The Chrome Horn News



   Last weekend Erick Rudolph and the DeLange Racing team headed west for their inaugural visit to the Buckeye State at Mansfield Motorsports Park in Mansfield, Ohio. The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour was running the Whelen 150 as part of a doubleheader program that also included the NASCAR Camping World Series East. It was a prime opportunity for the teenage racer to get some valuable exposure and as usual, "The Kid" was equal to the task at hand.
   Erick and the crew had the #45 Original Pizza Logs/PrimeTyme Motorsports/Brigham Concrete Modified out for some early practice by mid-morning and made the most of that valuable period. When it was time for qualifying Rudolph turned a very impressive lap that would place him 15th on the starting grid for the feature. After that the team made some final adjustments during the Camping World feature and prepared for the forthcoming battle. Finally it was time to go racing.
   Early in the 150-lap main Rudolph narrowly escaped disaster as the field got jammed up. Some minor damage was sustained but the crew made some quick repairs on pit road and sent the #45 back out. Erick drove a smart, steady race over the remaining distance and came away with solid seventh place finish, his best career NASCAR Tour finish to date.
   "Early in the race some cars got together up ahead," explained Rudolph. "Things happen fast here and I was on the brakes hard, but I couldn't stop in time and bounced off a few cars and then had a trip through the (track) apron. The engine temperature climbed pretty high after that and even though it came down some it was still in the back of my mind all race whether the motor was going to hold out or not. I could tell I was a little down on power because it was so hot. But it stayed where it was and it seemed the longer we raced the car was getting faster and faster.
   "This was our best finish on the Tour so far and I felt this was our best race. We had a good strategy going into the race and the crew had a good pit stop. I just had to wheel it hard. We were definitely competitive tonight. Every race we run on the Tour I get more used to the procedures. The big adjustment is in qualifying and we're getting better each time."
   After the race, the DeLange crew headed back home to compete at Dunn Tire Raceway Park on Sunday afternoon. A busy program was to include a 100-lap Race of Champions Modified Tour feature along with two 50-lap SST Sportsman features. Unfortunately Mother Nature intervened once again and washed out the program immediately after the Modified feature ended. Erick was able to garner a steady second place finish. No word as yet has been given by the speedway as to when the leftover races will be rescheduled.
   This weekend the DeLange team has a fairly tranquil timetable planned. The only racing scheduled is a 125-lap Race of Champions Modified Tour event on Saturday, part of the famed 52nd annual Budweiser Classic Week at Oswego Speedway. After that a busy month of September is on the horizon. The 2008 racing season is headed into the stretch drive.


Source: Bruce Boucher / DeLange Racing PR
Posted: August 26, 2008

2008 GeeLaw Motorsports/Wolf Pack Ventures, Inc.