PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. – Austin Theriault of Fort Kent, Maine, finished second in the ACT Late Model Tour season finale, the Fall Foliage 200 at Airborne Speedway in Plattsburgh, N.Y., on Sunday, October 7. Theriault started 22nd in the 30-car field, charged into the Top-10 by Lap 50 and closed out the 2012 ACT campaign with his eighth Top-5 finish in 10 races. The driver of the No. 57 Pelletier Ford Ford Fusion was the only driver in the series to finish inside the Top-10 in every race on the 2012 schedule.
WHO: Austin Theriault, Fort Kent, Maine
TEAM: AT Racing No. 57 Pelletier Ford Ford Fusion
CREW CHIEF: Mickey Green, South Paris, Maine
WHAT: ACT Late Model Tour Fall Foliage 200
WHERE: Airborne Speedway, Plattsburgh, N.Y. (.500-mile oval)
FINAL ACT POINTS POSITION: 3rd
AUSTIN, YOU OBVIOUSLY HAD A VERY GOOD CAR TO MAKE UP SO MUCH TRACK POSITION.
The car was good right from the drop of the green flag, and we were able to make quite a bit of progress through field. We got a little tight there about 20 laps before we pitted. We were still passing cars, but I think we used the right side (tires) up trying to make it up through. We took a couple more on our pit stop, and it helped a little bit, but there were so many different pit strategies out there that the main goal became just to stay out of trouble.
We had a good car on the final restart with 10 laps to go. The car was hooked up on the bottom. It seemed like everybody wanted the outside, but we were good on the inside.
DID YOU HAVE ANYTHING FOR RACE WINNER WAYNE HELLIWELL JR. IN THE CLOSING LAPS?
I did, yeah. We were catching him pretty good. There was a quite a bit of a gap between us, but we closed to two car-lengths. Me and Patrick (Laperle) were the two quickest cars at the end.
The last four or five laps we were making up a lot of ground on him, but we just ran out of time.
WHAT DOES BEING THE ONLY DRIVER TO FINISH IN THE TOP-10 IN EVERY RACE THIS SEASON MEAN TO YOU?
Obviously, championships are won by being very consistent. If there’s a checklist of what you need to do in order to win one, being consistent is probably No. 1 on the list. At the same time, winning races is second in importance. And the way the points are set up, it may be more important to win these races. Obviously 10 Top-10s is a good thing, but the only thing we were lacking were (multiple wins). We were around at the end of all the races.
It says a lot about our whole crew and all the family that helps out, but if there’s one thing we didn’t do this year, we didn’t win enough races. We were capable of winning more than we did win, but it just didn’t work out.