Super Late Models
Erik Jones Wants to Race the Best at Money in the Bank
Jun 1, 2022
Since the racing world came out of COVID-19 shutdown of early 2020, Brian Robie has shown great stride in Modified competition up in northern New England, winning three track titles in southern New Hampshire along with the NHTSRA Modified Cup and NASCAR New Hampshire State championships in 2020. Shifting more to Tour-type Modifieds in 2021, he followed up with a Modified Racing Series title.
So far, 2022 has gotten off a bit slower than planned for the Sunapee, NH native; mostly when coming to car preparation. But, Robie has avoided major calamities and is now poised to do more entering the summer.
This Friday and Saturday, June 3 & 4, Robie plans on doing just that with a bold doubleheader weekend across the Granite State. Starting off with a show postponed one week by rain will be the $15,000-to-win Open Modified race at Claremont Motorsports Park on Friday, and then heading north into Late Model territory as the Modified Racing Series visits White Mountain Motorsports Park for just the second time in series history.
Following finishes of third and ninth in Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series competition at Monadnock Speedway and Thunder Road respectively in the past month, Robie is confident heading into the weekend ahead.
“We’re getting dialed back in, everything is in pretty decent shape. It’s been an odd spring because we’re behind, normally we’d have both cars ready and I’ve only got one. So, we’re just running the one. But, we’re coming along. We changed around some things with getting the cars set up, but we’ll be in good shape for Claremont. I’ve never raced White Mountain, but I think it’ll be similar setup to Monadnock, so I think we’ll be in good shape there too,” Robie told Racing America.
First up is the Racers Honoring Racers 100 at Claremont, a unique 1/3-mile oval with two distinct ends. Regarded by some as a track benefitting home track drivers, Robie feels his experience will not give him as big an edge as some might think.
“There is to an extant, it’s always good to have laps anywhere. But out of all the tracks that we normally run, I would say that Claremont would be the least advantageous because for most of those tour guys it’s a fairly easy track to pick up. If you’ve run there once you’ve got a good handle on it going forward."
A former Friday night weekly champion at Claremont, Robie is pleased to see The Racing Guys, spearheaded by promoters Jim Schaeffer and Dick Williams, along with Claremont promoter Mike Parks, help put the New Hampshire oval in the spotlight for this open show.
“Those guys are great, they’ve done a lot for the Modified community with their endeavors with Tri-Track and then doing these open shows. Can’t say enough for all they’ve done for Modified racing here in New England.”
On the other hand, Robie has no racing laps at White Mountain Motorsports Park. That said, many Modified drivers have little to no experience at the North Woodstock, NH quarter-mile with only a handful of Tour-type Modified races over the years.
“It’s one I’ve been looking forward to, anytime I can go race somewhere that’s new to me it’s always a great challenge. White Mountain is a neat little track, it’s a little different with the new pavement in the second groove and the older pavement in the first groove. High banking and fast speeds, a nice area which isn’t too far for us; I can’t wait to get up there.”
Saturday’s Milton CAT 100 is seeing a slight monetary boost with a series of bonuses announced this week, including from WMMP & Thunder Road track owner Cris Michaud who is giving extra money to any team who ran at Thunder Road last Sunday in the Tri-Track Granite City 100. The MRS has also seen increased bonuses since the season opener in April at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
“Bumps like that are always helpful, for sure. The bonuses from Cris Michaud and Jack Bateman will be good for everyone in the whole field, it makes it more affordable when we go there and with the car count as well. MRS is doing a good job to get us to these different places while helping to keep it affordable for us.”
With a busy weekend ahead the big question for Robie now is could he pull off another big career moment and sweep the two 100-lap shows.
“I don’t know. Claremont, I think we got as good a shot as anybody with our experience there. Then White Mountain, even though we don’t have any experience, most people don’t have experience there either. Those that don’t have a lot, so we got a shot there too. I feel like anywhere we go we can be competitive. We also want to get through Friday clean so we can back after it Saturday.”
For those unable to see these two 100-lap Granite State Ground Pounder showdowns in person, Racing America will bring you the broadcasts for both. First on Friday, June 3 at 8pm ET for the Racers Honoring Racers 100 at Claremont Motorsports Park.
Then Saturday, June 4 we’re live from White Mountain Motorsports Park for the Modified Racing Series Milton CAT 100, which also feature the Spring Board 100 for WMMP’s Late Model stars.