Non Stop Action For DJ Kennington At Phoenix

This past weekend former NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Champion DJ Kennington competed in both the NASCAR Nationwide and the K & N Pro Series West events at Phoenix International Raceway. Kennington piloted the #80 MacDonald Motorsport entry in the Nationwide series, and the #81 car from Bill McAnally Racing in the K & N event. Both cars featured sponsorship backing from Northern Provincial Pipelines, Whitemud Mechanical, Clark Construction and Mahindra Tractors. It was a long and hectic weekend of activity, but also a successful venture for everyone involved.

The first on track activity on the newly reconfigured and resurfaced track was Thursday afternoon with Nationwide Series practice. Friday was a full day of practice laps beginning with the K & N Pro Series. “I like racing at Phoenix and the Thursday session gave us some time to feel out the new track” said Kennington. “Friday we worked on set up for both cars to make them faster on the new track” he added.

Saturday featured back to back qualifying sessions, first in the K & N Series. Kennington posted a very solid lap time and would start the race 23rd. In the Nationwide event Kennington rolled off 34th at the start. “We were struggling a bit with the Nationwide car” explained Kennington. “Our plan was to make adjustments during the race” he stated.

A crash on lap one of the Nationwide race sent the field scrambling and Kennington made it through unscathed. In the first few laps Kennington maneuvered his #80 entry forward gaining eight positions. Unfortunately his day would end early with a right front tire going down sending him hard into the wall. “It was a tough break” said the driver. “We were just trying to stay out of trouble but it found us” he added.

Kennington was back in action a short while later as the K & N Pro Series West race began. After several early caution flags Kennington began moving forward in the field and by the half way point was running fourteenth. “We just took it easy early on and grabbed the spots if they were there” said Kennington.

During the second half of the race Kennington continued his march forward and moved inside the top-ten. The race stayed green for the final twenty laps and Kennington would cross the finish line eleventh. “If we had one more caution to help us with track position we would have finished event better” said Kennington after the race.

The exciting double header weekend of action at Phoenix was the result of tremendous support and cooperation from a number of supporters. “I can’t thank all of the sponsors enough” said Kennington. “Dwight Kennedy from Northern Provincial Pipelines made the first call and almost immediately we had Clark Construction, Whitemud Mechanical and of course Mahindra Tractors join in to support both teams as well, we wouldn’t be here without them”.

DJ Kennington is also very appreciative of the efforts from both race teams. “I worked with Randy MacDonald and MacDonald Motorsports for a long time and it was great to do it again. Bill McAnally Racing and their group of people are terrific. I want to thank everyone who came down here from Canada with me and worked non-stop all weekend too” said Kennington.

Race fans are encouraged to keep up to date with the latest team news in several ways. Race fans should bookmark the team website www.djkracing.ca and follow them on twitter, www.twitter.com/djkracing and look for the new DJK Racing Fan Page on Facebook.

Photo: DJ Kennington after hitting the wall at PIR by Joe Archer.

Kennington tightens points battle

September 11, 2011. DJ Kennington and the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team returned to Barrie Speedway this past weekend for round number ten of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series looking to pick up their fourth win at the track. While they didn’t score the victory, Kennington did tighten up the point’s race for the overall championship.

The day began as expected when Kennington posted the quickest time around the very tricky 1/3 mile oval track in the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge. “The car was really good and it got even better with the adjustments we made during practice” said Kennington.

DJ would start the 300 lap race in the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge from the fifth position and easily keep pace with the leaders. “So many things happen at this track you have to be sure and survive the 300 laps” explained Kennington. “I didn’t want to do anything risky too early” he added.

Following several caution periods for incidents the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team made their first pit stop of the night for fuel. “We wanted to have track position later in the race” said Kennington about the strategy. “With a few other caution periods we decided to also make stops for tires and be able to run the rest of the night without stopping” he stated.

The rough racing continued with several incidents. Meantime Kennington continued to keep the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge in position for a late charge. In the late stages of the event however Kennington was hit from behind and spun out of contention. “I know you are going to have contact on this small track, but I feel I was deliberately moved out of the way and that’s wrong” said Kennington.

Despite the setback Kennington charged hardest in the closing laps and salvaged a seventh place result in the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge. It also tightened the championship fight with still two races remaining. “We had a chance to really tighten it up until that spin, but we made some progress and we’re off to Riverside to win” stated the driver.

With the seventh place finish Kennington pulls to within 69 points of the overall championship lead. Round eleven of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series will take place Saturday September 17th at Riverside Speedway in Antigonish, Nova Scotia.

Race fans are encouraged to keep up to date with the latest team news in several ways. Race fans should bookmark the team website www.djkracing.ca and follow them on twitter, www.twitter.com/djkracing and look for the new DJK Racing Fan Page on Facebook

DOUBLE DUTY FOR DJ KENNINGTON IN MONTREAL

August 21, 2011. DJ Kennington and the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team once again came to Montreal for round number nine of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series looking for another solid result at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, a track they’ve run very well at in the past. Kennington and the team were focusing on claiming a solid result to continue their push in the overall championship battle.

The race weekend began with a wet practice session on Thursday afternoon. “The track got soaked just before practice and there was no rain in the forecast for the rest of the weekend so we only ran a few laps to make sure the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge was ready to go” said Kennington.

Kennington qualified on the outside of row six and began the 100km race in the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge carefully. “With 37 cars I took it easy at first to make sure we got through the start okay” explained the driver.

Now settled into a rhythm Kennington began looking for his chance to gain positions in the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge and he found them. “Our approach at these road course events is to come away with the best finish possible, knowing there’s a lot of guys who only run a couple of these races” explained Kennington. “We know who we’re racing against for the championship and that’s what I’m concentrating on” he added.

Kennington continued his professional approach to the event and was poised for a good result on the day when another car made contact with the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge. “Everything was looking good” said the driver. “We were running our race and had the #22 car right there with us, that’s who we’re battling with right now for the championship and we get clobbered by a part timer” he stated.

The contact along the right side of the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge would cause him to spin and lose a great deal of track position. Kennington fell all the way back to 26th spot. Kennington immediately knew his job was to regain as much as possible in the closing laps and would push the car hard and manage an eighteenth place result.

While pleased he climbed back inside the top twenty Kennington knows it’s going to be a tough job the rest of the season. “We’re going to have to approach the final three races with the mindset we’re going to win them all” said the driver. “We’ve won at all three tracks and we’ll do our best to do it again starting with Barrie” he added.

Despite the disappointing result Kennington remains second in the overall championship.

DJ Kennington also participated in the NASCAR Nationwide event piloting the #13 Dodge. Kennington retired after lap 28 with a broken track bar.

Race fans are encouraged to keep up to date with the latest team news in several ways. Race fans should bookmark the team website www.djkracing.ca and follow them on twitter, www.twitter.com/djkracing and look for the new DJK Racing Fan Page on Facebook.

Photo of the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge on track at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve by Joe Hamilton.

TOP TEN AT TROIS RIVIERES FOR DJ KENNINGTON

August 8, 2011. DJ Kennington and the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team had to battle the competition and the elements during round number eight of the 2011 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series at the Grand Prix of Trois Rivieres. Rain fell during almost the entire event yet Kennington was still able to see his way through the showers to a ninth place finish.

Through practice and qualifying the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team was on their game as Kennington posted very fast lap times. He would back that up with a third best qualifying time. “What a job the team did preparing the car” said Kennington. “It was such a pleasure to drive, we got absolutely everything out of it during qualifying” he added.

Just before the feature race of the weekend Sunday at the Grand Prix of Trois Rivieres showers dampened the track and teams would begin the event on rain tires. “I was pretty worried about what might happen” said the driver. “I just wanted to go easy and just make sure we finished the race well” he added.

Not only would the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge driver battle the rain showers, but also visibility issues. “We prepared for a wet race but the windshield was so foggy I could barely see at times” explained the driver.

Forced to fight for position with limited visibility Kennington would at times give up a position rather than put the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge at risk. “It just didn’t make sense” said the driver. “When the fog on the windshield lifted I could race harder and battle back” he stated.

With the final caution period setting up a green, white checkered finish Kennington dug in to secure a solid finish. “When we were all bunched up for the last restart I just wanted to make sure we brought the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge home with a good finish” said Kennington who would do just that with a ninth place run.

With such difficult conditions it was as good a result as the driver could have hoped for. “Any time you run top ten it’s a pretty good day, but when you finish top ten on this kind of a day it’s great. We fell a couple points behind in the championship but our car hardly has a mark on it. We’ll just dry it out and the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge will be ready to run in Montreal” he added.

It was an extra special weekend for the team being in Trois Rivieres, Quebec where sponsorship partner Mahindra Tractors has such a large presence. “It’s great we had a good run here for Mahindra Tractors” said Kennington. “We also had a really good run going for the #00 Mahindra Tractors Dodge with Pierre Bourque going until he was taken out by some contact” added Kennington.

DJ Kennington and the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team will race again in Quebec during the Nationwide weekend event at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal August 19-20. Once again this year fans will be able to watch all twelve races on TSN.

Race fans are encouraged to keep up to date with the latest team news in several ways. Race fans should bookmark the team website www.djkracing.ca and follow them on twitter, www.twitter.com/djkracing and look for the new DJK Racing Fan Page on Facebook.

Photo: The #17 Castrol Edge Dodge practicing at the Grand Prix of Trois Rivieres by Joe Hamilton

ANOTHER PODIUM FINISH FOR DJ KENNINGTON

July 28, 2011. DJ Kennington and the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team closed out the western swing for the 2011 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series with their second consecutive second place finish of and closed up the gap in the overall point standings during round number seven at Auto Clearing Motor Speedway in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Posting the quickest qualifying time with a new track record to secure the pole position as he did a year ago the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge driver was focused on securing another victory at the 1/3 mile banked oval track. “No doubt about it we were on a mission” said Kennington. “We had a victory earlier in the year at Delaware and this whole team wanted another one” he added.

When the 250 lap feature race began Kennington took off and lead the first 87 laps of the race. “The whole #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team did an unbelievable job and gave me a great car” said the driver. “We hardly made any changes during practice it was so good” he stated.

Pit stops would cycle through and Kennington found himself hunting down the leader into the late stages of the race. “I was racing hard with J.R. Fitzpatrick in the #84 car” said Kennington. “We went door to door as hard as we could and neither of us put a mark on the other. It was a lot of fun” he added.

Kennington regained the top spot on lap 227 and appeared head toward the win. A late caution set up a five lap dash to the finish. On the final lap the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge was muscled aside by the eventual race winner and Kennington had to settle for second. “I had some contact from the #7 car earlier in the year and we talked about it” explained Kennington. “He’s not running for the points championship so I guess whatever it takes to win is okay” he concluded.

Despite losing the one position Kennington made substantial progress in tightening up the point’s championship and now sits only twenty points from top spot overall. “It was a good points day, losing out on the win is frustrating but we’ll take this result and keep the momentum going in the next race. I’ve got to thank the whole team that worked so hard on this western trip, everyone did such a great job” he added.

DJ Kennington and the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge team will return to action during round eight of the series at the Grand Prix of Trois Rivieres August 5-7 in Trois Rivieres, Quebec. Once again this year fans will be able to watch all twelve races on TSN.

Race fans are encouraged to keep up to date with the latest team news in several ways. Race fans should bookmark the team website www.djkracing.ca and follow them on twitter, www.twitter.com/djkracing and look for the new DJK Racing Fan Page on Facebook.

Photo: The #17 Castrol Edge Dodge practicing at Auto Clearing Motor Speedway by Todd Lewis