Weekend Preview 98-09-08

CASCAR Castrol Super Series Weekend Preview September 9, 1998 KOMOKA, ON Just days after Dave Whitlock won his second consecutive (and third overall) CASCAR Castrol Super Series National championship, the Eastern and Western titles are set to be...

CASCAR Castrol Super Series Weekend Preview September 9, 1998

KOMOKA, ON Just days after Dave Whitlock won his second consecutive (and third overall) CASCAR Castrol Super Series National championship, the Eastern and Western titles are set to be determined this weekend.

In the East, the CARQUEST 200 will be held this Saturday and Sunday (Sept 12-13) at New Brunswick International Speedway, in Fredericton, and will give Ford driver Whitlock a shot at winning his second CASCAR championship of the season. But to reach that target, Whitlock will have to post a top finish, while current points leader, Ron Beauchamp Jr., falters somewhat. The young Dodge driver from Windsor posted a pair of victories, in June, and has rode a steady string of finishes, in Eastern series events, to build a solid 36 point lead over Whitlock.

Other drivers with a shot at the Eastern crown include Ancaster's Neil Fair, Barrie's John Gaunt and DJ Kennington, of St. Thomas, ON. Last year's inaugural visit to the Fredericton oval was very popular with the drivers and Maritime racing fans. A late race twist saw season-long points leader Alan Turner suffer a flat tire with just a handful of laps remaining in the event. Turner's misfortune opened the door for last weekend's CARQUEST 300 winner, Peter Gibbons, to slip through for his first CASCAR Castrol Super Series East championship. Turner and former series champion Kerry Micks finished tied for second place just two points behind Gibbons. The race itself was won by National champion Whitlock.

While the Eastern drivers are in a close chase for the championship, the winner of the 1998 Western title is a little more predictable. Calgary's Wade Lee has rebounded this season after an 'off year' (for him) in 1997. The GM Goodwrench Pontiac Grand Prix driver has won a pair of races this season and merely has to finish this Saturday night's AC Delco 150 at Calgary's Race City Motorsport Park to secure another CASCAR Castrol Super Series West championship. Lee returned to Calgary after competing in the CARQUEST 300 National event at Delaware Speedway Park last weekend. During that race, Lee needed relief from the heat and passed the reigns of his #79 Pontiac to substitute driver Rob Neely for the second half of the race. Following the race, however, Lee felt much better and didn't anticipate any lasting effects that would interfere with his championship quest.

Entering the final Western event of the season, Lee holds a commanding 102 point lead over longtime rival Kevin Dowler, of Edmonton, AB. Like Lee, Dowler has posted a pair of Super Series wins this summer, including the National road course event at the Edmonton City Centre Airport.

CASCAR Notes: This weekend's CARQUEST 200 at New Brunswick Int'l Speedway is a two day event. Time trials for the Eastern series closer are scheduled for 1 p.m. on Saturday afternoon, with heat races planned for 3:15. Also on the card will be Street Stocks and Sportsman cars. Sunday's racing program gets underway with the drivers' autograph session at noon, followed by the Final Qualifier (1:30 p.m.) and driver introductions. The CARQUEST 200 is slated to begin at 2:30... Last year's CARQUEST 200 was such a success that it earned the CASCAR Achievement Award at the season ending National banquet, in London, Ontario. New Brunswick International Speedway was recognized for its hospitality and organization. If there were any doubts about CASCAR returning, they were put to bed following last year's outstanding show...

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Series NASCAR Canada
Drivers Kevin Dowler , Peter Gibbons , Dave Whitlock , Ron Beauchamp Jr. , Kerry Micks , John Gaunt