Future Stars Get Their Start In Karting At Daytona
NASCAR Busch Series champion Brian Vickers, 2002 NEXTEL Cup Series champion Tony Stewart among previous Karting competitors at Daytona
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., (Dec. 15, 2003) -- Daytona International Speedway, famous for its stock cars, sports cars and motorcycles, is also the home to the world's largest karting event - Daytona KartWeek - on Dec. 26-30.
The historic motorsports facility will be transformed into a big playground as hundreds of go-karts will be camped out throughout the infield of the Speedway and at nearby Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium for five days of racing.
Daytona KartWeek activities begin Friday, Dec. 26 with the World Karting Association/Briggs & Stratton 4-Cycle Day at the "World Center of Racing." On Saturday, Dec. 27, the WKA/Dunlop Tire National Road Racing Series races and the Sprint Championships get on track at the Speedway while the WKA/Briggs & Stratton Speedway Dirt Series Kart Races also get underway at Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium.
Many of today's racing stars got their start in karting, including 2002 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series champion Tony Stewart, 2003 NEXTEL Cup Series Rookie of the Year Jamie McMurray and 2003 NASCAR Busch Series champion Brian Vickers.
The 20-year-old Vickers, who'll race in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series in 2004 driving the No. 25 Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports, competed in the dirt track events at Municipal Stadium in his early teens.
"That was the big race just like (the Daytona 500) is in NASCAR," Vickers said. "The race at Municipal Stadium was the biggest race of the year. It was tough. It was a big challenge. In one race you may have 300 go-karts trying to make the race."
When the go-karts aren't racing, DAYTONA USA, the official attraction of NASCAR, is a perfect place to make a pit stop during Daytona KartWeek. The one-of-a-kind interactive motorsports attraction is open year-round and features hands-on activities such as motion simulator rides "ACCELERATION ALLEY," "DAYTONA DREAM LAPS," and Toyota Thunder's Tundra Road in addition to the award-winning "The Daytona 50: The Movie."
For more information on events at the Speedway, call the Speedway ticket office at (386) 253-7223 or go online to www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or www.DAYTONAUSA.com