Team press release
SASKATOON, SK Ã¢â‚¬â€œ July 28, 2011 Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Mark Dilley wrapped up the NASCAR Canadian Tire SeriesÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ two-race swing through western Canada with his second consecutive fifth-place finish. The driver of the No. 9 Leland / PartSource / Rheem/ Farwell Racing Dodge Challenger SRT started 12th in Wednesday nightÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Velocity Prairie Thunder at SaskatoonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Auto Clearing Motor Speedway but came on strong in the race to score another solid result.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We had problems during practice and we made a lot of changes for qualifying,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Dilley, of the teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s adventures at the 1/3-mile Saskatchewan oval. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We were looking for a setup for the long runs and we were scrambling a bit. The guys were throwing everything they had at it, but it worked out well. The guys changed the sway bar four times and the rear springs twice; just really worked hard.Ã¢â‚¬Â
It was the second race in a row that the No. 9 Dodge crew came through with a strong setup that permitted the Barrie, Ontario racer to earn a top-five finish. In fact, if it werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t for a late-race caution, Dilley felt he could have done even better.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“In the end, the car was excellent on the long runs. I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t want to see the caution flag with 10 [laps] to go, I wanted to keep on going because we were gaining on the guys ahead of us. Once the car got rolling and we got 10 laps on it, it would Ã¢â‚¬Ëœfree upÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ and it was good.Ã¢â‚¬Â
In Vernon, BC, just days earlier, the crew fought throughout the race to find a working setup on their car. But in Saskatoon, they got it right prior to the green flag, after struggling in practice. Dilley continued, Ã¢â‚¬Å“The car was good pretty much from the start of the race so we didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have to make any drastic changes during our pit stops, because we worked most of it out before the first green flag.Ã¢â‚¬Â
The No. 9 Leland / PartSource / Rheem Dodge team was able to stick to their strategy in the 250-lap race. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We stopped around lap 90 for fuel and some adjustments and then again around lap 170 for tires,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Dilley. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We came out around eighth after the second stop and progressed from there. As the race went on and we had some good long runs, we got better and better and we were kind of picking them off. But then the caution came out with 10 to go and that hurt us a bit. The car tightened up and that slowed us downÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ but we made it to fifth.Ã¢â‚¬Â
During practice for the race at Auto Clearing Motor Speedway, Dilley was 11th-fastest of the 21 competitors. He qualified 12th with a lap of 14.984 seconds (80.005 mph). But Dilley was smiling after the race. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Two fifth-place finishes arenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t bad for the western swing, so weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re pretty happy with that.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Following Race #7 of the 12-event 2011 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series season, Dilley is sixth overall in the points chase, which is led by Scott Steckly, who was involved in an early-race incident in Saskatoon, that dropped him to 20th in the final results. The Velocity Prairie Thunder was won by Peter Shepherd who made a thrilling last-lap pass on reigning series champion DJ Kennington. Five-time Canadian national stock car champ Don Thomson Jr. completed the podium sweep for the Dodge contingent.
The Velocity Prairie Thunder from SaskatoonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Auto Clearing Speedway will air on TSN on Saturday, August 6 at 1 p.m. ET. The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series returns to the track on Sunday, August 7, in Quebec, for the Grand Prix de Trois-RiviÃƒÂ¨res. The GP3R 100 is the first of two consecutive road course events in that province.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We are looking forward to going to Trois-RiviÃƒÂ¨res because weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re pretty confident we can keep our road course momentum going,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Dilley, who guided the No. 9 Leland / PartSource / Rheem / Exide / Sylvania / Castrol Dodge to a sixth-place finish in the NASCAR race held during the recent Toronto IndyCar weekend. Ã¢â‚¬Å“If we can come out of the swing through La Province du Quebec with two more fifth-place finishes Ã¢â‚¬â€œ like we got in western Canada Ã¢â‚¬â€œ I would be happy with those road course results.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Mark Dilley is supported by: PartSource, Rheem Canada, Leland Industries, Exide Batteries, Sylvania and Castrol.
For more information on the NASCAR Canadian Tire series please visit www.nascarlocalracing.com
For more information on Mark Dilley please contact: Linda Jones // Wide Open Motorsport Solutions // (705) 730-4044 // Email: email@example.com
Photo by Perry Nelson