Caledonia racer Max Kahler looks forward to more big things in 2021


ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO/WQRF) — Most of us will look back on 2020 as a terrible year. Not Max Kahler. Things couldn’t have gone much better for him on the race track.

The Caledonia resident and current Belvidere North High School senior won the Big 8 Series season championship in his Late Model car beating out other racers from Northern Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

In September he won the Rockford Speedway’s premier event the National Short Track Championship again beating top drivers from the Midwest. And at age 17 he became the youngest driver ever to win that event breaking the mark that had been held by NASCAR great Mark Martin. Kahler can’t wait to try to pick up in 2021 where he left off in 2020.

“I’m definitely looking forward to it. The season starts here in April, so I’m kind of counting down the days, but there’s a lot of work to do yet.”

The more Kahler achieves the higher he sets his sights. That’s why we’re not likely to see him racing in Rockford quite as much this year.

“The plan for 2021 is to run most of the Super Late Model races and the ‘Alive for Five’ Series and the ‘Tundra Super Late Model Series’, said Kahler. “We’ll run a couple races at Rockford. For sure, the Spring Classic and the National Short Track Championships at the end of the year.”

Kahler has been a natural on the track since he started racing go-karts at age nine. His big results so far have him dreaming big. Ten years from now Kahler expects to be at the highest level of racing.

“Hopefully at the top level of NASCAR.” “It takes a lot of hard work obviously. You’ve got to win races, get your name out there and get recognized by some of these major organizations and hopefully they can help you out and get you to that level.”

Kahler will again drive the number 17 car this year, and we at WTVO 17 will once again be one of his sponsors. We’re excited about that.

Meanwhile this Sunday, Daytona 500 Sunday, a fundraiser for Kahler to help with his racing expenses will be held at Fozzy’s Bar & Grill on East Riverside in Loves Park. The cost is ten dollars at the door. That gets you pizza, pasta, and salad. There will be a raffle and a silent auction. You also can watch the Daytona 500 there, and you can meet Kahler. That starts at one o’clock Sunday afternoon.

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