MICHAEL GERVAIS, JR. AND TEAM LOOK TO GET BACK TO EARLY SEASON FORM IN CARQUEST SK 150 TWIN 75’S AT STAFFORD
(Stafford Springs, CT)---For SK Modified® driver Michael Gervais, Jr., the 2012 season has been a coming out party. After winning the 2009 track championship in Stafford’s SK Light division, Gervais moved into the SK Modified® division for the 2010 season. Gervais struggled through his rookie season, finishing 21st in the points standings. After finishing 10th in the SK Modified points last season, Gervais has picked up his first win at Stafford this season and he led the points for several weeks. After several weeks of bad luck, including a blown engine, Gervais has fallen back to fifth place in the points standings, but he and his #22 NJK Automotive team are looking to bring back their early season form beginning in this Friday night’s CARQUEST SK 150 Twin 75 lap feature events.
“We’re excited for it, but we wish we had our other motor to race with,” said Gervais. “We blew our motor a couple weeks ago in the 100 lapper, it’s also a spec motor, but the motor we lost definitely felt a little better than the one we have in the car now. The car has been handling better so that has helped it along, but we’re definitely not as quick as we were the first couple of weeks when we were leading the points. But the car shouldn’t be too bad, as long as we keep out of trouble, we should be able to get a good finish in those races. We’ve definitely learned a lot as a team and with Mike Paquette helping us out with setting up the car has helped out a lot and the good power we have this year. The combination of those two things has definitely made us a lot stronger this year.”
For the past 8 CARQUEST SK 150 events, the race has been run as a 150-lap feature event. This year’s event brings a new twist in that the race will be split into two 75-lap feature events, which is sure to provide the drivers with the challenge of setting their car up for two separate races that are each almost twice as long as their normal 40-lap distance.
“I think we’ll pretty much be on the same plan as we would for a 100-lap race,” said Gervais. “We still want the car to be there at the end, and we need to maintain the tires if we get some long green flag runs going. I like the longer races, I like to be able to put a little more strategy into the race like saving tires, and you can work on the car early in the race, and it’s not as crucial as it would be for a 40-lap race. It’s cool to do races like this because that’s what you see in the higher ranks of racing, they drive longer lap races. In between races we’ll check a few things that we usually do after a regular race, we’ll nut and bolt everything and give the car a good look over. The two 75-lappers will be interesting for sure.”
After picking up his first ever win at Stafford back on May 25th, Gervais feels confident that he can reach victory lane again this season. There would be no better place for Gervais and his team to get their second win of the season than in the biggest race of the SK Modified® season and that a win in one of the twin 75-lap features this Friday night would serve as a springboard to get him and his team back to their early season form.
“I don’t see why we couldn’t get back to victory lane again,” said Gervais. “We’re going to be getting our good motor back and as long as we can get some good finishes, I don’t see why we can’t. A win in one of these races would definitely be cool for us, I’ve always wanted to get a long distance win. Hopefully that can be this weekend and things work out for us with the car. We’d like to at least finish up front, we wouldn’t be upset with a top-5 finish. Any top-5 finish is good for points and is good for morale. It definitely felt good to finally get that first win at Stafford and we hope to win again soon.”
Having already won a track championship at Stafford, Gervais knows what he needs to do in order to be in championship contention. As the second half of the 2012 season gets underway, Gervais has a simple plan for getting himself and his team back to the top of the standings where they were earlier this season.
“The plan is to keep trying to finish up front, that’s all we can do,” said Gervais. “We’ll try to win some more races and try to not have any more problems like we’ve had. All our bad luck happened right around the same time, we got in a wreck, blew the motor, and got in a wreck. We finished 9th last week and that felt great for us. To be in the top-10 and not have anything wrong with the car was big. It’s kind of tough seeing that we were leading the points at one point and now we’re in fifth, but it’s an improvement from last year and as long as we keep going forward, that’s what’s important to us. But it does feel a lot better when you’re on top. I have great help from Nick and Steven, my Dad, my Uncle Gary, and my spotter Ray, so we don’t see any reason why we can’t get back to where we were,” said Gervais. “The car is working well so we have a good shot at it.”
Gervais carries sponsorship from NJK Automotive, Arbitell Conv. Stores, David Smith, Mark Edwards Siding, and Gervais Brothers Roofing. With a great crew behind him and their good motor set to get back on track in another week or two, things are looking up for Gervais and the #22 team.
The 9th Annual CARQUEST SK 150 is scheduled for July 20th. Tickets are priced at $27.50 for adult general admission, $5.00 for children ages 6-14 general admission, and Free for Children ages 5 & under. Reserved seating is available for $30.00 for all ages. All ticket prices include 10% CT Admission Tax. As always, Stafford Motor Speedway offers free parking with overnight parking available.
For more information, or to order tickets to the 9th Annual CARQUEST SK 150, contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at 860-684-2783 or visit us on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.