Ted Christopher Plays the Numbers and Gets to 100 Wins at Stafford By Denise Dupont
Friday the 13th is Not a Nightmare for TC
Most people shy away from the number thirteen, let alone dread when the thirteenth day of the month falls on a Friday. But for much of his career, Ted Christopher has proven the color black and the number thirteen are his lucky combination. On Friday, June 13th, 2008 Ted Christopher drove his black numbered 13 car to his 100th career feature win at Stafford Motor Speedway.
Over the past twenty-two years Christopher has had a real love-hate relationship with fans and drivers as he has built his place in racing. TC has been 'booed' when he is introduced but the same fans in the end have stood and cheered as he crossed the finish line to take this checkered flag.
As part of Stafford's victory lane ceremony, it was announced that Christopher's 100 career victories had earned him a place with the Stafford's other Modified greats. Section A in the main grandstand will be named after Ted Christopher to honor his racing accomplishments and establish a place in history for his legacy.
“This place has always been real special to me and a big part of my racing career. Jack Arute, Sr. always criticized me and then thanked me when I did well. I really appreciate this,” said Christopher.
Christopher was also presented a hand carved commemorative plaque, recognizing his 100 career wins.
“This is something that you cannot just place on your calendar and say you are going to win.,” said Christopher. “The car was just a little bit loose, which is real strange for us. Last week we were all set to go and then it got rained out so we were not sure what we were going to do this week. This car has is a really good race car. Our car took a while to get going on restarts. I had to wait until I got my groove going and the car it self. One we got some laps going I got a pretty good run. We made it!”
With all the victory lane celebration, the hard charge of runner up Woody Pitkat and podium finish of veteran Tommy Bolles were slightly over shadowed.
Pitkat got out of his car and ran over to shake the hand of his fellow competitor and
“First, I have to take my hat off to Ted Christopher. The guy is unbelievable,” said Pitkat
after the race.
Pitkat was all over TC's rear bumper the last ten laps but it was not his night to shine.
Pitkat over the years has expressed his adoration of TC racing talent and his pride in
being one of his protégés.
“He won 100 races here. Week in and week out he has been the fastest car here. I just
have to congratulate him. That is a feat that probably no one else will ever conquer.”
Friday, it did not take too long for Tommy Bolles to get back behind the wheel and his
car and show why one you are a racer you are always a racer.
“I have not been out for over a year in a half,” said Bolles. “We just wanted to get a
race under our belt and work our way up to the front. The car (his #1 SK Modified car) was good tonight.”
Christopher started his Stafford career after purchasing a car from two time NASCAR Busch Series (now Nationwide Series) Champion Randy Lajoie. It took him three years of sweat and car flips before he finally got it all together for his first win at Stafford Motor Speedway on May 23, 1986.
After conquering the half-mile track with his first win, TC continued on over the years with his track dominance. He has had 85 SK Modified wins along with eight victories on the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, six Pro Stock wins and 1 Camping World East victory.
Woody Pitkat (#52) chases Ted Christopher's #13 to the finish at Stafford. (Jim Dupont Photo)
The fans were in TC's corner for this race,
With all these notches on his belt, TC has shown the racing community that he can drive the wheels off of almost every vehicle he accepts the challenge to drive.
UPDATE - Stafford Motor Speedway issued this statement altering the finishing order late on Monday afternoon.
Following post race technical inspection from the Friday, June 13th 35th Annual Coors Light SK Modified® 100 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series feature events at Stafford Motor Speedway, the following change has been made to the official SK Modified® order of finish.
Unofficial SK Modified® second place finisher Woody Pitkat was disqualified from his original finishing position to the last place finishing position of 28th. Pitkat's car did not meet the required minimum frame height measurement, and he was disqualified from his second place finishing position.
Christopher (Center) appears with the Arute family in victory lane - with his new grandstand sign.