On the heels of a career best CARS Tour performance at Hickory Motor Speedway, Mini Tyrrell and the #81 Mini T's Fastest Grease In The East team head to their home track for this weekend's Radley Chevrolet 125 at Dominion Raceway in Thornburg, Va. with a major spring in their step.
"I can't wait to go run my home track," said Mini. "It's definitely one of my favorite places." Mini captured his first pole position on the CARS Tour on August 1 at Hickory. He followed that up with a career best 3rd place finish in the race. After 3 DNF's in as many races to begin the season, the effort at Hickory brings the team home with momentum and confidence for Saturday's night race.
"Our team did an amazing job at Hickory," said Mini. "Qualifying on the pole and finishing 3rd was a huge boost in confidence for all of us. I think we have a car that's more than capable of winning. We just have to get it done."
Despite the 3 DNF's, an area where Mini and the #81 team have thrived in 2020 has been in qualifying. Through four races, Mini's average starting spot is 7.2 -- including consecutive starts in the top-5 -- which is 4th best among the drivers who've started all 4 CARS Tour races.
The Manassas, Va. native has made his mark throughout the Commonwealth from his early days at Old Dominion Speedway, Capital City Speedway and King George Speedway, to his formative Late Model years at Shenandoah Speedway, through his visits with the CARS Tour to Dominion Raceway. During last year's pre-race Fan Fest at Dominion, hundreds of friends and family crowded near Mini's #81 Chevrolet to greet the driver.
Although COVID-19 concerns have canceled the pre-race Fan Fest for this weekend, the loudest cheers emanating from the grandstands and suites will likely be for the region's native son.
● Event: CARS Tour Late Model (125 laps / 50 miles)
● Date/Time: August 8. Green flag: Approx 7:30 pm/et
● Location: Dominion Raceway. Thornburg, Va.
● Layout: .4-mile oval.
14 degree banking - corners
9 degree banking - straightaways
The #81 Mini T's Fastest Grease In The East Late Model will have a white/red paint scheme at Dominion. Mini will drive the same chassis that he drove at Ace Speedway in June. He was running in the top-10 before brakes failure ended his night on lap 72.
Among the drivers entered for Saturday's CARS Tour race is Grayson Cullather in the #22 car. Grayson has served as a mechanic on Mini's race team for the past two years. Suffice to say, Mini is hoping for a 1-2 finish with Grayson (in tow)!
Mini moved from 25th to 18th in the CARS Tour points standings following the 3rd place finish at Hickory. He is 24 points outside of the top-10 in the standings. It will certainly require consistent finishes to join that exclusive club, but after the struggles of the first 3 races, there are rays of optimism on the horizon.
Mini posted season-best efforts with a 3rd place qualifying effort and a strong 4th place race result. It was his first top-5 finish on the CARS Tour.
FRIENDS OF JACLYN FOUNDATION RAFFLE:
Be sure to check out the raffle for the #81 pedal car benefiting the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation. Tickets are $5/each and limited to 500. Every dollar supports the mission of the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation to brighten the lives of children and families impacted by cancer. Mini and his race team have been steadfast FOJ supporters for the last 2 years.
THANK YOU TO OUR PARTNERS:
Mini and the #81 team are thankful for support from Convenience Tire and Auto, Weber Rector Commercial Real Estate Services, Absolutely Amish Structures, and Friends of Jaclyn Foundation. Thank you Rayvon Clark/Clark's Automotive Race Engines and Hedgecock Racing Enterprises for your support.
MINI'S ON-TRACK SCHEDULE:
Friday, August 7
Practice: 4:30-5:30 pm, 5:45-6:15 pm, 6:30-7:00 pm
Saturday, August 8
Practice: 2:30-3:00 pm, 3:15-3:45 pm
Qualifying: 6:30 pm
Green flag: Approx 7:30 pm
Gear up with Mini's merchandise from Black Acid Apparel. T-shirts, hats, and tank tops are the perfect way to show your support for Mini and the #81 team.