Mopar Speed Monday, June 7, 2004 WoO Lasoski wins twice in Ohio Danny Lasoski and the Mopar-powered No. 20 team from Tony Stewart Motorsports found themselves in Victory Lane in back-to-back wins over the weekend, thanks to two nearly...
Monday, June 7, 2004
Lasoski wins twice in Ohio
Danny Lasoski and the Mopar-powered No. 20 team from Tony Stewart Motorsports found themselves in Victory Lane in back-to-back wins over the weekend, thanks to two nearly flawless races.
A strong run Friday night at Sharon Speedway in Hartford, Ohio, put Lasoski in the spotlight for his first A-main win in WoO competition this season. Lasoski qualified fourth and transferred from the third heat into the second dash event, where he finished second. "The Dude" led the final ten laps of the 30-lap A-main event.
On Saturday night, Lasoski drove the Mopar-powered machine to his first-ever win at the historic 1/2-mile oval at Eldora Speedway. Transferring from the third heat race to win the second dash event, "The Dude" started the A-main on the outside of the first row. Lasoski drove the No. 20 machine into the lead on the first lap and remained in the lead for all 30 laps at the Rossburg, Ohio, track.
The No. 20 team also competed at Rolling Wheels Raceway last Tuesday, finishing the A-main in seventh. Lasoski's efforts allowed him to maintain second place in World of Outlaws Series points, cutting series Steve Kinser's edge to only 99.
The team looks to ride its wave to Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin during this week's schedule. The WoO Sprint series begins action Wednesday at LaSalle (Ill.) Speedway. The series moves on to Hartford (Mich.) Speedway Park on Thursday and wraps up the weekend Saturday at The Raceway at Powercom Park.
"I love [Eldora], but I just have never been able to seal the deal here. This Paul Kistler-built Mopar motor really made some horsepower. This is a huge monkey to get off my back. I know we won an All-Star race here years ago, but we've never been able to get the job done with the Outlaws.
"I have to thank Jimmy Carr, Todd Splain, Richie Wagner and this whole J.D. Byrider/Home Depot/Mopar team. They never gave up on me."
-- Danny Lasoski and the No. 20 team from Tony Stewart Motorsports, who used their Paul Kistler-built Mopar power to pound out two big wins in the state of Ohio, his first victories of the season.
"This is a wonderfully easy car to drive fast. It goes right where it is pointed. The ride and balance are nearly perfect, and it puts a lot of power down on the road."
-- Paul Choiniere, who finished third overall at STPR, putting the No. 11 Mopar Dodge SRT-4 on the podium with the help of co-driver Cindy Krolikowski.
One of the last times a 2WD car managed a podium finish in SCCA ProRally competition was in 1990, when current Team Mopar experts Doug Shepherd and Pete Gladysz won the overall rally at the Ojibwe Forests in Minnesota in a Dodge Daytona.
Guest driver and eight-time SCCA ProRally Overall champion Paul Choiniere ensured that the Mopar winning streak in SCCA ProRally competition continued, as his Group 5 victory on Saturday at the Susquehannock Trail Pro Rally (STPR) near Wellsboro, Penn., extended the streak to nine for Mopar-sponsored Dodge SRT-4s.
Choiniere and co-driver Cindy Krolikowski finished in the third Overall position, giving the Dodge SRT-4 its first podium finish at an SCCA ProRally event, and the car's durability was a huge factor in a rally that saw many competitors record DNFs.
Choiniere, who had not competed in a two-wheel-drive (2WD) car in approximately 20 years, tightly challenged Team Mopar regulars Doug Shepherd and co-driver Pete Gladysz through the first seven of 10 stages.
"Choiniere took to it like a fish to water," said Shepherd, who led Choiniere for most of the rally. "It's really nice to see someone else be able to come out and handle the car and drive it like it's capable of being driven."
Shepherd and Gladysz incurred front suspension damage from a road hazard in Special Stage 8 and recorded a DNF, breaking a string of eight victories in a row.
On each of the race stages at STPR, the Mopar Dodge SRT-4 vehicles set new Group 5 stage records despite the very slippery conditions in the foothills and around the peaks of the Susquehannock National Forest.
STPR proved to be a great place for the Team Mopar tandems to premiere the Mopar Performance Stage 2 Turbo Upgrade Kit in their 2700-lb. race vehicles. The Stage 2 kit, which is currently available for installation on stock Dodge SRT-4 vehicles, is factory rated at 265 horsepower.
The next event is an attack on the highest raceable peak in the 48 states -- the Pikes Peak Hillclimb -- scheduled for June 24-26. Chioniere will again join Shepherd behind the wheel of the two Mopar Dodge SRT-4s. Stay tuned to www.moparspeed.com for an exclusive event preview.
"This weekend felt like old times. We've made several personnel changes, and we went to Dover with a new outlook. We had to start in the back of the field and work our way up, just like we used to, but we moved up quite a bit this weekend.
"I felt like it was a top-five truck, but the pump went out, so I had to finish the race without power steering."
-- Ted Musgrave
Musgrave moves up through the field prior to steering troubles
Ted Musgrave and the Ultra Motorsports team brought the No. 1 Mopar Dodge Ram home in 12th position at Dover International Speedway on Friday afternoon after experiencing power steering failure late in the event.
Former crew chief Gene Nead returned to top of the No. 1 Mopar pit box after serving five races for driver Rick Crawford of another NCTS team. In 2002 and 2003, Nead and Musgrave won six races together and finished in the top-three in points each year.
Dodge Ram driver Chad Chaffin won his first career NCTS race at Dover.
The NCTS travels next to Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth for an event this Friday. Live coverage on Speed Channel will begin at 9 p.m.
Hubinette exhibits drifting, prepares return to Formula D
Team Mopar Formula Drift driver Samuel Hubinette was at it again last week, showing off his drifting skills for a corporate audience, this time at the DaimlerChrysler Chelsea (Mich.) Proving Grounds.
With numerous DaimlerChrysler executives and VIPs from the investment world on hand, Hubinette and fellow drifting expert Tanner Foust gave hotlap rides to many impressed participants. Hubinette and Foust drove the new V10-powered Dodge Ram SRT-10.
Hubinette will return to action in the Formula Drift Championship, which is sanctioned by the SCCA, this weekend at the Reliant Center in Houston, Texas. Hubinette won the previous Formula D event, the inaugural series event in Atlanta, Ga., in late April.
Samuel Hubinette gets nearly the same thrill sharing his sport -- drifting -- with others as he does competing in his Mopar Dodge Viper Competition Coupe.
Larry Morgan (above) and his team hope to strengthen their fourth-place standing in Pro Stock points at National Trail Raceway, which is only 20 miles from the Larry Morgan Racing shop in Newark, Ohio.
Morgan has appeared in four semifinal rounds already this season.
NHRA, WoO Late Models return to action
The NHRA POWERade series kicks back into high gear this weekend, as they will visit National Trail Raceway near Columbus, Ohio. Last season at Columbus, Allen Johnson became the first person to drive a Dodge Stratus R/T into an NHRA semifinal round. Team Mopar members Darrell Alderman and Gary Scelzi each own one victory and one top-qualifier spot at National Trail, while drivers Whit Bazemore and Larry Morgan each boast one top-qualifier title there.
Television coverage of qualifying will air from 7 to 8 p.m. Saturday on ESPN and repeat from 4 to 5 a.m. on ESPN2 Saturday. Eliminations will air this Sunday from 3 to 6 p.m. on ESPN2. All times are Eastern.
The WoO Late Model competitors, including Mopar's Steve Francis ,will head to Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, for the famous DREAM event.