Mike Christopher Jr. To Run Uncle Ted’s 13 In Twisted Tea Mod 80 At Stafford

(Press Release from Stafford Motor Speedway)

Mike Christopher Jr. will run the No. 13 Tour Type Modified car of his late Uncle Ted Christopher in the Twisted Tea 80 Friday at Stafford Speedway (Photo: Stafford Speedway/Jim DuPont)

When the Twisted Tea Open Modified 80 takes the green flag this Friday at Stafford Motor Speedway, it will mark a momentous occasion for Mike Christopher, Jr. The race will be Christopher, Jr.’s debut in a tour type modified behind the wheel of his late Uncle Ted’s red #13 M & T Enterprises car. Christopher, Jr. is looking forward to not only make his debut in a tour type modified but representing his family, driving Uncle Ted’s number 13.

“I’ve been looking forward to this race since we decided to run it,” said Christopher, Jr. “The car is pretty much ready to go, I just need to make sure I fit in the seat. I’m excited not only because it’s my first race in a Tour type Modified, but we’re keeping the car all red with the #13 on it and Ted’s name on the roof. It’s going to be pretty special to go out and represent Ted. It means everything to me and to my family to be driving this car and the race is going to be a lot of fun. I have to thank my Auntie Quinn and my Dad for giving me this opportunity.”

Christopher, Jr. got started racing in the Wild Thing Kart Series and he has made the progression to Legend Cars, SK Lights, and now the SK Modified® division at Stafford. The longest race that Christopher, Jr. has taken part in is the 100-lap NAPA SK 5k, which he has started three times. Christopher, Jr. has recorded top-7 finishes in each of the last 2 NAPA SK 5k events but with the difference in power between an SK Modified® car and a tour type modified, he isn’t quite sure what to expect for tire wear during the Twisted Tea Open Mod 80.

“I think the biggest issue for me will be driving the car on old tires,” said Christopher, Jr. “I know we can change two tires during the race but I’ve never driven a car with this much power. Depending on how many laps we go before the pit stop, I’m not sure if it’s going to be a challenge or not driving on old tires. Not that it’s a major challenge, but I think that will be the biggest thing for me. I’ve only ran the SK 5k a couple of times but we don’t really wear the tires that much.”

Despite his lack of knowledge when it comes to the potential tire wear during the Twisted Tea Open Mod 80, Christopher, Jr. knows he will be behind the wheel of a good car with Ted Christopher winning the VMRS race at Waterford last August. Rather than setting his mind on a win, Christopher wants to simply finish the race and possibly get a top-5 finish in his first race in a tour type modified car.

“We definitely have a good piece coming to the track,” said Christopher, Jr. “Ted ran really well with the car at Waterford and it was fast at Stafford before the engine blew up. I know I have a good car underneath me and I’m prepared for the 80 laps and whatever might be in store. More than anything I want to finish the race. Going into my first tour type modified race, I know there’s a lot of good teams that are coming and it will be pretty prestigious to win Stafford’s first open modified race. There’s a lot of hype going into this race so everyone is going to be on their game for this race. If I could salvage a top-5 or get on the podium, that would mean a lot. A lot of things can happen and if it comes down to going for the win, we’re going to go for it.”

The 2018 season at Stafford has gotten off to a great start for Christopher, Jr. in the SK Modified® division. He has recorded 3 top-5 and 4 top-10 finishes in the first 7 races to currently sit 7th in points. Christopher, Jr. is still chasing his first SK Modified® feature win and he says he wouldn’t quite know how to react if he were to win the Twisted Tea Open Mod 80 this Friday night.

“I really don’t know how I’d react,” said Christopher, Jr. “The anticipation for this race has been building and we’ve had a good car in the SK Modified® and we’re really close to getting our first win there. If I were to win this race, I’d be more shell shocked than if we won an SK race. Especially being Ted’s car, I wouldn’t know what to think. We’re really close with the SK. We thought we had a good car last week but the race went green to checkers and there wasn’t much we could do. The whole field is pretty close but I can feel it’s coming and a lot of people have faith in me.”

Teams can register for the Twisted Tea Open Modified 80 online or by calling the track office at (860)-684-2783. Rules for the two Open Modified 80 shows can be found in the TEAMS section of www.staffordspeedway.com.

Stafford’s five NASCAR Whelen All-American Series divisions will join the Open Modifieds in feature action. Tickets for this event are priced at $30.00 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 $32.00 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.

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Comments

  1. Bob Npt. says:

    You called it Reggie. Good luck Mike. Make Teddy proud.

  2. No pressure kid, just be yourself.

  3. The Reg says:

    Thanks Bob, Looking forward to going since i got day off.

  4. The Reg says:

    Still trying to find that shirt!!!

  5. The Reg says:

    i was at Waterford last year when teddy won the VMS race. Last time I saw him win!! i will never forget it!!

  6. Best of luck. Great to see the 13 out there again. Would have been TC’s birthday today, I’m sure he’s proud.

  7. Who doesn’t love this? Let me add them up…….nobody. A surprise? The car has been on the pre registration page for months but I guess this seals the deal. Christopher not used to the power? Ahhh, maybe not such a big deal. The VMRS top five in the recently completed show averaged and best time of 19.13. The SK’s on the same night averaged 19.03. The VMRS motors at Thomson a really big deal. Stafford maybe not as much.

  8. Chase Dowling is driving a Troyer in this race. Talk amongst yourselves.

  9. 22 cars pre registered as of this morning. What a wonderfully eclectic group it is too. Yes as expected it’s dominated by VMRS cars. I count something like 13 or 14. One would expect top guns Pennink in the 25 and Pitkat’s 52 to be favorites but Etheridge and Savory run strong at Stafford. ROC ‘s Andy Jankowiak who came in 6th in the opener at Lancaster should be interesting to watch. The guy that seems to race everywhere these days, the winner of the NWMS Fall Final last year Eric Goodale has signed up. Could this turn around what has to be a disappointing season so far? We have the diaper dandies from the SK Lights Moeller and Rufrano packing big boy cars for this race. How about a three familiar names that pick their spots very carefully. Tommy Barrett with a strong TTOMS 4th place finish in the opener at Claremont. And Frank Ruocco and Jeff Malave who clearly know the track but haven’t been seen so much lately as far as I can see. What do those guys have in store. Cory Midget who? A Riverhead guy apparently who definitely qualifies for the “out of the woodwork” award. Put a pin in that one to see what happens.
    Stafford regulars Chase, Pennink, Cipriano, Christopher, Rocco, Mueller and Rufrano pulling double duty in cars with completely different competitive profiles then we regular fans are used to. Can Rocco and Dowling get their four barrel cars that haven’t been so great to the front?
    $30 clams but well worth it since it will be flat out racing from the first heat to the end with all these wild cards in play that no one has any idea how will play out. And the motors. What the heck are these guys doing with them. Are the VMRS guys standing pat with what they usually run or will they add some special sauce? Will guys like Jankowiak, Barrett, Ruocco and Malave surprise? Will Christopher in the 13 outperform and drive the crowd wild.
    I dare you to pick this winner with any authority.
    So much to anticipate, no idea what will happen and absolutely perfect weather predicted.

  10. Fast Eddie says:

    Doug, some racetrack and/or series should hire you for marketing & promotion. Great post!!

  11. GOING TO BE GREAT TO SEE THE 13 OUT THERE AGAIN. WOULD LIKE TO SEE BIG MONEY MATT HIRSHMAN RACE AT STAFFORD AND A FEW MORE WMT GUYS.

  12. Fast Eddie says:

    JH, $5K to win or more seems to be Hirschman’s requirement. My guess is towing from PA for less isn’t cost effective for him.

  13. MCJ in TC,s #13, pretty much as it came off the track. Don’t think there will be a dry eye in the house. And if by chance he wins, it’ll bring the house down .GOOD LUCK MCJ and the whole 13/82 team. Just drive your race and let the cards fall where they will. A special thanks to Ms Quinn Christopher for giving MCJ this chance.

  14. This is a VMRS race with a purse.

  15. He’s a spec motor guy isn’t he? You’re probably right about Hirschman Fast Eddie but how about some wild speculation. Matt took the time to register at the track in the SK’s with the number 41 owned by Rob Gallaer. Is Stafford still on his radar? Hope springs eternal for me anyway that in the next two days Stafford, who many would agree is capable of a last minute surprise to peak fan interest, will announce Hirschman will appear or some other heavy hitter. Preceded perhaps by an unexpected bump in bonus money. I don’t know if they ever would throw a few bones under the table to him for travel money but since I’m being a wild eyed optimist let’s put that on the table as well. Or under the table as the case may be.

  16. wmass01013 says:

    This is Stafford they don’t BUMP $$, The show IS LOW PAYING for an open Comp Show, I was hopeful when they announced 2 OPEN SHOWS but obviously the $$ ARE NOT BRINGING in the Big Guns to race, even THE speedway stated at the VMRS race in may that ALLLLL they teams there indicated they wanted to run the OPEN shows but NOT MANY have entered, nor preece, silk, Nocella, or many big names entered, Nice try by Stafford but more $$ NEEDED especially with a NEW SPONSOR

  17. It’s fair to say that many of you folks here are NWMT focused. That you will travel for the NWMT shows and perhaps the TTOMS affairs. Would any of you travel from NY, Vermont or NH for this show……..few to none is my guess and who can blame you. This will be a local Stafford crowd and if it gets Modifiedz Night crowd numbers it will be a big success. We’ll see. The critical part is it’s got many Stafford drivers and the pre registration at 23 cars is marginally OK for a new event.
    When this was announced we all knew that since spec motors were out that most of the big guns from the NWMT and ROC would be out. But Pennink, Dowling, Goodale and Sutcliffe may not be in NWMT cars but they are notable tour drivers. Will Preece be there too? Will some other big name appear out of the blue? Fingers crossed. Part of the fun is not knowing.
    No this isn’t a TTOMS event with a long record of big dollar shows, Big Money Matt, a fan following and all the rest. It’s the first act of a new show and there will be growing pains. If I’m sitting in NY now I would probably be as unexcited and skeptical as most of you. But being 30 minutes away and a Stafford fan I’m psyched for a pretty interesting night of racing. Stafford regulars vs the wild cards should make it a very entertaining Modified Open feature. 5 action packed regular division features capped with full fields in the SK’s and Lights is reason alone to take in the show. Having absolutely no idea what will happen is the cherry on top.

  18. wmass01013 says:

    Doug long gone are the days when Teams SHOW up to race the day of the show on a whim, u have to preregister and pay a fee to enter not just load the car and here I am to race, happy you are excited for this event and it might be a good show, who knows but for my money its a VMRS light race, and by the way Walt Sutcliffe is NOT A NOTABLE WMT driver, he has ran a few shows at the BACK of the pack!
    Also it has nothing to do with being WMT focused, I like competition from all over the racing series, guys that can compete to win, sure most of the Better teams run the WMT even the TRI TRACK has backed off its BIG numbers of drivers who show up since they started, the WMT seems to be the thing that makes teams show up these days, Just a FACT!!!

  19. Andrew B. says:

    I like the format of the entry list, showing crew chiefs, chassis and engine builders.

    No LFR’s? Are they not legal for an ‘open’ show?

  20. Fast Eddie says:

    I’ll have a 2+ hour ride thanks to weekend traffic, but I’m going! The VMRS against “the other guys” presents a little different event for Modified fans. I was hoping to see more entries, as some of the VMRS teams that run Stafford are not on the list. However, every event has to start somewhere. The first SBM race at Star had only 19 cars, but still had a great race. They had over 30 cars last year. There are plenty of quality cars and drivers entered tomorrow, PLUS SK &SKL features… Lots of good quality Modified racing to make it worth the trip!

  21. Said it before , Fast Eddy is the best pure race fan here. Always civil, knowledgeable, open minded, reasonable expectations, travels well and enthusiastic with multi groove interests. We should all be such good fans.

  22. “No LFR’s? Are they not legal for an ‘open’ show?”

    I think all the NWMT LFR’s are spec powered, so they’d need a different engine to be legal for this event.

  23. “No LFR’s? Are they not legal for an ‘open’ show?”

    The VMRS is pretty much a collection of racers using previously owned equipment. LFRs have not been around long to make it into the secondary market, and hence, the VMRS teams. Also why SPEC engines won’t make it to the VMRS series… when a SPEC motor is used, it’s useless, not much left to re-use, blocks are consumables. Built motors last a long time. Since the Tour isn’t using built motors anymore, the VMRS has to figure out what to use for engines as the old built engines age out and there aren’t anymore available from the Tour teams.

  24. Fast Eddie says:

    The VMRS decided last year to not allow SPEC engines. I’m guessing maybe Stafford decided to go along with that for the open shows as a way of encouraging more VMRS teams to enter. That was also the primary rule difference between the VMRS and the now defunct MTS. There’s still plenty of small block Chevys, Mopars, and Fords out there that can be “built”.

  25. Yeah, good point. If SPECs were allowed at the Stafford Open shows, that would scare off the VMRS regulars. I wouldn’t bother running a built against a SPEC at Stafford. And not too many Tour cars show up at non-NASCAR events anyways. So this is pretty much a rogue VMRS event. Read the rules, like right out of the VMRS rulebook. Headers have to be bought from MRS or Jack’s Competition Engines. 🤔

  26. There’s an LFR now. Tom Abele.

  27. There’s no LFR cars because they’re not being bought by the VMRS teams. Most teams buy used NWMT cars. Did notice allot of SPAFCO cars, and 1 CD car.,even a homebuilt chassis. Many different motor builders though. If you read through the rules there are at least half a dozen engine combinations. This should prove interesting since the Stafford tech department has a hard time teching their SK motors.

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