Whelen Modified News & Notes: Charlotte Battle For Bragging Rights Set For North Carolina Bullring
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — For the second time in 2017, unified NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour teams will have the opportunity to compete in a non-points special. The series will roll into Charlotte Motor Speedway Friday night to compete in the Southern Slam 150 on the infield bullring as part of Bojangle’s Pole Night.
Although some drivers entered have already visited the oval, others will be rolling on the track for the first time. Four-time series champion and current points leader Doug Coby is one of those drivers. The Milford, Connecticut, native, who is seeking his fourth straight points championship this season, has seen the track, but has never been behind the wheel around the quarter-mile.
On the flip side, Danny Bohn has already visited the oval as part of the seven previous NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour races. Bohn has four top fives in his five starts and has a best finish of third. He would like nothing better than to break through and capture his first win at Charlotte.
Ryan Preece, who is the defending winner of the race and has five wins on the unified Tour this season, will sit behind the wheel of the No. 7NY.
Coby and Preece are among five drivers who will head into the season finale the following week at Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park with a shot at the tour championship. Before they get there, Charlotte’s non-points special allows teams to go for the victory and bragging rights.
|Race:||Southern Slam 150|
|Place:||Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte, N.C.|
|Date:||Friday Oct. 6|
|Time:||8:40 p.m. ET|
|Track Layout:||quarter-mile paved oval|
|2016 Winner:||Ryan Preece|
|2016 Polesitter:||George Brunnhoelzl III|
|Event Schedule:||Garage Opens: 8:45 a.m., Practice: 11:15 a.m. to 12 p.m. & 12:30-1:15 p.m.
Qualifying: 4:05 p.m., Race: 8:40 p.m.
|TV Telecast:||NBCSN, Thursday Oct. 12, 6 p.m.|
|NASCAR IMC Contact:||Jason Christley, firstname.lastname@example.org, (346)-547-2469|
The Race: Friday’s Southern Slam 150 is the second of two non-points events on the 2017 unified NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour schedule. The first non-points event of the season at New Hampshire Motor Speedway was won by Ryan Preece.
The Track: Built in 1960, the 1.5-mile Charlotte Motor Speedway has hosted NASCAR events ever since its opening. The track was designed and built by Bruton Smith and Chris Turner. The track has gone through various updgrades, including the addition of lights in 1992. Charlotte currently holds two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series events each year, including Saturday’s NASCAR playoff race.
Race Winners: In seven previous NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour races at Charlotte, which were all Whelen Southern Modified Tour races, Burt Myers leads all drivers with three career victories. George Brunnhoelzl III has two wins, while Ryan Preece and Tim Brown each have one.
Pole Winners: In the seven previous races, three drivers have won Coors Light Pole awards. George Brunnhoelzl III has four career poles, while Ryan Preece and Andy Seuss have also won pole awards.
Southern Slam 150 Notes:
Kraus Goes Modified Racing: Though his NASCAR K&N Pro Series West season is nearly complete, Derek Kraus is not done racing for 2017. Kraus will jump behind the wheel of the No. 77 for Mike Curb to make his first career Whelen Modified Tour start on Friday. Kraus has a best finish of second in his 12 K&N West races this season and sits third in the championship standings there. The No. 77 he will pilot was most recently entered in competition at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, where Ryan Newman drove the car to the Coors Light Pole award.
First-Time For Coby: Four-time NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion Doug Coby will make his first trip to the Charlotte bullring on Friday night. Coby has 23 career Whelen Modified Tour wins in 203 career starts, but has proven tracks like Thompson and Stafford, those above a half-mile, are definitely his strongest. However, Coby also has run well at the bullrings of New England en route to his four titles. He has one career win at Monadnock and he finished on the podium in both races at the quarter-mile of Riverhead this season. He also won at Seekonk in August. Even though it will be his first trip to the Charlotte oval, look for Coby to unload towards the front of the pack and be in contention. He has never even driven a car on the quarter-mile.
Harvey Enters Former Whelen Modified Winner: Former championship car owner Eddie Harvey will have a familiar driver chasing victory for him in Friday nights race. Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver Corey LaJoie will pilot the No. 11. LaJoie, a NASCAR Next alum, has 26 starts in NASCAR’s top series this season, while he also has one career Whelen Southern Modified Tour victory on the similar quarter-mile at Atlanta Motor Speedway to his credit. Harvey has prior success at Charlotte as a car owner, since Andy Seuss clinched the championship driving Harvey’s car at Charlotte in both 2014 and 2015.
New Venture For Veteran Tomaino: Jamie Tomaino has made 622 career Whelen Modified Tour starts if you combine his Whelen Southern Modified Tour starts with the north. However, through all of those starts, Tomaino has never competed on the Charlotte infield bullring. The Howell, N.J. driver will make his first visit on Friday night behind the wheel of the No. 99 Dunleavy Truck and Trailer Repair, Atlantic Sprinkler Chevrolet. He made three Whelen Modified Tour starts so far this season.
DOUBLEHEADER: Bojangle’s Pole Night On Tap
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will be the final division on the track Friday night, but the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will qualify for Sunday’s NASCAR playoff race at 7:15 p.m.
Press Release By Kyle Souza, NASCARHomeTracks.com