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Tim's CornerISSUe 98

Exide Rookie Of The Year Preview - #24 Steve Ross

If you are looking at experience when it comes to making your pick for the Exide Batteries Rookie of the Year Award, Steve Ross should be near the top of your list.

Ross, who hails from Waverley, Nova Scotia, has an extensive resume of accomplishments at stock car racing ovals throughout the region. Though known in recent years for lighting up the Sportsman Tour as their 2010 champion, Ross had early success in racing by winning the 1995 Late Model Championship at his home track of Scotia Speedworld. He dabbled in MASCAR before taking a few years off before returning to the track he won his championship at in 2006. Ross ran his #24 in a part-time role in the Sportsman class at the Speedworld from 2006 to 2008 prior to ramping up for a full-time campaign in ’09, in which he finished in sixth place, just 32 points out of champion Jeff Dillman and the late Terry Roma, who tied for the championship.

The 2010 season was a huge year in the career of Steve Ross. In addition to Ross winning the Sportsman Tour championship, he collected a huge win on that series at the Lake Doucette Motor Speedway. The win, described as one of the biggest Sportsman races in recent history, was worth over $7,000 to Ross after purse and race bonus monies were tallied up. In a part-time schedule at Scotia Speedworld in ‘10, he collected two feature wins and six top ten finishes.

The Sportsman Series in 2011 was full of ups and downs for the #24 team. While the team kicked off the season with a win at the Riverside International Speedway, they experienced more than their share of mechanical problems. The team visited Petty International Raceway with the Sportsman Tour, combined with open shows at Speedway 660 and Oyster Bed Speedway in the past three seasons, Ross has visited every track that the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour visits at least once. This seat time could pay dividends when the cars hit the track in a matter of a few weeks.

Ross and his team acquired a Pro Stock at the beginning of last season and ran a select number of races at Scotia Speedworld and Riverside International Speedway but had been chasing a miss within the car all season. “There’s something not quite right with this car and we cannot figure out what it is,” Ross told me prior to the Dartmouth Dodge 200.

“We’ve all but pulled the car completely apart to figure out what the problem is. That’s our next step if the problem presents itself today.” I’ve been told the team has gone over the car and is prepared for a full season on the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour.

The car will carry a number familiar to fans of Ross - #24. The number was not available in 2011 after long-time veteran Scott Livingston had run the number in previous seasons, but with Livingston idle last year after a practice crash at his home track of Oyster Bed Speedway in 2010, the number became available for Ross.

Ross and his fellow drivers will get their first shot at the track on Sunday, May 20th when the series opens at Ross’s home track of Scotia Speedworld for the CARQUEST 100. Ross is one of seven rookies expected to run throughout the 2012 season. For ticket and event information, keep your browser on MaritimeProStockTour.com in the coming weeks.

Until next time, keep the hammer down and we’ll see you at the track!

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