How Did Project Bomber Perform
Try as he might, Busch couldn't...
Try as he might, Busch couldn't get by Kimmel and settled for Second. Kimmel, an up and coming racer, lays down a smokey victory burnout for the fans in the stands.
Of course, the biggest question on our minds here at CT was what Busch thought of our little project. "It was great," he said. "The car was aero loose the whole time, the wicker provides a lot of down force ahead of the windshield, but makes lift behind. Most people would think, 'What fun is that to run a Street Stock?' I must say the package of aero and hard tires makes you really have to drive the cars. Frank has a really good concept; it puts the driver back into the racing. You have to be on your toes and bring good stuff to run all day. My car was very well built; it had safety as the major focus and reliability as the key ingredient. We only had one problem. About 20 to go, the engine started to misfire, a burnt plug wire boot is what we found, but it still came home in Second.
"Racing Rockingham was as much fun as it always was," said Busch. "There were all the lanes to choose from. We worked the low groove and the high groove. This place is so fun with the bumps and quirks. This racetrack, for sure, gets a gold star. Guys in our series (Sprint Cup) who are car guys-who are racers-should definitely be down here racing."
Will Kimmel celebrates his...
Will Kimmel celebrates his win in Rockingham's Victory Lane.
The Impact That quote from Busch says it all. And for the Series founder to have Busch race in the Polar Bear was a big deal. "It was huge," said Frank Kimmel. "I felt privileged that he came and raced with us. It was really big for the competitors. That somebody of his stature came to race gives us so much credibility.
Not only that, but Kimmel says that Busch fit right in with the Street Stockers. "He was genuinely happy to be there, happy to work on the cars. I couldn't imagine anybody better to race with us. Everybody he came in contact with said how gracious he was; what a cool guy. I'll tell you, Kurt Busch just gained a lot more fans."
Busch's positive experience at the Polar Bear begs the question: Is Kimmel going to encourage other Cup guys to come race the Street Stock Nationals? "I think we could have more guys come race with us, especially if their schedules allow. You know, Kurt came down and had success and he enjoyed himself. So, I could see the message getting out to other Cup guys about what we are doing here.
The Rock Opens Up
Your eyes don't deceive you,...
Your eyes don't deceive you, that's an open-wheel Modified taking a lap at Rockingham. Track owner Andy Hillenburg had the cars put on a special exhibition prior to the race. Makes you think doesn't it?
Before the cars of the Frank Kimmel Street Stock Nationals (FKSSN) took the green flag for the Polar Bear 150, race fans in attendance and drivers alike got to witness something truly unique to the 1-mile oval. Track owner Andy Hillenburg arranged for a special exhibition of open-wheeled Modifieds prior to the green flag of the Polar Bear 150.
Although readers of this magazine are surely familiar with the pavement open-wheel Mod, fans likely recognized them as the cars raced at Bowman-Gray Stadium featured in the History Channel show Mad House.
"The Modifieds are just such cool race cars and have such a tremendous cult following. We've had some tests on the track and the cars handle well here," said Rockingham Speedway President Andy Hillenburg. "The exhibition before the Polar Bear will be something new for our race fans and, who knows, the Modifieds could find themselves on Rockingham Speedway's schedule for 2011 and beyond."
The thought of Mods racing around Rock's 1.1-mile oval is tantalizing to say the least.