.Teams and Drivers,
Submit your FREE profile
 for 2010
   The Chrome Horn - Valenti Modified Racing Series




When the Modified Racing Series made their first visit of the 2011 season to Stafford in June, Dave Etheridge had one of the strongest cars and looked to be a contender for victory. Then the rain forced the race to be resumed in August and Etheridge fought his way to a 10th place finish. When the MRS comes back to Stafford next Friday night, Sept. 9 for the Shark Cycle 80, Etheridge will be looking to repeat his June performance and be a contender for the checkered flag.

“I don’t know if it was the weather difference or what,” said Etheridge. “That first time around in June, it seemed like it was going to be our night. Then when we came back the second time and it seemed like everyone picked up a little bit and we didn’t pick up. That first night was a bit cloudy and overcast with cooler temperatures, and the second time around it was a nice hot night, and Stafford is a temperature sensitive track. I honestly believe we can win the race, I have a lot of laps at Stafford and it’s a bit of an advantage to have laps at Stafford.”

A key to performing well in the Shark Cycle 80 will be a good starting position. The Modified Racing Series has a unique qualifying format where the driver who passes the most cars and finishes in a qualified position in the heat race will start on the pole, and Etheridge says that makes the race more interesting for the drivers and the fans.

“It used to be you wanted to draw a low number so you could start up front,” said Etheridge. “The way the format is now, you want to draw a higher number and then pass as many cars as you can in the heat to start the feature up front. Last time we were here, Keith [Rocco] started the race from the pole and he was able to dictate the pace for most of the race. It definitely makes the racing more exciting and our plan is to start off where we were with the car setup and see how the weather is and go from there.” Etheridge had a very strong car in the MRS’ first visit to Stafford.

Etheridge passed three cars in his heat race, which put him on the front row next to Keith Rocco for the 80-lap feature. Etheridge led several laps in the June segment before falling back to a 10th place finish in the August segment. With the experience he gained in those two visits to Stafford, plus a new SPAFCO car, Etheridge likes his chances.

“We’re working on a new SPAFCO car with Ken Barry and we’re slowly getting there with the car,” said Etheridge. “We’re still a little shy of making big changes for the feature, but we have a good baseline to come back to Stafford with. Our main concern the first race was having the car fast enough to qualify for the feature. Kenny has been great to work with and now we just have to work on fine-tuning the car so it is good on the long run because you want the car to be the best from lap-40 to lap-80. We aren’t able to put new tires on the car until we go out for the heat race, so during practice we’ll try to dial the car in the best we can because that will be what the car feels like at the end of 80 laps on older tires.”

Tickets for the Shark Cycle MRS 80 event at Stafford Motor Speedway are on sale now and are priced at $25.00 for Adult General Admission, $5.00 for Children Ages 6-14 General Admission, and $28.00 for Reserved Seating. Tickets can be ordered by calling the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at 860-684-2783, or tickets can be purchased the night of the show at the gate.

For more information, contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at
860-684-2783 or visit us on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.

Source: Scott Running / Stafford Motor Speedway
Posted: September 2, 2011

©2011 GeeLaw Motorsports/Wolf Pack Ventures, Inc.