“STANDING ON THE OUTSIDE” – LUCH MONTE
Fruitful business owners know all too well that the secret to success is employing the right people in the right roles to create winning teams, and those same leadership principles have proved to work equally as well in forming race-winning Sprintcar team combinations between driver, crew-chief and owner.
In the lead up to round 11 at Esperance Holden Speedway, we will profile six QSS World Series Sprintcars team owners who get their racing fix from watching and managing, rather than driving.
Despite claiming a list of feature races as a driver, famed West Australian team owner Luch Monte far more enjoys watching his racecar than driving it.
“It’s like a drug! It’s an addiction!” he says, twenty-one years after first secretly entering a sprintcar race as a driver at Claremont Speedway so his dad wouldn’t know.
“I always wanted a two-car team and did that for a lot of years but now I just enjoy watching my car with good drivers in it. It’s a lot less stressful and there’s no pressure. And I don’t want to be the type of owner that puts pressure on my driver or crew chief either. I know how hard it is to win so I have a hands-off approach and let them do what they do without me getting in the road.”
Luch is quick to assert however that it runs very differently at the family owned business where he has a far more hands-on style of management.
“It’s very different at the farm, with over 60 employees over three sites. I’m right in there making things happen and we do long hours, so to watch my racecar on the livestream or to be able to sneak in a quick trip away to the races is my hobby and I absolutely love it.”Luch has felt every conceivable emotion of elation and frustration as a team owner, claiming seven Grand Annual Sprintcar Classics with Danny Lasoski, Donny Schatz, Kyle Hirst, Steven Lines and most recently with James McFadden who has also delivered two World Series title for the team.
However, the cruellest event has been the one that Luch most desires – the Australian Sprintcar Championship that dealt him another heartbreaking blow last weekend.
“We’ve led the Title for the last four years with James, but never won. He was so fast last weekend. It’s unbelievable!” says Luch who is still licking his wounds from the #W17’s early retirement in Latrobe.
“I guess it just makes me more hungry for next year,” he laughs off, well aware that the title race returns to his home state of Western Australia in 2021.
In the meantime, Luch’s attention returns to the World Series battle where the Monte Motorsport #W17 with James McFadden at the helm leads the QSS World Series points standings with a 113 point buffer ahead of fellow West Australian team, Krikke Motorsport with the Kerry Madsen piloted #W2.
The next round will be hosted for the first time in the series’ 33-year history by Esperance Holden Speedway on Friday February 14.
Photo courtesy of Corey Gibson Photography
Caption: Proud team owner, Luch Monte celebrates with his team on winning the Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic at Warrnambool.