Competitors Chasing Brunnhoelzl At Tri-County
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - The NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour event at Tri-County Motor Speedway was a turning point in the championship chase a year ago and a field of challengers will look to the second edition of the Tri-County 150 as another opportunity to make a move on Saturday, Sept. 24 in Hudson, N.C.
Burt Myers proved it could be done last year when he used his win at Tri-County to get into contention for the Whelen Southern Modified Tour championship. He followed that with a win in the season-ending event at Charlotte Motor Speedway and earned his first tour title.
Myers was 66 points out of first place in 2010 entering the Tri-County 150, however, and George Brunnhoelzl III enjoys a 134-point advantage heading to this year's event.
One of the drivers chasing Brunnhoelzl is his Ideal Racing teammate Andy Seuss. Seuss has picked up a pair of wins in the past three races which vaulted him past John Smith into second place in the standings. Seuss hasn't been able to make up much ground, however, as Brunnhoelzl finished second when Seuss won at Caraway on Aug. 26, and managed a seventh-place showing at Langley while Seuss celebrated another victory earlier this month.
"We know we are going to have to win races first and foremost," Seuss said. "We can't control what happens to George (on the track) but we can go for wins and see what happens."
Brunnhoeozl and Seuss were also 1-2 in 2009 during Brunnhoelzl's championship season, Brunnhoelzl went on to set a record for largest margin of victory for the title over Seuss with 180 points (2,385-2,205).
Although Brunnhoelzl enjoys a comfortable lead, the battle between second and fifth place is separated by just 105 points. Seuss leads third-place Smith by 28 points (1,551-1,523), Smith is in front of Jason Myers by 31 (1,523-1,492) and L.W. Miller sits 37 points behind Jason Myers (1,492-1,455).
Brunnhoelzl is coming off of his third win of the season with a triumph at Thompson (Conn.) International Speedway and has built his points lead by 33 points over the past two races. The West Babylon, N.Y., native knows what he has to do if he wants to celebrate a second championship in December at the NASCAR Touring Series banquet in Charlotte.
"We just have to keep the mindset to keep winning races," Brunnhoelzl said. "There is a lot of racing left to do and anything can happen. If we keep winning races then the points will take care of themselves."
Brunnhoelzl won five races during his 2009 championship season. There have been four drivers win multiple events this season. Brunnhoelzl leads the way with three wins (Caraway 3/13, Hickory 4/2 and Thompson 9/11) while Seuss (Caraway 8/26, Langley 9/3), Miller (Caraway 7/1, Bowman Gray 8/6) and Christopher (South Boston 4/17, Caraway 4/23) each have two wins.
Frank Fleming has the other win on the tour as Bristol Motor Speedway as the highest finishing Whelen Southern Modified Tour competitor in the combination event on Aug. 24.
Familiar sight: This will be the second consecutive year the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour will compete at Tri-County Motor Speedway. Several drivers have quite a bit of experience at the track. Burt and Jason Myers have competed at the track and also worked at the track behind the scenes when their mom, Pam Myers, promoted races at the track in the late 1990s.
Turn It Around: Burt Myers, the defending race winner of the Tri-County 150, is still looking for his first win of the season. Myers, who suffered broken ribs and a punctured lung in a practice crash during a non-NASCAR event in April, used his win at Tri-County last year to move into contention for the championship which he won two weeks later at the quarter-mile track at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Stand Alone: The Tri-County 150 will be the only event on the schedule Saturday night at Tri-County Motor Speedway.
Last Time Out: Rain Postpones Race At Caraway
For the second time this season rain won at Caraway Speedway. The Caraway 150, originally scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 17, was postponed due to persistent rain showers in the Asheboro, N.C. area. In March, rain also forced postponement of the second race of the season at Caraway. Details on the Sept. 17 postponement will be announced at a later date.
Up Next: The Caraway 150
The next event on the schedule for the tour will be the make-up race at Caraway Speedway on Saturday, Oct. 1. The event was originally scheduled for March 26 when rain showers forced postponement of the event. Andy Seuss is the most recent winner at Caraway Speedway on Friday, Aug. 26. Seuss will attempt to become the first winner of back-to-back races at Caraway since Brian Loftin accomplished the feat in 2008.
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