Weekly Report (17 Sept 2018)

Once again my week started with various visits to the medics, but by Thursday (13 Sept)  all the appointments were over and had the Mohawk Nationals to look forward to at the weekend.

It’s always good when I have a big event happening on my door step.

The Mohawk International Raceway is just one mile from my house, on the other side of the St Lawrence Seaway, and the weather forecast for this years event looked great. It was the second week in September and it felt like the second week of July. 

Since the Nationals started a few years ago we’ve never had a warm one like this.

I went over on Friday afternoon with my good friend Chantal Lesage, who’s dad ‘Tech man’ Ted, was already over there and parked up with his camping trailer.

We got there early enough to relax at the track before things got busy.

It was baking hot and once I’d signed in I took shelter from the sun in the Tech Shed.

It was so different from the past Mohawk Nationals when I’d been sheltering there from the rain.

Friday nights racing consisted of DirtCar Series races for 358 Modifieds and Pro Stocks, with Sportsman and Mod Lites as the back up divisions.

After my usual chats and wander around the pits I joined my regular ‘Tog buddies’ at the MIR, Don Simpson and Hilary Jacobs.

Hilary does some great pics from her wheel chair as she travels around the pits.

After listening to the drivers meeting I took a few pics of the warm ups from the back straight before moving to my regular spot on turn four.

The first of the features was for the Mod Lites, which was won by Jeff May and that  took place before the intermission.

After a long break for track prep the headline event of the night, the 358 DirtCar Series race took to the track.

It was good to see Big Block driver , Justin Haers behind the wheel of the # 11 Small Block.

It  proved to be a good one where longtime leader Matt Williamson got overhauled late in the race by track champion Tim Fuller.

This was a record breaking 9th win of the year at the M.I.R. for Fuller.

The Sportsman feature was up next which turned out to be a popular win for local lad,  Thomas Cook, grandson of the legendary ‘Mohawk Expess’, Billy Cook.

We managed to get a nice picture of Thomas, Billy, his mother July and girlfriend Elizabeth.

By now it was after mid night as the Pro Stocks came out for there series race.

This  looked like C.d Beauchamp was going to make it two in a row, following last weeks Series win at Airborne, but after a spin out in the final laps it rewarded long time challenger Sid Harmer Jnr the checkers.

Stephane Lebrun was runner up.

By now it was nearly 1-30 am,  so after the Victory Lane shots werdone, I was back over the bridge and back home.

After a good long sleep , I was ready to return to the track after lunch on Saturday.

On arrival, I met up with Chanty , Ted and Jeannie at the camper before we  wandered back to the Tech area.

Once again we based ourselves at the Tech Shed, until things started happening .


The DirtCar Trailer which acts as an operations center at the Super Dirtcar Series, had parked along side , so there were plenty of friends among the officials to chat with.


We soon met up with our good friend Dean Reynolds, who has just landed the job of DirtCar Series Director, and will be taking over from the retiring Mike Perrotte at the end of the year.

Headline event of the day , was the Super DirtCar Series race for the Big Block Mods and there was a series race for the Sportsman too, for the Pete Mitchell Memorial Trophy.

The Vintage Mods were also there as support along with the Mod Lites once again .


After the drivers meeting I had a great idea for some different pictures.

The extra race cars in attendance meant the pit parking had overflowed to the area at the back of turn three and four. Eric Gouvreau , father of Cedric Gauvreau had parked their team hauler there, and the roof looked like the perfect spot to take some hot lap pics.

I asked Eric if it was OK, and he willingly obliged.

I got a few pics from up there , then moved to my usual spot on the middle.

Tim Fuller was there racing the same 358 powered car that he won in the previous night, and it was obvious it could hold its own against the Big Blocks.

At the redraw , it was Eric Rudolph who got the pole.

The 100 lap SDS race was the first of the Features, where Eric Rudolph, Jimmy Phelps, Matt Williamson and Ryan Arbuthnott were the early pace setters.

Mohawk International Raceway NY 15 Sept 2018 www.rickattheraces.com

Meanwhile ,  Fuller in his small block was gradually reeling them in, and like the night before, it came down to him and Williamson.

At the checkers it was Fuller, followed by Williamson and Billy Dunn in third

The 100 lap Sportsman race was up next and this one took a long time to run.

There was a mid race, controlled pit stop on the front stretch midway,  then there were two serious wrecks. Luckily all drivers were OK.

The first big wreck was on the front stretch and involved the rolling Bucko Branham , Ricky Thompson and Junior Delormier.

Martin Pelletier had held the lead for most of the race and actually went on to win, following the second of the big wrecks on the final lap. 

As he was challenged for the lead by Dave Marcuccili the two cars came together, with Marcuccilli coming off worse, and taking out a number of innocent victims. One of which was Brianna Ladouceur who flipped over.

Time was getting on a bit, but I stayed on , for the Vintage Feature that was won by Kenny Polite.

It had gone mid night, so I left before the last race, which was the Mod Lite feature that gave Jeff May another win.

After the short drive home , I switched on to Face Book , and caught up with other racing events that mean a lot to me.

Firstly , in Austin, Texas, my six year old grandson, Benji  got behind the wheel of a Go Kart for the first time in one of the cities parks.

Watch Out Lewis Hamilton, a challenger is on the way.

Next bit of news was from England , that Stuart Smith Jr had won the BriSCA F1 World Final at the Skegness Stadium  ,

Congrats to Stewart

My racing week was concluded, laying on my couch on Sunday morning watching the Singapore F1 Grand Prix live on TV.  It was yet another win for Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes,