PHELPS FINDS SUCCESS WITH LATEST SUPER DIRTCAR SERIES WIN IN CANADA
CORNWALL, ONT ( August 23, 2009) Powered by VP’s C12 racing fuel, Jimmy Phelps ended a year-long drought Sunday night as he captured his first Super DIRTcar Series victory of the season in the headline Akwesasne Mohawk Casino International 100 at Cornwall Motor Speedway. Competition in Canada has been kind to the Baldwinsville, NY driver as his last tour triumph was scored at Merrittville (Ont.) Speedway in August of 2008. Career series win number five is just the third win taken anywhere this season for last year’s runner-up in the overall Hoosier Tire-VP Racing Fuels Mr. DIRTcar Championship point standings.
“Man, we needed this (win), we’ve been so up and down all year with trying to find some consistency,” stated Phelps, 34, who holds down third in the current Mr. DIRTcar points chase behind leader Brett Hearn and hot shot Matt Sheppard. “We were real balanced tonight and things seemed to go in our favor.”
“These guys built this new car about three weeks ago and we had only around 4-5 races on it. The thing has been awesome right out of the box. Can’t thank the guys at Troyer enough, certainly can’t thank Curt for the job he does keeping it bolted together tight because tonight it really needed it. The track was awfully demanding tonight, fortunately these guys put a good car under me that I knew would make it to the end,” noted Phelps, who was one of 11 drivers to complete the entire 100 lap distance, with only three more cars taking the checkered flag.
Closest in pursuit at the line were popular Frenchman Pierre Dagenais and veteran New Yorker Danny Johnson, followed by Hearn, defending race winner Gary Tomkins and Sheppard. Reigning Mr. DIRTcar points king Billy Decker was the last to be scored on the lead lap after a late-race flat tire knocked him out of the top-three.
Plenty of rain from the day before and the forecast of more on raceday put track owner Ron Morin on the look-out all evening as the heavy quarter-miler was as treacherous as it was fast, making the century grind a battle of attrition as much as it was a struggle to keep up with the leaders throughout. Phelps took advantage of flat tires by Hearn and Decker to first inherit then hold on to the lead en route to the $6,000 victory, easily his biggest of the year steering the H&H Motorsports no. 98H Mohawk N.E.-New England Race Fuels-Joe Gibbs Racing Oil/Troyer machine.
“We were able to take advantage of guys that were real tight and pushing, and also good enough to get by those that were free and loose. The bottom line is we caught some breaks and just had a real good race car to be around when it counted. Fortunately, we got a yellow (flag) here and there to take a breather. It would’ve been a question mark whether we could’ve made it to the end so I’m just real happy right now for everybody involved,” Phelps pointed out.