FRASERVILLE, ON – The day after the most measurable amount of precipitation in almost a month came through the area, a new storm cell arrived at Kawartha Speedway. A 50-lap Thunder Car main event was the highlight of a racing program that closed out the July portion on this year’s schedule and before things were over, there was a first two-time Thunder Car winner and a pair of drivers had also made a long-awaited return to victory lane for their first feature event wins of 2012.
NAPA Auto Parts ACT Late Model qualifying kicked the show into gear on Friday, July 27, as Jamie Horner and Dave Morgan claimed heat race wins. Matt Spence and Howie Crowe shared the Thunder Car opening rounds, with Michael Batchelor and Ryan Oosterholt earning a lap with the checkered flag as the reward for their performance in the Hasiuk Trailer and Container Rental Mini Stock preliminaries. The Late Model consolation round went to Mike Wallace, while Dwight Brown, John Baker Jr. and Alex Lees took their respective Late Model, Thunder Car and Mini Stock semi features.
Close to 15 Thunder Car teams took to the track for their 50 lap feature, with heat race winners Spence and Crowe leading the way. The show ran clean until lap 28, when the front row starters came together exiting the second turn to produce the only caution flag. Both drivers were able to continue under their own power, but wouldn’t contend for the win. 2009 division champion Kyle Donaldson – again running the #9 from Crowe Brothers Racing – had a strong effort, but would settle for second as Oshawa’s John Baker Jr. returned to victory lane. Chad Strawn, Ken Donaldson Jr. and 2007 track champion Steve Mayhew rounded-out the top 5.
As they have done so many times recently, the Hasiuk Trailer and Container Rental Mini Stockers ran their 20-lap feature without a yellow flag. Peterborough high-school teacher Rob Flindall and 14 year-old Brandt Graham paced the field to the line, with Flindall taking the lead. His #57 machine was strong early on, but faded late in the going. Just past halfway, Alex Lees took over the top spot with team mate and friend Daryl Fice on his back bumper. Fice – who carried the momentum of a 3 race winning streak into battle – attempted his traditional late race charge, but couldn’t keep Lees from his first win of the year. Defending rookie of the year Ryan Oosterholt was 3rd, with Michael Batchelor and Kyle McCabe 4th and 5th.
A strong field left the staging area for the 25-lap NAPA Auto Parts ACT Late Model feature and like their Mini Stock counterparts, they ran the entire race distance caution-free. Front row starters Bryan Mercer and J.P. Josiasse brought the pack to the green and after breaking away early, Mercer – the 2011 Summer Sizzler winner – never surrendered the top spot. Larry Jackson, Dave Morgan, Ryan Kimball and Dan McHattie followed Mercer across the stripe.
Kawartha klips: Kevin Foisy won the 20 lap Ontario Legends Series feature event…Defending track champion Ken Donaldson Jr. made his first start of the year in the Thunder Car invitational, as did 2001 title holder John Bryan…To make-up for the cancellation of the June 1 season opener, Kawartha Speedway’s Thunder Cars will run a double points show Friday, August 17. NAPA Auto Parts ACT Late Model drivers will get the chance to pad their point totals at the Friday, August 24, event…At the start of the year, Kawartha Speedway and Capital City Speedway announced a Thunder Car challenge series. In addition to regular race purse, drivers will run for a bonus payout of $250 for 1st, $150 for 2nd and $100 for every competitor. The 50 lap events are Friday, August 24, at Kawartha and Saturday, September 8, at Capital City. Registration by August 15 is required and drivers need to run both events to eligible… Kawartha Speedway will take a week off Friday, August 3, but action returns Friday, August 10, with the 75 lap OSCAAR Super Late Model Don Biederman Memorial as the featured attraction, along with the Hasiuk Trailer and Container Rental Mini Stocks, Thunder Cars and NAPA Auto Parts ACT Late Models. See the complete track schedule and the latest news at www.kawarthaspeedway.com.
From Jim Clarke – Clarke Motorsports Communications