Keeping Pace

Idaho 200 Champion Heading To Yakima For Apple Cup

Gary Lewis, winner of the Montana 200 and Idaho 200 for two consecutive seasons, heads to Yakima Speedway this weekend looking for his first career Apple Cup victory. (Photo courtesy of Gary Lewis Racing LLC) (The Spokesman-Review)
Gary Lewis, winner of the Montana 200 and Idaho 200 for two consecutive seasons, heads to Yakima Speedway this weekend looking for his first career Apple Cup victory. (Photo courtesy of Gary Lewis Racing LLC) (The Spokesman-Review)

Gary Lewis, the two-time Idaho 200 champion, heads to Yakima this weekend looking for his first career victory in the famed Apple Cup season opening late model event for Northwest stars.

LEWIS HEADS TO APPLE CUP EAGER TO GET SEASON STARTED

Courtesy: Gary Lewis Racing

SNOHOMISH, Wash. (April 15, 2009)–Gary Lewis was prepared to get his 2009 season underway on March 28 for the season opening ASA Northwest Late Model Tour event at Evergreen Speedway.

Mother Nature had other plans as the rain came early and washed out the race and set the team on a course for this weekend’s Yakima Speedway Apple Cup.

This will be Lewis’ first attempt at the famed race in his own team’s race car. The Snohomish, Wash. native has made one prior Apple Cup start driving for Dan Schmoe in the Winner’s Choice house car back in the mid-90s but The Nutter Racing Engines Chevrolet has never chased the cup in team history until Sunday.

Lewis sees the Apple Cup as another big event to conquer and add to wins in the Montana 200, Idaho 200 and Fall Classic.

“A win this weekend at the Apple Cup would rank right up there with some of our biggest wins that’s for sure. This will be the first time (racing) in a Lewis-prepared car but we’ll approach this race just like any other big race we’ve taken part in. We have raced Yakima Speedway many times throughout the years so things should be fine.”

The last time out for Lewis and his Mike Leary Shock Shop crew at Yakima was the 2008 Fall Classic. At the end of the day Lewis recorded one of only two DNF’s for 2008 and feels that off-season work on the race car will help pay off in potential victory this weekend.

“We hung a new 2009 ARP Racing Bodies Impala SS on our car after learning some new aerodynamic things at the Lefthander Chassis trade show and it looks great. We had some problems with the car (after an incident at the Miller 200) and are going back to what we know and will be successful (for the car),” the three-time Northwest late model champion said.

Hading into the weekend Lewis knows that practice lost at Evergreen, many of the team members working on Friday and not being able to practice in Yakima could leave the AP Brakes crew playing catch-up for set-ups in qualifying and race trim, he noted

“We made just a few small changes (from the Evergreen set-up to prepare for Yakima) like gears and such. Practice is a big concern yes, but, we all have jobs and can’t afford to miss time from work on Friday.

With that being said we will have to miss that first day of practice in Yakima but we have a great baseline set-up for the track and just have to adjust to the new Goodyear tire we have. It is a concern but hopefully we will learn quick during the limited practice on Saturday morning.”

Like most things in racing success will come from hard work, he added.

“Yakima is a tricky track. We have won many races there and have struggled in just as many with almost the same set-ups. We will just have to work hard and make the correct decisions. Hopefully we can do that and have a good weekend.”

Yakima Speedway’s Apple Cup for Northwest Late Models stars is set for Sunday afternoon April 19. To learn more log onto www.yakimaspeedway.us

For more information on Gary Lewis Racing check out www.garylewisracing.com




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Keeping Pace

Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.







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