ASCoT: Knoxville Nationals preview

ASCS Knoxville Nationals This Weekend TULSA, Okla. (July 30, 2007) -- Ten consecutive nights of Sprint Car racing in Southern Iowa kicks off this Thursday night with the 17th Annual ASCS Knoxville Nationals at Iowa's Knoxville Raceway. The ...

ASCS Knoxville Nationals This Weekend

TULSA, Okla. (July 30, 2007) -- Ten consecutive nights of Sprint Car racing in Southern Iowa kicks off this Thursday night with the 17th Annual ASCS Knoxville Nationals at Iowa's Knoxville Raceway.

The three-night event, which culminates with Saturday night's $10,000-to-win finale after two nights of qualifying action on Thursday and Friday, is sanctioned by the O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National series.

With more than 100 entries set to battle it out for the $10,000 prize atop the famed Marion County Fairgrounds dirt oval, three-time and reigning series champion Gary Wright of Hooks, TX, enters the weekend in strong form as he chases down the series $50,000 championship.

Wright, the 1998 ASCS Knoxville Nationals champion and winner of last year's Brodix Tournament of Champions at Knoxville, enters the event with a 56-point advantage over Oklahoma City native Wayne Johnson. Johnson won the ASCS Knoxville Nationals in 2000, the same year that he won the ASCS National championship.

Gunning for his first ASCS Knoxville Nationals crown, Jason Johnson of Eunice, LA, enters the event just 98 points off the lead pace. Forney, TX, shoe Travis Rilat, the 2003 ASCS National champion, enters the event ranked fourth, with Foster Landon of Collinsville, OK, the leading Brodix Rookie of the Year contender in fifth.

Other top O'Reilly ASCoT National shoes entered include Darren Stewart (Bixby, OK), Nick Smith (Broken Arrow, OK), Eric Baldaccini (Keller, TX) and Chris Schmelzle (Victoria, BC).

The ASCoT shoes will be joined by a number of top ASCS Regional drivers from around the country along with Knoxville's top contenders and countless other frontrunners from every corner of the nation.

In addition to Wright and Wayne Johnson, other past ASCS Knoxville Nationals past winners entered include two-time winner Garry Lee Maier (1992 and 1993) and defending race winner Jesse Giannetto of Palo, IA.

Gary Wright enters the ASCS Knoxville National riding a wave of momentum that includes six triumphs in the previous eight series events, including a stretch of four-of-five wins to snare his sixth career ASCS Speedweek crown.

-credit: ascs

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Series Sprint
Drivers Darren Stewart , Travis Rilat , Nick Smith , Wayne Johnson , Jason Johnson