51's NORTHERN EXPOSURE by Mike Twist
News from Out West, Florida and (of Course) the Northeast
KOBYLUCK CARRIES EASTERN FLAG WELL IN PHOENIX

It is over 2,600 miles from Uncasville, Connecticut to Phoenix, but that didn’t stop Matt Kobyluck and his Mohegan Sun team from heading out West and contending for victory in the NASCAR West Series opener there this past weekend.

Also making the trip to Phoenix from New England was Jeff Anton and the #30 team.  Anton finished on the lead lap in the 17th position. 

CLARKS TO BUSCH NORTH…OR NOT?

Earlier this winter, there were plenty of rumors that the unrelated pair of PASS drivers Johnny Clark and Cassius Clark might be making the switch to the NASCAR Busch East Series in 2006.
Kobyluck ran near the front all day long in the 125-lap race that helped make up the Copper World Classic weekend at Phoenix International Raceway.  He eventually finished third behind Ken Schrader and Eric Holmes.

The experience should pay dividends when Kobyluck tackles the Busch East schedule later this year.

“It was great to come out here and put on a good show,” said Kobyluck. “What was better for us was that we were using this race and a race here in April for R&D for our Loudon race. Phoenix and NHIS are similar in that they are one-mile flat tracks and I really think we had a positive outcome on working on our set-ups for the those (NHIS) races.”
It looks like Mike Rowe, Ben Rowe and Corey Williams are definitely going to run the full slate of races.

Donnie Whitten finished sixth in the PASS standings last season, but is currently without a ride for this year.  His previous team, Richard Moody Racing, will field the #44 entry for Travis Khiel in a partial schedule.

Former TD Banknorth 250 winner Gary Drew will run a
PIECES TO PASS PUZZLE START TO COME TOGETHER

Recently, Speed51.com talked to a number of PASS drivers about their plans for 2006.  Almost everyone said that they would be back in the series this year, but not everyone is willing to commit to running a full schedule quite yet.
Cassius Clark would like to give Busch East a try, but so far the rumors that he will are just rumors.  (51)
Matt Kobyluck had a productive trip to Arizona.  (51 Photo)
Speed51.com talked to both Clarks recently and found out that nothing Busch East-related is in the works – at least not right now.

Johnny Clark admitted that he had talked to different teams and would consider the move, but lacks the bankroll that is usually required to find a ride in the series.

Cassius Clark seemed more amused by the rumors.  He hinted that he would give Busch East a try if given the opportunity, but that nothing was in the works currently.
limited schedule of PASS races in addition to his full-time
campaign for the championship at Oxford Plains
Speedway (ME).

Richie Dearborn, Scott Mulkern, Cassius Clark and Johnny Clark all plan on being back to, but for how many races is a question mark.  The cost of running a competitive Pro Stock for the 15-race schedule seems to be the biggest factor in making their plans.  The again, there have been many cases where a racer has felt one way in the off-season and changed his mind once the smell of racing fuel is in the air.  You can probably expect at least one of those four to chase PASS points in 2006.

SOUTHERN RACING FOR NORTHERN DRIVERS

This weekend’s Speedfest at USA International Speedway in Lakeland, Florida will have some of the best Super Late Model drivers from across America in the pit area.  This includes many top Northeastern teams.
PASS regulars Mike Rowe, Ben Rowe, Cassius Clark and Scott Mulkern are all entered along with partial schedule drivers Patrick Leperle, Scott Chubbuck and Louie Mechalides.

Speed51.com will have extensive team coverage of Speedfest through this week.

Meanwhile, over on the Atlantic Coast of Florida, Ted Christopher will be racing in the Rolex 24 at Daytona driving for the legendary Brumos Racing team. 

A test earlier this month at Daytona was very promising for the Brumos bunch.  The #58 car with TC, David Donohue, Darren Law and Sascha Maassen posted thethird best overall time of the entire three-day test with a lap of one minute, 43.953 seconds, 123.286 mph.

The Brumos Porsche team that Ted Christopher will race for has quite a history at Daytona.  The vintage photo is on the wall at Daytona USA.  (51 Photo)



SPEED Channel will feature extensive live coverage of the Rolex 24 starting at Noon on Saturday.

PASS PLANS OFF SEASON SHOW

Plans have been announced for the first Annual PASS Motorsports Extravaganza on March 24th-26th at Scarborough Downs in Scarborough, Maine.  The show will feature PASS cars from all divisions (Pro Stock/Super Late Model, Outlaw Late Model and PASS Modifieds), displays from tracks on the PASS schedule and racing memorabilia.

BUSCH NORTH/EAST SNOWMOBILE RIDE COMING UP

The seventh annual Busch North (now Busch East) Scene Snowmobile Poker Run will take place in Rangeley, Maine on February 4th.  Four-time Busch North champion Andy Santerre will lead the list of racers headlining the event.
Gary Drew in victory lane at Oxford.
Last year's Rangeley ride.   (51 Photo)
The day will start out with an optional 11am drivers meeting at the Rangeley Inn. Ride credentials can be purchased for $20 at the Rangeley Inn all day and you can ride with the 11am group or ride with your own group at any time during the day.

The $20 ride credential also gets you admission to the entertainment night at the Rangeley Inn. There will be dinner specials and drink specials exclusively for those with a ride credential. The proceeds from the ride will all go to several great charities including the Maine Special Olympics and the Busch North Series Women's Auxiliary and their various charities.
There will also be 100's of raffle prizes and great auction items at the event. Busch North Scene will also be awarding the 2004 Busch North Scene Driver of the Year at the event, along with the 2004 Fans Favorite Driver award. As part of the evening entertainment, three nationally known comedians will perform at 9pm.

Last year’s event was the most successful to date, raising well over $8,400 for the charities. Over 250 people participated in the event.

For more details, please email at scene@neracing.com or call Busch North Scene at (207) 224-2060.

MOE TWEEDIE PASSES AWAY

New Hampshire racing lost one of its most colorful characters in recent history last week.  Moe Tweedie passed away at the age of 61.

Tweedie was a fixture at Hudson Speedway, but had plenty of experience racing at tracks all over the region.  He operated Moe’s Trading Post, a used car lot and an antique store, and it wasn’t unusual for there to be plenty of bric brac decorating his cars.  Many of his rides had plastic doll heads attached to the roofs of his #81 cars for example.

Tweedie didn’t do much touring racing.  He had eight ACT starts in 1988 and 1989 and attempted to qualify for a June, 2002 PASS Pro Stock race at Star Speedway.  He mostly kept to the local tracks, where he would run anything from an Enduro car to a Bud Lightning (a former class that closely resembled Pro Stocks/Super Late Models).

This author, who spent many of his early years in stock car racing at Hudson, has many memories of Tweedie throughout the years and it is no doubt that many other fans do as well.  He will be missed.