CHRISTOPHER WINS MADE IN AMERICA WHELEN 300 AT MARTINSVILLE SPEEDWAY,

LOFTIN IS TOP-FINISHER AMONG WHELEN SOUTHERN MODIFIED TOUR DRIVERS

MARTINSVILLE , Va. (Sept. 3, 2005) – Ted Christopher won the Made in America Whelen 300 at Martinsville Speedway, the first NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour event held at the track since 2002 – and the first night race held at the historic .526-mile track. Mike Stefanik finished second, followed by John Blewett III, Eric Beers and Doug Coby in fifth place.

Brian Loftin, of Lexington, N.C., was the top-finishing driver from the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour. Loftin finished 12th overall but will be credited with first-place points towards the Whelen Southern Modified Tour championship.

Despite the magnitude of the win, Christopher remained focused on the season championship picture for the northeastern-based Whelen Modified Tour.

“This means a lot,” said Christopher, who collected $9,750 for the win along with Martinsville Speedway's traditional Ridgeway Grandfather Clock winner's trophy. “We've had a pretty rough run in the middle of the summer, with tire problems and other things and we had lost a bunch of points. Tonight we gained maximum points. If we can keep doing that and finishing well … at the races we're coming up to, our car is really, really great. The races that are coming up are ones that I'm really looking forward to.”

Christopher, of Plainville , Conn. , started on the pole after qualifying seventh and scoring the front-row starting position via the Tour's re-draw of the top eight qualifiers. Christopher battled New York 's Chuck Hossfeld during the opening laps while Beers and Eddie Flemke chased the leaders.

Christopher continued to set the pace over the 43-car field until lap 125, when the race was halted for a mandatory halfway break. After the break, Christopher returned to the lead followed by Hossfeld and Rick Fuller, who had advanced from the 11 th starting position to third during the first half of the race.

Pit strategy became a factor during a caution period from laps 138-145. The race leaders headed down pit road for a fresh set of tires – which teams were not permitted to change during the halfway break. Hossfeld, however, made a bold decision to remain on the track and inherited the lead. By lap 157, Hossfeld's strategy to forgo fresh tires was coming up short, as Stefanik and Jay Hedgecock – who had pitted for fresh tires before the mandatory halfway break – passed Hossfeld and took over the first and second positions.

Following another restart, Christopher was soon back in the hunt. The former NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series national champion had returned to the top five by lap 175, just as Hedgecock drifted back and Hossfeld ran in the second position behind Stefanik. Hossfeld spun on lap 203, placing Blewett in the top three behind Stefanik and Christopher. Christopher then charged past Stefanik on a restart with 25 laps remaining and seized the lead for the final time.

The 250-lap event, which was preceded by a 50-lap “last chance” qualifying race won by Connecticut 's Reggie Ruggiero, was the 30 th Whelen Modified Tour race held at Martinsville since 1985. The race lived up to its billing as a “can't miss” event for Modified fans – it was attended by the largest stand-alone (non-NASCAR NEXTEL Cup) crowd in the track's history. The race is tentatively scheduled to be televised by SPEED Channel in December.

RESULTS
NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour / NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour
Made In America Whelen 300
Martinsville Speedway    September 3, 2005

Pos
Start
Driver & Home Town
Lap
Reason Out
Money Won
1
(1)
Ted Christopher, Plainville Conn .
250
$9,750
2
(21)
Mike Stefanik, Coventry R.I.
250
$4,200
3
(6)
John Blewett, III, Howell N.J.
250
$3,900
4
(4)
Eric Beers, Northampton Pa.
250
$3,400
5
(3)
Doug Coby, Milford Conn.
250
$3,100
6
(15)
Jamie Tomaino, Howell N.J.
250
$2,600
7
(7)
Tony Hirschman, Northampton Pa.
250
$3,250
8
(10)
Mike Christopher, Plainville Conn.
250
$2,600
9
(18)
Steve Whitt, Forked River N.J.
250
$2,450
10
(13)
Todd Szegedy, Ridgefield Conn.
250
$1,700
11
(14)
Jerry Marquis, Broad Brook Conn.
250
$2,450
12
(12)
Brian Loftin, Lexington N.C.
250
$2,300
13
(31)
Jay Foley, Stuart Va.
250
$1,575
14
(17)
Junior Miller, Pine Hall N.C.
250
$1,550
15
(11)
Rick Fuller, Auburn Mass.
250
$2,025
16
(30)
Anthony Sesley, Matawan N.J.
250
$1,500
17
(28)
Tim Brown, Cana Va.
250
$1,475
18
(2)
Chuck Hossfeld, Buffalo N.Y.
249
$3,700
19
(19)
Jay Hedgecock, High Point N.C.
249
$1,825
20
(42)
Randy Butner, Pfafftown N.C.
248
$1,900
21
(38)
Richard Coy, Ringwood N.J.
245
$1,375
22
(24)
Renee Dupuis, Glastonbury Conn.
245
$2,050
23
(36)
Alex Hoag, Hornell N.Y.
244
$1,325
24
(9)
Zach Sylvester, Lebanaon Conn.
243
$2,100
25
(40)
Gene Pack, N. Myrtle Beach S.C.
233
$1,275
26
(41)
Daren Scherer, Binghamton N.Y.
228
Black Flag
$1,225
27
(23)
Gregg Shivers, Rocky Point N.Y.
221
Overheating
$1,200
28
(20)
Dave Etheridge, Portland Conn.
221
$1,900
29
(8)
Donny Lia, Jericho N.Y.
220
$2,000
30
(25)
Kevin Konopka, Meriden Conn.
211
Overheating
$1,900
31
(34)
Bobby Hutchens, Lexington N.C.
211
Handling
$1,200
32
(5)
Eddie Flemke, Southington Conn.
197
$1,900
33
(35)
Frank Fleming, Mt Airy N.C.
190
$1,200
34
(26)
Burt Myers, Walnut Grove N.C.
183
$1,500
35
(22)
Tyler Haydt, Kunkletown Pa.
158
Rear End
$1,500
36
(29)
Reggie Ruggiero, Rocky Hill Conn.
157
Accident
$1,200
37
(16)
Kevin Goodale, Riverhead N.Y.
157
Accident
$1,900
38
(37)
Danny Knoll, Buffalo N.Y.
129
Engine
$1,200
39
(33)
Brian Pack, Walkertown N.C.
120
Engine
$1,200
40
(43)
Wade Cole, Riverton Conn.
97
Oil Line
$1,600
41
(27)
Michael Clifton, Walkertown N.C.
39
Accident
$1,200
42
(39)
Jamie Tomaino, Jr., Howell N.J.
32
Overheating
$1,200
43
(32)
Brian Crammer, Howell N.J.
32
Accident
$1,200

Failed to Qualify:      (3) Jimmy Storace (#47), Jake Marosz (#9), Kevin Powell (#04

Time of Race:   2 hrs., 21 mins, 28 secs       

Average Speed:  55.773 mph      

BUD POLE AWARD:  Chuck Hossfeld, 50 Creative Racing Products Ford

FEATHERLITE MOST IMPROVED DRIVER: 
John Blewett, III, 66 Blewett Motorsports/John Blewett, Inc. Chevrolet


POWERADE POWER MOVE OF THE RACE AWARD:  Randy Butner, 5 Ram Fabrication/Angel Clean Chevrolet

TOMMY BALDWIN MEMORIAL AWARD:
  Ted Christopher, 13 AWD,DWD,TSI,JAT Chevrolet

Caution Flags:  Laps 2-7; 16-19; 20-24; 55-59; 60-64; 68-74; 96-102; 126-131; 138-146; 147-152; 158-161; 170-175; 203-208; 222-226.  14 for 81 laps.

Lap Leaders: 
   Ted Christopher 1-18, Chuck Hossfeld 19, Ted Christopher 20-141, Chuck Hossfeld 142-145, Mike Stefanik 146, Chuck Hossfeld 147-156, Mike Stefanik 157-167, Jay Hedgecock 168, Mike Stefanik 169-226, Ted Christopher 227-250.

Total Laps Led: Ted Christopher 164, Mike Stefanik 70, Chuck Hossfeld 15, Jay Hedgecock 1.  9 changes involving 4 drivers.