Mansfield Motorsports Speedway openner for Super Car series

April 29 - The ACDelco Super Car Series (ASCS), formerly known as the Iceman Series, opened their season Saturday night at Mansfield Motorsports Speedway. A field of 29 template bodied cars filled the pits for the earliest start in the 14 year...

April 29 - The ACDelco Super Car Series (ASCS), formerly known as the Iceman Series, opened their season Saturday night at Mansfield Motorsports Speedway. A field of 29 template bodied cars filled the pits for the earliest start in the 14 year history of the series. Drivers came from Canada and six states: Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Minnesota to race in the ASCS opener. Eight rookies that are running for Rookie of the Year were on hand.

Harold Fair Jr. led the field in qualifying. He drew the pole position for the 100-lap feature event with Tim Felver to his outside. On the initial green flag start, Ray Skillman and Jr. Hanley spun in turn one to bring out the yellow. The field reformed and tried again when Mike Hennessy, Tracy Potter and Jason Mignogna were all involved in a spin. Hennessy ended up against the wall and was double hooked to the pits with suspension damage.

The third time start proved to be the charm with Felver jumping into the lead. Fair Jr and rookie Ted Johnson fell in behind the Owosso, Mich. driver. Felver aboard his River City Truck & Equipment, Rick Cole Enterprises, ProStrip Monte Carlo set a torrid pace with the rest of the field in tow. On lap 32, Johnson moved around Fair Jr for second place.

On lap 36 Jerry Cook spun in turn two and rookie Ginger Phillips plowed into him. At the same time, the rookies of Kyle Edwards, Douglas Ehret and Jon Helman crashed hard in turn one. The race was red flagged for cleanup and to remove the cars of Edwards and Helman, both of which had to be double hooked.

When the race resumed, Felver picked up where he left off. Johnson got to the high side of Felver a few times after the halfway point, but spun when he got out of the groove. Fair Jr took over second place, while Johnson dropped back into sixth.

On lap 89 Felver car abruptly slid towards the third turn wall in a shower of sparks after something broke in the front end. Fair Jr took over the lead with Freddie Campbell, Dave Kuhlman, Glenn Gault and Ted Johnson, the only cars on the lead lap. On the restart Fair Jr’s Lefthander Chassis/Phil Harper Motorsports Monte Carlo took off and recorded his first ASCS win when the checkered flag fell. He finished a 1/4 straightaway ahead of Campbell.

It’s been a long time since race winner Harold Fair Jr has seen victory circle. The series regular has come so close capturing an ASCS win, but some gremlin always cropped up to steal the win away from him. In the opening 1998 race the Canton, Mich. driver was in the lead when a yellow was thrown on lap 98. On the restart clutch problems slowed his restart and he lost the lead. Later that year he was leading with two laps to go and blew a tire. Prior to tonight Fair Jr had three second place finishes as his best placement in the series. Fair Jr led the final ten laps for the win over Freddie Campbell. “It was a good race. I had enough to stay with Tim (Felver) but not enough to get around him. Everyone on the lead lap seemed to be pretty equal. The track was in real good condition for the race & I love this track. Not just because it’s my first win, but because you can drive anywhere on it, high or low. The lapped cars were a little bit hard to get around at times, maybe they were just racing hard with other lapped cars. I’m happy that I finally got the first win, the crew deserved it, they work hard,” said Fair Jr.

Tim Felver returned to the series after being away since Sept. 1, 1996. Felver returned with a roar, starting on the outside pole (after qualifying third) and dominating the race until his car’s untimely demise on lap 89. Felver looked well on his way to a sixth win when apparently the right front suspension broke. He costed to a stop on the frontstretch and was towed back to the pits, done for the night. The Owosso, Mich. driver finished 16th.

Freddie Campbell finished second, but many fans may not have recognized his car. Campbell is now driving for Vern Slaugh and returns to his old number that he used to run locally for years at Berlin and Kalamazoo Speedways. Gone is the familiar red #61 and is replaced by a white and red #47. Campbell ran in the top five the entire event and ultimately finished second.

Dave Kuhlman’s night didn’t start the best. Dave had the misfortune to be the next car in line to qualify after the track had been oiled down by another car. Although the track crew put oil dry down, Dave’s car was so loose during his qualifying attempt his time was a full second and a half slower than his practice times. After two other cars had problems of spinning and sliding the track crew worked on the greasy track. Kuhlman and three other drivers were allowed to requalify and Dave’s time dropped a second and a half. The driver of the Right Tools/Zeillers Farm Market Monte Carlo finished fourth.

Tom Hernly Jr is back after a two year absence. The Lansing, Mich. resident’s last full season in the Iceman series was in 1997. Tom takes over the wheel of John Flannery’s car which Phil Massuch drove in 1999. The driver of the Woodie Mfg., Suspension Technologies, Condad Heat Treat Grand Prix finished sixth, the first car one lap down.

I give Tim Olsen “The Longest Haul Award” for traveling the furthest to get to the ASCS show. Tim is from Hamel, Minn., a suburb of Minneapolis. The driver of the #79 Monte Carlo traveled about 12 1/2 hours to get to Mansfield. Tim told me that the team had started out to run at Madison, Wisc. but that track rained out Friday night so they kept coming east and ended up at Mansfield. Tim suffered brake problems and dropped out after 25 laps.

Rookie Corner: Ted Johnson was the top finishing rookie, posting a fifth place finish. The Birch Run, Mich. driver was the second fastest qualifier and started the race in third place. He spent much of the race running second to Tim Felver but spun his Birch Machinery, Teamtech Motorsports, Greg Doerr’s Automotive Monte Carlo late in the race and was put to the rear of the lead lap cars.

~~~ Aaron Hulings was the second placing rookie, finishing seventh, one lap down. Hulings is one of two 16 year old rookies racing with ASCS this season.

~~ Brad Perry was the third rookie to record a top 10 finish, posting a tenth place, two laps down. Perry, from Tipton, Mich. is a former race winner in the Canadian Coupe division.

~~ Randy Triplett becomes the first driver since John Grega in 1998 to run a triple digit number in the series. Randy comes from dirt racing and tonight was only his second pavement race. He finished 11th.

~~ Rookie Ginger Phillips from Elkhart, Ind. became the first woman to compete in the series. She finished 15th. Her car is owned by Rick Bruder.

~~ Kyle Edwards is the series other 16 year old driver. He was involved in an accident and finished 22nd. ~~ Douglas Ehret’s car was the one involved with Edwards and Ehret finished 23rd.

Joel Kauffman is not running for Rookie of the year. The 14-year old is the youngest driver to compete in the series, eclipsing the record set last year by Kyle Edwards who was 15 at the time. Kauffman did a great job, finishing 12th after suffering tire problems late in the event and losing three laps. The LaGrange, Ind. driver is a regular on the National Touring Allison Legacy Series.

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Series Stock car
Drivers Rick Cole , Phil Mass , Joel Kauffman