TORC: Douglas Motorsports Bark River summary

SCOTT DOUGLAS BACK ON THE PODIUM WITH SECOND PLACE FINISH AT BARK RIVER Bark River, Michigan-As the Traxxas TORC Series presented by AMSOIL's inaugural season reached the halfway point; Scott Douglas climbed the podium for the fourth time in...

SCOTT DOUGLAS BACK ON THE PODIUM WITH SECOND PLACE FINISH AT BARK RIVER

Bark River, Michigan-As the Traxxas TORC Series presented by AMSOIL's inaugural season reached the halfway point; Scott Douglas climbed the podium for the fourth time in eight starts. In round eight of TORC race action, Douglas finished second in the AMSOIL Kumho Ford F-150.

The impressive finish came after crew chief Bill Smith made critical suspension tuning changes. Like Crandon, Bark River is a high-speed natural terrain track that features the biggest elevation change of any circuit on the TORC Series schedule. In addition to the speed, Bark River also produces major airtime with a huge drop away jump that flies the trucks 200 feet at race speed. This year, new obstacles were added that included corner banking, a tabletop jump, and a tricky rhythm section that made proper chassis and suspension setup essential. The track changes transformed Bark River from a horsepower track to a high-speed track that was also quite technical with new challenges and passing opportunities for the driver.

"My crew really gave a great race truck to drive today," commented Douglas after the race. "This track is really wild, it now has a little of everything and I like the fact that there are more places to pass. Ricky Johnson worked with the Bark River officials to add new elements that are challenging for both the driver and entire race team. There are more places to make mistakes both on the track and in the pits. The AMSOIL Kumho Ford F- 150 handled it all today and we had the speed to run up front."

Douglas was fast in practice both Friday and Saturday morning, but Saturday's round seven race didn't go as planned. After a great start, Douglas worked his way into second by the second lap and was challenging Steve Barlow for the lead when an unusual mechanical failure occurred. A huge rock was thrown inside the left front wheel at speed breaking the wheel. Douglas was able to limp the truck back around to the hot pit but the crew had to dislodge the broken wheel parts and install a new wheel under green. The change put Douglas a lap down but he was able to drive to a seventh place finish and salvage valuable championship points.

"We run Walker Evans Racing wheels on the AMSOIL Kumho F-150 and they are very tough," stated Douglas. "No wheel can survive that kind of abuse, I was impressed that I was able to drive the truck on the broken wheel back to the pits so I could finish the race."

Douglas Motorsports' success at Bark River comes at an ideal time because the TORC Series returns to Bark River in early August for the ninth and tenth races of the 2009 season and the team knows they have a combination that works exceptionally well. "We have a few more things to try that should make the truck even quicker, but those are fine-tuning tweaks, not big changes," said Douglas. "No team is working harder to put an end to Toyota's streak on top of the podium, I'm confidant that the Douglas Motorsports AMSOIL Kumho Ford will be there soon."

Sunday's second place finish gives the Douglas Motorsports team momentum heading into the second half and homestretch of the 2009 TORC season. Bark River TORC Series action will air Sunday July 19th at 11:30 am on ESPN2. TORC Series PRO racing resumes August 8th and 9th in Bark River, Michigan.

-credit: dms

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Series Offroad
Drivers Scott Douglas , Bill Smith