By Jim Clarke, Kawartha Speedway PR/Clarke Motorsports Communications
Smart racecar drivers know there’s no easy path to victory lane. You can’t ask for directions at a gas station or speak to someone on the street. Its one of the few places you’ll never get to using Mapquest or a GPS. Hard work and racing luck may be the only sure fire way to find your way to the winner’s circle. With Kawartha Speedway’s 2012 campaign inching closer at every tick of the clock, the 3/8th mile oval at Fraserville, Ontario will host an open practice session for their 3 regular divisions – and any driver looking to take some laps on one of the finest racing facilities in the province – Friday, May 25th.
“Race teams, crew members and drivers spend most of the winter getting their machines ready for the new season. We need to give them a chance to make sure everything is set for when the green flag flies June 1st,” said General Manager/Promoter Derek Lynch. “The season can be a long one if you’re not prepared and even a few hours of track time can make all the difference when things get rolling.”
Dan McHattie and Ken Donaldson Junior have confirmed plans to defend their 2011 track championships in the NAPA Auto Parts ACT Late Model and Better Carpet Thunder Car divisions respectively. With last year’s Hasiuk Trailer and Container Rental Mini Stock title holder Darragh ‘Too’ Moroney stepping away from action for at least a year to focus on his budding real estate career, the facility’s entry level division will see a new name on the season ending trophy. Lynch says he expects 2012 will be another exciting year at Kawartha.
“Even though Dan and Junior are coming back, with the right breaks and some decent racing luck, any driver can win a track championship in any division,” said Lynch. “We had car counts in the 30 range in each of our weekly divisions last year. Those are numbers any track promoter would be thrilled to see. When you look at the success drivers like Bryan Mercer, Chad Strawn, Ryan Oosterholt and Alex Lees enjoyed just a season ago, its proof that anyone can make it to victory lane.”
Lynch says fans and even speedway officials look forward to the arrival of a new season. Getting a glimpse of the different paint schemes, sponsors and changes that have been made gets everyone excited.
“It was a pretty mild winter compared to what we’re used to seeing, but – other than our annual Long John 200 – still too cold to do any racing. Once the season gets rolling, things will really heat-up.”
Most teams circled the May 25th pre-season shakedown session on their shop calendars about 8 months ago. Gates will open at 2:00, with rotating testing getting underway at 3:00. Spectator admission is free, with pit passes at $10.00 per person. Drivers will also have the opportunity to register their cars and purchase memberships during the event. For complete details, visit www.kawarthaspeedway.com.
Kawartha klips: There will be an open test day for NASCAR Canadian Tire Series teams at Kawartha Wednesday, June 6th. The practice is open to the public with free grandstand admission...The Richard Petty Driving Experience Summer Tour returns to Kawartha Speedway Saturday and Sunday, July 14th and 15th. See www.drivepetty.com/can-tour or call 1.800.237.3889 to book the High-Speed Ride Along or behind the wheel Rookie Experience.
Photo attachment: Jim Clarke – Clarke Motorsports Communications
Bryan Mercer picked-up wins in 2 extra distance events and earned the Most Improved Driver honours for 2011 in Kawartha’s NAPA Auto Parts ACT Late Model division.
Prepared by: Jim Clarke – Clarke Motorsports Communications
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