Race Preview - Parts For Trucks 100, Oyster Bed Speedway
The Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour visits our third province and fourth track in a six weekend span this weekend as we race at Oyster Bed Speedway. This will mark the Tour’s twentieth appearance at the track and many exciting things have happened in those previous nineteen visits. You’ll see later in this article that there are many quirky statistics that we don’t have at many other tracks including the amount of hometown winners, the “consecutive race wins factor” and the foursome of drivers who scored their first win at the track.
That last factoid could be the biggest one to change on Saturday night. I just have that feeling that we will see a first time winner this weekend in Oyster Bed Bridge. We will have a mix of rookies in the field as some of the PEI Modified drivers will get their first taste of Pro Stock racing, but here are three Tour regulars who have a legitimate chance of winning their first race Saturday:
#18 – Darren MacKinnon – Charlottetown, PE
MacKinnon has been lighting it up on the Tour this season. The driver who is currently seventh in the standings recorded his best finish last Saturday with a strong fourth at Riverside. He heads into his home track this Saturday with a fast car and momentum on his side, which could spell trouble for the rest of the field.
#32 – Chris Hughes – Brackley Beach, PE
Hughes has come so close so many times at his home track. The driver from nearby Brackley Beach has solidified himself as one of the best qualifiers on the Tour but hasn’t been able to close the deal. Mechanical problems combined with sponsorship woes have limited Hughes to a scaled back schedule in 2011 – but that could all be forgotten with a win this weekend!
#98 – Jerome Kehoe – Sydney, NS
The Pride of Cape Breton recorded his first heat race win on the Tour at the July event here last season. The first three events can be compared to a roller coaster for the team with a mid-pack run at Scotia Speedworld followed by a career high third at Petty International Raceway and a valiant effort after a practice wreck at Riverside last weekend. If the team can bounce back like they did in Petty, the party may be on after 100-laps at Oyster Bed!
There are drivers in the series that are due for a win and that elusive checkered flag could come on Saturday. Craig Slaunwhite ran strong at this race last season and is as hungry as any driver on the Tour for a feature victory. Greg Proude hasn’t been to victory lane since the season opener in 2010. How about John Flemming who came within five laps of winning here last June? Oyster Bed Speedway presents us with tight, close quarter racing that is unique to the layout of the oval. With that said, who will adapt the quickest to grab the checkered flag at the end of 100-laps on Saturday? The only way to find out is to be at the track on picturesque Prince Edward Island Saturday when Atlantic Tiltload Time Trials roll off a 5:10pm and racing kicks off at six!
Joining us on the Island will be the popular PEI Modified and four-cylinder Outlaw classes. It’s a full card of Saturday night, under the lights, short track racing,what else could you ask for?!
Until Saturday night, keep the hammer down and we’ll see you at the track!
FAST FACTS – PARTS FOR TRUCKS 100
The Track: Oyster Bed Speedway, high banked, ¼-mile oval located in Oyster Bed Bridge, Prince Edward Island.
Milestone Anniversary: This is the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour’s twentieth appearance at the Island track. The Tour has held two events at the track since 2001 with the exception of 2009, where rain condensed the two scheduled races into one 200-lap event. The 2009 race was the only extra-distance Pro Stock race held at the track under Pro Stock Tour sanction.
Last Five Winners at Oyster Bed Speedway: Wayne Smith (July 31st, 2010), Jonathan Hicken (June 26th, 2010), Greg Proude (August1st, 2009*), Wayne Smith (August 19th, 2008), Kent Vincent (June 28th, 2008)
*Denotes extra distance event (Parts for Trucks/Lucas Oil 200).
CFA’s Strong at Island Track: Though Island drivers tend to run strong on their home turf, the “come from away” drivers currently hold the advantage 11-8 when it comes to feature wins. In the last ten races, that score has been split 5-5.
Season Sweep: According to TheThirdTurn.com, only once has the Oyster Bed Speedway races been swept in a single season by one driver and that was John Flemming in 2002.
Only one “back to back” winner: Flemming is also the only driver to win consecutive races as he won thrice in that stretch, including the Tour’s first appearance there in 2003.
Four “double dippers” at OBS: Only four drivers have won more than one feature at the Island track, including Wayne Smith (four), Greg Proude (three), John Flemming (three) and Kent Vincent (two). Eleven drivers have won over the first nineteen races held at the track.
First time winners: This track has produced at least four first time winners on the Tour, most recently with Jonathan Hicken in 2010. Brad Mann (2006) and Kent Livingston (2004) won their first race in the spring Oyster Bed Speedway event while Dale Holmes won the second race on the Island in 2005 for his only Tour win.
SPRING OYSTER BED SPEEDWAY WINNERS:
2010 – Jonathan Hicken
2009 – Rained Out (Race was held as a 200-lap event, won by Greg Proude)
2008 – Kent Vincent
2007 – Bobby White
2006 – Greg Proude
2005 – Greg Proude
2004 – Kent Livingston
2003 – John Flemming
2002 – Wayne Smith
2001 – Shawn Tucker
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