CLICKITY CLICK
EDMONTON, AB. (July 2) - Will the 2012 season be a record year for visits to the official website of the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series?  "We certainly are trending in that direction," says Gord Craig, the NPP Series announcer and media relations director, "comparing the first six months [for visits] of our record year, to the first six months of this year is revealing some interesting numbers." 

VISITS TO THE NPP SERIES WEBSITE JUMPED 32% AFTER THE RIMBEY RACE
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (photo: STP Racing Memories)

The current record for total NPP Series website visits in a calendar year [January - December] sits at 42,366.  This number was reached at the end of 2009.  The first six months of 2012 has already seen 19,090 visits to the NPP Series website.  The first six months of the record year [2009] saw 18,242 visits.  "It certainly looks like we are heading into some uncharted territory on-line." The official website of the NPP Late Model Series has recorded more than 167,000 visits since its launch on May 1st 2007. "I have been asked on numerous occasions if we are going to delve into the social media scene," adds Craig, "right now I wouldn't count out having a NPP Series Facebook site for the 2013 season.  This [Facebook page] will definitely be brought up with the drivers during our off-season meeting."


THE NPP SERIES MIGHT 'LIKE' BEING ON FACEBOOK

The next schedule race for the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series will be the first two-day show of the season (the two-day show in Rimbey was rained out).  Friday and Saturday night, the NPP Series is the support class for the 2012 Gold Cup at Edmonton's Castrol Raceway.  This is the 12th consecutive season the NPP Late Model Series has been the support class for Canada's oldest, most prestigious Sprint Car race. 


2012 GOLD CUP
> Friday, July 20th
> Saturday, July 21st
-featuring '360' Sprint Cars and the NPP Late Model Series

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GOLD CUP NUGGETS
EDMONTON, AB. (July 12) - The Gold Cup was first competed in Edmonton (Speedway Park) back in 1954.  In 1997,  Northern Provincial Pipelines Ltd. became directly involved in Canada's oldest, most prestigious open wheel race as both a major sponsor and major participant.  "We've sponsored this race several times over the years," says NPP owner and president Dwight Kennedy, "1997 was also the first season we were the major sponsor of Wade Fleming's sprint car." 


FLEMING FLEW THE NPP FLAG FOR 6 OF HIS 8 EDMONTON TRACK CHAMPIONSHIPS

Fleming, who retired from Sprint Car racing in 2009, would win the 1997 Gold Cup sponsored by Northern Provincial Pipelines and would go on to win the 1997 Castrol Raceway track championship.  Two years later, the upstart NPP Late Model class would make its debut alongside the open wheel Sprint Cars for the 1999 Gold Cup.  "We'd been racing in Valemont, Clearwater and Hinton at the time," says Kennedy, "so to be given the opportunity to race in Edmonton was pretty big for our small group."  Including Kennedy, a total of 6 NPP Late Model teams plus 4 Super Stock teams made the tow to Edmonton.  Edson, Alberta's Kennedy would win the debut NPP Late Model Feature event in his familiar #81 Dodge.  "I still have that trophy around here somewhere".  The NPP Late Model class would return for the 2000 Gold Cup.  Kennedy would again drive to victory lane. 


KENNEDY WON THE FIRST EVER NPP LATE MODEL FEATURE AT THE 1999 GOLD CUP
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (photo: NPP Series archives)

The Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series would officially form in 2001 and run its inaugural season at Edmonton's Castrol Raceway and would once again be the support class for the Sprint Cars at the 2001 Gold Cup.  "The competition in the NPP Series has been tough since the very beginning," adds the 2001 and 2006 NPP Series Champion, "you just never know who's going to win these races anymore.  It's even more tougher at two day shows like the Gold Cup."  Kennedy, who currently sits sixth in NPP Series Championship points has gone to victory lane a total of three times at Gold Cup events since 2001.  "It's been a few years since we've won at the Gold Cup [2007].  Maybe this year will be our year."  For the 12th consecutive season, the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series will be supporting the open wheel Sprint Car class at the 2012 Gold Cup in Edmonton.


2012 GOLD CUP
> Friday, July 20th
> Saturday, July 21st
- featuring '360' Sprint Cars and the NPP Late Model Series

NPP LATE MODEL SERIES
FEATURE WINNERS AT GOLD CUP EVENTS
(SINCE 2001)
Trevor Emond------ 6
Jason Beaulieu------ 3
Dwight Kennedy---- 3
Bruce Broughton---- 2
Darrell Midgley------2
Larry Simpson------- 2
Mike Tom------------ 2

Dwight Kennedy--- (01 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Larry Simpson----- (01 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Trevor Emond -----(02 Gold Cup-Night #1)
Larry Simpson----- (02 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Trevor Emond------(03 Gold Cup - Night #1)**
Trevor Emond------(03 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Dwight Kennedy----(04 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Jason Beaulieu------(04 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Trevor Emond------(05 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Trevor Emond------(05 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Darrell Midgley-----(06 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Trevor Emond------(06 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Jason Beaulieu------(07 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Dwight Kennedy----(07 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Jason Beaulieu------(08 Gold Cup)^^
Mike Tom------------(09 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Darrell Midgley-----(09 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Bruce Broughton--- (10 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Bruce Broughton--- (10 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Mike Tom----------- (11 Gold Cup)^^

**still needs to be verified by the NPP Late Model Series video archives.
^^ One night show - First night rained out.

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CLARK IS GOLDEN IN EDMONTON
EDMONTON, AB (July 20) - Kevin Clark had one of his best nights in NPP Late Model Series competition.  The Altario, Alberta driver won his Qualifying Heat, the 'A' Dash and then held off a hard charge by defending NPP Season Champion Mike Tom to win Friday nights Feature in Edmonton.  "I was just hanging on at the end", admits Clark, "I had the better car up high, [Mike] had the better car down low that's for sure."  Clark last went to victory lane in Edmonton on August 22nd, 2008.  "That was some of the best side by side racing I've been involved in," says Clark, "I was doing everything I could just to stay ahead."  Clark,  who is running a limited season in 2012, sits 12th in the NPP Series Championship points chase. "That was fun.  Looking forward to Saturday night." 


CLARK AND TOM BATTLE IN THE FEATURE

Defending NPP Series Champion Mike Tom would have liked to steal the win from Clark but was pleased with second.  "We hummed and hawed about our set-up for the Feature," says the driver of the Jazzy Oilfield #55 Chevrolet, "we were just about the only car to stay on bottom the entire race. That's where we were passing cars." Passing cars on the bottom did get Tom into a little bit of hot water early in the Feature.


POINT LEADER BEAULIEU GOES FOR A SPIN WITH SOME HELP FROM TOM

Tom received a rolled up black flag after spinning point leader Chris Beaulieu.  "That was my fault completely," exclaims Tom,  "I was working on the #3 car and was too hot going into turn one and hit the back end of the #90. So I will be having a chat with him [Chris] to apologize."  The second place finish  in the Feature moved the Stony Plain, Alberta driver from fourth to second in NPP Series Championship points.  Tom wasn't the only driver to see his position change in the NPP Series point standings after race action Friday night.  A fifth place finish in the Feature gave Whitecourt, Alberta's Kevin Wheeler the valuable points needed to move from third to the second in the NPP Series points chase. 

WHEELER SITS JUST XX POINTS BEHIND BEAULIEU IN THE STANDINGS

Edson, Albertas Dwight Kennedy finished the feature in third and moved back into the top five in the NPP Late Model Series standings. After his early race run-in with Mike Tom, Campbell River British Columbia's Chris Beaulieu finished the Friday night Feature in seventh but still managed to hang onto the NPP Series point lead. Last month, Bruce Broughton saw a dramatic rise in the point standings after his performance in Rimbey.  The Spruce Grove, Alberta driver gave most of that huge gain back on Friday night dropping from second to third after a 8th place finish in the Feature.

Night #2 of the Gold Cup weekend in Edmonton featuring open wheel sprint cars and the NPP Late Model Series goes Saturday night July 21st.

NPP SERIES - THE INSIDE TRACK
- Clark is the seventh different NPP Series driver to win a Feature at a Gold Cup event since 2001.
- tough night for two NPP Series drivers; Sherwood Parks Curtis Moore and Whitecourt's Pete Head were forced to retire from the Feature early due to parts failure. 
- Millet's Kary Rogers didn't even make it to the track with his car.  His tow vehicle experienced mechanical problems. 
- NPP Series driver Travis Day broke his ankle in a work related incident in Whitecourt and showed up at the track on crutches.
- Pavement and Kart racer Denver Foran made his NPP Series debut Friday night.  His first time ever on a dirt/clay race track and the Spruce Grove Alberta finished 11th in the Feature.    

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LIKE FATHER LIKE SON
EDMONTON, AB. (July 22) - The Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series has been the support class for the Gold Cup sprint car event at Castrol Raceway since 2001.  Campbell River British Columbia's Jason Beaulieu, the 2007 NPP Series Champion, has 3 Feature wins at Gold Cup events with his most recent victory taking place in 2008.  Saturday night, Jason's son Chris, the current NPP Late Model Series point leader, entered the NPP Series history books by driving to victory lane at the 2012 Gold Cup.  This is the first time a father and son have won a NPP Series Feature event at a Gold Cup race weekend.  "It's a prestigious race weekend to begin with says the Campbell River, British Columbia driver, "very cool to be able to say that me and my dad have won a feature event at this race.  I'm very happy we did this [win]."  Beaulieu, who finished second in his Qualifying heat, won the 'A' Dash and would hold off 2009 NPP Series Champion Darrell Midgley for the entire 25 lap Feature.  Even though he was fighting an overheating problem most of the weekend, Midgley had his best showing of the season finishing second in the Feature Saturday night (fourth on Friday night). 


BC DRIVERS LEAD THE WAY IN EDMONTON SATURDAY NIGHT

"He [Darrell] got his nose in front of me a couple of times but we held him off."  Saturday night's victory by Beaulieu was his second win of the season.  "I battled with the car set up Friday night [finished 7th]," admits the driver of the All Weather Windows #90 Dodge,  "I actually dialed the car out.  It just about cost me the point lead.  Saturday night I was watching how the track was shaping up a little more closely and adjusted the set up accordingly."  The victory gives Beaulieu a 29 point cushion over Kevin Wheeler.  The Whitecourt, Alberta driver had a very strong weekend in Edmonton.  Wheeler and his KW Mechanical #3 Dodge finished third Saturday night and fifth on Friday night.  Kevin Clark, Friday nights Feature winner, placed fourth in the Feature on Saturday night.             

NPP SERIES - THE INSIDE TRACK
- The pole sitter won the Friday and Saturday night Features.  The last time the NPP Series saw back to back wins from the pole position in Edmonton was August 28/29, 2009.
- British Columbia drivers took the top two spots on the podium Saturday night. The last time this happened in an NPP Series race was August 29th, 2009. Jason Beaulieu won the Feature and Darrell Midgley was second.
- Defending Season Champion Mike Tom had engine problems Saturday and registered his first DNF since September of 2009.  Ironically Tom's teammate and NPP Series Rookie of the Year contender Mike Dunn suffered catastrophic engine failure in Saturday's feature.  
- The NPP Late Model Series congratulates Travis Rilat in winning the 2012 Gold Cup Feature race in his Xtreme Oilfield/Scott Safety/ Northern Provincial Pipelines sponsored Sprint Car.  The Forney, Texas driver was competing in his first ever race weekend in Canada. 
- Dennis MacEachern, the 2002 NPP Late Model Series champion, was top Canadian in the Gold Cup Sprint Car Feature. The Edson, Alberta driver finished 3rd.

NPP LATE MODEL SERIES
FEATURE WINNERS AT GOLD CUP EVENTS
(SINCE 2001)
Trevor Emond------ 6
Jason Beaulieu------ 3
Dwight Kennedy---- 3
Bruce Broughton---- 2
Darrell Midgley------2
Larry Simpson------ 2
Mike Tom---------- 2
Chris Beaulieu ----- 1
Kevin Clark --------1

Dwight Kennedy--- (01 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Larry Simpson----- (01 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Trevor Emond -----(02 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Larry Simpson----- (02 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Trevor Emond------(03 Gold Cup - Night #1)**
Trevor Emond------(03 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Dwight Kennedy----(04 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Jason Beaulieu------(04 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Trevor Emond------(05 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Trevor Emond------(05 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Darrell Midgley-----(06 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Trevor Emond------(06 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Jason Beaulieu------(07 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Dwight Kennedy----(07 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Jason Beaulieu------(08 Gold Cup)^^
Mike Tom----------(09 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Darrell Midgley-----(09 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Bruce Broughton--- (10 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Bruce Broughton--- (10 Gold Cup - Night #2)
Mike Tom---------- (11 Gold Cup)^^
Kevin Clark --------(12 Gold Cup - Night #1)
Chris Beaulieu----- -(12 Gold Cup - Night #2)

**still needs to be verified by the NPP Late Model Series video archives.
^^ One night show - First night rained out.

Next race for the Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series takes place on the August long weekend at Merritt Speedway in British Columbia.  This is the debut of the NPP Late Model Series in the province of British Columbia.


> SATURDAY, August 4th
> SUNDAY, August 5th
4:00pm - Gates Open
5:00pm - Merritt Time Trials/NPP Hot Laps
6:00pm - Racing Starts

General Admission $10.00
Youth (age 13 - 17) $6.00
Seniors $6.00
Children 12 and under FREE.

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VENTURE TO BC
EDMONTON, AB. (July 30) - The Northern Provincial Pipelines Late Model Series makes its British Columbia debut at Merritt Speedway this August long weekend.  For two current NPP Series competitors it's a chance to race in their home province.  Both Chris Beaulieu and Darrell Midgley can't wait for the Saturday and Sunday night events on the 3/8 mile clay/dirt oval track in Merritt, BC.  "I've never raced on the dirt in BC before," says Campbell River's Chris Beaulieu, "just to let you know that I am going to go for it this weekend!"


ALL OF BEAULIEUS WINS THIS YEAR HAVE COME IN EDMONTON
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(photo: STP RACING MEMORIES)

Beaulieu, the current NPP Series point leader, has two Feature wins in 2012 [both in Edmonton] and would like to be the first driver to win a NPP Series Feature event in British Columbia.  "It would be pretty good to win one in front of the BC race fans."  For Darrell Midgley it's been almost 20 years since he raced at a dirt track in British Columbia.  "I raced my IMCA Modified at Cassidy Speedway in the early 1990's," says the Sidney, BC driver, "that dirt track is closed now but I've run many paved events in BC since then in my Late Model."  Midgley is the current president of Western Speedway on Vancouver Island.  "This next race should play out well for us," adds the 2009 NPP Series Champion,  "no one in the Series has raced there before [in Merritt].  I feel pretty good going in." 


MOMENTUM FOR MIDGLEY HEADING TO MERRITT??
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(photo: STP RACING MEMORIES)

Midgley moved from ninth to sixth in the NPP Series point standings after a strong fourth and second place finish at the last race weekend in Edmonton [July 20th & 21st].  "Winning races is the key right now.  We'll see what happens in Merritt this weekend."  Saturday nights race at Merritt Speedway marks the official halfway point of the 2012 season for NPP Late Model Series race teams.  Just 77 points separates the top 5 drivers in the standings.  Sunday nights race in Merritt marks the beginning of the last half of the 2012 season.           


> SATURDAY, August 4th
> SUNDAY, August 5th
4:00pm - Gates Open
5:00pm - Merritt Time Trials/NPP Hot Laps
6:00pm - Racing Starts

General Admission $10.00
Youth (age 13 - 17) $6.00
Seniors $6.00
Children 12 and under FREE.

-

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