PASS South Series: Austin Theriault
Myrtle Beach Speedway Race Preview
FORT KENT, Maine – Austin Theriault of Fort Kent, Maine, looks to make it two wins in a row in PASS South Series competition in the Bash At The Beach 150 at Myrtle Beach Speedway in Myrtle Beach, S.C., on Saturday, March 16. The driver of the Brad Keselowski Racing No. 29 Checkered Flag Foundation Ford Fusion won the PASS South opener last weekend for his second straight win in PASS-sanctioned competition and his first win in the BKR development program. Now in his second full season with the organization owned by 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Brad Keselowski, Theriault tested at Myrtle Beach recently and hopes to make a return trip to Victory Lane in the inaugural PASS event at the .538-mile seaside facility.
WHO: Austin Theriault, Fort Kent, Maine
TEAM: Brad Keselowski Racing No. 29 Checkered Flag Foundation Ford Fusion
CREW CHIEF: Gary Crooks, Mooresville, N.C.
BEST CAREER MYRTLE BEACH SPEEDWAY FINISH: N/A
LAST RACE AT MYRTLE BEACH SPEEDWAY: N/A
WHAT: PASS South Series Bash At The Beach 150
WHERE: Myrtle Beach Speedway, Myrtle Beach, S.C. (.538-mile oval)
WHEN: Friday, March 15 – 3 p.m., practice; Saturday, March 9 – 1 p.m., practice; 4 p.m., qualifying; 7:30 p.m., race
PASS South Series
LAST RACE: March 9, South Carolina Clash 150, Dillon Motor Speedway, Dillon, S.C. (1st)
NEXT RACE: March 30, Easter Bunny 150, Hickory Motor Speedway, Hickory, N.C. (.363-mile oval)
DID YOU KNOW?
Austin Theriault won the PASS South Series South Carolina Clash 150 on March 9 to become the first Brad Keselowski Racing development program driver to win a race since Landon Cling won at South Boston Speedway on June 9, 2012.
Austin Theriault has won the last two PASS-sanctioned Super Late Model races he’s entered. Prior to the South Carolina Clash 150 win, he was victorious in a family-owned car in the PASS North Series season finale at Oxford Plains Speedway in October of 2012.
Austin Theriault finished third in the prestigious Oxford 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway in each of the last two seasons, becoming the youngest podium finisher in the 40-year history of the race in 2011.
Austin Theriault will compete in six PASS North Series races this season – three at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway and three at Oxford Plains Speedway – in the same family-owned car where he won races at each of those tracks in 2012.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING?
AUSTIN THERIAULT, Driver of the Brad Keselowski Racing No. 29 Checkered Flag Foundation Ford Fusion, On heading to Myrtle Beach Speedway after testing there two weeks ago: “It’s a totally different track than Dillon is. It’s very abrasive, it’s hard on tires. It’s always critical to get the car set up right and tuned in in practice, but it’s going to be really important as a driver this weekend to take care of your tires and equipment. How you approach the race is going to be way more critical than it was at Dillon. It was huge at Dillon, but it’s going to be even more of a factor here with saving tires and making sure you have something to race with at the end.
“It’s a flatter, longer track, and you carry a little bit more speed into the corners.”
On how it feels to finally have won for Brad Keselowski Racing: “Wins always bring confidence to any team, no matter what sport you’re in. It’s good to get one off our back and get the year started on the right foot. It’s a confidence booster. Not that we needed any more confidence, but gaining more confidence is never a bad thing.
“(Crew chief Gary Crooks) and I have worked on being comfortable together, and we’re still working on it… That win just kind of topped it off for us and for the whole crew. The last time the (BKR) Late Model team had a car win was last year at South Boston. Enough time had passed that it was time to get another win, and it was good that we could do it.
“I can’t say it will make it easier to get another one, but once you know how to win, it’s a lot easier to keep winning.”
On his goals for this weekend: “I don’t think they’ve changed from what they were a week ago heading into Dillon. I expect to be contending. IEvery week we should expect to contend for wins.
“Like I’ve said before, things can happen that prevent that from happening. But those things should be things that are out of our control. As long as we make sure we control the things that are in our control, we should be in position again at the end of the race.”
The PASS South Series returns to action with the annual Easter Bunny 150 at Hickory Motor Speedway in Hickory, N.C., on Saturday, March 30… Austin Theriault will make his first career start in the staple of the PASS South Series schedule and his third straight start in the series to begin the year.