Varney, ON – Lloyd Ritchie (#62 Standing Arrow Smoke Shop/Orange Blossom Special Chevrolet) led each of the 25 laps at Varney Speedway Motorplex on Saturday night to claim the victory in a test event for the OSCAAR Super Late Models at Canada’s Fastest ¼-mile oval. After being the quickest in time trials with a lap of 12.316 seconds, Ritchie would start on the pole for the 25-lap event. Ritchie, who is running a limited 2012 schedule, was happy to know his car is still among the class of the field.
“It actually felt pretty good. I was pleasantly surprised. I thought she would slick up a little bit considering the tight turns, but it was pretty good actually,” said Ritchie. “I kind of found, especially in (turns) one and two, you had to come up a lane, about a car length. Just by watching (the OSCAAR Modifieds), you learn quite a bit from them.”
Seven Super Late Models were up for the challenge of tackling the tight, D-shaped ¼-mile and the chance to be crowned North America’s fastest Super Late Model. The current ¼-mile record for a ‘Super’ stands at 11.095 seconds, set in the early 1990’s at Slinger Speedway in Wisconsin by Tony Strupp. The record remains intact as many of the Super Late Model drivers were unfamiliar with Varney and ran the qualifying laps on used tires.
The 25-lap event would see the caution flag out twice, the first for Quinn Misener (#5 Jenco Equipment/Passer Racing Chevrolet) as the rookie looped around on the back stretch exiting the high-banked turn two on lap 3. On the restart, Todd Campbell (#07 Campbell’s Sanitation/Remax Chevrolet) pulled his outlaw to the pit area with some difficulties.
Caution would fly for the second time just before the half way mark as Chris Burrows (#64b Burrows Boyz Racing Chevrolet) spun in turn three, glancing off the outside wall. Fluid would leak down the track from the #64b, causing a lengthy delay.
Ritchie would pull away from the field on the final restart as Roy Passer (#27 Jenco Equipment/Passer Racing Chevrolet) was unable to challenge the ‘Orange Blossom Special’ for the lead despite trying to use the upper groove to his advantage.
“I saw the higher line with the Mods going out there. It looked like the line to run so I thought I’d try it. I was keeping with Lloyd for a while and he just had too much car for me at the end there,” said Passer.
The intent of the mini-feature for the Super Late Models was to have the drivers test Varney for the possibility of a full point’s event at the track in 2013. The top-two finishers believe the track can handle the event.
“I think it’s possible. I think if everybody uses their head right it’s possible. They’ve done a great job on the backstretch and there’s lot of room back there to do your thing,” explained Ritchie. “(It’s) fast, it didn’t take very long to get around here. Nice facility.”
All the drivers that were a part of the event are in the process of giving feedback to OSCAAR President Dave Gainforth. It will take an offseason of discussion and planning as to whether or not the Super Late Models will run a full event in 2013 at Varney Speedway Motorplex. For now, there are eight full points’ races remaining on the OSCAAR tour with the next event on the oval at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park on Saturday July 21.
By Clayton Johns (@cjohnsmedia)
Results: Varney Speedway Motorplex (Non-Points Event) July 14, 2012
1. #62 Lloyd Ritchie; 2. #27 RoyPasser; 3. #18 Bruce Gowland; 4. #42 Tyler Hawn; 5. #5 Quinn Misener; 6. #64b Chris Burrows; 7. #07 Todd Campbell.
Time Trial Results
1. #62 Lloyd Ritchie, 12.316 seconds; 2. #27 Roy Passer, 12.505; 3. #42 Tyler Hawn, 12.655; 4. #64b Chris Burrows, 12.816; 5. #07 Todd Campbell, 12.963; 6. #18 Bruce Gowland, 13.002; 7. #5 Quinn Misener, 13.185.