TOURING SERIES CHAMPIONS HONORED IN CHARLOTTE
Top Performers Of 2013
Celebrate At NASCAR Hall Of Fame
future was celebrated within the walls that houses
its history Saturday evening as seven champions in
NASCAR’s touring series were honored at the Night of
Champions Touring Awards at the Charlotte Convention
Center at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
The ceremony featured the champions representing
four different countries and top drivers from the
regional touring series in North America and Europe,
who gathered for the special year-end event.
The 2013 champions included Dylan Kwasniewski
(NASCAR K&N Pro Series East), Derek Thorn (NASCAR
K&N Pro Series West), Scott Steckly (NASCAR Canadian
Tire Series presented by Mobil 1), Rodrigo Peralta
(NASCAR Mexico Toyota Series), Ander Vilariño
(NASCAR Whelen Euro Series), Ryan Preece (NASCAR
Whelen Modified Tour) and George Brunnhoelzl III
(NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour).
· Kwasniewski, of Las
Vegas, at just 18 years of age continued his assault on the record books by
becoming the first driver to capture both K&N Pro Series East and K&N Pro
Series West titles.
· Thorn, of Lakeport, Calif., earned his first
NASCAR championship with three wins and 12 top-five finishes in 15 starts.
· Steckly, of Milverton, Ontario, Canada,
claimed his third series crown in six seasons on the power of four race
· Peralta, of Querétaro, Mexico, scored his
first series title in his first full season of competition.
· Vilariño, of San Sebastián, Spain, won his
second championship on the strength of seven victories.
· Preece, of Berlin, Conn., at 22, became the
youngest Whelen Modified Tour champion in its 29-year history.
· Brunnhoelzl, of West Babylon, N.Y., won his
third straight Whelen Southern Modified Tour title and fourth in five
“The drivers who graced the stage truly reflect the depth, talent and
diversity of NASCAR in the 21st century,” said George Silbermann, NASCAR
vice president, regional and touring series. “And the seven NASCAR champions
who were crowned embody the strength and future promise of our sport.”
Talented, young drivers have made their mark on each of the touring series
and many were on hand to collect many of the awards presented.
“There are a lot of young faces here tonight that you will probably be
seeing a lot more of in the future,” continued Silbermann. “They are the new
ambassadors of our sport – fearless and very talented on the racetrack and
eager to prove their mettle.”
In addition to the championship awards, each series rookie of the year was
honored. The Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award winners were Jesse Little in
the K&N Pro Series East, Dylan Lupton in the K&N Pro Series West, Cole
Powell in the Whelen Modified Tour and Luke Fleming in the Whelen Southern
Modified Tour. Top rookie performers in three international series were Alex
Guenette in the Canadian Tire Series, Santiago Tovar in Mexico’s Toyota
Series and Yann Zimmer in the Euro Series.
The Most Popular Driver Awards for each series were also presented during
the ceremony. The seven drivers honored with the prestigious award were Ben
Kennedy in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, Cameron Hayley of the NASCAR K&N
Pro Series West, Guenette in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, Pepe Montaño
of the NASCAR Mexico Toyota Series, Freddy Nordström from the NASCAR Whelen
Euro Series, Mike Stefanik from the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and Andy
Seuss from the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour. Montaño and Nordström
were repeat winners from a season ago.
The top-10 drivers and car owners from each of NASCAR’s touring series also
were recognized during the gala event – which featured Mike Joy, Dr. Dick
Berggren and Monica Palumbo from Fox Sports as co-hosts. The musical
entertainment was provided by 3 Doors Down front man Brad Arnold. The awards
ceremony was streamed live online at NASCARHomeTracks.com – the official
online home of NASCAR’s touring series – in English, French and Spanish.
The celebration capped a week of festivities in the Charlotte area aimed at
providing the top drivers and track operators in NASCAR’s weekly and touring
series an up close and personal look at the hub of stock-car racing. The
NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Awards Banquet on Friday honored champions
from across North America in the series that is NASCAR’s grassroots
Source: Jason Christley / NASCAR