Archive for the 'Kalamazoo' Category

Coughlin Scores Another Top 10, Extends Points Lead at Kalamazoo

KALAMAZOO, MI – Cody Coughlin fought hard in Wednesday night’s Kalamazoo Klash 125 for the ARCA/CRA Super Series at Kalamazoo Speedway. He battled in traffic throughout the race and came home sixth in his inaugural start at the fast and challenging 3/8-mile Michigan oval.

Coughlin qualified seventh and started third after an invert of nine. He ran in the top five for much of the race, and was at one point as high as second.

However, with under 50 laps to go, Coughlin was hit from behind and moved out of the racing groove. The 20-year-old Joe Gibbs Racing Development driver went for a slide, but kept his JEGS.com Toyota Camry from going for a spin. When Coughlin regrouped, he found himself in sixth.

Continue reading ‘Coughlin Scores Another Top 10, Extends Points Lead at Kalamazoo’

Kalamazoo Klash XXIV to Be Broadcast on Speed51.com

Concord, N.C. — The nation’s biggest Outlaw Super Late Model race is returning to Speed51.com in 2016. In a joint announcement on Wednesday, Speed51.com and Kalamazoo Speedway officials announced that the Kalamazoo Klash XXIV will be broadcast live on Speed51 TV next Wednesday night.

CLICK HERE TO ORDER LIVE VIDEO TICKET

“Speed51 has been an excellent partner to Kalamazoo Speedway over the past several seasons. Bob Dillner and his team are true racers,” said Gary Howe, owner/promoter of Kalamazoo Speedway. “They have a passion for this sport and they do an excellent job of covering the premier short track events around the country. It is an honor that the Kalamazoo Klash has become one of those events and the fact that people all over the world can now see the Klash on Speed51.com is a great thing for all parties involved.”

In addition to the 125 green flag laps on deck for the Outlaw Super Late Models, the ARCA/CRA Super Series Super Late Models will also be in competition for a 125-lap feature race. Since the addition of the CRA Super Series in 2014, even more luster has been added to the prestigious event.
Continue reading ‘Kalamazoo Klash XXIV to Be Broadcast on Speed51.com’

Brooks Navigates Challenges at Kalamazoo

Sellers Cuts Anders’ Whelen All-American National Point Lead

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Mike “Bubba” Brooks is navigating his way through early season challenges at Kalamazoo (Mich.) Speedway.

Brooks leads the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series outlaw super late model track and state point races. It’s taken relentless hard work.

Brooks battled back from two hard hits, the first wiping out his reliable race car in the second event of the season. He and his team rushed to build a new car in six days and it won immediately. Brooks added runner-up and third-place finishes before a second DNF due to another brutal incident. He came back to post his third win of the season Saturday night. He has hustled to stay among the point leaders and managed to maintain the lead.

“Last Tuesday night the car had no motor, no transmission and no rear end. It was just a shell. The frame was bent and we had suspension damage,” Brooks said of the tear-down of his new car after the May 24 incident. “When we put it back together we went back to a set-up that was exactly the same as the old car.

“Saturday we made some changes after hot laps and again after qualifying,” Brooks said of the race-night fine tuning. “We got it close to where we wanted it in our heat race. Now it’s back to the set-up I like.”

Brooks, 31, of Kalamazoo, leads the track standings by 44 points over A.J. Foote. He leads the NASCAR state point race three wins, five top-fives and five top-10s in seven races.

STANDINGS: NATIONAL TOP 500 | STATE/PROVINCE

National point leader Anthony Anders of Easley, S.C., was inactive over the weekend, allowing second-place Peyton Sellers to gain 66 points. Sellers, the series’ 2005 national champion, posted finishes of third and runner-up in twin 75’s at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va., Saturday. As a result, Anders’ point lead of 197 last week was reduced to 131 points this week. Anders’ planned Friday night at Anderson (S.C.) Motor Speedway was rained out and Greenville (S.C.) Pickens Speedway had an open date on its schedule. Anders went to Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway without a car Saturday night to support of Hawk-McCall Motorsports team mate Brayton Haws who finished fourth.

Sellers, of Danville, Va., holds the No. 2 spot by six points over two-time defending national champion Lee Pulliam. Pulliam, of Alton, Va., had finishes of second and fourth at Motor Mile. Tommy Lemons Jr. of Troy, N.C. jumped to fourth-place this week from sixth. He had a win and a third-place finish at Motor Mile. Lemons’ success let him slip by Dillon Bassett who moved from fourth to fifth. Bassett, of Winston-Salem, N.C., was inactive over the weekend.

Matt Bowling fell from fifth to sixth in points this week. He won the first 75-lap feature at Motor Mile Saturday but finished 20th in the second event. Three top-three finishes helped 2010 series’ national champion Keith Rocco move to seventh from 10th in national standings this week. At Thompson (Conn.) Speedway Motorsports Park on Thursday, Rocco posted finishes of second and third in Sunoco Modified competition. He added a runner-up finish at Waterford (Conn.) Speedbowl Saturday. Ryan Preece jumped from 14th to eighth in points this week. He won both Sunoco Modified features at Thompson, and added finishes of third and second in twin 30s at Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway. Kres Vandyke moved from eighth to ninth in national standings. He had a win at Lonesome Pine Raceway in Coeburn, Va., and a third-place finish at Kingsport (Tenn.) Speedway. Chad Finchum moved from ninth to 10th in national ranking. He had a win at Kingsport and a runner-up finish at Lonesome Pine.

Under the NASCAR point structure in Divisions I-V drivers receive two points for every car they finish ahead of in an event, up to 18 cars. Three bonus points will be awarded to a race winner with a single-digit starting position and five bonus points will be awarded to a race winner with a double-digit starting position.

Drivers must be NASCAR-licensed and cars will be verified for display of required series sponsor decals to be eligible for NASCAR points and awards. 

Both of Brooks’ DNFs were the result of accidents he didn’t create. Despite the incidents, he’s the only driver to win more than one NASCAR outlaw super late model feature at the .375-mile banked paved oval so far this year. The driver says winning at Kalamazoo is tough even on perfect race night.

“A lot of it has to do with the level of competition we have here,” Brooks said. “These guys are good. We’ve had five winners in the first seven races.”

Brooks won the season opening Intimidator 75 but it would be the last checkered flag the car would take. It was totaled in the following week’s 50-lap feature. Brooks didn’t have a back-up car but got a replacement to start building the following day.

“Our crew, the chassis builder and all the people involved made sure we got to the track the following week,” Brooks said.

He stayed with same FLF chassis brand he’d been running and added all the recent updates. The team also installed their Bob Snyder Competition Engine. So far Brooks has won twice in the new car.

Due to differing point systems, Kalamazoo Speedway had dual champions in the outlaw super late model division last year. Kyle Bergakker won the NASCAR track and state point races over Brooks. Brooks won the track’s point race over Bergakker.

The regular weekly feature event distance for the wedge-style bodied late models at Kalamazoo is 50 laps. The fastest qualifier can start as deep as 18th depending on the roll of inversion-determining dice. Brooks started 12th Saturday night.

“We’re going to keep working hard, try to keep the fenders on the car every week and get the best finishes we can,” Brooks said.

Brooks started racing in pure stocks in 1998. He took 1999 off to fund and build his own factory stock and drove it from 2000-2003. He moved to limited late models from 2004-06. He made his first venture into the outlaw super late model division 2007-08, then moved to modifieds 2009-2011. He won the modified division track championship in 2010. He returned the outlaw super late models in 2012.

Brooks is an owner-driver. Dan McEndarfer is crew chief. Crewmen include Gary Jenkins, Bob Miller, and his dad Mike D. Brooks.

Because his primary sponsor has two main products, Brooks’ race car is typically painted blue on one side and red on the other. Leduc Farms of Paw Paw, Mich., has two top brands: Leduc Blueberries and Leduc Strawberries, hence the differing colors and product sponsorship. The 59-year-old, 400-acre family farm is operated by second-generation owners Joe and Chantal Leduc. Most of the farm’s harvest goes to commercial clients. A retail store operates on site in season. Other sponsors include Spike’s Service, Feyen Zylstra Electrical Contractors.

Brooks and his wife Jamie have a daughter Alex, 13, and a son Mike “Bubbie” Brooks, 7. Brooks works for Kendall Electric, an industrial electric component and parts provider.

Sources: Paul Schaefer/NASCAR PR

Whelen All-American Changes Announced

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR announced several new initiatives for the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Thursday at the annual Track Operators Meeting.

The competition changes, which go into effect in 2014, are designed to spotlight the sport’s young stars and reward the achievements of drivers at every level of the series. They were announced at the meeting, which was held in conjunction with the touring and weekly series awards ceremonies in Charlotte, N.C.

Starting next season, a national champion will be crowned in all five divisions of the series. In recent seasons, the Finalist Program honored top competitors in Div. II-V.

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