CARQUEST Tour Marks Midseason in PEI Saturday
OYSTER BED BRIDGE, PEI (July 20, 2006) - The CARQUEST Pro Stock Tour visits Raceway Park this Saturday night for round six of 11 en route to the 2006 championship title. Competition at the tight, unforgiving 1/4-mile oval historically is a major factor in determining the final point standings.
With the track being like it is (unforgiving), there is usually not a lot a driver can do when trouble happens close by. If mechanical demons bite a racecar, about the only hope a driver has to get out of harms way is if they are "lucky" enough that their malfunction happens on the front stretch - so they can coast directly into the pit area from the track exit off turn one...
And so, track position may be more important at Raceway Park than any of the other four venues the series visits. To be at the front, or close to the front, can make a race - and to be mixed up in the field dicing for position, can break a race.
Unless you're a racer that hails from Prince Edward Island...In what may be an unprecedented streak in Maritime stock car race racing history, drivers that call the Island home have been the victor in CARQUEST Tour events at Raceway Park in five consecutive events - going for number six Saturday night. Gordie Ryan (Wellington, NS) was the last "non Island" Tour driver to get the checkered flag at Raceway Park - in August 2003.
John Flemming (Halifax, NS), the current series point leader and only two-time winner this year, has seen victory at the tight oval - but it's been a while. He finished fifth in the series first stop at Raceway Park for 06 on July 1. With his two wins on the season, Flemming has stretched his point lead to 34 markers over second spot - which is tied between Ryan and Brad Mann (Glen Livit, NB). Ryan also has one win this year.
Other members of the 2006 CARQUEST Pro Stock Tour Victory Lane Gang include Greg Proude (Charlottetown), the winner of the first Tour stop on the Island this year, defending series champ Rollie MacDonald (Pictou, NS).
MacDonald served notice last week in round five at Shediac that he's just as strong this year as he was in last years run for the title. MacDonald is not points racing this year - choosing instead to take some weekends off to enjoy time with his family.
The top contender in the EIT Rookie of the Year competition is Russell Smith (Timberlea, NS). Smith holds a slim 10-point advantage over fellow rookie racer Bobby Nielsen (Vernon River).
Competition gets underway Saturday at 5:10 with Time Trials - the first round of qualifying for the 100-lap pro stock feature. Racing starts at 6 p.m. with the Motor Mart Dash for the Pole, the Motor Mart Heat Races. The final positions for the feature race starting field will be determined in the B Feature. Raceway Park weekly racing divisions will compete between pro stock races.
Gates for the pits and the grandstand open at Noon.
Raceway Park is located at the intersections of routes 6 and 7, halfway between Cavendish and Charlottetown.
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