Teenage race car driver lands spot on local Sigma Racing team

Las Vegas, People, Sports

Kayli Barker, 16, is 2013’s NASCAR Super Stock points champion

LAS VEGAS – It’s been a good year for Kayli Barker. On the heels of emerging as this year’s NASCAR Super Stock points champion at the Bullring at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Barker was recently signed as a member of the Sigma Racing team.

Joe Farré, owner of Sigma Engineering Solutions, a civil engineering consulting firm, has been a racing enthusiast since he was a child and heads his firm’s performance division, which designs and manufactures race car chassis. So when he saw Barker, 16, race and then met her, her family and her team, he knew he was in the presence of something special. He invited Barker to be a member of the Sigma Racing team, and she accepted.

“We are really focusing on developing upcoming drivers in the West, and that includes Kayli in the Super Late Model division,” said Farré, also a racer in the SRL Southwest Tour Series. “What we want to do is give her a well-rounded view of racing – all the aspects of racing. Not just driving.”

“I’m excited to be a part of this team and have this opportunity to grow as a driver,” Barker said. “Sigma Racing has shown a great deal of confidence in me, and I won’t let them down; 2014 is going to be a great year.”

Becoming a member of the Sigma Racing team means the high school junior will receive factory support of her race car, including chassis set up and race preparation, chassis performance training, driver training through coordination with other teammates and business and public relations training.

“We chose Kayli to be a part of this team because she showed me she has the passion to be the best race car driver she can be,” Farré said. “We don’t want people to think the only reason she’s on the team is because she’s female. She’s a young, talented, passionate race car driver, and we’re excited to work around people like that. We’re confident she’s going to run with the best of them.”

Before signing Barker to the team, Farré watched her racing and met with her intermittently over the course of a year – essentially, a yearlong audition. Barker fills a strong local niche in the racing community, Farré said.

“We need local talent. And we would like to see her progress with this team,” he added. “This is just the start with Kayli.”

A race car driver from the age of 8, Barker obtained her NASCAR license just after her 14th birthday. On Aug. 18, 2012, she won the NASCAR Whelen All-American series feature race, setting a new NASCAR age record: 15 years, 24 days.

Barker is a second-generation race car driver; her dad was racing super stocks when she was still a toddler, and some of her earliest memories are helping him tighten bolts on his cars.

In 2006, she started racing Bandoleros, the next step beyond simple go-karts, and ended the year as the Nevada State Bandolero Bandit Champion. In 2009, she won the championship again, becoming the youngest female track champion in Las Vegas and the first female to place within the national top 10. In 2011, she won 18 races in a row in the Bandolero Outlaw division, racing to the championship with a total of 22 wins and becoming the only female to win two track championships in Las Vegas. She placed fourth in the nation that year, although she had more total wins than any other racers.

A junior at Mountain View Christian School, Barker earns straight A’s and hasn’t missed a single day of classes.

She is also the spokesperson for Project 150, a program dedicated to offering supportive services to homeless high school students throughout Clark County, helping these Las Vegas area youths receive the guidance they need to graduate from high school.

For more information on Barker or to sponsor her, visit http://kaylibarkerracing.com.