Brian Hoar of Williston, Vt., sets to embark on history this weekend when the ACT Late Model Tour opens the 2011 season with the NH Governor's Cup 150 at Lee USA Speedway in Lee, N.H., on Sunday afternoon, April 17. Hoar owns seven ACT championships in his illustrious career to tie him with Jean-Paul Cyr for the all-time mark, and he is the series' career win leader with 28. His best career finish at Lee USA Speedway is third, which he did last summer after this event was rained out and postponed until June.
WHO: Brian Hoar, Williston, Vt.
TEAM: RPM Motorsports No. 37 GossCars.com Dodge
CREW CHIEF: Rick Paya, Georgia, Vt.
BEST CAREER LEE USA SPEEDWAY FINISH: 3rd (June 2010)
WHAT: ACT Late Model Tour NH Governor's Cup 150
WHERE: Lee USA Speedway, Lee, N.H. (.333-mile oval)
WHEN: 1 p.m., Sunday, April 17
ACT LATE MODEL TOUR
NEXT RACE: May 1, Merchants Bank 150, Thunder Road International Speedbowl, Barre, Vt. (.25-mile oval)
FINAL POINTS POSITION (2010): 1st (seventh championship)
DID YOU KNOW?
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING
BRIAN HOAR, Driver of the No. 37 GossCars.com Dodge, On opening the season this weekend at Lee USA Speedway: “I love the track. I always seem to run well there, and I can't wait to get back there. It's a really good track for our Late Model package.
“I like Lee. I've always liked Lee, even when I was there in the (NASCAR K&N Pro Series East) cars. The last couple of years, I've been really fast at Lee – but I don't totally feel vindicated there. I've led a lot of laps, but like last year, I just used it up by the end. I had nothing left for the leaders over the last 20 laps or so.”
On starting the championship chase with good finishes early in the season: “Obviously, it's not the end of the world if you have a bad race, but it's a helluva lot more fun to get off on the right foot. You've kind of got to plan on having a bad race or two at some point in the year, but the nice thing is if you can put those bad races off until the end – then you can build up a point lead and have some padding.
“I'm very confident we'll go down and be competitive right off (at Lee). I haven't gone there with (RPM Motorsports owner Rick Paya) yet and not had a great chance. I'm looking forward to what happens.”
On the track configuration at Lee USA Speedway: “I feel like it races like a bigger track. It's got real straightaways, serious braking in the corner where you really plant the nose, there's a wall all the way around the outside of the track, and you've got an inside groove. You kind of go from the outside to the inside getting into the turn and you really try to hold that apex.
“The other thing about Lee is that it races different than it practices. You may feel like you've got a good car in practice or qualifying, and then all of a sudden in the feature it's totally different The track is really old and it doesn't have a lot of grip. It loses grip quickly and then the cars really start sliding around.
“It almost acts like a progressive banked track. It certainly makes for an interesting race.”
RICK PAYA, RPM Motorsports owner and crew chief for the No. 37 GossCars.com Dodge, On racing at Lee USA Speedway: “I love it. It's a very challenging track. It's unique, so it's hard to get a handle on it. I really always look forward to going to Lee.
“It has an inside groove and an outside groove, especially as the tires start to wear out. The wall all the way around the track on the outside is intimidating for a lot of people. I like it. It's a challenging track from a setup standpoint.”
The ACT Late Model Tour heads to the Merchants Bank 150 at Thunder Road International Speedbowl on Sunday, May 1 for the second race of the season... Brian Hoar last won at Thunder Road to close out the 1999 season. That year, Hoar won two of the five races contested on the quirky, historic .25-mile oval.
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