ARA Racefacts Bulletin and Model Review (02/08/98)
9 February 1998
AUTO RACING ANALYSIS RACEFACTS BULLETIN FEBRUARY 8, 1998 Rusty Wallace (Miller Penske Ford Taurus) scored the Ford Taurus' historic first victory in Sunday's Daytona Bud Shootout! The victory was Wallace's first in a "restrictor plate" event and only his second at Daytona, joining an IROC victory on February 17, 1989. Wallace finished second in 1997's Busch Clash. In the nineteen-race history (1980-1998) of the Clash/Shootout, Wallace is the eleventh racewinning driver! Dale Earnhardt leads with six wins; Neil Bonnett, Jeff Gordon, and Ken Schrader each have two, while Wallace joins Darrell Waltrip, Bobby Allison, Terry Labonte, Bill Elliott, Geoff Bodine, and Dale Jarrett at one victory apiece. Rusty's win was only the fourth in the event for Ford, joining Ford wins by Bill Elliott (1987), Geoff Bodine (Bud Moore entry in 1992) and Dale Jarrett (Yates, 1996). Chevrolet leads in Clash/Shootout wins with 12 over Ford's four, Buick's two, and Oldsmobile's one. Rusty had two previous victories in NASCAR Winston Cup "nonpoint" events; he won the "Winston" at Charlotte in 1989 and the 1996 Suzuka event. Kenny Wallace finished second in the Shootout and brother Mike finished second in the ARCA race as the Wallace brothers finished first or second in both events! This continued the "brother theme" established Saturday by the front row efforts of Bobby Labonte (Interstate Batteries Gibbs Pontiac Grand Prix) and Terry Labonte (Kelloggs Hendrick Chevrolet Monte Carlo)! Prior to the Shootout, Jimmy Spencer won the Shootout Qualifier in the Winston Travis Carter Ford Thunderbird. The victory was Jimmy's second in a "nonpoint" event, joining his 1996 Charlotte "Winston Open" victory. Kenny Irwin, Jr. (Blair Raybestos Ford Thunderbird) won ARCA's FirstPlus 200 Bondo/Mar-Hyde classic; the victory was Kenny's first oval victory in a stock car, joining his 1997 Homestead and Texas NASCAR Craftsman Truck wins! Kenny's win was Ford's first in the event since Mickey Gibbs won in a Ford in 1988! Although the race has now been held 35 times, Ford has won only nine times, with the Irwin and Gibbs wins joined by Ralph Jones (1987), Ron Hutcherson (1975), Andy Hampton (1972), Benny Parsons (1969), Jack Bowsher (1966), Iggy Katona (1965) and Nelson Stacy (1964 inaugural)! Chevrolet had a record six-race win streak in the event entering 1998 and GM products had won the last nine Daytona ARCA classics prior to Irwin's breakthrough! Ford has now tied Chevrolet for the all-time Daytona ARCA (1964-1998) racewinner honors with nine wins apiece; Dodge and Oldsmobile have six apiece, Pontiac and Plymouth two each, and Buick one. Many fans may not know that Irwin's early pro racing efforts featured IMSA road racing! Kenny competed in the IMSA American Challenge series from 1986 through 1989 and took his first major pro racing win in the series' successor, the IMSA GTO class, in 1990 on May 5 at Heartland Park in a Buick Somerset! He placed seventh in 1990 IMSA GTO points. Kenny won six races in 1992 All-American Midget Series (AAMS) competition en route to the 1992 AAMS season and Florida Winternationals driver championships! He scored his first USAC win on April 5, 1992 at Winchester in a USAC Midget event! Kenny's 1992-1997 USAC efforts produced eight National Midget wins, seven Sprint Car victories, six Silver Crown wins, and one Indianapolis Speedrome Regional Midget victory! He won the 1996 USAC Midget title, was runnerup for the 1996 Silver Crown and 1993 Midget titles, finished third in 1992 Midget points, and fourth in 1994 Silver Crown and Midget points and in 1995 Midget points! Irwin is a master of the USAC pavement; he has six IRP wins (two each in Midgets, Silver Crown, and Sprint Cars), four Salem wins (three Sprint Car, one Midget), four Winchester wins (two each in Midgets and Sprint Cars), plus Silver Crown wins at Phoenix and Pikes Peak Speedway! The Irwin achievement gave Ford a sweep of Sunday's events! Ford last won the Clash/Shootout and ARCA race in the same year in 1987, when Ralph Jones won the ARCA race and Bill Elliott won the Clash; Elliott went on to win the Daytona 500! The upcoming Daytona 125 Qualifiers afford Dale Earnhardt the chance to continue an astounding streak: he's won eight consecutive Daytona 125 Qualifiers, 1990 through 1997! Dale also won his qualifier in 1983 and 1986. The "Dales" swept the 1997 events as Dale Jarrett won the other qualifier. In the last ten Daytona 125 Qualifiers (1993-1997), only five drivers have scored wins! Earnhardt has five, Ernie Irvan two (1994 and 1996), and Jeff Gordon (1993), Sterling Marlin (1995) and Dale Jarrett (1997) one each. Only four teams have won the last ten Daytona 125 Qualifiers: RCR has five wins, Yates three, Hendrick and Morgan-McClure one apiece. ARA MODEL REVIEW BRUMM 1:43 SCALE DIECAST PORSCHE 356 MILLE MIGLIA 1952 The Brumm (R120) #248 Porsche 356 Mille Miglia model depicts the car driven by Konstantin Berckheim and the famed Count Giovanni "Johnny" Lurani (later of Formula Junior organizational fame) to victory in the 1500 cc class of the 1952 Mille Miglia! The early 356 is the Porsche most "children of the 50s" think of when "Porsche" is mentioned; most famous as a road car, the model was raced and rallied extensively both at the international and "club" level! The white, black-numeraled car features a sunroof and appropriate chrome detailing and auxiliary lighting. The interior is appropriately detailed with the red upholstered seats providing a colorful contrast. An interesting note: as the Mille Miglia (and Targa Florio) did not employ "massed" starts but rather started cars at intervals, the car number indicates the starting time for the car! As noted by Karl Ludvigsen in his book, Porsche: Excellence Was Expected: "The first major road race entry of the 1488 cc engine in its seventy-horsepower form was in the Mille Miglia on May 4th, 1952. Konstantin Berckheim shared the wheel of the factory-prepared aluminum coupe with another count, Giovanni Lurani. They were only forty-sixth in the overall standing, having been slowed for the last fifth of the distance by the loss of all gears but third in the VW gearbox. Nevertheless, they managed to outlast their 1.5-liter sports-racing opposition to win their class." Ludvigsen further notes that "The 1100 cc class was won by the private Porsche of Prince Metternich and Count Einseidel." Ludvigsen states "One of the strongest early rally drivers in Porsches was Count Konstantin "Tin" Berckheim. Tall, youthful, handsome and aristocratic." Richard Von Frankenberg, in his book Porsche: The Man and his Cars, elaborates "On the sporting side the works entered one car in the spring of 1952 for the Mille Miglia; a light-alloy coupe with a 1500 cc engine producing about 70 bhp. It was handed to the Italian Count Lurani and he, together with Count Berckheim, competed in the "gran turismo" class of the Mille Miglia. The few cars which were kept at the works from the Gmund (early factory location) days were entered again and again for sporting events for they weighed about 220 lb less than the steel-bodied production ones. Lurani and Berckheim did not have an easy job. On the last but one sector between Florence and Bologna where the Futa and Raticosa pass have to be crossed, they had the old gearbox trouble: suddenly there was only third gear left and the last 200 odd miles from Bologna via Piacenza and Mantua to Brescia had to be covered in this third gear, which meant 6000 rpm at about 90 mph." The ARA website features color photography of this model! Our website at http://members.aol.com/autoracg/ provides a wealth of useful and interesting auto racing information!