photos by David Heath - 

Tiger Buddies Enjoying Thunder Road Rookie of the Year Battle

For Immediate Release TR63-092002

Barre, VT - - Thunder Road NAPA Flying Tiger Rookie of the Years honors are still up for grabs with two races remaining. Fred Dezan of Moretown leads Justin Hart of Williamstown by 39 points heading into the Mini-Bowl, the Tiger's main event on Milk Bowl weekend.

Justin Hart (44) races around the outside of Chuck Perkins (18)

Dezan has driven the Griffin & Griffin Excavating Celebrity No.77 to his first career win and five top-10 finishes in his initial season. He was in contention throughout the Flying Tiger Subway "Grand Slam" Series event at Riverside until sidelined late by a flat tire. "That was as good a race as I've had all year," said Dezan. "I had to run the outside nearly the whole race and I was coming back at the leaders before my tire popped."

Hart's top effort came at an opportune time, when he finished second on Times-Argus double points night. "The third week of the season, I had a bad wreck and bent the frame. It took a while to sort that out, but we've had a good second half," Hart reported. "Fred shares a shop with Chip Grenier within walking distance of me. We have a good time racing each other hard. Nobody gets mad. It's very competitive out there, but we're having fun."

"It's a lot different from the Street Stocks we drove last year," said Dezan. "There's more things to adjust and a lot more horsepower. It takes time to learn about the car."

The Flying Tiger track championship battle is also going down to the wire. Joe Steffen of Essex Jct leads Reno Gervais 922-904. Doug Murphy is third at 901. Dezan and Hart are 15th and 17th, respectively.

The New England Dodge Dealers Milk Bowl has a two-day format which includes the ACT Late Models, NAPA Flying Tigers and Allen Lumber Street Stocks. Post time is 1: 30 pm. Gates open Saturday at 10:30 am and Sunday at 10 am.


Fred Dezan receives Fisher/Federated Auto Parts 1st place trophy