WSSU Student Reaches Racing Goal in 2011

Jeff Oleen

Jeff Oleen

March 9, 2011
         Jeff Oleen, a student in the motorsport management program at Winston-Salem State University (WSSU), has already reached his major goal for this year.  NTS Motorsports has recently added him as a rookie driver for its NASCAR K&N Pro Series East program.

            “Racing in the K&N Pro Series was my main goal for this year, so the opportunity to compete with an organization like NTS Motorsports is one that I very much appreciate and am excited about,” Oleen said. “My career path is aimed at achieving a Sprint Cup ride and I know I need winning results to get to that point.”

            Oleen already has managed to earn victories along the way.  The 2010 season was his first in late-model competition and he earned top rookie honors in the late-model division at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va.  Prior to that, he earned victories in USAC Ford Focus Midgets, Skip Barber Regional and National formula cars and kart.

            “I started with go-karts and then moved to sprint racing in shifter karts,” Oleen said.  “I trained on the national level for shifter karts for a year with one of the lead instructors at the Bob Bondurant Super Karts School in 2004. I also participated in the Skip Barber Racing School and the Skip Barber Regional and National Championship before moving to USAC Ford Focus Midgets.”

            In 2010, Oleen made his NASCAR stock-car debut racing in the Whelen All-American Series, where he won the coveted Rookie of the Year award.  Now, he’s moving up to the NASCAR K&N Pro Series where he will be competing on the national level.

            While Oleen’s diverse experience with motorsports is intended to prepare him for every possible situation that can occur in a race, he is also taking the necessary steps toward academic excellence.  He was an honor roll student at Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda, Md. and graduated one year early. In December 2009, he earned his associate’s degree at Montgomery College in Germantown, Md. and enrolled at WSSU in January 2010.

            “In racing today, you have to be an excellent driver, but you also have to understand the various aspects of racing, such as marketing and the importance of building a solid fan base,” Oleen said.

            He is constantly working on that fan base through the use of his website, Facebook, Twitter and email updates that he authors and distributes personally.  Additionally, he has appeared on local news stations, and even starred in the documentary “Fast Dreams” that premiered at the Philadelphia International Film Festival in spring 2009.

            “I also have a commitment to fitness training,” Oleen added.  “I appreciate the strict and regimented workouts that enable me to be at my best physically while I’m at the race track.  I understand that racing is about knowing how to handle the car, being in the best possible physical condition and being mentally prepared.”

           Oleen will be racing alongside Brennan Newberry, who is racing in the K&N West Program, and Brian Deegan, 10-time X-Games freestyle motocross medalist who joined NTS Motorsports in 2010.

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