Fellows to Drive at Watkins Glen

Fellows to drive Cat Chevrolet at the Glen CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Aug. 3, 1998) Canadian Ron Fellows, who has won two major NASCAR events at Watkins Glen International in the last year, has been named to drive the No. 96 Caterpillar Chevrolet in this...

Fellows to drive Cat Chevrolet at the Glen

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Aug. 3, 1998) Canadian Ron Fellows, who has won two major NASCAR events at Watkins Glen International in the last year, has been named to drive the No. 96 Caterpillar Chevrolet in this weekend's Bud at The Glen at the upstate New York road course by American Equipment Racing team owner Buz McCall.

Fellows, 38, has won two of the last three NASCAR events he has driven at Watkins Glen's high-speed 2.45-mile course. He raced to victory in Joe Nemechek's NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division car in June, and handily won the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race for owner Billy Hess last August. At Watkins Glen's truck race in May, Fellows captured the Bud Pole Award and led the first part of the event before mechanical failure ended his day early.

"Ron drove for me in 1995 and 1996 in SCCA Trans-Am racing, and we were second for the championship in 1996," said McCall, whose winning background in American road course racing, including three straight Trans-Am titles, led him to the NASCAR Winston Cup Series after a brief fling in the NASCAR Busch Series.

"He is one of the most focused and dedicated racers I've ever met. I saw that when he was driving for me, and I saw that when he was a competitor of mine in the early '90s. I'll tell you this much. I'd much rather have him on my side than against me."

McCall has had several different drivers in his car since David Green was released in June, including Hut Stricklin, who most recently was driving the car on a race-to-race basis, and Robby Gordon at the previous road race at Sears Point raceway in Sonoma, Calif.

Fellows, a native of Toronto, showed his Watkins Glen expertise in his two NASCAR victories. After a caution, the green flag fell in the NASCAR Busch Series race with three laps remaining -- Fellows won by three seconds.

There was no late caution in his truck victory but he grabbed the lead from eventual series champion Jack Sprague with seven laps to go -- and won by 1.4 seconds.

"I've won with Buz before so I know it's a pretty good feeling," Fellows said, referring to a 1995 Trans-Am victory at The Glen.

The year before, he won the Glen Trans-Am race while driving for Tom Gloy when the race finished in the rain. Ironically, the 1998 Bud at The Glen could be the first official NASCAR Winston Cup Series event in which the race or its qualifying events will be held rain or shine.

Rain tires have been tested and will be available and teams have been notified that they must have windshield rain repellant, windshield wipers, windshield de-foggers and rear-facing "rain lights" mounted in the rear window area for this weekend's event.

"It's a lot of fun to race the stock cars and this weekend is something I'm really looking forward to," said Fellows, who made his series debut at The Glen in 1995. He started 36th and finished 35th in a Canaska Racing Chevrolet. "These are great racers and I always like the opportunity to go up against great racers.

"I might have more Watkins Glen experience than some of these (NASCAR Winston Cup) guys but I don't know that that is going to make a whole lot of difference when it comes time to race. All of these guys have been racing on road courses long enough that their experience with these cars probably outweighs any road racing knowledge of the track."

Still, Fellows knows what to look for in the 3,400-pound stock cars.

"There is a difference in the heavier cars and the lighter ones," Fellows said. "With the heavier cars, you have got to be a little smoother and have a little more finesse. You can be more aggressive with the lighter cars."

Fellows has driven one NASCAR Busch Series race -- the one he won at Watkins Glen in June -- and four NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races this season. In the truck events, all with Hess as owner, he won the Bud Pole at Watkins Glen, finished seventh at Texas and was involved in accidents at Nazareth and Colorado.

Source: NASCAR Online

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Robby Gordon , Hut Stricklin , Ron Fellows , Jack Sprague , David Green , Buz McCall