Practice Day #1 News and Notes
The drivers of Delaware Speedway took to the track for the first time in 2013 on Saturday for their first of two pre-season practice days. Track conditions on the first practice day often prove a challenge for drivers until they are able to get some laps in and lay down some rubber as well as clear off the dusty racing surface. This as well as the challenge of getting new equipment and setups dialed in dominated the day.
Practice continues this coming Saturday, May 4. Drivers will be on track at noon, spectators are welcome to the grandstands free of charge.
Gord Bennett (#67) of Cambridge became the surprise of the day in the FT Garage Late Models. After a pair of self spins in the early practice sessions that raised the concerned eyebrows of onlookers, Bennett would have the last laugh coming out on top at the end of the day with the fastest time in practice turning a 19.467 second lap time. With Bennett only running special events, Shawn Thompson (#72) of Ailsa Crag was the fastest local driver with his 19.595 second lap.
The Demar Aggregates Truck drivers faced the greatest challenge of drivers in any division on practice day. The new tires for the trucks in 2013 are slightly wider than last season and provided a great deal of difficulty for drivers during their first session with Brady Smith (#39) of Coldstream and Trevor Collver (#51) of Lucan cutting tires against their vehicle’s suspension. In the afternoon session most trucks were running tires from last season and planned to make the necessary adjustments to accommodate the new tires (which are expected to last more races than the previous tire) at a later time.
Paul Fothergill (#33) of London was the fastest in practice for the Coca-Cola Super Stocks sessions. Drivers in the division were running a variety of setups and vehicle configurations, some of which may have had their vehicles setup for Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup Competition. In Fothergill’s case, although he only recorded eleven laps on the day he topped the charts in the session with a 20.595 second lap. Defending champion Jeff Showler (#44) of Mt. Elgin appeared to struggle on the charts falling behind numerous other local drivers. Showler, however, appeared confident in practice day interviews as he and his crew worked through mechanical issues on the car.
Steve Arrand (#37) of Ailsa Craig topped the charts in the GAW Recycling Enduro / V8 Stocks practice session with a 22.453. Also strong out of the gate was Jamie Klumper (#07) of Mitchell who was second on the charts with a 22.581. Competition in the division is expected to be strong this season both on Saturdays with the “A & B” program and with the introduction of the V8 Stocks rules package which will run on Friday nights in place of the Enduro Challenges from previous seasons.
Numerous Bone Stock Chaos Car drivers made their first-ever laps around the track on Saturday. The division is currently the fastest growing at the track. It is expected that even more Bone Stock drivers will be attending this Saturday’s session as the complete preparations on their vehicles in anticipation of their Season opener on May 11.