While a lack of early winter snow has kept Bill Penfold's snowmobiles idle, he's been hard at work both inside the Penfold Motorsports garage and on the road, continuing preparations for the team's 2002 campaign on the NASCAR Busch North ...
While a lack of early winter snow has kept Bill Penfold's snowmobiles idle, he's been hard at work both inside the Penfold Motorsports garage and on the road, continuing preparations for the team's 2002 campaign on the NASCAR Busch North circuit.
Despite encountering snowstorms on his way to Wisconsin to take two engines to Wegner Motorsports for refreshing, the delivery was made shortly after Christmas. This came after a trip to North Carolina found Penfold returning with two complete bodies and plenty of mechanical equipment for the team's fleet of Chevrolet Monte Carlos. Despite all this traveling, Penfold still found time to appear at the Northeast Motorsports Expo to sign autographs for his fans.
"We're doing real well right now," Bill said. "We've got two cars that are pretty much race ready, one needs a motor and transmission, and some bodywork. The other one just needs to have the nose painted. Our Loudon car, the one we stove up at Dover last year, has been all repaired and we've got a new body on that. We picked up another chassis that we're working on, and we're picking up another one this weekend, and we've got another body to put on it. We've got a lot of work to do but we're up for it and we'll be ready for the season."
The new bodies were from the team that David Green drove for last year, and once the decals were removed they left a clean white and red finish that the team will keep on the cars when the bodies are mounted.
"It's going to be a little different. It's just something that's simple, easy to maintain," Bill said. "We've got VIP Charter Coaches as a sponsor and they've been with us for ten or fifteen years. They're pretty much letting us run any color we want to run, they'll go with us, so we're pretty lucky that way. Hopefully we can pick somebody else up who wants to put their names on the car. We've got some good looking cars and if they want them black or whatever color, we'll do that. Whatever they want, they'll get."
The biggest development in Busch North in recent weeks was the announcement that Goodyear would be the tire supplier for the coming season. This news was greeted positively by the Penfold Motorsports team.
"Goodyear makes a good racing tire and this series has needed a good tire that we didn't have to worry about going into the corner and wondering if the thing was going to come apart on you," Bill said. "It was a hard deal for drivers. We'd go into the corners thinking, 'do I dare to drive it in, is the tire going to hold me?' Goodyear has all the experience building good racing tires, when we fire a car into a corner at 150 miles an hour, we don't have to worry about it coming apart on us."
While Penfold has been busy in the shop, he's also been eagerly awaiting snow so he could get back on his snowmobile.
"I just wish we could get a little bit of snow so we could go drag race some snowmobiles and have some fun," he said. "They just sit on a little bit of ice and that's about all there is around here now. Hopefully that will change in the next couple days and we can get out and show them what we can do on a snowmobile too. We'll make a snowcross track and we'll go out and spend the whole day racing on it. Sometimes it beats your body up worse than any race car ever did, but it's a lot of fun."