In preparation for his K&K Pro Series East debut
“I wanted to get ready for the NCATS opening race (May 20 on the Mosport road course), as well as learn the Bristol track before the March 16 race there. Boy did I get experience. The high-banked corners on the Bristol half-mile track are like walls at the end of the short straightaways, and I had to learn to let the car coast into the corners, rather than brake and end up almost stopped in the middle of the corners.”
Transplanted Quebecer Mario Gosselin prepared the car and coached Ray Jr, and got his driver to within a second of the quickest K&N racer there – quick enough for NASCAR to grant Ray Jr the upgraded license he needed to race on the high-speed track.
Ray Jr remains realistic about the upcoming Bristol race. “Going quick is one thing, Fighting off thirty madmen in the race while lapping at an average speed close to 120 mph is something else entirely. I went to Bristol to learn and that has certainly been the case so far.”
2012 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series (NCATS) season plans for the Bonzaï Racing Team call for chasing after “Rookie of the Year” honours by running all Eastern races on the schedule, with the Western races depending on Ray Jr’s point situation at the time. Ray also plans to add to his experience by running in two other NASCAR K&N race on high-speed tracks, Richmond (VA) on April 26 and Dover (DE) on September 28.
Ray Jr is ready to work hard this summer. “The NCATS drivers are extremely competitive and experienced, and I need to learn quickly so I can claw my way into the Top 15 mix and finish in that group, with Top Ten results a bonus. It sure will be a fun and a learning year for the whole team.”