Mark Dilley Kwaratha race report

Mark Dilley wins the last-ever CASCAR Super Series race Victory in Kawartha's Dodge Charger 250 sweet for several reasons BARRIE, ON -- It would be hard to top the kind of day that Mark Dilley had on Sunday at Kawartha Speedway. The driver of...

Mark Dilley wins the last-ever CASCAR Super Series race
Victory in Kawartha's Dodge Charger 250 sweet for several reasons

BARRIE, ON -- It would be hard to top the kind of day that Mark Dilley had on Sunday at Kawartha Speedway. The driver of the #9 Dodge / Mobil1 / Exide / Leland / Avenue MotorWorks / CRS / NTN Dodge Charger will go into the history books as the winner of the last-ever CASCAR Super Series race; the 'Dodge Dealers of Ontario Dodge Charger 250, presented by MOPAR'.

Dilley started third in the race and came out on the winning end of a superb back-and-forth battle with five-time Super Series champ Don Thomson Jr. Dilley bided his time, waiting for an opening as he pressured the leader in the late-going. With 16 laps to go, Thomson slid high and Mark made the most of the opportunity. From there, he survived several late-race restarts en route to the win.

It was Dilley's first feature win of the season, and it went a long way toward making up for some of the 'wins that got away' earlier in the summer.

"We pitted early and found that the right-rear tire was blistering a bit," said Dilley, soon after completing his celebratory victory 'donuts' on the front-straight at Kawartha Speedway. "It was a great call by my crew to bring me in at that point to make the change and fix our loose condition. After that, the car would really 'come on' about 15 laps into the runs. To win the last-ever CASCAR Super Series race in an event sponsored by the Dodge Dealers, Dodge and MOPAR is a great honour."

Down the final stretch of the 2006 season, the Dodge-sponsored Charger driver was the hottest racer on the CASCAR circuit, scoring podium finishes in the final three races, culminating with his win in the Kawartha finale.

Based on the result, the Barrie, ON racer finished the season in fifth-place in the overall points, just one marker behind his Whitlock Motorsports teammate Dave Whitlock.

Adding to the jubilation of winning his sponsors' race was the fact that Dilley's checkered flag run secured the CASCAR Manufacturers' Championship trophy for DaimlerChrysler / Dodge / MOPAR for the second year in a row.

"To contribute to us winning the Manufacturers' Championship is just huge," continued Dilley. "I'm glad I could get a win for them. I'm just so grateful to all of our sponsors for their support this season. I'd also like to thank my crew for all their great work. They give it everything they have and put me into a great car for every race and I want them to know that I appreciate their efforts and talents.

I'd also like to recognize Dave Whitlock and Whitlock Motorsports. It's a pleasure to be part of one of Canada's top motorsports operations and I'm looking forward to continuing our successful relationship."

KAWARTHA RACE NOTES: Mark Dilley guided his #9 Dodge-sponsored Charger to victory lane in Sunday's CASCAR Super Series season finale at Kawartha Speedway. Five-time National champion Don Thomson Jr. came from the back of the field at the start to take second in the closer. Thomson was forced to change engines prior to the green flag, which relegated him to the tail of the pack. DJ Kennington guided his Dodge Charger to the third and final podium position.

There was a changing of the guard on Sunday as third-year CASCAR driver J.R. Fitzpatrick won the Super Series points championship, ending Thomson's five-year run at the top.

Dodge driver Jason Hathaway closed out his successful rookie campaign with a sixth-place finish to secure the series' Rookie of the Year Award in style.

Looking ahead to next year, the CASCAR Super Series will be re-branded 'The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series'. The tour will pick up where CASCAR left off. "I'd like to thank Tony Novotny for bringing the sport to where it is now," said Dilley. "It took a lot of work and vision and we were proud to play part in getting it to where it is now. We look forward to competing in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series in 2007 and beyond."

-credit: wm

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Canada
Drivers Dave Whitlock , Mark Dilley , Don Thomson Jr. , J.R. Fitzpatrick , Jason Hathaway