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SMT: Series Caraway IV preview

SMT: Series Caraway IV preview
Oct 2, 2009, 4:16 PM

NASCAR WHELEN SOUTHERN MODIFIED TOUR NEWS & NOTES - CARAWAY NEWS & NOTES: SEUSS IS READY TO MAKE HIS MOVE TO THE TOP Andy Seuss (No. 40 Advance Auto Parts/Q Racing Oil Dodge) knows one this is for certain: If he is going to have a chance to win ...



Andy Seuss (No. 40 Advance Auto Parts/Q Racing Oil Dodge) knows one this is for certain: If he is going to have a chance to win the 2009 NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour championship -- he is running out of time to catch George Brunnhoelzl III (No. 28 Oval Speed/Fibrwrap/PT Ford).

Seuss enters this weekend's Caraway 150 just 76 points behind Brunnhoelzl (1,505-1,429).

The Hampstead, N.H. driver made up 10 points last week by winning the Myrtle Beach 150, but with only five races remaining on the schedule he will have to find a way to make up more than 10 points per race if he is going to have a shot.

While momentum is clearly on Seuss' side heading into Saturday night's race, it appears he will need Brunnhoelzl to experience some bad luck if he is going to catch the West Babylon, N.Y., native.

Brunnhoelzl hasn't finished out of the top two since he finished 11th at Caraway back on April 11. It was also his only finish outside the top three all year long.

While Seuss currently holds the lead for most wins for the season with three, it has been the consistency by Brunnhoelzl that has him at the top of the point standings.

Seuss is no stranger to Victory Lane at Caraway -- winning the season-ending race last season at the track.

He has also finished in the top three in every race at the track this year.

Seuss finished second to Ted Christopher in April and has back-to-back third-place finishes in the other two events.

Seuss will need to slice away an average of nearly 16 points per race from Brunnhoelzl the rest of the season to have a chance to win the title. While that might be a tall order for the young driver, it can be done and that should make the remaining five races on the 2009 schedule very entertaining.

One thing is certain -- Seuss will not give up his pursuit.

Activities for the Caraway 150 get underway this Saturday with practice at 4:30 p.m. and qualifying slated to begin at 6:30 p.m.

Fans can come out and meet the drivers in the pre-race autograph session at 7:15 p.m.


Next Race

Caraway 150 WThe Place Caraway Speedway, Asheboro, N.C.

The Date Saturday, Sept. 12, 2009 WThe Time 8 p.m. ET

Track Layout .250-mile paved WRace Purse $24,806

2008 Winner Tim Brown W2008 Pole Tim Brown

Schedule Saturday: Practice 4:30-5:15 p.m.; Time Trials: 6:30 p.m.


News & Notes

The Race -- The Caraway 150 will be the 10th of 16 races on the 2009 NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour schedule and the fourth of six stops for the series to Caraway Speedway.

The Procedure -- Starting positions 1-24 will be set from time trials. The remaining two will be filled through the provisional process. Fastest qualifier will draw to determine redraw of top 6, 8, or 10 cars. The race is 150 laps (68.25 miles).

The Track -- Caraway Speedway, a 455-mile paved oval, is considered the home track of the southern division of the modifieds. The track has hosted 25 NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour events, dating back to March 2005.

The Records -- Qualifying: George Brunnhoelzl III, April 11, 2009, 102.844 mph, 15.752 seconds; Race: Junior Miller, Sept. 9, 2006, 90.977 mph, 44 minutes 30 seconds.

Caraway Winners -- Brian Loftin leads all winners at Caraway Speedway with seven victories. L.W. Miller is second with six wins.

Other Caraway winners -- NASCAR veteran Junior Miller has won five times at Caraway while Tim Brown has won there twice. Defending NASCAR Whelen Modified champion Ted Christopher has won three times at Caraway -- in 2005 and 2006, and most recently in April of this year.

Pole Winners -- Burt Myers has collected eight of his NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour record 19 Coors Light Pole Awards at Caraway Speedway. George Brunnhoelzl III won the pole at the most recent race held at the track in August.


Final Notes From Myrtle Beach

Season Best Finish -- Buddy Emory (No. 02 RCS Construction Chevrolet) picked one of the most challenging tracks on the 2009 schedule to have his best run of the year. Emory was one of the fastest cars in practice and ran up front the entire race. He was able to use tire management and a timely pit stop to take home his first podium finish of the season, when he crossed the finish line third. He also earned the Featherlite Most Improved Driver Award.

First Time Lap Leader -- Rich Kuiken Jr. (No. 44 Flowmasters Chevrolet) and his team decided to wait as long as possible last Saturday night at Myrtle Beach Speedway to pit for tires. The strategy almost paid off for the UNC-Charlotte student. Kuiken led laps in a tour race for the first time in his career, leading a total of 18 laps in the Myrtle Beach 150.

Homecoming A Success -- Veteran competitor Gene Pack (No. 31 Comtech Solutions/Wings-n-Things Chevrolet) always wanted to come back to Myrtle Beach and race in front of his family and friends that he grew up with while living on the Grand Strand as a teenager. His homecoming was a good one as he collected his second top-five finish in the last four races and also led a race-high 58 laps in the Myrtle Beach 150.

Tough Times -- After finishing second at Caraway Speedway back in July for his best finish of the season, things have not went well for Frank Fleming (No. 40 Jerry Hunt Auto Sales/Pro Health Centers Pontiac). Fleming has finished last in the past two races after getting involved in an accident at Caraway on August 29 and suffering mechanical woes at Myrtle Beach last week. He has dropped from the top five in the point standings as a result.

Challenging Day For Myers Brothers -- Jason Myers (No. 81 Clubhouse Food & Spirits/Rockefellers Chevrolet) was forced to start the race in another competitor's car and his brother Burt (No. 1 Capital Bank Ford) was unable to finish the race after being involved in an accident made for a long day for the veterans. Burt finished 11th and Jason followed in 12th.

Miller Collects -- L.W. Miller (John Baker Plumbing & Utilities/Sink Towers) started 10th and finished fourth to earn the Coca Cola Move of the Race Award.


Quick Facts

Champions -- In the first four years of the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour, Junior Miller (2005 and 2006), L.W. Miller (2007) and Brian Loftin (2008) have taken home the championship trophy.

Most Win -- With his win at Caraway Speedway two weeks ago, defending NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour champion Brian Loftin now has the record with 11. In second place is, L.W. Miller and Junior Miller with 10 wins each. Miller, last won at Ace Speedway in 2008. Junior Miller's last trip to Victory lane was in 2007 at Greenville (S.C.) Pickens Speedway.

Variety in Victory Lane -- Twelve different drivers have visited Victory Lane, with Andy Seuss being the most recent new winner when he won at Mrytle Beach Speedway last week.

New Record In Sight For Driver -- George Brunnhoelzl III has already won five Coors Light Pole Awards in the nine races this season. He is one shy of tying the record currently held by Burt Myers for the most pole awards won in one season, with six. Ten different drivers have won at least one pole award, with Myers holding the career record with 18. Tim Brown is second with eight.


Fans Can Vote Online For Their Favorite Driver

Online voting is under way for the Most Popular Driver of the Year Award in the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour as well as the regional touring series.

Fans can visit the official website to vote for their favorite NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour driver.

This year, fans also may write in their favorite driver if he / she is not among the nominees for a specific series.

Fans send an e-mail to and submit their write-in vote. Fans may vote or submit a write-in candidate once per day and are encouraged to vote throughout the season. Voting continues through Oct. 10.

Results will be announced at the NASCAR Touring Series Gala Saturday, Nov. 13 at Concord, N.C.

NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour Most Popular Drivers Eligible Are: J.R. Bertuccio, Zach Brewer, Tim Brown, George Brunnhoelzl III, Greg Butcher, Ted Christopher. Bryan Dauzat, Buddy Emory, Frank Fleming, Jay Foley, Bobby Hutchens Jr., Rich Kuiken Jr., Brian Loftin, L.W. Miller, Jay Mize, Burt Myers, Jason Myers, Gene Pack, Rowan Pennink, Erick Rudolph, Andy Seuss, Ronnie Silk, John Smith, Jamie Tomaino, Jason Trinchere, Brandon Ward, and Dean Ward. Make sure to vote for your favorite driver today and help them become the Most Popular.


Whelen Made In America 300 Is Just Weeks Away

After the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour drivers complete the Caraway 150 this Saturday night and return to the speedway for the Spring Classic 150 rainout make-up race on Sept. 19, it will be time to head north.

For the second time this season the best of the NASCAR Whelen Modified and NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified drivers will once again compete against one another for bragging rights.

In August, the tours collided and made history competing for the first time ever at Bristol Motor Speedway. This time they will meet at a familiar track for modified competitors and fans alike -- Martinsville Speedway.

Martinsville Speedway and modified racing have enjoyed a long history and this years Whelen Made In America 300 weekend promises to be another exciting chapter in the history books of NASCAR's oldest touring series. Ryan Preece became the then-youngest winner in NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour history with his win last year.

The event will be a two-day show with practice and qualifying scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 26 and the race scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 27.

The modified race will be 200 laps, and the show will also include a 100-lap Limited Late Model race.


Swaim Earns Third Track Late Model Championship

The last time the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour visited Caraway Speedway, fans also got to watch High Point, N.C., driver Travis Swaim collect his third Late Model Division championship at the track.

Swaim captured the Bud Pole Award and stayed on point following a redraw of the top six qualifiers. He then led all 200 laps en route to his fourth win of the season. Brad Brinkley of Sanford finished second, followed by two-time defending champion Randy Benson.

Swaim previously won track championships in 2004 and 2005, and joins Steve Loftin (1998-99 and 2002) and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Dennis Setzer (1988-90) as three-time Late Model champions at Caraway.

The Limited Late Models will be the top Caraway division this Saturday. Also on tap will be the Mini Stocks, Super Mini Trucks, Pure Trucks, Southern Ground Pounders and U-Cars.

Granstands open at 6 p.m., with racing starting at 8 p.m. Trackside and the pit area will open at 2 p.m. Tickets for adults are $20 and children 11 and under are free.

-credit: nascar

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