51's NORTHERN EXPOSURE by Mike Twist
Webster Injured, Benjamin Wins in a Wheelbarrel, Name That Racecar and a Look Ahead

Webster’s cars have run limited schedules with Cabral and Fred Skaff in recent seasons.


PASS driver Travis Benjamin has had nothing but bad luck on the racetrack this season, but he finally broke through into victory lane last week at Unity Raceway (ME).  Benjamin joined up with fellow Unity Modified racer Chad Dow to win in a race where they had to overcome a machine that drove like a dump truck.
“That’s a place to start,” said Benjamin.  “We figured out the frontstretch at least.”


There are some pretty interesting names for different divisions at tracks in New England.  At various facilities, you can watch Wildcats, Junkyard Warriors, Thompson Modifieds, Runnin’ Rebels, Dare Stocks, Mad Bombers, Beetle Bugs or Pro Quads.

Now it could be your turn to come up with a catchy class name.
Webster faces a long road to recovery ahead of him, but he has shown signs of improvement this week.

“We’re hoping for a quick recovery for Steve,” said Cabral.  “The team hasn’t been allowed to visit him yet, but we’re getting reports every day from the hospital and the news is getting better.  We really miss him around the shop.  He’s been more than just a car owner to me, he’s also been a real friend and I think that all of the guys on the team would tell you the same thing.”
Well, actually it drove more like a wheelbarrow.

“Chad and I won the wheelbarrow race,” said Benjamin.  “That was fun.  I slipped at the start, but we got them at the end.  Every time we got to the start finish line, we had to switch and Chad had good balance because every time that I tried it, I dumped him [literally].  They were catching from behind, but we pulled it off.”

With the Unity 250 on tap for this weekend, the victory from last week could give Benjamin some momentum heading into the $12,000-to-win PASS Pro Stock race at the track.
from the "Big Three" automakers and with the Ethanol fuel program - which is based on U.S. grown corn, we really have something special.  The name should also reflect that."

People wishing to participate in the "Rename the Streets" contest can fill out a form on Thursday nights at Thunder Road at the main Announcer's Tower, as well as submit a selection by US mail, e-mail or fax.  Fans wishing to use the postal service should send their name, address and daytime phone number along with their suggestion for a new name to Renaming Contest, P.O. Box 296, Waterbury, VT  05676.  The fax number is 802-244-1616 and the e-mail address to use is tb@acttour.com.  If sending entry by fax or e-mail, be sure to include a name, address and daytime phone number along with the proposed name.  Entries are due on or before Friday, July 15.

The winner will get more than just the satisfaction of hearing a name they picked to describe a class of racecars every week.  They will also earn a general admission season pass for the 2006 Thunder Road season.


Weather permitting, Speed51.com plans to bring you coverage this weekend of the NASCAR Busch North Series at Stafford Motor Speedway (CT) and the IBG-PASS Pro Stocks from Unity Raceway (ME).

Also in the region this weekend will be the True Value Modified Racing Series at Star Speedway (NH) and NEMA and Ford Focus Midgets at Seekonk Speedway (MA) on Saturday night.

Travis Benjamin celebrates a victory while Chad Dow does all the work.  (Mike Oles / www.thewebguys.com Photo)
Webster's #55 car runs at Lee last season. 
(51 Photo)
The division currently known as Street Stocks at Thunder Road Speedbowl is going to undergo a name change.  The class features fairly stock four cylinder cars such as Mustangs, Escorts and Cavaliers. 

"The Street Stocks have been a work in progress and the present-day cars are under going another transformation as our alternative fuel program moves firmly into the Research and Development stage," commented Thunder Road general manager, Tom Curley.  "When you say `Street Stock' to a race fan, it can mean so many different things, depending on what part of the country they're from.  We want a name that will tell fans, no matter where they live; this is a homegrown, American-made division.  The only cars allowed in this class are
The newest member of the Speed51.com team, Justin St. Louis, has been a competitor in the Street Stocks at Thudner Road.  Here he wheels the #15 Mustang last season.  (ACT Photo)
IBG-PASS Pro Stock (Super Late Model) car owner Steve Webster was seriously injured last week in an accident at the body shop that he owns in Hampstead, New Hampshire.  The owner of the car driven by Bobby Cabral was helicoptered to a hospital in Boston and placed into the ICU, where he currently remains.