Brothers often get hand-me-downs. A lot of time it’s clothes. Sometimes it’s furniture. Other times it might be old toys and bicycles.
Young Nick Stroupe (17-years-old) has gotten a lot of hand-me-downs from his older brother Zach. But maybe the best thing he’s gotten has been the ability to drive a racecar.
Starting in 2000, then 4-year-old Nick began his racing career in the seat of a WKA Kid Kart. Following in his father’s (Mike) and brother’s footsteps, Nick amassed 62 wins over a two-and-a-half year period in Kid Karts before moving onto the more powerful go-karts.
In his first few months of WKA Go-Karts, Nick recorded one win and one pole at the state level.
But Go-Karts weren’t in Nick’s future for long. He had his eyes set on the 600 Racing Bandolero Division, a place his brother won many races and several championships.
Beginning in October 2003, Nick started his Bandolero career, racing at tracks such as Concord Motorsports Park, Lowe’s Motor Speedway, Atlanta Motor Speedway, Kentucky Speedway and the historic Nashville Fairgrounds. During his four-year Bandolero career, Nick became one of the nation’s best, always one of the drivers that others were looking to beat when he showed up to the racetrack.
Nick’s record in the Bandoleros stood for itself, with 33 race wins and a championship at the Winter Heat at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, all while never running the full-season to chase the National Championship.
In March 2007, Nick once again followed in his brother’s footsteps, taking the wheel of the ¾-scale Pro Challenge car. Nick instantly took to the car, running up front right away. Racing at tracks such as Hickory Motor Speedway, Peachstate Speedway, Lanier National Speedway, Dillon Motor Speedway, Franklin County Speedway and Orlando Speedworld, Nick won five Pro Challenge Series events and earned 12 poles through the middle of the 2008 season.
Nick found himself in the position as the Pro Challenge Series National Points leader, as well as the Regional points leader, before he decided to part ways with his car owner to look for better opportunities. During his run in the Pro Challenge Series, Nick also began to dabble behind the wheel of a Legends car.
In just a few starts, Nick found himself second in the points at the Winter Heat and running up front in every race that he ran. Nick racked up wins on both oval and road courses at Lowe's Motor Speedway and Rockingham Speedway. However, Nick never ran a full-points season, keeping him from competing for a championship.
In late 2009, after a few months off of racing, Nick made the decision to switch from asphalt to dirt and to run Dirt Modifieds around the Carolinas and the Southeast.
Nick made his Dirt Modified debut in late-2009, driving for local racer Buck Stevens. After several successful runs to wrap up the 2009 season, Nick ran full-time behind the wheel of his family-owned #45 Killingsworth sponsored Open Wheel Modified in the 2010 season. In May 2010, Nick became Carolina Speedway's youngest Modified winner, capturing his first ever feature win on dirt. Unfortunately, engine issues kept him sidelined for a majority of the mid-part of the season. However, Nick came back in late 2010 to run several races at Carolina Speedway and East Lincoln Speedway, racking up several top-fives and top-10 finishes along the way.
The 2011 season had its ups and downs for Nick and the SBR team. The season started off on a very strong note with a third place finish in the very prestigious Talladega Short Track Ice Bowl, but unfortunately, mechanical failures robbed Nick of several good runs throughout the first half of the 2011 season. Late in 2011 the team made the decision to join Team Skyrocket, a chassis company out of Iowa that is owned and maintained by modern day Modified standout, Kelly Shryock. This would prove to be a tough call as Nick would become the only Skyrocket driver in the North Carolina area. Stroupe shocked the competition after winning at Carolina Speedway in only his second attempt in this new chassis. The Iron Station, NC native would follow this up with a Pole Award at one of his most memorable race tracks, The Dirt Track at Lowe’s. Before the cars were able to hit the track for the main event, Mother Nature put a stop to the race. Unfortunately, the race was rescheduled on a weekend where there were prior family obligations that had to be met. This would end what was known as the roller coaster season for Team SBR but the team would not give up and prepare for Ice Bowl 2012 at the Talladega Short Track.
After what felt like an eternity, the 2012 season finally arrived and it would see Nick Stroupe once again making a name for himself at Talladega. After having to fight his way through a B-Main event, Stroupe would roll off 17th. It took the youngster out of Iron Station, NC only 16 laps to rally up to 2nd place, but on the final restart, he would sever a brake line and have to settle for sixth. This remarkable showing for the then 16 year old, Nick Stroupe, was just the beginning to the unbelievable 2012 season. Nick would pilot his #45 machine to seven wins at Cherokee Speedway alone. Stroupe would also be crowned the 2012 Southern Open Wheel Modified Shootout Tour Champion, where he picked up four series wins, five poles, and eight top fives.
After the great success of the 2012 racing season, the team was excited about what was in store for them in 2013. The team came out of the box extremely strong winning the first four races of the season. At the halfway point of the season, the team made the decision to venture out and run some big races across the east coast. Nick would finish the season with six wins at four different tracks. One major highlight to the year was making the A-Main at Eldora Speedway for the UMP Nationals. Stroupe had to fight off 125 other competitors to earn one of the 24 starting spots for the A-Main.
The team is getting ready for the 2014 racing season and plans to make their first start at the North Carolina Modified Nationals at County Line Raceway on March 20th-22nd. Be sure to signup for the Sensation Nation Newsletter to get all of the up to date news from Nick's point of view. As always we greatly appreciate the support from fans and sponsors, and hope to experience more good things in the up and coming 2014 season!