Cassius Clark Takes Trip to Canada and Brings Back a Big Trophy
Mainer Wins Forbes 200 PASS North Race at Scotia Speedworld
Whenever a citizen crosses the United States/Canadian border, they are asked if they have any items that they acquired out of country to declare. After his trip North of the Border this weekend, Maine’s Cassius Clark had to declare some hardware on his return home. It wasn’t the type of hardware that he could have bought at the country’s Canadian Tire or Home Hardware chains though. It was the type of hardware that could only be earned by winning a race.
Cassius Clark stands tall next to his new trophy. (Norm Marx Photos)
behind me ended up pitting and we had to come back around and pit the next time. We were thinking about not pitting, but we’ve got a smaller fuel cell in there and it was going to be tight. With the car being so good, it wasn’t worth taking those kinds of risks, so we bit the bullet and played it safe. That put us behind those guys and we were back there quite a ways, but we finally worked our way back to the front. I could see them, so I knew that I could catch them.”
Clark ended up catching them and then pulling away. The final margin of victory was more than three seconds over Ben Rowe, Trevor Sanborn, Johnny Clark and Turple.
Cassius Clark’s first victory at Scotia was special for several different reasons.
Clark took home the top trophy in Saturday night’s Forbes Chevrolet-Olds 200 at Scotia Speedworld, near Halifax, Nova Scotia, but he didn’t have any trouble getting it through customs.
“It wasn’t too bad this time, but you never know what to expect [crossing the border],” said Clark. “It’s all about who is sitting in the chair. When we came back, they didn’t even open up the trailer. Sometimes, you get a race fan who gets pretty delighted when a trophy comes back through, but sometimes they just check out your license and send you on your way. That’s not bad either.”
The Forbes 200 took place under threatening skies and a not-so-bright forecast, but after a slight rain delay, all 200 laps of the race took place just as advertised. At the beginning of those laps, Clark played it safe.
“Weather was an issue at the beginning there, but it got in,” said Clark. “They shortened up the schedule and finally got it in around four or five. Right off the trailer, we were pretty quick. We started last in our heat race, passed a couple of cars and started the feature in ninth. I knew that we had a good car, so we took our time getting to the front.”
While Cassius Clark was conserving, Shawn Turple, Travis Benjamin, Richie Dearborn and Johnny Clark all took turns leading. When Cassius did make it to the front, he started to run away – before a pit stop almost ruined his day.
“We were checking out for awhile,” said Clark. “Then somebody blew up with 60 laps to go and we had a caution. When I went by [pit road], the pits weren’t opened up yet. The guys
“We’ve had really awesome cars since we started going up there,” said Clark. “Last year, Johnny [Clark] and I almost lapped the field, but my second set of tires didn’t match up and we lost to Johnny at the end. It’s been good so many times there, but we never have gotten it done. The fans up there are awesome and they love the Fords. We didn’t tell them that we actually have a Chevy engine in there though.”
Another strong point was the bond between Clark and the Fraser family. Scott Fraser was one of the best oval racers in the Canadian Maritimes before he lost his life in a snowmobile accident in 2004. Fraser’s father Frank and his brother Frank, Jr. are still both involved in racing and even lent Clark a hand for his victory.
“To be friends with Frank Fraser makes it mean a lot too,” said Clark. “I remember watching Scotty go around there. He was pretty awesome when I was first getting into the sport. I watched him go around there and I learned a lot. It’s a weird track. I like to run right up on the curbs and that’s what he did when he raced there. You really have to keep it down the bottom. His brother helped us change tires because we were short handed. That was pretty special too.”
Thanks to his runner-up finish, Ben Rowe now retains a slim point lead in PASS North over Johnny Clark.
The PASS North Super Late Models will return to action Saturday, June 30th for the All-Star 200 at Epping, New Hampshire’s All-Star Speedway.
PASS North Super Late Models
June 23, 2007
1. Cassius Clark
2. Ben Rowe
3. Trevor Sanborn
4. Johnny Clark
5. Shawn Turple
6. Derek Ramstrom
7. John Fleming
8. Bill Penfold
9. Donald Chisholm
10. George Koszkuiles
11. Richie Dearborn
12. Mike MacKenzie
13. Travis Benjamin
14. Mike Rowe
15. Curtis Gerry
16. Gary Bellefleur
17. Adam Bates
18. Wayne Smith
19. Steve Brown
20. Marty Prevost
Travis Benjamin (#17), Shawn Turple (#0x), Johnny Clark (#54) and Richie Dearborn (#33) all led laps at Scotia.
Cassius Clark's winning ride.