CRA: Mid-season notes 2007-07-11

CRA SUPER SERIES REACHES HALFWAY POINT OF 2007 SEASON WITH MID-SUMMER BREAK Salem, IN (July 11, 2007) -- The CRA Super Series has reached the halfway point of it's 2007 season having had seven points events to date with six points events and...

CRA SUPER SERIES REACHES HALFWAY POINT OF 2007 SEASON WITH MID-SUMMER BREAK

Salem, IN (July 11, 2007) -- The CRA Super Series has reached the halfway point of it's 2007 season having had seven points events to date with six points events and the All American 400 non-points special event remaining on its 2007 schedule. The 2007 season has been tough on the series regular teams with three events rescheduled because of weather, two of those had to be postponed after teams had already arrived to race, the Berlin Raceway event had to be postponed after practice just prior to qualifying.

" Nobody wins when an event is postponed because of weather," remarked Glenn Luckett, CRA Super Series Director. "The track loses all the money it invested in advertising for the event plus the labor dollars they spent, the series loses with labor dollars and expenses to travel and the teams really lose if they traveled to the event, especially with the high cost of fuel. No one can control Mother Nature, it's just something we have to live with in this business. We have been fortunate in that we have been able to reschedule every event that had to be postponed because of weather, we greatly appreciate the tracks and the teams working with us on those reschedule dates, hopefully the rest of the season will be dry!"

The teams how have a mid-summer break, the last event was on June 30 and the next series event will not take place until August 4 with the $5000 to win Anderson 250 Presented By Great Deals Coupon Magazine. That event is part of the Anderson 400, which will also have the CRA Street Stocks competing in a 150-lap feature.

"We didn't originally plan for this large of a break, it just worked out that way with the schedule," remarked R.J. Scott, Managing Partner of the CRA Super Series. "We had hoped to have an event on July 22, but that didn't happen. This break will be good for the teams to get there equipment ready for the second half of the season especially with the big shows we have at the end of the year."

Chris Gabehart has been the series point's leader since the second event of the season. Gabehart has had an exceptional season to date including victories at Toledo Speedway on May 27 and Anderson Speedway on June 9. Gabehart has only finished out of the top five in one event to date, that was a seventh place finish in the series last event at Angola Motor Speedway on June 30. Gabehart's two wins and consistent finishes have given him a 65-point leader over second place Scott Hantz, which is one of the largest leads any driver has ever had at this point in a season. Gabehart has also helped his points lead with good qualifying results to date including a series leading two Appleton Rack & Pinion Fast Qualifier Awards, one at Toledo and a new track record at Columbus. Gabehart's plans during the break will include a trip down south to compete in a Five Flags Speedway Blizzard event in Pensacola, Florida on July 20 and then compete in a companion event at Mobile Speedway in Mobile, Alabama on July 21.

2000 and 2006 CRA Super Series Champion Scott Hantz is currently second in series points. After a rough start to the season that saw him finish 15th at Nashville and 16th at Winchester Speedway, Hantz has five straight top ten finishes including a win at Baer Field Speedway and third place finishes at Toledo and Columbus. Hantz got a sixth place finish at the Angola event, coming back through the entire field after an early spin. Hantz looks to become the series first three time Champion, but will have to continue to have good finishes and hope for Chris Gabehart to have some bad luck in the second half of the 2007 season. Hantz will continue competing in his Outlaw Late Model during the break including big specials like the Gaylord Parr Memorial at Angola Motor Speedway and The Klash at Kalamazoo Speedway.

Rookie competitor John VanDoorn is currently in third place in series points, only 12 points behind Hantz, and is leading the Team Full Throttle Driver Development Services Rookie Of The Year standing with consistent finishes. VanDoorn has also claimed six straight RV Performance Rookie Of The Race Awards. VanDoorn started out the season with a 23rd place finish at Nashville, improved to an 11th place finish at Winchester and a ninth place finish at Baer Field, VanDoorn has been on a roll since then with a fifth place finish at Toledo, and series high second place finish at Columbus, a sixth place finish at Anderson and a fourth place finish at Angola. VanDoorn's team was recently purchased by former ARCA Series Champion Tim Steele, were VanDoorn also competes in an Outlaw Late Model recently scoring a victory at Dixie Speedway and a second place finish in the big M-40 Speedway 4th of July special that was worth $10,000. VanDoorn will spend his break also competing in Outlaw Late Model special events.

2005 CRA Super Series Drivers Champion Jeff Lane is currently fourth in series points, 23 points behind VanDoorn. Lane's season has been one of ups and downs starting off with a 38th place finish in the season opener in Nashville after ignition problems, Lane has gotten two second place finishes and a third place finish along with a seventh place finish so far this season, but has a 13th and 15th place finishes that have lost him valuable points. Lane will be looking to get his first victory of the season during the second half of the season, and looking to improve his position in the point's standings.

JR Roahrig is currently fifth in series points and is also seeking his first win of the 2007 season. Roahrig has five top ten finishes so far this season with a second place finish at Toledo and a fifth place finish at Anderson, to go along with a 25th place finish in the season opener at Nashville after being involved in an accident and a 22nd place finish at Baer Field. Roahrig has been busy building a template Late Model for his son Tyler who hopes to make his Late Model debut this Saturday in the Super Pro Crate Series event at Plymouth Speedway.

Jason Shively is having his best season ever with the CRA Super Series so far in 2007, currently in sixth place in points. Shively's new Crew Chief Duke Berkes has improved Shively's confidence and has provided a competitive racecar at each series event. Shively finished 18th in the season opener at Nashville on the lead lap battling back from some early suspension issues. Shively then got sixth place finishes at Winchester and Baer Field, coming from the back of the field in both events after pitting to make set up adjustments. A blown right front tire resulted in a 17th place finish at Toledo, Shively battled the tough Columbus oval for an 11th place finish after being spun out by another competitor and placed at the rear of the field. Shively added two more top ten finishes so far this season with a seventh place finish at Anderson and an eighth place finish at Angola.

1997 series Champion Kenny Tweedy has had a season of ups and downs so far in 2007 resulting in his seventh place standings series points. Tweedy has four top ten finishes so far including a seventh place finish at Baer Field, and a season high fourth place finish at Anderson, but equipment failures have resulted in a 30th, a 24th and a 22nd place finish to date. Ignition problems got him at Nashville and rear end problems ended his day early at Columbus and at Angola. Tweedy hopes to get the first ever series victory for the Floyd Fehl Motorsports Team in the second half of the 2007 season.

The Y-Town Hustler, Rick Turner is currently in eighth place in series points so far in 2007. A tough start to the season including a 26th place finish at Nashville and a 23rd place finish at Winchester started the team in a hole, but three top ten finishes including a season high third place finish at Anderson have this team looking forward to the second half of the 2007 season. Turner has also been the Crew Chief for his teammate Bret Miles Jr. who is running a limited schedule in 2007 in order to run for Rookie Of The Year honors in 2008. Miles Jr. has been competitive in every race he has competed in to date including an impressive second place finish at Anderson, one position higher than his Crew Chief.

Jack Smith is currently in ninth place in series points. Smith has competed in all seven series events to date with a lower horsepower Crate Motor. Smith started off the season with an impressive tenth place finish at Nashville after starting 39th. The next three events saw the team struggle with ignition problems that resulted in 17th, 23rd, and 21st place finishes. Smith came back to score a tenth place finish at the Columbus event and an 11th place finish at Angola. Smith battled motor problems at the Anderson event, having to replace the motor prior to practice, getting no laps with the series practice and did not get to qualify. Smith turned a hand full of laps right before the feature and showed some impressive times, but got caught up in someone else's wreck early in the event which resulted in a 20th place finish.

Terry Fisher Jr. rounds out the top ten in series points at the season halfway point. Fisher Jr. missed the season opening event, but has bounced back with three top ten finishes including a season high sixth place finish at Toledo. Fisher Jr. is competing this season with a new Hanley Chassis and a new McGunegill Sealed Motor that have resulted in consistent finishes, and only one DNF that was caused by damage to the car after a flat right from tire at Columbus. Fisher Jr. is looking forward to using his new combination to hopefully get his first series victory sometime during the second half of the 2007 season.

In all 82 teams have already competed with the CRA Super Series during the first half of the 2007 season, with many more teams expected to compete during the second half. More information on the CRA Super Series including rules and the remaining 2007 schedule is available at www.craracing.net.

-credit: cra

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Series Stock car
Drivers Terry Fisher , Tim Steele , Jeff Lane , Jack Smith