51's Northern Exposure Compiled by Mike Twist
Opportunies, Snowmobiles, a New Name and More
A MAINE NATIVE GETS SET TO MAKE HIS MARK DOWN SOUTH
One young Mainer is in for a season of racing far from home in 2008. Derek Kneeland, who is only 21 years old but has been out of a racecar for two years while working down south towards a career in the racing industry, has put together a plan to race at Tri County Speedway (NC) this season with the #5 Late Model Stock Car.
The event will return to its 'roots' this year.
"We had an opportunity to return the event to the Clubhouse this year," event organizer George Campbell said, "We started the event here nine years ago when it was the People's Choice Restaurant, and decided to return the event to a place where riders would have access to a complete menu through out the entire days event and could stay later into the evening if they choose."
The day will start out with an optional 11 AM drivers meeting at the Clubhouse. Ride credentials can be purchased for $10 at the Clubhouse all day and you can ride with the 11 AM group or ride with your own group at any time during the day. The $10 ride
credential also gets you admission into the full night of entertainment at the Clubhouse that evening. 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 Multiple Sclerosis Society, Maine Special Olympics, Travis Roy Foundation and the Busch East Series Women's Auxiliary and their various charities.
Kneeland cut his teeth racing at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway and finished as the runner-up in the 2005 100-lap Sportsman race as part of the PASS 400 weekend at that track. Not much later, Kneeland headed south and put his driving on hold to go and work for Motorsports Designs where he produces decals for racecars. In his free time, he works as a spotter for PASS South standout Corey Williams.
But Kneeland still had the racing bug and with the help of former NASCAR Busch Series team owner Bob Sutton and current LMSC car owner Lee Faulk, he’ll get to run at least a few events in 2008.
“I had great luck and was fortunate to get as far as I did back in Maine with not really having much financial support,” said Kneeland. “But it got to the point where a lot of the money was coming from my parents, so I called it quits and took a chance at coming down South. Now, I am very fortunate to have met Bob and we’re looking forward to teaming up with Lee a few times this year to hopefully pull off some results that I know Lee's cars are capable of.
“At this time we only have a few races planned but we'll see how those go and go from there. It’s good to be back though. Racing is a tough sport, it is something I have worked hard at since I was eight years old, it was unfortunate I had to stop for a little while but hopefully this is my door to a bright future. We plan to start testing in the next month or two and go from there.”
BUSCH EAST SCENE SNOWMOBILE RIDE SET FOR THIS WEEKEND
The 9th Annual Busch East Scene Snowmobile Ride for Charity will take place on Saturday, February 2nd, at the Clubhouse in Rangeley Maine. There will be NASCAR Busch East Series drivers and team members joining the ride again this year. The ride is open to everyone teams, fans and all.
have a little bit more of a safety net at the five races we compete in should it rain or something,” explained car-owner Mike Olsen.
Dumarey began his career in 2005 via Formula Renault 1.6, a European road racing series. His quick successes saw him advance to the FIA GT3 European Championship series where he honed his skills driving cars such as a Porsche 997, Dodge Viper, and Porsche 996 GT3 and RSR. In 2007, Dumarey joined Fadden Racing for the NASCAR Camping World East Series schedule where he posted his first career top-10 finish at Mansfield (OH). During a weekend off, Dumarey returned to his home country of Belgium and became the youngest driver in the world to win the prestigious 24 hours of Zolder.
“I think the road course is going to be a big strength for us,” said Olsen. “Max has good car control, he’s a quick learner, and he gives us a lot of feedback. He really learns fast on tracks that he’s never seen before so we’re really optimistic about a lot of these venues that we’ll be going to.”
NBIS BECOMES SPEEDWAY 660
Entertaining a new generation is the focus of one of Canada’s top stock car racing facilities for the 2008 season. A new name and a commitment to a new era of entertainment had race teams and fans excited at the annual awards banquet at the Fredericton Inn on Saturday night.
Speedway 660, located on Route 660 near Geary, will be the home of “Wic-Kid Family Fun” when the racing season begins in May. Entertaining long time racing enthusiasts and a new generation of fans will be the focus every week of the upcoming season.
“Our drivers and crews provide an on-track product unequalled in Canada, but now we
are going to raise the bar around the entertainment value of that product” said
Speedway 660 co-owner Steve Burns. “We are repackaging the entire racing program
with a focus on entertainment for the kids and families who come to visit us.”
Speedway 660 has an extremely loyal fan base, but needs to reach new fans to grow
to the next level. In the coming weeks, more work will be done as the branding exercise
currently underway is completed.
“As much as some people may think we are in the racing business, we’re actually in
the entertainment business” said Speedway 660 co-owner Chris Johnston. “We’ve been
doing this for 12 years and realize, with the help of our fans, sponsors and race teams
we have built one of Canada’s best speedways, but now its time to make it bigger and
Speedway 660 will see many changes during the 2008 season highlighted by a complete
fan-focussed entertainment package each and every race date. As part of the branding exercise, the speedway has unveiled the new face of the speedway, Speedway the Moose. The mascot made his debut in front of over 350 fans, sponsors, race teams and speedway staff at the Fredericton Inn on Saturday night.
“I know people now have big expectations for the 2008 season and we intend to live up to them and more, so be prepared to be entertained” said Burns. “In addition to new ways to entertain our race fans, we are developing innovative ways to attract more fans to the speedway.”
Speedway 660 will also see some major improvements to the facilities infrastructure as well. An electronic scoring system and race management software will be implemented for the new season, providing immediate scoring results and information to race teams.
A sneak peak of the 2008 schedule was released Saturday night with the major events that make up a great summer of racing. The entire 2008 schedule is expected to be released in February in conjunction with the launch of a brand new Speedway 660 website.
SUNOCO IS BACK WITH PASS
Pro All Stars Series (PASS) President Tom Mayberry announced today that Sunoco Race Fuel will return as the official fuel of the Pro All Stars series as well as the spec fuel for both the PASS Super Late Model North and South series. 2008 will mark the eighth season that PASS has been fueled by Sunoco.
“I’m particularly pleased to welcome Sunoco Race Fuel back to the PASS family of sponsors, “said Mayberry.” Their northeast distributors, New England Racing Fuel stepped up to the plate and supported this series before we’d even run a single race. PASS has grown a great deal from our ten race series in 2001. In 2008 we will sanction over fifty races in five divisions from Georgia to Nova Scotia, and Sunoco Race Fuel has played an important role in the growth of our racing series. Thanks to New England Racing Fuel we have had a fuel testing program in place for eight years. They’ve distributed thousands of dollars in awards to our competitors, and their product is readily available anywhere that PASS races. We appreciate their continued support of the Pro All Stars Series, and short track racing everywhere.”
In addition to the full NASCAR Camping World Series East schedule, Dumarey will compete in West Series events at Phoenix International Raceway in April and the road course event at Infineon Raceway in June. Additional ARCA RE/MAX Series races will include stops at Kansas Speedway, Pocono Raceway, Nashville Superspeedway, and Talladega Superspeedway in October.
“I want to get some experience on the superspeedways so we leaned a lot toward races at the larger tracks like Daytona, Talladega, and Phoenix. I really like the speed and momentum you get on those big tracks,” said the 19-year-old Belgium driver. “I’m really looking forward to getting this season started, and to do it at a place like Daytona is just phenomenal.”
Dumarey will driving the familiar #16 Fadden Racing entries in the NASCAR Camping World East Series, but will sport the #94 in the ARCA RE/MAX Series events.
“We’ll be leasing the number from Darrell Bashin Racing in the ARCA events. It’s a win-
win situation for both of us. He’ll benefit by ways of the contingency program while we’ll
Busch East Scene at 1-207-224-2060. There will also be news on the www.neracing.com website.
NEW HAMPSHIRE TEAM PLANS LOTS OF TRAVEL IN ‘08
Fadden Racing together with driver Max Dumarey announced today an aggressive 20-race schedule for the 2008 season that kicks off with the ARCA RE/MAX Series 200-mile race at Daytona International Speedway. Dumarey will compete in a full NASCAR Camping World East Series schedule, five ARCA RE/MAX Series races, and two NASCAR Camping World West Series events.
The ride by snowmachine can be as quick as under two hours or as long as you like if you take longer trail routes.
"The event is held rain or shine, snow or not. Many of the participants in the ride don't even ride snowmachines," ride organizer George Campbell said. "Most of the fun is at the dinner that night anyway!"
Much of the fun takes place inside the Clubhouse during the evening festivities. There will be 100's of raffle prizes and great auction items at the event, and a 50/50 raffle as well. Busch East Scene will also be awarding the 2007 Busch East Scene Driver of the Year at the event, along with the 2007 Fans Favorite Driver award and Most Improved Driver.
The Raffle begins at 6PM with the auction to follow at approximately 7:30 - 8PM.
For room availability or directions, you can call the Rangeley Chamber of Commerce at 1-800-MT-LAKES. For more details, please email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call
Derek Kneeland has a history of success at Beech Ridge.
There is always some good stuff up for grabs at the Busch East Scene raffle and auction.
What it is called, Speedway 600 enjoys plenty of fan support as proven by this Perebilt 250 weekend photo.