Mars, PA (6-9-11) The start of the 2011 season has been a rough one for Butch and the #27 Lambert Racing Team. After capturing a 5th place finish at Lernerville Speedway on Friday, April 29th, the team was optimistic heading into the first FASTRAK Northeast Tour Event at Roaring Knob Motorsports Complex on Saturday, April 30th. A trip through pre-race tech determined that the carburetor that we run for the last two years is now considered illegal, and we were very fortunate that fellow competitor, Troy Shields was willing to lend us his spare carb for the night. Butch started 5th in the heat, but was spun early on and came back to a 4th place finish, which put him 14th on the starting grid for the feature event. He patiently worked his way through the field to score a 7th place finish.
Thanks to some rainy weather, our next event was not until May 22nd, when the team made the haul to Port Colbourne, ONT Canada for the first ever international FASTRAK Touring event. Butch started 5th in his heat and was able to advance to a 4th place finish and make the re-draw for the feature. For once we drew a good pill, but his 3rd place starting spot didn’t last long, as the pole sitter lost the handle on his car on lap 2, forcing Butch to check-up and be hit from behind. The hit sent him through the infield and he fell back several spots. He had started working his way back through the field, only to fall back again. As the crew stood and wondered what could be wrong with the car, Butch ran 17 laps without any power-steering, and still managed to pull off a 9th place finish. Not what we had hoped for, but pretty good, considering the circumstances.
Memorial Day weekend brought the much anticipated “Wild Card Weekend” and the American Cancer Society Night at Sharon Speedway. We are proud to have been able to raise nearly $1100 for this very worthy cause. Unfortunately, the night on the track did not go as well. After failing to advance in the heat event, Butch was forced to run the B-main, where his 5th place finish was not enough to make the feature event on this night. He went on to finish 4th in the Wheelman Bonus Event for Non-Qualifiers. The second race of the Wild Card Weekend was run on Memorial Day at Lernerville Speedway. Once again, Lady Luck was not on our side, when we drew #63 out of 66 with 46 cars on hand for the 24 starting spots. Butch started the heat event in 9th place and worked his way to a 6th place finish. In the B-main, he started 3rd and took the lead on lap one. Never looking back, he captured the b-main event win in convincing fashion, earning himself the 22nd starting spot in the feature. After a lap one caution slowed the field, Butch was the next caution as he was spun out after another competitor hit him from behind. Just a few laps later he found himself the victim of someone else’s crash, as he was hit as tried to avoid another spinning car. The hit caused extensive damage to the left front of the car, but Butch was able to wrestle it around the track for the remaining laps of the race and finished 21st. Just this week, the winner of that race was disqualified for his tires not passing the independent lab tests, so Butch was credited with 20th place. Despite all of the struggles we have had on the FASTRAK Tour thus far, Butch currently sits in 6th place in the points standings, with our next 8 events being Tour events.
In an effort to try to get a handle on the new car and overcome some of our struggles, the team headed to Sharon Speedway on Saturday, June 4th for a regular event. Once again, we pulled a bad pill and ended up starting 6th in the heat event. Butch was able to advance one position to finish 5th in the heat to earn the 14th place starting spot for the feature event. With the car finally looking like it was going the way it should, Butch raced to an 8th place finish. It was a great learning night for us and the team was optimistic leaving the track, hoping to have left the bad luck and struggles behind.
Little did we know, that our biggest blow would come in the early morning hours of Sunday, June 5th, as the truck we haul the racecar with caught on fire while it was sitting in the driveway. Luckily, a neighbor alerted Butch’s dad and the fire department to the blaze, and the Adams Area Fire Department was able to contain the fire to just the truck. Unfortunately, the truck is a total loss, as is everything that was in it, including Butch’s driving suit and other gear. We were unsure what would happen to the rest of our season, but have been offered a truck to use, for at least this weekend, and will have to determine our next steps day by day. Hopefully, our bad luck went up in smoke with everything else!
Our next event will be a FASTRAK Northeast/MOV Tour race at Tyler County Speedway, in Middlebourne, West Virginia on Saturday, June 11th and we are hoping to make the next Tour race at McKean County Speedway on Saturday, June 18th. Saturday, June 25th the FASTRAK Northeast Tour will be at Sharon Speedway and will be the first of 6 Tour races in 9 days, as the Bully Dog Cross The Borders Speedweek kicks off at Expo Speedway on Wednesday, June 29th. Thursday, June 30th will be back at McKean County Speedway, then on to Raceway 7 on Friday, July 1st. Saturday, July 2nd we travel to Pittsburgh’s PA Motor Speedway, and the Speedweek will end on Sunday, July 3rd at Eriez Speedway. We do not know at this time if we will be able to make it to all 5 events, but we will make every effort to do so.
Don’t forget to “Like” us on Facebook (Butch Lambert Racing), where we have up to the minute race results, schedule changes, news and contests, and as always, our website, www.lambertracing.com is updated weekly with results and stats. You can also follow us on Twitter @LambertRacing27!
Butch Lambert and the Lambert Racing team would like to thank all of their sponsors and supporters for 2011: Bagel Bites, Austin's A1 Bleach, Fannie's Friends Pet Cremation Services, , www.HeinzStuff.com, Fleming Tire & Auto, Lambert Plumbing, RAM Transit Lines, Inc., Kozminski Auto Body, BP Construction, Smardt Equipment, Woodward, Inc., ZeroWraps.com, Mars Beer Distributor, Marburger Farms Dairy, Hotsy, B&E Mini Mart, Herr's Snacks, Afco Racing Products, Epic Action Video Cameras, KAR Fab, Ultrashield Race Products and JNJ Motorsports Media.