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Conrad Motorsports Bark River Recap

Mechanical Gremlins Can’t Stop Conrad Family Fun in Bark River

BARK RIVER, MI – After a successful trip to ERX Motor Park, the STEEL-IT sponsored 3-truck Conrad Motorsports team headed to the Upper Peninsula, where Bark River International Raceway played host to Rounds 5&6 of the Midwest Short Course League on August 11-12. Cody Conrad in the #97 Kenda Tires PRO 2 looked to build on his best finish of the year, and the girls were excited to take their improving skills to another track.

As has become the norm in 2018, rain forced the cancellation of scheduled events at Bark River on Friday night. All three drivers were slated to take the course – Cody in practice and Hope and Faith for their Round 5 race. PRO 2 Practice was cancelled and the short course kart races were rescheduled in the traditional Saturday/Sunday slate.

Faith started on the front row in Saturday morning’s short course kart main event with Hope starting 11th in the stacked field of 20 karts. There was a lot of carnage on the first lap in the horseshoe turns, which is treacherous when crowded. Faith and Hope got bottled up a bit but were able to safely navigate the wreckage, emerging in 7th and 13th, respectively.

Hope moved up quickly through the field, and passed her sister in the first half of the race. At the Competition Caution, it was Hope in 8th and Faith in 10th. The sisters both improved their positions and ran strong in the second half of the race. Hope finished in 7th with Faith just two spots behind.

On Sunday, Faith once again started up front with Hope in 10th. It didn’t take long for the sisters to find each other on the track: at a lap two caution Hope was in 9th and Faith was 10th. Fast competitors pushed their way around the Conrad sisters in a rough first half of the race. At one point, Faith put up quite a fight when her older sister tried to pass:

“I was really excited to pass my sister even though she passed me right back,” said Faith. “I wasn’t real happy when someone hit me and spun me out, but at least I could drive out of it and keep going this time.”

The capable Conrad Motorsports crew had the truck back together and ready to rumble on Sunday morning. In qualifying, Cody beat his Saturday time by four full seconds. He started on the outside of the fourth row for Sunday’s main event. The race got off to a great start, with Cody running strong in 6th. But once again mechanical gremlins spoiled the fun as a broken water pump belt ended the day just a couple laps in.

“I’m frustrated on the poor luck we’ve been having,” Cody said. “But they’re all lessons learned going into the big four races and final showdown in Crandon.”

“I just have to keep lifting the kids spirits up,” said team owner Jerry Conrad. “We had some bad luck with two of the vehicles this weekend but we have to keep going. The kids are still smiling at the end of the day and that’s what we want; it’s family fun with lots of work.”

Next up, the team heads back to Crandon, Wisconsin for the biggest race in short course racing: the World Championships and AMSOIL Cup. Hope has a chance at the short course kart class points championship, and Faith and Cody will be looking to score their first podiums of 2018 and end the season on a high note.