NASCAR Camping World Series West News & Notes Central Iowa Building and Construction Trades 125 Second-Generation Driver In Multiple Events At Iowa Series Travels To Heartland Of America Very Tight Points Battle With Just 2 Races...
NASCAR Camping World Series West News & Notes
Central Iowa Building and Construction Trades 125
Second-Generation Driver In Multiple Events At Iowa
Series Travels To Heartland Of America
Very Tight Points Battle With Just 2 Races Remaining
Young Driver Faces Big Challenge With Double Duty At Iowa
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Competitors in the NASCAR Camping World Series West are headed to Iowa Speedway this week for the Central Iowa Building and Construction Trades 125 on Friday night.
The event is a critical one to drivers and teams, with only two races remaining to determine the final championship standings for 2009.
One driver in the series is facing an even bigger challenge, however, in his return to the track east of Des Moines in Newton. In addition to racing in the NASCAR Camping World Series West race, Jamie Dick (No. 88 Viva Auto Group/Johnnie Walker Performance Center Chevrolet) also plans to make his debut in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
It will make for a busy weekend for the 20-year-old second-generation driver from Albuquerque, N.M., who is currently 10th in the championship standings for the NASCAR Camping World Series West.
"We're going to be running the West race and also the Truck race the following day," he explained. "That's going to be tough because the West race is on the same day as all the practice for the Truck Series. On Friday, it's going to be pretty busy going back and forth."
As he jumps from one to the other, Dick will need to adjust to various differences between his race car and race truck -- including the different tires on each.
"It will be my first time ever in a truck and they're on radial tires," he said. "So, it should be tricky -- going back and forth with the West series on bias tires and the Truck Series on radial tires. We'll see how it goes."
He is accustomed to adjusting his focus on different subjects. Dick, who will be entering his junior year at the University of Denver this fall, has balanced his school work with two full seasons of racing in the NASCAR Camping World Series West.
"It's not too hard," said Dick, who plans to major in real estate and construction management. "The school I go to, the University of Denver, does not offer too many Friday classes. That's kind of why I picked it. Most of the classes are Monday through Thursday. It's still a hard school; it's still a very challenging school -- but I haven't had to miss too many classes to go racing. So, it's worked out. I've had to do homework on airplanes. But besides that, it's not too hard."
This week's event, meanwhile, marks Dick's second visit to Iowa Speedway -- a track he looks forward to returning to.
"I really like it," he said. "It's an awesome track and an awesome facility."
While he admits he struggled at Iowa Speedway last season, Dick expects to do better after having raced on two other tracks similar in size.
"I think I learned a lot since then about big track racing," he said. "I'm a lot more confident going back there than I was last year, when we kind of struggled."
Although his best finishes have come on short-track events or road- course races, Dick says he prefers the bigger tracks, like the .875-mile track at Iowa Speedway.
"I think it's more fun and I like it, but results have shown I do better on the short tracks -- just because I have more experience," he said. "I think it's fun to race on the bigger tracks, but I need a lot more practice to get better."
Early on, Dick competed in Legends series and late model stock cars in Texas and New Mexico. He followed the path of his father, Jimmy, who raced in the NASCAR Camping World Series West in 1993 and 1995 and competed in several events in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in its inaugural season of 1995.
Since coming into the NASCAR Camping World Series West as an 18-year-old two seasons ago, Dick has one top-five and eight top-10 finishes in 18 starts. It's been "up and down," he said.
"We've struggled," Dick said. "It's never easy, but I guess it's not easy for anyone. I've definitely gotten better. We get better every week and we're still getting better. Kind of the whole reason for going to the truck series is to keep getting better and keep improving and keep taking on different challenges.
"We're getting better, but there are still struggles and still little mountains to overcome."
In addition to competing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Iowa Speedway on Saturday, Dick hopes to also race in that series at Phoenix International Raceway in November.
"Ideally, we'd like to go to Phoenix, too, this year and do about five to seven truck races next year -- along with the West races," he said.
News & Notes
The race ... The Central Iowa Building and Construction Trades 125 is the 12th event on the 2009 schedule for the NASCAR Camping World Series West. It marks the second visit to Iowa Speedway by the NASCAR Camping World Series West this season. The circuit traveled to Iowa in May for a NASCAR Camping World Series East-West combination race.
The track ... Iowa Speedway is a .875-mile paved oval with compound banking of 12-14 degrees in the corners, 10 degrees in the frontstretch and four degrees in the backstretch. The facility, which opened for operation in 2006, is located east of Des Moines in Newton.
The records ... The qualifying mark and race record for a standalone NASCAR Camping World Series West race is to be established.
RCR, JGR talent ... Entries for this event include a couple of talented young drivers who represent two of NASCAR's most well known car owners. Richard Childress Racing has entered Ryan Gifford (No. 29 Shell/Pennzoil Chevrolet), while Max Gresham (No. 18 Joe Gibbs Driven Toyota) will be behind the wheel for Joe Gibbs Racing. Gifford, 20, of Winchester, Tenn., has registered two top-fives -- including a second-place finish at South Boston (Va.) Speedway -- while competing in three NASCAR Camping World Series East events for RCR this season. Gresham is a 16-year-old from Griffin, Ga., who has raced in two NASCAR Camping World Series East races for the Joe Gibbs team, recording a top-five finish at South Boston Speedway.
Home again ... Making a return to his native state will be 17-year-old Brett Moffitt (No. 4 Karl Chevrolet Chevrolet) of Grimes, Iowa. Moffitt -- who finished sixth in the NASCAR Camping World Series East-West combination race at Iowa Speedway in May -- scored a win at South Boston Speedway in just his fifth series start. In addition to that victory, he has four top-five and seven top-10 finishes in nine races this season.
Tight title battle ... Jason Bowles (No. 6 SunriseFord.com Ford) of Ontario, Calif., leads the championship standings by 37 points over Eric Holmes (No. 20 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota) of Escalon, Calif. A year ago, with two races remaining, Holmes led Bowles by nine points. Holmes went on to capture the championship by a 48-point margin, his second series title in three years.
Top five contenders ... The competition is tight between all of the drivers in the top five of the standings, with only 58 points separating the drivers in third, fourth and fifth -- Greg Pursley (No. 26 Gene Price Motorsports/Star Nursery Ford) of Newhall, Calif.; Paulie Harraka (No. 12 NAPA AutoCare/Adaptive One Brakes Toyota) of Fairlawn, N.J.; and David Mayhew (No. 17 MMI Services/Ron's Rear Ends/KHI Chevrolet) of Atascadero, Calif.
Even closer ... The three drivers in sixth, seventh and eighth in the standings are very close. Only 24 points separate Moses Smith (No. 16 HASA Pool Products/White Flyer Toyota) of Tempe, Ariz.; Brett Thompson (No. 61 Rich Thompson Trucking Chevrolet) of Jerome, Idaho and Blake Koch (No. 21 GodSpeaks.com Chevrolet) of W. Palm Beach, Fla.
Strong showing ... David Mayhew had a strong showing when the series visited Iowa Speedway as part of the NASCAR Camping World Series East-West combination race in May. Among the West teams, Mayhew was the top qualifier and top finisher. He qualified second quickest overall and finished behind Kyle Busch (No. 18 Toyota of Des Moines Toyota) and Brian Ickler (No. 15 BrianIckler.com Chevrolet).
New arrival ... David Mayhew and his wife, Lyndsay, welcomed their first child, a daughter named Riley, on Aug. 12.
Four first-time winners ... With his win in Colorado on Aug. 15, Paulie Harraka became the fourth different first-time winner in the series this season -- joining Mayhew, who was credited with a win in the combination race at Iowa Speedway; Greg Pursley, who won the season opener in Kyle, Texas; and Patrick Long (No. 9 Sunrise/AASCO Motorsports/UIS Ford), who took the win at Miller Motorsports Park last month.
The Race: Central Iowa Building and Construction Trades 125
The Place: Iowa Speedway, Newton, Iowa
The Date: Friday, Sept. 4
The Time: 8 p.m. CT
TV Schedule: SPEED Sept. 10, Noon PT
Track Layout: .875-mile paved
Race Purse: $124,590
2008 Winner: Inaugural event
2008 Pole: Inaugural event
Schedule: Friday: Practice 9-10 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-12:20 p.m. Time Trials 4:30 p.m.
Final notes from Colorado
Big victory ... The victory by Paulie Harraka (No. 20 NAPA AutoCare/Adaptive One Brakes Toyota) in the Toyota/NAPA 150 at Colorado National Speedway on Aug. 15 marked many firsts in the NASCAR Camping World Series West. In addition to being Harraka's first career series victory, it was the first series win for NASCAR's Drive for Diversity program and the first series win for Harraka's registered car owner, Mike Curb. Harraka became the sixth different driver to win in seven series races at CNS.
Moving up ... With his win, Harraka moved up one position to fourth in the championship standings, 33 points out of third. He also edged in front of Blake Koch (No. 21 GodSpeaks.com Chevrolet) in their intense dual for this year's Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award in the NASCAR Camping World Series West.
Another pole for Holmes ... Eric Holmes (No. 20 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota) turned in the fastest lap (at an average speed of 80.159 mph) on the .375-mile oval at CNS to win his second Coors Light Pole Award of the season. It marked his 12th career series pole, which puts him in a tie in that category with Ron Hornaday Sr., Marvin Porter, Roy Smith and Sean Woodside. Holmes is the first driver to win multiple pole awards in series competition at Colorado.
Career-best for Warn ... Jim Warn (No. 10 MJ2Racing/GPIPerformance.com Chevrolet), who challenged Harraka for the win in the closing laps, came away with a career-best runner-up finish at Colorado.
Other top marks ... In addition to Harraka and Warn, several other drivers had career-best marks at CNS. Travis Milburn (No. 14 Cooks Collision/Alhambra Chevrolet) garnered his first top-10 finish, with a sixth-place showing. Johnathan Hale (No. 5 Aramark Chevrolet) had a career-high eighth-place finish and Phil Dugan (No. 34 RTD Motorsports/D4D Chevrolet) came home with a career-best 10th-place finish.