Daytona, Beach, Fla.(July 1, 2002) Eddy McKean of Jerome, Idaho maintains a slim lead in the 2002 Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring point standings after a 16th place finish this past Saturday night at Mesa Marin Raceway. The second...
Daytona, Beach, Fla.(July 1, 2002) Eddy McKean of Jerome, Idaho maintains a slim lead in the 2002 Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring point standings after a 16th place finish this past Saturday night at Mesa Marin Raceway. The second year driver has posted five top-ten and three top-five finishes in eight 2002 scheduled events, including his breakthrough win at Pikes Peak Int'l Raceway earlier this season. McKean has lead the point standings most of the season but has Sean Woodside, M.K. Kanke, Burney Lamar, Doug McCoun all less then 100 points behind him as the series heads into the final six events.
Woodside is enjoying his best season on the Featherlite Southwest Series in 2002 Featherlite Southwest Series. The former 1999 NASCAR Winston West Series champion has put together a solid run for the championship with five top-ten and four top-five finishes including a win at Mesa Marin Raceway back in April. Woodside has also completed the most laps of any driver this season with 924 completed of 943 run. Woodside trails McKean by just 19 markers as the series takes two weeks off before heading to Altamont Raceway Park in Tracy, Calif. Saturday, July 20.
Long-time Featherlite Southwest Series veteran, M.K. Kanke of Frazier Park, Calif. has only two finishes outside the top-ten this season. A 38th place finish at Phoenix to open the season and a 35th place outing at Infineon Raceway last month are the only blemishes on an otherwise championship season. Kanke has six top-ten and five top-five finishes, including a thrilling victory at Cajon Speedway back in March, to highlight his 2002 season. Kanke trails McKean by 61 points to find himself third in the overall standings.
Sophomore sensation Burney Lamar of W. Sacramento, Calif. has seen the highs and low of this racing season. Lamar has lead the most laps this season (210 of 943), and he has collected two Bud Pole Awards this season. He has also seen "sure" victory escape his grasp in the late stages of two races this season. Through it all he currently sits 4th in the point standings, 66 points out of first place.
Doug McCoun returned to form this past Saturday with well-deserved and long-time coming victory at Mesa Marin Raceway. McCoun, a perennial top-ten points finisher has struggled the past year and a half to find the consistency that has produced nine wins, 45 top-five and 75 top-ten finishes in the past nine plus season. McCoun is only the third driver in series history to surpass the $300,000 mark in career earnings. His sights are squarely set on a championship run.
Rounding out the top-ten in the current point standings are Todd Souza from Aromas, Calif. just 93 points out of first place. Souza is followed by Frank Maronski Jr. in seventh, with Jim Pettit II, Joe Herold, and Rookie Steve Belletto rounding out the top-ten.
Through eight events this season, there have been 121 drivers earning championship points with an average of 42 cars attempting to qualify for each event. Only ten drivers have managed to qualify for all eight scheduled events this season and there has been no repeat winners this in the first eight races. Ken Schrader took the checkers at PIR in February, with M.K. Kanke stealing the win at Cajon in March. Season Woodside won at Mesa Marin in April, with Ron Strimska Jr. winning in his first series start at Stockton 99 Speedway. Eddy McKean was victorious at Pikes Peak, with David Gilliland winning at Irwindale in only his fourth series start. Jim Inglebright won at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. for the third consecutive year, and Doug McCoun returned to victory lane after nearly four years at Mesa Marin. Six different drivers have won the Bud Pole Award with M.K. Kanke and Burney Lamar claiming two each.
The Featherlite Southwest Series has six championship races left on the schedule this season and if the first eight are any indication, the last six are anyone's guess. There is no clear favorite who will win the championship this season. What is clear is the driver who has the most consistent finishes and avoids trouble will top the field in 2002.