Speed51.com Award Announced At Past Weekend's Banquet
Barnes followed in the footsteps of his father in winning the award.
“My father has won this award at our local track, Louisville Speedway (KY),” said Barnes, a Louisville native. “I’ve always watched him and I’ve been proud of what he’s done. Now, I think that he’s pretty proud of me. It’s really great to get one of the same trophies that he's earned.”
When asked what gave him the edge for this award,
Chuck Barnes Jr. was named the 2004 SSS Most Popular Driver by fan voting.
The award added to the luster of the 22-year-old’s 2004 season. Barnes won the 2004 Sunoco Super Series championship in 2004 and collected two victories in the process. He rounded out his 2004 year with a win in Nashville’s prestigious All American 400.
However, he was pretty surprised to be awarded the MPD honors. He had one of his competitors already figured to win the award.
“I was pretty shocked and excited when they said my name,” said Barnes, who was the series' Rookie of the Year in 2003. “I was not expecting this award. I would have picked Scott Hantz to win it.”
It's widely acknowledged that there are several top names in the series, and fan response to the award, which was decided by votes cast at Speed51.com, was strong. The balloting was close and actually came down to the final hours of the last day before a clear winner emerged.
"There are a lot of great racers in the CRA Super Series,” Said Bob Dillner, editor of Speed51.com and television commentator for SPEED Channel. “Scott Hantz travels the nation to compete in some of the top Super Late Model shows, Jeff Lane continues to be ultra competitive and Junior Hanley, well, what else can you say about him? He's a legend. But, Chuck Barnes Jr. is one of those up-and-coming guys you really get a feel about and apparently so did his fans. We at Speed51.com are proud of being a partner with CRA and we are looking forward to continuing that relationship for years to come. Like Barnes, the CRA is one of the top up-and-coming things in its arena."
It didn’t take Chuck Barnes, Jr. very long to win over a legion of fans in the CRA Super Series. After only his second full season in the series, Barnes was named as the 2004 Sunoco Super Series Most Popular Driver presented by Speed51.com at this weekend’s CRA Super Series banquet in Indianapolis, IN.
Barnes was very modest and attributed it to basic friendliness.
“I think that I’m pretty easy to talk to,” Barnes said. “I talk to everyone that I can. If it’s another competitor, I talk to them as well. I try to help out guys who are new or struggling. I like helping people and I tell them everything that I know.”
Speed51.com will return in 2005 to sponsor the CRA Super Series Most Popular Driver award. Keep posted to Speed51.com for developments on how to and when to vote for the award.
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