Waterbury, VT – Three years ago the American Canadian Tour (ACT) introduced a Ford crate engine option to their racing program. The goal was to give the Late Model teams some variety, and hopefully make the racing more exciting for the fans, many of whom are die hard Ford fans.
Many of the top teams in ACT elected to switch from the Chevrolet crate program, which had been the mainstay of ACT racing since it was developed in 1999. After a couple of years of ‘tweaking’ the rules, officials are hoping that the two major manufacturers’ engine programs have reached the ultimate goal of parity for which ACT racing is known. The goal of Late Model racing has always been to make it a ‘driver’s series’, not a cubic dollar series.
“When I was asked to test the original version of the Ford crate motor, I knew it would take some time to get things sorted out. There was no perfect science without actually competing with the engines in actual race conditions,” said Chris Michaud, the three-time Thunder Road Champion and original team elected to do the Ford testing.
“The most difficult part of getting the two engines in compliance has been the different needs for different sized tracks. Engine set back requirements for the Ford, different torque levels, particularly high end torque, have been a challenge. With the help of Butler & MacMaster Engines, and a lot of co-operation from teams, we think we have reached that goal for 2012. There are some adjustments we have made over the past couple seasons, and along with the rule changes we have made going into 2012, that should help make both engine more compatible. Now it is up to the drivers and team set ups, as it should be”, said Dean Gallison, the Director of Competition for ACT.
Some of the challenges will come from the following teams in 2012:
#32 Jean-Paul Cyr, Milton, VT #37 Brian Hoar, Williston, VT
#02 Randy Potter, Groveton, NH #97 Joey Polewarczyk Jr., Hudson, NH
#78 Quinny Welch, Lancaster, NH #27 Wayne Helliwell, Jr. Dover, NH
#55 Brent Dragon, Milton, VT #57 Austin Theriault, Fort Kent, ME
#51 Ricky Rolfe, Albany Twp., ME # 7 Glen Luce, Turner, ME
#15 Ben Ashline, Pittston, ME #17 Ray Parent, Tiverton, RI
#16 Mark Lamberton, Mooers Forks, NY
ACT CASTROL SERIES
#80 Donald Theetge, Boischatel, QC #48 Karl Allard, Ste Felicien, QC
#21 JF Dery, Quebec, QC #91 Patrick Laperle, Ste Denis, QC
#19 Dany Trepanier, St- Edouard, QC
#40 David Michaud, St-Anne-de-Pin, QC
#51 Patrick Hamel, St-Edouard, QC
#11 Claude Leclerc, Lanoraire, QC
#14 Phil Scott, Middlesex, VT #44 David Pembroke, Montpelier, VT
#88 Nick Sweet, Barre, VT # 6 Chris Michaud, E. Montpelier, VT
#89 Scott Payea, Milton, VT #26 John Donahue, Graniteville, VT
#85 Trampas Demers, Shelburne, VT
#18 Jamie Fisher, Shelburne, VT
#68 Brooks Clark, Waitsfield, VT
#41 Jamie Aube, Bow, NH
#99 Cody Blake, Barre, VT
#00 Mike Bailey, E. Barre, VT
#58 Jamie Hebert, Williamstown, VT
The Chevy vs. Ford rivalry will begin on Sunday, April 15, 2012 at the Lee USA Speedway in Lee, NH for the 22nd running of the New Hampshire Governor’s Cup 150. The Merchants Bank 150 will open the Thunder Road season with the American Canadian Tour on Sunday, April 29, 2012.
For additional information contact the ACT office at 802.244.6963, or [email protected], or visit www.acttour.com.