Every week, our esteemed panel at Speed51.com will determine the most improbable, fascinating or "shocking" moment from the week and award the Pro Shocks "Shock of the Week." The winner each week will receive a product gift certificate from Pro Shocks, the leader in short track shock technology and performance. At the end of the season, the most "shocking" moment will be awarded the "Shock of the Year" and the winning driver will receive a special gift from Pro Shocks.
For this week's "Shock of the Week..."
Once upon a time, it wasn't unusual to see a Modified in victory lane with a member of the LaJoie family standing by it holding a big trophy. Don LaJoie won plenty in his homestate of Connecticut, often at the now-shuttered Danbury Fairgrounds, with his #711 Modifieds. Randy LaJoie, who would later go on to become a multi-time champion of what is now the NASCAR Nationwide Series, also wheeled Modifieds with a #17 on the side of it.
So we're not surprised that Don's grandson and Randy's son, Corey LaJoie, would give Modified racing a try. After all, he's won in Legends, Pro Challenge cars and Late Model Stock Cars. Taming a Modified would make a nice next step in the teen's racing career.
We just didn't think that Corey LaJoie would get a hang of things so quickly. Last Friday night, LaJoie hopped into the Hill Enterprises #19 for the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour opener on the quarter-mile at Atlanta Motor Speedway. At a track that is similar to Bowman-Gray Stadium, everyone expected someone like Tim Brown or one of the Myers Brothers to be the pre-race favorite. Instead, LaJoie made his learning curve only 150 laps as he entered the event in victory lane - having had to hold off Brown to win the race.
That performance earned Corey LaJoie this week's Speed51.com Pro Shocks Shock of the Week award.
That victory shocked the majority of our voters this week and gave LaJoie an easy victory in the competition for the Pro Shocks award this time around.
Also receiving votes this week were:
Tony Clark (SLM) - Like LaJoie, Tony Clark was figuring out a new type of racecar this past weekend and just like LaJoie, he turned plenty of heads with it. Clark made his Super Late Model debut in the Rattler at South Alabama Speedway and he came away from the event with a solid top five finish. Some might say that to make a SLM debut in a race as big as the Rattler, would be foolish. But Clark was nobody's fool and earned a few votes this time around for shocking everyone with his strong run.
Korey Ruble (PLM) - We all know that Korey Ruble can wheel a Pro Late Model, but when it comes to the big PLM shows like Saturday's Pro Rattler 125, many observers expect one of the bigger names of short track racing to take the victory. Not this around though - Ruble progressed through the pack and took the lead late at South Alabama Speedway in a run that earned him this vote of confidence from one member of our panel.
"Not Grill, Not Long, Not Pollard...But Korey Ruble was the PLM winner at Opp. That's my pick for the Pro Shocks Shock of the Week."
That vote was good enough to earn Ruble an honorable mention this time around.
For his “Shock” of a performance,LaJoie will receive a product gift certificate from Pro Shocks, the short-track leader in racing shock technology and performance. Based in Lawrenceville, Georgia, Pro Shocks has helped drivers on both dirt and asphalt perform better for more than 25 years.
Pro Shocks is proud to have the largest and most knowledgeable technical staff in the racing shock industry. For more information about Pro Shocks, log onto www.proshocks.com or call 770-995-6300.