Wolcott's Mike Christopher
Jr. gets his start
|By Brian Danko, Staff Writer
The New Britain Herald & Bristol Press
your uncle is a NASCAR national champion and your father is a three time
champion at the Stafford Motor Speedway and still ranks fourth on the all
time win list with 28 despite not racing the last 10 years, well you know
that young Mike Christopher, Jr of Wolcott can’t fall far from the family
Christopher, who is just 14, has been racing the last several years but
this year moved into the Legends car series and is running full time at
the Waterford Speedway every Wednesday night and some Saturday nights.
For Mike, Sr. seeing his son racing brings a smile to the fathers face. “I
am glad to see him enjoying it. First he was learning (legends) and now I
think he’s ahead of me.” Mike said laughing that the driver is ahead of
the crew chief. “But I have a good idea of what I am doing now.”
Mike Jr. starting in racing at the urging of his mother, Jen. Racing is
usually a male dominated sport and even when the father raced, the mother
was dead set against it.
“My wife is the one who got hin into the go-karts, he liked it and
actually got pretty good at it.” Mike said but after a few years in that
series, he knew it was time to move up.
“Week after week, your running against the same kids and your not
learning. Running in the Legend cars series, you’re running not only
against kids but adults too.”
Better competition is the only way to improve regardless of what sport it
Mike said that he enjoys the Legends cars and is learning a lot everyweek
and although his father, Mike, is a championship driver, he was to young
to watch him but he still sees his fathers idential twin, Ted, continuing
to win and carry on the Christopher name.
“I enjoy working with my dad. He is teaching me a lot at the track every
week. Where to run on the track, stuff like that.” Mike Jr. said.
The legends car aren’t slow either, according to Mike they can get up to
speeds over 85 MPH at the Waterford Speedway, a one-third mile oval on the
When asked if his uncle has given him any advise, he said not really and
it’s not because of he doesn’t want to see his nephew succeed, its just
that they aren’t at the same track at the same time.
“A couple weeks ago, at Waterford, that was the first time we have been at
the same track at the same time.” Junior said.
Younger Mike would like to do a little traveling and that is something the
father is in full agreement with.
“Maybe at the end of the year, we’ll go to Seekonk Speedway, Bethel
Speedway in New York as well as Riverhead Raceway on Long Island. He most
likely will go to New Hampshire Motor Speedway and run the road course
there.” Father Mike said.
“I’d also like to try and run the nationals.” Mike Junior said.
When asked if any of his school friends know of his fast life style, Mike
said some do but they really don’t get it.
“I have some friends that race but most of my friends don’t understand it
and don’t get it.” Junior said chuckling.
While M.C. Jr. has yet to get to victory lane he is hoping that his hard
work along with his father hard work and teaching techniques will pay off
“I am hoping, who knows, it could be next week.”
While his father and uncle have raced the 500 HP NASCAR modified tour and
the SK division in and around New England, I asked young Mike if he is
looking to move up to the fast and more expensive modified, SK or SK Light
division and he said he can’t wait.
According to Mike, Sr., the Legends car series is pretty inexpensive to
run weekly….if you don’t wreck.
“Basically you just add gas and get tires every couple of months. You
could run the whole year for about $4,000 with tires but again that’s
without wrecking. One wreck can cost about $500.00 to repair.”
So while M.C. Jr. is looking at the next level, Mike, Sr. is up in the
“I would like to but it’s so expensive.” That is something he knows first
hand from his own days of building his cars and engines to keep his racing
“I think the next step would be either a SK or SK Light and maybe even a
modified. Right now, the modified tour isn’t drawing full fields and it
cost just as much to repair a SK modified or a modified tour car but the
payout is better with the tour.”
But regardless of what happens, it seems to be that another Christopher
will soon be racing at tracks like Stafford, Thompson and Waterford, just
like his father and uncle before him but at just 14 he’s still learning.
TV TIME FOR MODIFIED TOUR
There is good news for the fans of the NASCAR Whelen modified tour as four
of the remaining nine races will be shown on TV with three events of the
races shown live.
Saturday was the New Hampshire Motor Speedway at 1p.m. Effective August
17th, Fox Sports will rebrand Speed Channel into Fox Sports One and the
Fuel TV into Fox Sports Two.
The modified tours next live event will be Wednesday night August 21st at
6 p.m. from the Bristol Motor Speedway on Fox Sports two.
On Saturday, September 21 at noon, also on Fox Sports Two, the modifieds
return to the New Hampshire Motor Speedway for another 100 lap race.
The final event of the year will be taped on October 20th from the
Thompson International speedway and will be shown on Sunday, November 3rd
on Fox Sports One.