The No. 90 UNION Insurance Group Chevrolet comes off turn four at Monadnock. Hodge Photo.

On Saturday (July 17) NASCAR’s Whelen Modified Tour returned to Monadnock Speedway (Winchester, NH) for the first time in 20 years. The trip to ‘Mad Dog’ – as the .25-mile facility has been nicknamed – marks the halfway point in the 2010 season.

Following registration and inspection, two 45-minute practice sessions were held. With some radio assistance from Dale Evonsion, the team picked up the pace in the second session.

“When I saw Carol (our spotter) chatting with Dale – I thought ‘he has a ton of laps here, maybe he can help me figure this place out.’ The two of them helped tremendously,” recalled Renee.

After practice, came qualifying. In qualifying, Renee timed 17th – and, as a result, had to run a 25-lap heat race. She finished third.

At about 9 PM, the green flag dropped on the 175-lap feature. The team struggled with an ill handling race car for most of the race.

“We pitted for adjustments several times and the guys did an excellent job in the pits. Running on .25-mile tracks requires super fast pit stops – if you don’t want to lose laps. The guys made all the changes we called for while keeping us on the lead lap. The pit stops are the best thing that happened all night.”

On lap 135 several cars got together in front of Renee, while she slowed to avoid the wreck, she got shoved into the accident from behind. It took two laps to pull away from the pile-up and another three laps in the pits while the crew repaired the front end.

In the end, Renee finished 18th – and is now ranked 17th in the points standings.

Next up, on Saturday, July 31 the Tour will compete at Long Island’s .25-mile Riverhead Raceway in another 175-lap feature. The race at Riverhead will be broadcast in primetime on Versus on Wednesday, August 4 at 8 PM.