Coniam finding his groove in WoO series. November 4, 2002 -- Burlington, Ontario -- Ryan Coniam continues to learn after week two with Junior Holbrook's 8h World of Outlaws sprint car, and this week's lesson was definitely patience. Coniam...
Coniam finding his groove in WoO series.
November 4, 2002 -- Burlington, Ontario -- Ryan Coniam continues to learn after week two with Junior Holbrook's 8h World of Outlaws sprint car, and this week's lesson was definitely patience. Coniam started 14th in Sunday's A-main at the Hollywood Hills Speedway in San Felipe Pueblo, New Mexico, and finished 17th.
The result isn't what the young VSM Abrasives/Patco Transportation-sponsored Canadian wanted, but Coniam realizes it's part of the learning process. "The finish doesn't reflect how good the car was," says Coniam. "We were up to eleventh a couple of times, but I got in too hard and went off the track. All I needed last night was a little more patience."
The groove at Hollywood Hills was around the bottom, and the best time to pass was on restarts. Coniam was one of a few drivers who could work the outside.
"We could really roll the top on restarts," he says. "The car was great, but I got excited a couple of times and it hurt us."
Despite the disappointing finish, Coniam and the team continue to improve, and the biggest gain from the previous outing was in Sunday's time trial. "This weekend was a big improvement," says Coniam. "We timed in the top 10 Sunday, and that was great. I'm starting to feel really comfortable in the car, and I'm breaking a lot of the bad habits I came in with.
"I can't keep driving like I did in my 360 sprinter. Running Junior's (Holbrook) car is more like some of the pavement cars I've raced. I have to work on tire conservation and running as smooth as I can."
Coniam says the crew is giving him great cars, and he expects that he'll produce results this weekend when the WoO circuit makes its final stop for the year in Las Vegas.
"The guys on the crew don't beat around the bush," says Coniam. "They're not there to finish 17th either, but we're working well together, and I'm really pumped about Las Vegas. We have to get into the show, and then we'll go from there."
Coniam says Saturday was much tougher to deal with than Sunday. The team didn't make the A-main after running well all day.
"Saturday everything was going good," he says. "Time trials didn't go our way, and I got into the worst heat, but we were really quick. I was racing Steve Kinser for the last transfer spot, and I let myself get intimidated. "I was right under him, and I had a really good run. I backed out for just a second, and that's all it took. I learned a lot in that race. We ran really competitive this weekend, and that's what we had to do. We have a lot of confidence heading to Las Vegas."
Coniam's supporters will head to Las Vegas to cheer him on this weekend. His main sponsor Hal Banas of VSM Abrasives plans to attend along with Coniam's parents. Ryan's father is legendary supermodified driver and member of the Canadian Motorsports Hall of Fame Warren Coniam.