SWS: Irwindale pre-race notes 2001-06-09

Irwindale, Calif. Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring teams were met with warm and humid temperatures as they entered the state-of-the-art facility in Southern California. M.K. Kanke of Frazier Park, Calif. leads Craig Raudman of ...

Irwindale, Calif. Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring teams were met with warm and humid temperatures as they entered the state-of-the-art facility in Southern California. M.K. Kanke of Frazier Park, Calif. leads Craig Raudman of Bakersfield, Calif. by 152 points in the 2001 FSWS point standings. Kanke has collected three victories this season, including a win last Saturday night at Mesa Marin Raceway in Bakersfield, Calif. Raudman set a new series record for consecutive Bud Pole Awards last Saturday with his fifth in a row, breaking the seven-year old record held by Lance Hooper.

Scott Brand of Kalispell, Mont. leads W. Sacramento's Burney Lamar by one point in the 2001 FSWS Rookie-of-the-Year standings. Lamar has vaulted into second place and 12th overall on the strength of two straight top ten finishes.

The following are excerpts from drivers prior to the running of the FOOD 4 LESS "150" at Irwindale Speedway.

John Baker of Tucson, Ariz. driving the Mid-States Truck and Rigging Inc. Chevrolet has 6 starts, 1 top 5 and 2 top tens, with 713 total points. He currently sits 11th in the season point standings and has won $7,220 in purse money. "I hope to run well every week," Baker said. " We just pick up the pieces from last week and go out at Irwindale. I am confident because Irwindale is a lot like Tucson Raceway Park, it's just faster. I am planning on staying in the top 5 the rest of the season."

Greg Fowler of Longmont, Colo. driving the PPG Paints/Rent Comm Chevrolet has 5 starts, 2 top tens, and 649 total points. Fowler currently stands 17th in the point standings with $6,790 won. "I am really looking forward to racing at Irwindale," Fowler said. "They have a nice facility, its wide and there is plenty of room to race. We had a great car last week, so all we'll do is change the shocks and the set up a little. I would like to keep running in the top 10, consistency is the key."

M.K. Kanke of Frazier Park, Calif. driving the Community Recycling Chevrolet has 6 starts, 3 wins, 5 top fives, and 5 top tens. Kanke has led the point standings since the second event of the season. Kanke has won $32,510 and more than $325,000 for his career. "I like racing." Kanke said. "It doesn't matter where I race I just want to win and run well. Tom (Fry) expects us to do well, and as long as we make no mistakes, we'll do just that. When your winning it eases everything."

Bob Lyon of Aqua Dulce, Calif. driving the Northridge Equipment Rentals Chevrolet has 6 starts, 2 top fives, and 3 top tens, and 782 total points. Lyon currently sits 3rd in the season point standings and has won $8,330. "I have run these cars for a long time," Lyon said. " We've been around for a while and this is the series I like to race in. I just want to win races, and every time out I think I can. I know where the end of my car is so some nights I'll settle for the best finish I can instead of sticking my nose in there and wrecking. I expect the track will loosen up a lot, so that will be the trick at the end of the race."

Eddy McKean of Jerome, Idaho driving the Magic Valley Pipe Pontiac has 5 starts, 1 top 5, and 3 top tens. He currently sits in 13th place in the season point standings with 695 points. McKean currently sits in 4th in the Rookie-of-the-Year point standings with 33. "I am going to have to on at Irwindale," McKean said. "I finished in 8th back in April, but the temperature will be warmer so I am sure the track will change a bunch. Each time out I continue to learn, I know who I can drive with. This is a learning year for us so what ever happens, happens. I just plan on finishing the best I can and let the rest end up where it may."

-Derrick Shannon

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Series NASCAR
Drivers Lance Hooper , Burney Lamar , Craig Raudman , John Baker