wide open and got turned head-on into the wall.”
Kody is now a development driver with Lee Faulk Racing and Development. LFR has worked with a number of talented young racers over the past 30 years, including current NASCAR Cup Series racers Kyle Larson and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Moving up to the bigger, faster late models has been a challenge unto itself for Kody. But he says his age has been the biggest challenge, so far:
“I’ve gone from racing kids my own age in the go-karts, to competing on a national scale against veterans of the sport, some of whom have more years of seat time than I have of age.
“As every racer does, I really want to be able to secure a win, however, my goal is to get more experience and to further mature as a driver on the track and a person off the track.
“With having just moved up divisions, it’s adapting to the new car, learning new racetracks, and becoming familiar with my competition. Also, I like being able to race with, and learn from, some of the veterans of the sport.”
Like most racers on his current trajectory, Kody says he would love to race on the sport’s biggest stage – the NASCAR Cup Series – one day, but he’s also realistic about the limited opportunities to do so:
“I would really love to work my way efficiently through the ranks in hopes of ultimately making it to the NASCAR Cup Series, however, I feel that as an achievable goal, I would really like to run the ACRA Menards Series and be competitive. Along with all this, I would like to be able to continue representing my marketing partners with professionalism and integrity.”
Even at his relatively young age – and perhaps even because of it – he’s cognizant of the role he can play in encouraging other young people to get involved in racing. Here’s his advice to those who might like to get started:
“First of all, chase your dreams, because it is possible for dreams to become a reality. However, in order to get achieve your dreams, you need to be able to take the bad days in stride, and use them to better yourself, it’s more likely than not that you’ll have a bad day at the track.
“Also, you always need to treat everyone with the utmost respect as you never know who’s watching.”
Finally, Kody has a message to those who have supported him throughout the early stages of his racing career:
“I thank my family, MPM Marketing, and all of my supporters. I would really like for everyone to know how appreciative I am of everyone who has helped me to get to this point. Racing is truly a team sport and success cannot be accomplished without a great team!”
For those who would like to follow Kody this season, check out his Facebook and Instagram accounts (kodykingmotorsports) and his Twitter and Tik Tok accounts (kodyking_14).
(Photos provided by MPM Marketing)
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