By Jim Clarke, Clarke Motorsports Communications
Pat and Danny O’Brien have a score to settle with their younger brother. Since the 2005 inception of Brighton Speedway’s Applefest Shootout, featuring the DIRTcar 358 modifieds the name “O’Brien” appears on the championship trophy only once and it doesn’t belong to the 4 time Mr. DIRTcar title holder or the 10 time Brockville Speedway track champion. In 2011, Tim O’Brien captured the prestigious win with a thrilling late race triumph over Danny O’Brien and Mike Bowman. With the 2012 edition of the Benson Auto Parts 100 lap extravaganza, presented by VP Fuels and Imagefactor.ca taking the green flag Saturday, September 22nd the older O’Brien siblings have a chance to earn a trip to the winner’s circle. Track promoter Mark Rinaldi says the brothers are crowd favourites wherever they race.
“There’s no disputing the numbers these guys have put up throughout their careers and the fact that only one of them has picked-up the checkered flag at this race speaks volumes about the level of competition at our race,” said Rinaldi. “Pat, Danny and Tim race each other as hard as – or harder than any other car in the field. All 3 finished in the top 10 in points atBrockvilleduring the 2012 season, so our fans are in for a great show.”
After another self-imposed hiatus, Pat O’Brien returned to Brockville Speedway’s weekly wars this year. His 4th place point finish – on the strength of a pair of wins in 17 starts – proved there is no slowing down the driver of the #6 Gypsum Logistics/Milestone Protective Coating Systems Bicknell Racing Products machine. The eldest O’Brien would like nothing better than being the second family member to walk away with the $4,000 winner’s cheque in his back pocket.
His uncharacteristic 7th place point finish, with 2 feature victories punctuated a frustrating year at Brockville for Danny O’Brien. On the other side of the coin, the middle of the 3 racing brothers finished 5th at Mohawk International Raceway and enters Brighton Speedway’s Mr. DIRTcar championship trail event 6th in the standings. A perennial top 5 finisher on the tight 3rd mile bullring, no one would be too shocked to see the #17D 1000 Islands RV Centre/Ponte Brothers Masonry/103.7 BOB-FM ride in victory lane after 100 laps.
A series of late season mechanical woes prevented Tim O’Brien from cracking the top 5 in Brockville’s final point standings, but as the defending Applefest Shootout champion, the pilot of the #88 Jim’s Performance Plus/S.G. Wells/Windmill Construction Ford powered TEO Pro Car heads into the fray as a marked man. The youngest of the clan will be looking to put his bad luck in the past and earn a second trip to the winner’s circle.
The Benson Auto Parts Applefest Shootout, featuring the DIRTcar 358 modifieds – presented by VP Fuels and Imagefactor.ca – takes the green flag Saturday, September 22nd at 6:00 at Brighton Speedway. For a complete schedule of events, see www.brightonspeedway.com, www.imagefactor.ca/applefestshootout or call 866.681.1102.
Photo attachment: Jim Clarke – Clarke Motorsports Communications
Prepared by: Jim Clarke – Clarke Motorsports Communications
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