(Stafford Springs, CT)—What a difference one year can make. After making his Stafford Late Model debut last season with the #31 LifeCare Family Chiropractic team, Glen Reen has returned to the Late Model ranks this season and he currently sits at the top of the points standings. Reen’s 2016 season was curtailed due to a blown engine, only allowing him to make 9 starts. But those 9 starts laid the foundation for the 2017 season where Reen and the #31 team have yet to finish outside the top-7.
“I knew we’d run well together, especially after last year with the success we had in the few races that we ran,” said Reen. “Other then when we blew the engine and got into a wreck, we were in the top-5 every week with the #31 car. Rob Russell, Marc Russell, Billy Johnson, and Todd Fissette, those guys have their stuff together. They build an amazing race car and it makes my job driving the car very easy. I never second guessed once that we would be in the situation we’re in. As much as we wanted to run for the championship last season, losing the motor really ended up working to our advantage. I was able to learn the car, the team and I learned about each other, and the guys learned what I like and I learned what they like and how to approach things. I have to give a big thank you to Rob, Marc, Marc’s wife Chey, Billy, and Todd for their support as well as my sponsors LifeCare Family Chiropractic, Ruby’s Liquors, New England Racing Fuel, Whelen Engineering, Team Fox, T/A Engines, Travis Roy Foundation, and Alpine Tree Co. for all their support.”
Reen has also been getting help from a freshly retired Carl Edwards.
“Carl Edwards has been helping me a ton,” said Reen. “We talk once a week and we text back and forth and the information he helps me with, it’s a mental and physical thing. It’s made a night and day difference for me.”
Reen is currently leading the tightest points race that Stafford has on offer at the moment with the top-4 drivers separated by only 18 points, or 9 positions on the track. With 1 win, three second place, and two third place finishes among his 8 top-7’s for the season, Reen feels like he and the #31 team are legitimate contenders for the championship this season.
“I don’t want to sound cocky, but I think we’re a serious threat and I think we’ve showed that this season,” said Reen. “It’s not going to be easy but every week we’re learning new things about the car and every week we’re striving to get better. Guys like Tom Fearn, Kevin Gambacorta, Michael Wray, Michael Bennett, Josh Wood, they’re all tough and they’re in the top-5 every week. I honestly think we’re getting stronger. The car seems like it runs better on older tires, which is the complete opposite of my SK car, and as long as we can keep out of trouble, I think we’re going to be a serious contender.”
Last Friday night saw Reen battling with Tom Fearn for the feature win, which was possibly a preview of what is to come in the second half of the Late Model season as drivers will be looking to put themselves into position to make a run for the championship in the closing races of the 2017 season.
“We almost got Tommy last Friday night, but I just couldn’t get to him,” said Reen. “I probably could’ve moved him out of the way, but I didn’t want to win like that because he always races me so clean. I actually got into him in turns 3 and 4 by accident and I hit the brakes to give him time to recover and continue. He came up to me after the race was over and he told me that was a class act and that it was a true racer move, which really meant a lot to me. But when it gets down to the championship late in the season, who knows? Instead of giving an inch, it might shrink down to giving only a half inch or quarter inch. It’s definitely going to get a lot more exciting as we get down to the wire later in the season.”
Reen will also have to balance his time between the #31 car and his #17 SK Modified® machine. Despite running double duty for the entire season, Reen says that he has a game plan in mind each time he gets behind the wheel, which won’t detract from his efforts to capture a championship.
“This year has been really a lot of fun,” said Reen. “To get into the Late Model after driving the SK, it’s almost relaxing. I feel like I’m barely moving when I get into the Late Model after driving the SK. There’s a big difference between the two cars with things like your pickup points, lift points, and entry points, and you always have to keep that in the back of your mind depending on which car you’re driving.”
Reen and the rest of the Late Model field will be back in action this Friday night, July 28th as part of the 5-Star Series program with a special appearance by the Wild Thing Karts Senior Champs division. Tickets for this Friday night’s program are priced at $17.50 for adult general admission tickets, $5.00 for children ages 6-14, and children ages 5 and under are admitted free of charge when accompanied by an adult. Reserved seat tickets are $20.00 for all ages. All ticket prices include 10% CT Admission Tax. Stafford Motor Speedway offers plenty of free parking along with overnight parking available for self-contained Recreational Vehicles.
For more information, contact the Stafford Motor Speedway track office at 860-684-2783 or visit us on the web at www.staffordspeedway.com.