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NASCAR WHELEN SOUTHERN MODIFIED TOUR BACK IN ACTION SATURDAY AT CARAWAY SPEEDWAY WITH TITLE LOOMING LARGE DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 20, 2006) -- As the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour returns to action this Saturday night at ...


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 20, 2006) -- As the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour returns to action this Saturday night at Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, N.C., one of the biggest storylines is the battle for the championship between Junior Miller and a fast-closing Tim Brown.

With only four races remaining over the span of the next four weeks, the battle for the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour is a heated one as Miller leads the sophomore driver of Brown by a mere 37 markers.

"We've been pretty good so far this year," Brown said. "It's all going to come down to what happens in these last four races between me and Junior. Junior led a lot of laps at Ace (N.C.) Speedway last week until he had some bad luck."

The bad luck to which Brown is referring to came out on Lap 123 at Ace Speedway last Friday night when Gene Pack's car went for a harmless spin in the third turn and Miller made slight contact, sending Miller to the pits to make repairs en route to a sixth-place finish.

Brown finished second to Brian King who scored his first career NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour victory, but more importantly King was able to trim 20 points off Miller's championship lead and heads to Caraway Speedway this week facing a 37-point deficit with four races remaining in the 2006 season.

"We as a team have really tried to work hard all year long, so hopefully if we keep doing what we've been doing, things will go our way," Brown said. "We've really been consistent all year long up to this point. I was able to win the Southern Modified side of the race at Martinsville so things have really been good so far and I just want to keep running like we have been. If it wasn't for Junior Miller being out there, I'd be more than 100 points ahead of Burt Myers and he's third in the standings.

"Don't think that I want to beat Junior Miller because he has bad luck -- I want to beat him out on the track racing against him. I want to go to Caraway this week and sit on the pole and win the race. If I win and Junior finishes second then I gain 10 points on him. If we can do that in these last four races I can win this championship. That's the approach we're taking into the rest of the season and we're all looking forward to it."

Brown, a 35 year-old resident of Cana, Va., works as a chassis specialist at the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series team of MB2 Motorsports during the week. Brown's first full season with the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour came in 2005 and was impressive one for the six-time Modified champion who along with Miller calls Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C. their home turf.

Miller, on the other hand, is a 55 year-old veteran driver from Pine Hall, N.C. who has 14 various Modified championships under his belt, including this year's title at the famed Bowman Gray facility.

It certainly appears that the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour will be a battle of excited youth in Brown and experience through Miller. The two drivers didn't exactly see eye-to-eye with each other two weeks ago when the Whelen Southern Modified Tour visited Caraway when Miller made contact and in the process took the lead from Brown with less than 10 laps remaining and going on to win his fourth race of the 2006 season.

"It wasn't really any hard feelings after the race more than it was a case of I had the dominant car and didn't win the race," Brown said. "I was leading up until the final few laps and ended up getting beat. It's plain and simple -- I got beat. It wasn't a matter of me being mad at Junior as much as it was for me beating myself and putting myself in that position. I will be the first person to tell you that I'm a sore loser. When you work on stuff as hard as we do and put the effort into racing like we do as a team, if you're not a sore loser then you might as well stay at home.

"Finishing second is great, don't get me wrong, but I'm not satisfied with second-place. A lot of people took how I acted after the race at Caraway the wrong way. It's not that I get mad at finishing second and think I should win every race. It's just that I'm a very competitive person. As quick as the race is over, I'm trying to think about what we need to do in order to be better the next race. The last race at Caraway boiled down to I would have been disappointed even if Junior didn't nudge me out of the way right there at the end. I made some comments I probably shouldn't have made, but the very next time I saw him we sat down and settled our differences and put that race behind us. That's how it should be

-credit: nascar

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Drivers Junior Miller , Burt Myers