THE WAY TO THOMPSON’S ICEBREAKER
This weekend’s ICEBREAKER at the Thompson International Speedway will be day
one for champions to begin the defense of their titles. With seven NASCAR
Whelen sponsored divisions in competition at the ICEBREAKER, the 2008 champ
in each division will be under a lot of pressure to remain at the top.
NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (WMT) champion, Ted Christopher, will
lead his touring division into the 150-lap main event that will open their
season. Christopher is no stranger to victory lane on ICEBREAKER weekend
having scored back-to-back wins ’04 and ’05. Christopher was recently chosen
by members of the media as their choice to be the 2009 WMT champion.
Kerry Malone, Thompson’s 2008 Sunoco Modified title holder, will
return to defend his crown against some extremely tough competition. Malone
will once again face challenges from drivers like Danny Cates, Jimmy
Blewett, Tommy Cravenho, Todd Ceravolo, Keith Rocco and Woody Pitkat.
Another key player in this year’s Sunoco Modified competition will be the
return of Ted Christopher to weekly competition at Thompson.
The Super Late Model division, formerly known as Pro Stocks, also
has a large contingent of contenders for a front row table at the annual
awards banquet. Veteran Fred Astle, Jr will once again be behind the wheel
of the Rollie Lindblad # 48 and will be looking to repeat as the division
champion. Like with all of the NASCAR Whelen All American Series divisions
at Thompson, Astle faces stiff competition from Jay Macedonio, Michael
O’Sullivan, Norman Wrenn, Derek Ramstrom and more.
Glenn Boss, Leo Oliveira, R.J. Marcotte, Brian Tagg and Brian
Sullivan will all be busy trying to replace Kurt Vigeant as a two-time
Thompson Modified champ. The Late Model division’s top gun, Jeff Zuidema,
will once again be faced with a challenge he met in 2006 and 2007. Those
were back-to-back title years for Zuidema in the Super Late Model division.
He will open his 2009 Late Model run trying to duplicate that accomplishment
in a Late Model. A host of tough competitors will be on board also reaching
for the brass ring. They include Marc Palmisano, Rick Gentes, Conrad Cote
and Mark Jenison.
One of the most exciting NASCAR Whelen All American Series
divisions at Thompson is the Limited Sportsman class. Scott Sundeen, by a
slim margin, edged out Ed Puleo for the title last year. Both competitors
will be looking for a good run in the ICEBREAKER. Scott Sundeen and son Jay
provided exciting family competition within the division. This year another
Sundeen, Nick, will join his brother and dad as a Limited Sportsman driver
at Thomson. Add names like Joe Arena, Larry Barnett, Jesse Gleason, Ernie
LaRose and many more and you have one of the most exciting feature events
each and every week.
They may be small. But, they are exciting and fast. Thompson’s Mini
Stocks thrill fans every time they line up for their main event. Last years
champ, Danny Field kicked off his season with a visit to victory lane on
ICEBREAKER weekend and held on to edge defending champ Mike Romano in the
final race of the year. Shane, Steve and Scott Michalski along with Chuck
Rogers, Billy Pomposelli and many more are all top runners and any of these
drives, and others, are contenders for a victory lane visit.
In short, 2009 looks like an extremely competitive year in all six
of Thompson’s NASCAR Whelen All American Series divisions. They will all
play a major role in the ICEBREAKER excitement and will once again be fan
favorites once Thompson’s Thursday Night Thompson Thunder weekly schedule
gets underway in May.
Grandstands open at 9:30 AM on both this Saturday and Sunday
morning. Qualifying begins at 1:30 PM on Saturday. Upon completion of
qualifying events, the Sunoco Modifieds and the Late Models will run feature
events. Sunday’s activity begins shortly after 11:30 AM with pre-race
ceremonies and the action, including the big WMT autograph session, begins
at 12 Noon.
For more information on ICEBREAKER ’09, visit the Thompson
International Speedway’s web site at
www.thompsonspeedway.com Fans may also call the track office at
Source: Russ Dowd
/ Thompson International Speedway