“The last few races at Bangor were pretty good for us,” said Clark. “Last year, out of two races, our average finish was second. We’ve got a pretty good track record there; it’s been a good place for us.”
Speedway 95 is one of the odd places where the Rowe family has had a hit or miss record. Ben Rowe has three victories there, but the latest one came back in 2003. Mike Rowe finally broke through to win a race there last year, but surprisingly, it was his first-ever PASS finish better than ninth at the track.
“I know if you ask either Rowe, they’ll tell you that it’s not one of their favorite tracks,” said Johnny Clark.
Cassius Clark joined Mike Rowe as the other winner at Speedway 95 in 2005. Clark won the 2006 season-opener at Oxford Plains Speedway last weekend and has to be considered one of the favorites this week as well.
“I’ve always liked Bangor,” said Cassius Clark. “We should have won both races up there last year. We ended up with
PASS NORTH SET TO TACKLE TOUGH SPEEDWAY 95 TRACK by MikeTwist
It’s Off to a Driver’s Track for Round Two of the 2006 Season
When the teams of Pro All Stars Series North roll into Speedway 95 this weekend for their second race of the season, one thing will be for sure. The 150-lap race might be scheduled for Sunday afternoon, but drivers can expect anything but a “Sunday drive” in the race.
“Bangor is very tough to get around. It’s got a distinctive groove to run and if you aren’t in that groove, you’re not going to be able to go fast at all.”
Once a driver figures the place out, though, they can fly around the place.
“Those kind of man-handling, get-on-the edge of your seat tracks are places where I’ve seemed to take a liking to lately,” said 2004 PASS Champion Johnny Clark. “Places like Unity, Bangor and tracks like that are where I’ve done well.”
Cassius Clark is hoping to score another victory this week at Speedway 95.
The track, which is located just south of Bangor, Maine, is a throwback to an earlier time in motorsports. There isn’t much banking to carry you through the corners or wide passing zones. It is a track where you need to race hard just to survive, much less finish well.
“We always look forward to going to Bangor because it’s a different kind of facility,” said Corey Williams, who had two top-five finishes at Speedway 95 last year. “It’s probably how racing used to be. Some tracks, you can ride around, but at Bangor you need to put some wheel into it, throw the car around and have some fun. I’m sure it’s like Darlington (Raceway in SC). You can hang it out on the outside and that’s the kind of racing that I like to do.
Corey Williams is looking forward to racing at Speedway 95. (Norm Marx Photos)
The short track battle at Speedway 95 will draw fans from throughout Northern New England, but has also been known for some international flair as well.
“It’s in Central Maine and that’s pretty close to Canada,” said Johnny Clark. “We always get a lot of fans coming in from New Brunswick. It’s only about three-and-a-half hours from Fredericton. To get some fans to come down from there is important to us.”
Also on the racing card for Speedway 95, will be the season-opening race for the TAT/Link Belt PASS Modifieds. The growing division will start a 14-race campaign that will end with the crowning of a champion at the October 14th Canaan Fair Speedway event.
Racing at Speedway 95 is set to start at 1pm and will include four regular divisions from the track - Limited, Super Streets, Strictly Streets and Sport 4s. For more information, please visit www.proallstarsseries.com.
Johnny Clark's #54 finished second twice last year at Speedway 95.
first and third [in the two races there]. I’ve liked the track since I raced Legends cars up there. We’ve got some momentum coming out of here and we feel pretty strong about it, so we should be all right.”
If a first-time winner is in the cards, it might be Williams who rises to the occasion. A finish of third at Speedway 95 was his best result of the 2005 season and his team has stepped up their program for 2006. He led at Oxford and ran strong before running into problems in the PASS South Easter Bunny 150 at Hickory Motor Speedway.
“I think Bangor has a lot of potential for us,” said Williams. “It is where we can do well. We’ve always ran decent there, and I like that kind of track.”
Meanwhile, Johnny Clark might have been happy with his second-place finishes in 2005, but he won’t be satisfied until he wins at the track.
Another driver to watch is Scott Chubbuck, who has a pair of victories at the track. He rides into the track on the heels of a third-place run at Oxford. His Jay Cushman-owned team has a second-place finish at Speedway 95 to their credit with Louie Mechalides in 2001.
Other PASS winners at Speedway 95 have been Sammy Sessions (2004 and 2002) and Tracy Gordon (2003).