NASCAR CANADIAN TIRE SERIES PRESENTED BY SIRIUS SATELLITE RADIO NEWS & NOTES -- SUN VALLEY SPEEDWAY * Logistics Aside, Whitlock Enjoys Westward Migration * Series Makes Western Canada Debut DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 10, 2007) -- ...
NASCAR CANADIAN TIRE SERIES PRESENTED BY SIRIUS SATELLITE RADIO NEWS & NOTES -- SUN VALLEY SPEEDWAY
* Logistics Aside, Whitlock Enjoys Westward Migration
* Series Makes Western Canada Debut
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 10, 2007) -- Imagine packing for a two-week vacation that encompasses both water and snow skiing. It can be a wardrobe nightmare. In essence, that is what faces most NASCAR Canadian Tire Series teams. They not only have to prepare and pack for an oval race, but also a street course event.
Series teams will tackle the 1/2-mile tri-oval of Sun Valley Speedway near Vernon, British Columbia on one weekend and turn around the very next weekend to take on a 1.973 street course in Edmonton. Other than some teams based in western Canada, most competitors will be traveling well over 2,000 miles from the eastern provinces to participate in the two races.
The logistics of the two-race swing to western Canada can be a headache, but Dave Whitlock (No. 39 Dickies/Hamilton Tiger Cats/NMT Dodge) plans to enjoy the trip and get his season headed in the right direction despite the 2,400-mile trip from his home base near Hamilton, Ontario.
"It's a little difficult to prepare two cars for two entirely different styles of racing," said Whitlock. "But we're optimistic about the trip."
The Whitlock camp needs the positive attitude to produce positive results. The 2007 season thus far has not measured up to the anticipated results. The two oval races at Cayuga Speedway Park and Barrie Speedway showed finishes of 21st and 15th, respectively. The bright spot was an eighth-place showing on the road course of Mosport International Raceway, but even that finish should have been better.
"At Cayuga, we had a cam shaft failure early on that knocked us out of any contention and the Barrie race was simply a night to forget," Whitlock said. "Finishing eighth at Mosport was pretty good, but I had a late spin that took us out of a top five."
Whitlock intends to use the long journey as a new beginning for his season and use the strategy he never had the opportunity to employ at the last race in Barrie.
"Track position is the key at Sun Valley just as it is at any short track," he said.
Track position starts with qualifying, an area in which Whitlock has not struggled this season. He has started all three races 10th or better.
"Qualifying is certainly important, but it is a 300-lap race, so just about anything can happen between the start and the finish," Whitlock said.
The track at Sun Valley Speedway also has its own set of unique characteristics. The turns are not symmetrical. Corners one and two have less banking than those of three and four. Also factored in is the tri-oval configuration providing just one straightaway with which to work.
"Getting the car to turn at both ends of the track can be a little tricky," Whitlock said. "The end with (turns) three and four seem to be a lot roomier. It gets a little tight in one and two."
However, despite the long haul and the idiosyncrasies of the track, Whitlock is looking forward to his visit to British Columbia.
"It's a great track in a beautiful part of the country and we're going out there to win and get our season in gear," Whitlock said.
NEWS & NOTES
* The race ... This event is the fourth race for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Sirius Satellite Radio in 2007. It is the third of eight oval-racing events for the series this season. It is the only visit by the series to the province of British Columbia this year. It is also the first NASCAR Canadian Tire Series debut in western Canada and the first event outside the province of Ontario.
* The track ... Sun Valley Speedway is one of the finest short track racing facilities in not only Canada, but North America. The track is located just north of Vernon, British Columbia in beautiful Spallumcheen. It has a 1/2-mile banked tri-oval configuration with 11 degrees of banking in turns one and two, 14 degrees of banking in turns three and four along with a banking of seven degrees on the front and back stretches.
* The weekend ... It will be a full weekend of racing action at Sun Valley Speedway. On Saturday in addition to NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Bud Pole qualifying, the local NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Street Stocks will also be in action. The 300-lap main event, the British Columbia Dodge Dealers Dodge Avenger 300, will take place on Sunday evening.
* Ticket information ... Ticket information for the British Columbia Dodge Dealers Dodge Avenger 300 can be obtained by calling the speedway at (250) 542-9090 or by logging on to www.sunvalleyspeedway.com.
* Heading west ... This event is part of a two-race western swing for the Canadian Tire Series. The following weekend, the series heads north to Edmonton for a Saturday street course race at the big Grand Prix Edmonton weekend.
What: British Columbia Dodge Dealers Dodge Avenger 300
NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Race #4.
Where: Sun Valley Speedway, Vernon, British Columbia.
When: 7:05 p.m., Sunday, July 15.
Track layout: 1/2-mile oval.
Distance: 300 Laps, 150 miles.
Posted Awards: $83,394 CAD
Records: To be established in inaugural event.
Pre-race schedule: Saturday -- Practice, 1:30 p.m.-4:15 p.m. Qualifying, 7 p.m. Note: All times subject to change.
NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Top 10: 1. Andrew Ranger 500; 2. Mark Dilley 500; 3. Peter Gibbons 456; 4. Ron Beauchamp 455; 5. Don Thomson Jr. 451; 6. D.J. Kennington 444; 7. John Gaunt 428; 8. Derek Lynch 427; 9. J.R. Fitzpatrick 413; 10. Kerry Micks 399.