Concord, NC - Mobile Alabama's own, Rick Crawford, will be returning to the Gulf Coast for the running of the 34th annual Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Florida. The Snowball Derby is one of the oldest established short track races that is still in existence today. The race started in 1968 has run at the speedway every year since. Crawford, now a veteran of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, won the Snowball Derby in 1989.
Many great NASCAR Winston Cup drivers have run laps at the half-mile, high-banked oval at Five Flags Speedway. Donnie Allison and Darrell Waltrip have entered and won the race at least one time each.
Rick Crawford will be driving a Ford Taurus fielded by Richie Wauters. Wauters is no stranger to the Snowball Derby. He has fielded cars in the past for drivers such as Jeff Purvis and Scott Hansen. Wauters has also worked as crew chief in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.
This will be Rick's fourteenth appearance in the famed race. The #5 Taurus will be sponsored in part by Bay City Tool Company of Mobile, Alabama and by Milwaukee Electric Tool. Bay City was an associate sponsor of Rick's truck team at the inaugural race at the Daytona International Speedway in 2000. Milwaukee Electric Tool, a major producer and seller of high-quality power tools, has sponsored Crawford's NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series team for the past two years. "Richie approached me about racing in the Derby and everything has just fallen into place," stated Crawford.
Crawford, a native of nearby Mobile, will be racing in an area that is practically his own backyard. "I will be racing at one of my home tracks. Friends and family will be attending the race and it's nice to have that kind of support. I'm excited to run in the Snowball Derby. I'll be racing at a track where I have a lot of fond memories," commented Crawford.
The team will comprise of crewmembers from Rick's Truck Series team, Circle Bar Racing, as well as members from Richie Wauters Racing. Rick Crawford's crew chief from the NCTS, Ray Stonkus, will be with the team as a consultant.
Crawford has tested the #5 Ford Taurus at a track in Georgia in preparation for the Derby and was pleased with the results. "Richie has built a great race car. The test went well and we should be in good shape for the race at Five Flags Speedway," stated Crawford.
Crawford has raced in the Snowflake Derby, which is also at Five Flags Speedway, on numerous occasions and has won the event twice. The Snowflake is a one hundred lap action packed event that is raced on Saturday night. Crawford and the team will be running in that event as well.