51's NORTHERN EXPOSURE by Mike Twist
PASS Math Explained, Travis Rolls to Second, Louie Back with Fenders and Much More
DIFFERENT FORMAT FOR PASS AT OXFORD

third in segment three you get three points for a total of 14 points. The possibilities are virtually endless. Of course, you could make it simple and win all three segments for a total of three points, but that’s not going to happen with the expected big field of PASS regulars, outlaw visitors, and many of the Oxford Pro-Stocks.”

Speed51.com will be on hand at Oxford to give you the complete rundown of what goes on in the Triple 50s.

TWO NASCAR DIVISIONS TO INVADE THOMPSON

Speed51.com will also make the trip to Thompson Speedway on Sunday for a rare NASCAR Touring double feature.  The NASCAR Busch North Series will start their season [after the scheduled season opener at Lee was rained out three times] on Sunday along with the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour.  Both divisions will contest 100 lap feature races at Thompson. 
Meanwhile, the ACT Late Models will take to the White Mountain Motorsports Park (NH) to continue their season.  Cris Michaud is the ACT point leader, but expect a tough challenge for the victory from hometrack hero David Avery.

MAINE MID-WEEK SHOWS GET STARTED

In the past few seasons, a summer trend has emerged at racetracks throughout New England to promote mid-week shows with entry level divisions and low ticket prices.  No place has seen this work out better than in Maine, where car counts at several area tracks for these events are in the triple digits for these events.
“The PASS Super Late Model/Pro Stocks will follow the same qualifying procedure as they do in all 150 lap race – time trials, followed by heats and consi(s), then the dash for the top ten in time to set the field for the first segment. Thereafter, it all takes a turn for excitement and adventure because the field will be inverted after the first and second 50–lap segments.

”The winner will be the driver who accumulates the best combination of finishes in all three segments. For example, if you win segment one, you get one point, if you work your way from the rear to tenth after the inversion in segment two you get ten points, and if you’re
RACING IN THE HILLS AS WELL

There will be racing in high places this weekend in parts of New England on Saturday night.  The True Value Modified Racing Series will descend on the Monadnock Speedway in the hills of southwestern New Hampshire for their third event of the season there.

Kirk Alexander is gunning for four race victories in a row on the Tour this week as other drivers who have shown themselves capable of running of front this year, including Andy Seuss, Jim Boniface, Jimmy Kuhn, Peter Daniels and Louie Mechalides, are looking to break through into the win column.
Speed51.com will have some fun with this concept in 2005.  This writer will drive the #51 mini truck at Oxford in some of the Wednesday night shows there.  The truck was not quite ready for opening day, but we’ll have further updates when it is ready for primetime.

BENAJMIN GOES ON ROOF IN A MOD, COMES BACK FOR TOP RUN

Part of the mid-week Unity show is a Modified division using the same basic rules as the PASS Modified division.  Last week, PASS Pro Stock driver Travis Benjamin ran in the division, but ended up on his head in his heat race.  His car had a bent spindle, bent header and multiple other problems, but the team went to work and got it ready for the feature.
Everyone is gunning for Kirk Alexander in the True Value Modified Series right now.  (51 Photo)
Johnny Clark (#54) and Mike Rowe (#24) will be two favroite at Oxford no matter what the format is.  (Norm Marx Photo)
Now, as a sign of summer being in full swing, the tracks have gotten their mid-week shows underway.  Unity got their Thursday Night racing card going last week and Oxford competitors got going this week after a one hour rain delay.  Beech Ridge Motor Speedway kicks off their Thursday Night Thunder show this week.

Most of the tracks stick to a simple formula of divisions – a full-sized hobby stock-type division,with Monte Carlos seeming to be the car of choice, a four cylinder division with plenty of Hondas and VWs and a min-truck division with S-10s and Rangers.
“I rolled it in our qualifying race, but the team didn’t give up,” said Benjamin.  “They worked their butts off, we even straightened a bent tie road with a jack.”

Benjamin’s car wasn’t just able to run the feature.  It was able to lead laps and finish second.

“That car was awesome, we were really good.  At the beginning of the feature, I had no brakes.  They came to and the car was driving well so we raced it as hard as we could.”

Chad Dow ended up winning the feature, but Benjamin held on for a second-place finish.
There were plenty of cars on the track Wednesday night at Oxford.  (51 Photo)
This week’s IBG-Pro Stock race has something a little bit different in store.  Instead of being a straight 150 lapper, the event will be split up into three 50-lap segments.  This writer isn’t particularly great with math, so here is what the latest PASS press release has to say about the format.
Travis Benjamin goes on his lid at Unity.  He came for for a decent finish though.  (Mike Oles / www.TheWebGuys.org Photo)
“Chad got us at the end,” said Benjamin.  “He had a little bit better car because my panhard bar broke and we couldn’t get a good restart.” 

MAINE YOUNG GUN GETS HELP IN USAC

Maine native Drew Sprague is getting some help from friends in high places with his USAC Ford Focus Midget Series racing program.  Sprague will run his car for his father Jeff’s Fast Forward Racing Team in association with the legendary Seymour Enterprises operation with sponsorship from Briggs and Stratton.

The partnership of Drew and the Seymours has been in play for over a year and included an inaugural outing in USAC Ford Focus Midget competition in the Fall of 2004 in Anderson, South Carolina.  Sprague qualified second for that race but had troubles in the feature.  Still, an instant bond formed.

LOUIE BACK IN A PRO STOCK SOON

Louie Mechalides has been busy lately with his entry in the True Value Modified Racing Series lately, but he also loves Pro Stock racing.  However, after a wreck wiped out his #47 in the PASS feature at Thompson last month, he hasn’t been doing much of that in the past few weeks.
“It’s pretty bent up,” Mechalides said of his Pro Stock.  “I don’t know what we have.  I will probably bring it up to Frank Fraser’s and work on it.  I’ll rebuild what I can and bring it back for Florida [next year’s Speedweeks].  I have another car that I can run up here for the Oxford 250.”

Mechalides does have a ride lined up for next week’s Unity 250 Pro Stock race in Maine however.
“I’ve got a car that I’m going to run up there.  Brad Watson owned it and I drove it last year in the Longjohn 150.  He helped me in Florida.  He lives about ten minutes from Unity.  Scott Fraser built the car and it’s a good piece.  They run it once in a while and it runs good.”

In typical racer fashion, Louie doesn’t remember much about the appearance of his Pro Stock ride, but he can tell you exactly how well it goes.

“I don’t remember what number it was…but it was a black car and it was a good one - I can tell you that.”


Louie's #47 was pretty spent at Thompson.  (Norm Marx Photo)