Busch North Series, NASCAR Touring Race ...
Busch North Series, NASCAR Touring Race #12 of 19
Watkins Glen International, Watkins Glen, N.Y.
SPEED Channel, Monday, Sept. 9, 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. Eastern
Friday, August 9
9:00-11:15 a.m. Practice
1:30 p.m. Bud Pole Qualifying
Following NWC Qual. Final practice
Saturday, August 11
1:00 p.m. Little Trees 150 presented by Pepsi
NOTES OF INTEREST
* The Little Trees 150 presented by Pepsi is the fourth of seven Busch North Series races to be televised nationally by SPEED Channel. The broadcast is scheduled for Monday night, September 9, from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. Eastern time.
* Tom Carey won the 2001 Little Trees 150 in dramatic fashion, passing Brad Leighton just two turns before the white flag. Leighton slid off turn one on the final circuit and became embedded in the gravel trap, dropping him to 13th. Carey finished 1.684 seconds ahead of Bryan Wall, with Paul Wolfe, Matt Kobyluck, and Martin Truex Jr. completing the top five. Carey averaged 88.744 miles per hour as only four caution flags were required for 12 laps. Carey also won the Bud Pole with a non-record time of 1 minute, 15.689 seconds, 116.529 miles per hour, but did not lead until the final two laps.
* Watkins Glen is Andy Santerre's territory. He is the only two-time winner of the Little Trees 150 (1996 and 2000); he holds the track qualifying record of 1 minute, 15.477 seconds, 116.857 mph set in 2000; and he was the owner of Tom Carey's winning car last year.
* Watkins Glen is the only Busch North Series venue where the lap time exceeds on minute. It also has the longest lap distance (2.45 miles) and the longest overall race distance (151.9 miles), but the smallest lap count (62 laps).
* Brad Bennett, a Busch North Series regular in the mid-1990's, is scheduled to make his return to the series at Watkins Glen, where he nearly won in 1998. Bennett has been living in North Carolina and serving as crew chief for Derrike Cope's part-time Winston Cup effort.
* Ted Christopher, a winner at Nazareth Speedway in his only 2002 start and the 1997 Glen winner, is entered for his second race of the season. Making their 2002 debuts will be Tommy Beamer, a 2001 Raybestos Rookie contender, and John Wall Sr., who is the father of Bryan Wall and a regular competitor in the Busch North road course events at the Glen and Lime Rock Park. The only exclusively road racing driver currently entered is John Kohler, a regular in the Grand-Am Cup Series driving a Ford Mustang. He will switch brands to drive a Chevrolet for Vecchio Racing in the Little Trees 150.
* In addition to Carey, Santerre, and Christopher Busch North Series winners at the Glen have included Bobby Dragon (1993), Butch Leitzinger (1994), Joe Bessey (1995), Kim Baker (1998), and Bryan Wall (1999). The Little Trees 150 became part of the Winston Cup weekend program at te Glen in 1995.
* The current Watkins Glen track was built in 1956 and heavily modified in 1971, giving the pits their current location (they had originally been between today's turn 1 and 2). The first sports car races in the U.S. after World War II were held on public roads in the Watkins Glen area in 1948, giving the Glen the title, "Home of American Road Racing." The United States Grand Prix Formula One race was held here from 1961 to 1980, and the NASCAR Winston Cup Series has made an annual visit since 1986.
STAT OF THE WEEK
The Little Trees 150 at Watkins Glen has been won by the Bud Pole Award winner in each of the last three years. Since the 2000 Little Trees 150, a span of 37 races, only four other Busch North races have been won from the number one starting spot. (The number one starting spot is not always occupied by the Bud Pole Award winner due to the post-qualifying redraw at short tracks.)