(June 27, 2016) The Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour is the big attraction this weekend in the Geary Woods. Cassius Clark and Dylan Blenkhorn have each won two of the first four tour races, but several other drivers hope to pick up their first win of the season when they visit Speedway 660. In this edition of “The Weekly”, we’ll preview the Cummins 100 and also look at a rivalry in our street stock division.
PST Race Five @ 660
The Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour is always one of our biggest events of the season. This weekend the tour drivers will make their annual visit to Speedway 660 and fans are in for a great race when the Cummins 100 goes green. We’ll preview the tour race, but first let’s look at a spirited rivalry that is catching the eyes of fans in the Geary Woods.The tour always attracts a large crowd, from all over the Maritimes. Fans know the Cummins 100 will be one of the best races of the season and what better way to kick off the summer season than to spend a night at 660.
The DMR Auto Sales Street Stock Division is always tough, sometimes rough and occasionally borderline outta control. Going into last week’s races Rob Raynes, the defending champion, sat atop the point standings, but he was not alone. Courtney O’Blenis was tied with Raynes and Destiny Enkel was third. Rob has finished on the podium every race so far this season and every race last year. But Courtney has three feature wins and Destiny has one. So the girls have been ruling the street stock roost, so-to-speak.Rob Raynes won the first street stock feature of the season, but hasn’t been back to victory lane in a feature since then. But he’s finished second on four straight occasions behind Courtney O’Blenis three times and Destiny Enkel once.
Early in the season it became clear that there was going to be a big battle for the 2016 street stock crown. The tension has been building since the start of the season and it actually boiled over in last week’s second street stock heat. There was some contact, retaliation and aggressive racing.
Here are four observations. One: Rob Raynes will not take any prisoners, meaning he is not going to cut anyone any slack! Two: Courtney O’Blenis and Destiny Enkel will not be intimidated by anyone! Three: there is a real possibility that 2016 could be the year that we see our very first lady champion at Speedway 660. Four: this championship chase is going to go right down to the wire and is going to be well worth the price of admission, every time the street stocks are on the schedule.That’s Courtney in the 48, Destiny in the 52 and Rob in the 41. When push comes to shove, the two young ladies will not be intimidated and will give as well as receive, if you get my drift.
All three of these drivers desperately want the 2016 DMR Auto Sales Street Stock championship and none have given or will give an inch! Last Saturday night was amazing. It is fast becoming an old school rivalry, the kind we haven’t seen since Rick Cashol used to get after it with anyone who tried to challenge him for a street stock title. Occasionally Rick came out with the short end of the stick, but not often. He’s got five street stock championships! No one else has more than two. Oh BTW Rick is sitting fourth in points, so don’t count him out just yet.
After being unceremoniously bounced around in her heat race, Courtney rallied and won her third feature of the year last Saturday night. I know we are all going to Speedway 660 to see the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour this Saturday night, but just in case you don’t already know it, the street stocks are also on the card!After attempting a pass on the outside and almost being forced into the beach, Courtney O’Blenis dove to the inside to go for the lead. She ended up being driven down into the infield in that heat race, but got the last laugh by winning the feature for the third time this year.
OK let’s talk tour. Four of twelve races have been completed. Cassius Clark and Dylan Blenkhorn have alternated wins. Cassius won both races at Scotia (May 21st and June 18th), while Dylan won at Riverside and Petty (June 11th and June 25th). Heading into this weekend, Clark has a 12 point lead over Blenkhorn. Defending champ Donald Chisholm is third in points while Craig Slaunwhite sits fourth. (Editors Note: come back to www.speedway660.com for a Conversation with Craig Slaunwhite later this week)
One year ago, Cole Butcher won the Cummins 100 at Speedway 660. There were only three short cautions during the entire race. Blenkhorn was second, while Darren MacKinnon drove home third. The top New Brunswicker was Steve Halpin who finished seventh. Cole Butcher won the Cummins 100 at Speedway 660 one year ago. Cole is currently fifth in points on the tour and is not only looking for his first win of 2016, but also an opportunity to move up in the championship point standings.
After our race, the tour takes a week off to allow drivers to get ready for the first of three big Pro Stock 250 races. They’ll head to Riverside for the IWK 250 on July 16th, before going to Halifax for the Cat 250 in mid August and several of the tour drivers will be back here for the SpeedWeekend 250 in early September.
But round five of the Parts for Trucks Pro Stock Tour is on everyone’s mind right now and it is on this weekend at 660. And BTW, the Fredericton Gun Shop Sharp Shooters are racing and the DMR Auto Sales Street Stocks will also be fired up this weekend. So it’s going to a race date not to miss for a variety of reasons!
We’ll see you at the races!