FIFTH SEASON PODIUM FOR SCOTT DOUGLAS AT SECOND TORC SERIES BARK RIVER RACE
Bark River, Michigan-Just nine starts into the 2009 TORC Series presented by AMSOIL season, Scott Douglas already had five top-3 podium finishes. The latest came at Bark River International Raceway in round 9 of TORC PRO 4X4 racing. Douglas had to work his way through traffic to get to the front. TORC inverts the top six trucks by points, so Douglas started fourth on the two-wide starting grid. After challenging the leaders through turns one and two, Scott wisely dropped back to avoid damage from first lap bumping and banging. By the competition yellow at the midway point, Douglas was fourth and drove hard to the checkered flag to finish third.
Heavy rains Friday night into Saturday morning made track conditions challenging. The course was wet and sloppy early in the day, with the race line drying by the start of the PRO classes later in the afternoon. Sections were packed clay hard and slick enough to leave rubber or a "blue groove." Passing was difficult, because off the race line a wet cushion of loamy dirt and sections of heavy mud would rob speed.
Bark River's 1.5-mile track had new features that made the track more exciting for race fans and more technical for drivers. A large tabletop jump was added in front of the main grandstand and spectator viewing area, along with corner banking and changes to the rhythm section that presented new lines and passing opportunities.
The strong finish on Saturday was encouraging. Crew Chief Bill Smith and the Douglas Motorsports team made minor suspension changes to the Fox Shocks along with a different Kumho tire compound and groove that promised a faster truck for Sunday's Round 10 race action. When the green flag dropped, Douglas jumped out to a great start running in third place on the opening lap. Unfortunately, the number 7 AMSOIL Kumho F-150 was severely damaged on the second lap when Curt LeDuc was spun out and Douglas, running in his dust, had no where to go. Both LeDuc's truck and the Douglas Motorsports entry were sidelined with major damage. Douglas was able to drive on three wheels back to the hot pit, but there was no way to repair the damage.
"It's a shame, I feel bad for the entire team, we had a really fast truck today and great track position," commented Douglas after the race. "It was one of those 'wrong place at the wrong time' situations and wasn't Curt's fault. He was pushing hard for the lead and was turned around. The contact was hard and both trucks have a lot of damage."
The Douglas Motorsports crew is hard at work fixing the damage and will have the AMSOIL Kumho Ford in top shape when the TORC Series heads to Crandon International Raceway Labor Day weekend for rounds 11 and 12 of PRO 4x4 racing, the BorgWarner World Championship Off-Road Race and Crandon's 40th anniversary celebration. Scott Douglas is a two-time winner of the highly coveted BorgWarner Cup and will pull out all the stops to make it three.
Bark River TORC Series action will air Sunday Air August 16th at 11:30 am on ESPN2. TORC Series PRO racing resumes September 4th - 6th in Crandon, Wisconsin.