The Frontstretch: Tearing Apart the Trucks : Modified Drivers Make Their Debuts by Beth Lunkenheimer -- Friday October 23, 2009

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Tearing Apart the Trucks : Modified Drivers Make Their Debuts

Beth Lunkenheimer · Friday October 23, 2009


After a three week hiatus, the Camping World Truck Series is back in action this weekend at Martinsville Speedway. Ron Hornaday, Jr. has been the team to beat all season, and unless disaster strikes, the No. 33 team is on the way to the Truck Series banquet in December. Meanwhile, a few drivers hope to make their Truck Series debuts this weekend at Martinsville Speedway.

Tim Brown, a seven-time Bowman Gray Stadium Champion was the first driver announced to make his debut at Martinsville Speedway. Brown will pilot the No. 08 Chevrolet for SS Green Light Racing with technical support from Rick Ware Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing. From 2006 until 2008, the 38 year old driver finished runner up in the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour. Tim Brown currently works as a suspension specialist for Michael Waltrip Racing.

Tim Brown, a native of Cana, VA started driving in the modified series in 1991. 14 years after his debut, Brown became only the third driver to win three consecutive championships at Bowman Gray Stadium. The last driver to accomplish that feat was Ralph Brinkley who was champion from 1980 through 1982.

Mike Skinner will make his 200th career Camping world Truck Series start on Saturday at Martinsville Speedway.

As a teammate to Tim Brown, Whelen Southern Modified Series driver Burt Myers will be making his series debut this weekend. The 33 year old driver broke the record for youngest driver ever to win a Bowman Gray Stadium title since his great uncle Bobby did it 55 years earlier. Burt Myers was just 23 years old in 1999 when he won his first of three titles at the track, breaking the previous record by two years; his other two championships came in 2001 and 2007.

Burt Myers has found success at Martinsville Speedway before. Last September, Myers won the America Whelen 300 at the 0.526 mile paperclip when the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour celebrated its 500th race. NASCAR later disqualified Myers after his car was found to be in violation of the rules because his transmission gear was not within the specified limits of the rule book. Ryan Preece was awarded the win after Myers was dropped to a 43rd place finish.

Just like anyone else on the track, Burt Myers wants to win, but he knows right now that proving his ability is much more important.

“I’m an old school racer who wants to win every time I get behind the wheel, but I know I need to prove myself first,” Myers said. “The goal for this week is to finish all the laps with all four fenders on the truck and position myself to move up. The SS Green Light team has some good equipment, and I plan to show that I can compete at this level.”

In addition to the two modified drivers making their debuts, NASCAR Canadian Tire Series driver Derek White will also attempt to qualify for the Kroger 200. He will pilot the No. 12 DGM Racing Chevrolet with sponsorship from O.C.R. Gaz Bar, a full service gas and convenience store in his region.

It’s always nice to see a new name on the entry list, and to see three new names in one week is encouraging considering the struggles teams have seen this season in scoring sponsorship dollars. Here’s hoping Tim Brown, Burt Myers and Derek White catch the eyes of a sponsor so they can continue to race in the series.

Did You Know…

  • Mike Skinner will make his 200th career Camping World Truck Series start Saturday afternoon at Martinsville Speedway? Skinner has three wins this season and currently sits third in the points standings, 255 points behind leader Ron Hornaday, Jr.
  • Denny Hamlin will pilot the No. 51 Miccosukee Resorts / Graceway Pharmaceuticals Toyota for Billy Ballew Motorsports at Martinsville? Kyle Busch, the regular fill-in driver for the No. 51 will be at Memphis Motorsports Park Saturday afternoon and will be unable to run the Truck Series race at Martinsville.
  • Ron Hornaday, Jr. is winless at Martinsville Speedway in 14 starts at the 0.526 mile paperclip? The driver of the No. 33 Longhorn Chevrolet ran out of fuel in this race last season while leading late in the running and finished runner up to his boss, Kevin Harvick, earlier this season.
  • Nationwide Series driver Peyton Sellars will be running the Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway? The Danville, VA native will pilot the No. 17 Premier Racing Toyota with Jason Overstreet as his crew chief.

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