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NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour Preview: General Mills/Ukrop's Fall 150

28 October 1997

NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour
General Mills/Ukrop's Fall 150 Advance 
Richmond International Raceway

GARDINER, ME - With the NASCAR Regional Touring Series being as competitive 
as they are, it isn't often that a championship is decided before the final 
race of the season. In the case of the NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour as it 
enters its final 1997 event, the General Mills/Ukrop's Fall 150 at Richmond 
International Raceway on November 1, Mike Stefanik of Coventry, R.I. will 
start the race as the newly crowned 1997 NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour 

Stefanik's accomplishment is significant when you consider that Stefanik 
actually missed one NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour event during the season 
on June 14 at Jennerstown, Penn., yet he still managed to wrap up the title 
with one race remaining on the schedule. 

Even more significant, is the reason why Stefanik missed that race. He was at 
a NASCAR Busch North Series, Grand National Division race, in pursuit of that 
title - which he won in the final event at Lime Rock Park in Connecticut on 
October 18. 

Stefanik has picked up nine victories in the 1997 NASCAR Featherlite Modified 
Tour season, snapping Richie Evans' record of five-straight wins along the 
way with six-straight wins in six starts this year. 

Also significant, is the fact that Stefanik was the winner the last time the 
NASCAR Featherlite Modifieds roared around the three-quarter mile, 
high-banked track at the Richmond Fairgrounds, and he can certainly be 
considered one of the favorites this time around. 

While the pressure will be off Stefanik as far as the championship hunt goes, 
he is sure to be receiving a lot of pressure from his fellow competitors - 
all of whom would like to end the season with a win. 

Leading that group will be Tim Connolly of Endicott, N.Y. who joined with
veteran car owner Bob Garbarino of Mystic, Conn. in 1996 to create a very 
competitive team. When Connolly moved over to driving for the Garbarino team 
last year, he had a total of two career NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour 
wins. In the 1997 season alone, he added four more victories to his career 
record, and gave car owner Garbarino his first win since 1992. 

Stefanik does not have to worry about points, but Connolly is locked in a 
close battle with Rick Fuller of Auburn, Mass. for the runner-up slot in the 
final points standings. Fuller, with two wins this year, trails Connolly be a 
mere 40 points coming into the General Mills/Ukrop's Fall 150. It is likely 
that both teams will be planning a race strategy which will unfold and become 
apparent as the race goes on. 

A dual champion, the defending race winner, and a points battle that hasn't 
been settled yet all add up to a great day of ground-pounding, NASCAR 
Featherlite Modified Tour action. 

By NASCAR Public Relations