Mohawk International Raceway
Frank grabs first WoO heat of season at Mohawk
By Kevin KovacWorld of Outlaws Late Model Series
AKWESASNE, N.Y. (Aug. 20) — Chub Frank wouldn’t use the word “confident” to describe his feelings about Saturday night’s $20,000-to-win Battle At Eastern Door at Mohawk International Raceway after setting fast time and winning a 12-lap heat race during Friday’s qualifying program. But the 48-year-old veteran from Bear Lake, Pa., certainly likes his chances in the inaugural 100-lap World of Outlaws Late Model Series spectacular.
“I’m optimistic,” said Frank, who earned his first fast-time honor (a track record of 15.764 seconds) and heat victory of the 2010 WoO campaign. “If we can get the car right, we can win the race. If we don’t, somebody else will — that’s the bottom line. I wanna win it bad. I could use that 20 grand – and we’re due.”
Indeed, Frank is riding a 44-race winless streak on the tour that has reached almost exactly one year. His last triumph came on Aug. 22, 2009, at K-C Raceway in Alma, Ohio, ironically, in a 100-lap event that also paid $20,000 to win.
Frank, who has just five top-five finishes in 36 tour events this season and sits ninth in the points standings, will start Saturday’s 100-lapper from a position in the first three rows. He will join Rick Eckert of York, Pa., and Darrell Lanigan of Union, Ky. — Friday’s other heat-race winners — and prelim runners-up Ricky Elliott of Seaford, Del., Tim McCreadie of Watertown, N.Y., and Tim Fuller of Watertown, N.Y., in a redraw for the top-six spots on Saturday night at the 4/10-mile oval.
“It’s going to be interesting,” Frank said. “Nobody knows what to expect with a hundred laps here. Right now it feels like you can race all over (the track), but picking the right tire is gonna be the key.”
Frank does have a good feeling about his ride for the weekend, the same Rocket Chassis he flipped on July 30 at Attica (Ohio) Raceway Park. It’s a former Gregg Satterlee-driven machine that Frank purchased from western Pennsylvania racer Bob Close and brought out last month.
“The car really drives good,” said Frank, who repaired the damaged car during the recent break from WoO action and bolted a freshened Custom engine in it on Tuesday. “I got in it last night (at New York’s Rolling Wheels Raceway) for the first time since we flipped it and it felt good (he finished seventh), so now it’s a matter of tuning on it a little more and getting it right.”
Frank’s pit stall was a beehive of activity throughout Friday’s program. There were three cars sporting his familiar No. 1* and colors, including his backup machine that was driven by Mohawk International Raceway 358 modified regular Carey Terrance of Hogansburg, N.Y., and a third mount run by Peter Mantha Jr. of Gatineau, Que., who owns the car but allows Frank to maintain it and use it as another backup. Terrance and Mantha failed to qualify through the heats and will compete in Saturday’s B-Main.
Another 358 modified driver at Mohawk, Roy Tarbell of Hogansburg, N.Y., finished fifth in the third heat to transfer to the A-Main in a car fielded by WoO regular Clint Smith of Senoia, Ga.
Action will continue Saturday with the WoO consolation race and the 100-lap Battle at Eastern Door, which will boast a 24-car starting field and a total purse of nearly $100,000. A 50-lap Mr. DIRTcar Pro Stock Series event and Mohawk’s Bandit division will also be on Saturday night’s agenda.
Friday's heat races
(12 laps; six transfer to main event)
First heat: Chub Frank, Ricky Elliott, Steve Francis, Josh Richards, Clint Smith, Ron Davies, Carey Terrance, Gregg Satterlee. Scratched: Jeff Isabell.
Second heat: Rick Eckert, Tim McCreadie, Austin Hubbard, Shane Clanton, Larry Wight, Russ King, Dan Stone, Peter Mantha, Michael Trapp.
Third heat: Darrell Lanigan, Tim Fuller, Billy Decker, Vic Coffey, Roy Tarbell, Boom Briggs, Jill George. Scratched: Alan Fink.