WATKINS GLEN, New York (August 14, 2004) - Rain is the last thing Paul Wolfe wanted to see this past Friday at Watkins Glen International. When rain washed out NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series qualifying, teams lined up for ...
WATKINS GLEN, New York (August 14, 2004) - Rain is the last thing Paul Wolfe wanted to see this past Friday at Watkins Glen International. When rain washed out NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series qualifying, teams lined up for Saturday's Mohegan Sun 150 based on owner points. That meant Wolfe, who was racing in only his second Busch North Series event in 2004, was given a 28th place start in the 34-car field.
With track position being vital at the 2.45-mile road course, Wolfe knew he would have quite a task driving his No. 19 Racing for a Cure Chevrolet to the front. After finishing with the third-fastest time in Friday's only practice session (75.542 seconds/116.756 MPH), Wolfe thought he had a car that could challenge for a top-five. When it was all over, his sixth place finish and advancement of 22 positions during the race showed he was correct. For his efforts, Wolfe received the Powerade Power Move of the Race Award given to the driver who gains the most positions in the race.
"I knew I had a lot of cars to pass, and that I had to be patient in doing it," Wolfe said. "I just got into a rhythm and tried to avoid the trouble on the racetrack. The car did not feel as solid in the rear as it did in practice, and it was more difficult to pass cars, especially late in the race. We came here to win, but I think our team made the most of the situation we were in."
Wolfe was in 24th on lap 9 when an accident involving Bill Penfold, Jimmy Morales, Mike Johnson and Bryon Chew in turn four produced a 38-minute red flag for track clean up and repair of a guardrail. Wolfe drove his way though the field to 17th place by lap 15 and broke into the top-10 on lap 20. He climbed to as high as fifth place on lap 24 and kept the Racing for a Cure Chevrolet in the top-10 throughout the second half of the race. Wolfe made a move on Andy Santerre coming out of the final turn to narrowly grab sixth place on the last lap. Brad Leighton won the race followed by Brian Hoar, Dale Quarterley, Matt Kobyluck and Mike Stefanik. Wolfe now has four straight top-10s in the Busch North Series.
Watkins Glen was second race of the season for the Racing for a Cure program, an initiative designed to support cancer awareness and research through the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, New York. The program is supported by Buffalo-area sponsors the Sahlen Packing Company, Wegmans Food Markets and the West Herr Automotive Group. Busch North Series drivers Andy Santerre, Mike Olsen and Matt Kobyluck have supported the effort with dollars-per-lap contributions and donations of signed merchandise that will be auctioned off for Roswell. The program is also raising money through various appearances and events throughout the racing season, including a raffle for a new car from the West Herr Automotive Group. The raffle can be entered at www.racing4acure.com.
"I would like to again thank the drivers who have supported our fundraising efforts for Roswell Park," Wolfe said. "Thanks to their support and the backing of Salhen's, Wegmans and West Herr, Racing for a Cure will be able to make a difference."
The Racing for a Cure car will next see the track in the Busch North Series race at New Hampshire International Speedway on Saturday, Sept. 18.