Short Track Nationals news 2005-10-22

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (October 22, 2005) -- Daryn Pittman and past race winners Tim Crawley and Wayne Johnson are among the latest to enter the upcoming 18th Annual Team Affiliated Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires, which takes place at...

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (October 22, 2005) -- Daryn Pittman and past race winners Tim Crawley and Wayne Johnson are among the latest to enter the upcoming 18th Annual Team Affiliated Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires, which takes place at I-30 Speedway on Thursday through Saturday, October 27-29.

Entries have flooded the track office at record pace in recent days, with the current count climbing to 72. The final count is expected to challenge the century mark by Thursday, when the prestigious three-night event fires off with the first night of preliminary racing action. After another night of preliminary action on Friday night, the nation's top Sprint Car drivers then battle it out on Saturday night, October 29, for the prestigious STN title and the $15,000 winner's share, with $1,800 to all championship feature starters.

With the World of Outlaws wrapping up the 2005 season this weekend, seventh-ranked Daryn Pittman of Owasso, OK, returns to the STN for the first time since 2002 when he scored a runner-up finish behind Paul McMahan. Other WoO regulars expected to compete in this year's Short Track Nationals include Shane Stewart and former STN winner Jason Sides.

Oklahoma native Wayne Johnson, now residing in Knoxville, IA, scored his STN triumph in 1997, with Mabelvale, AR, hotshoe Tim Crawley taking the honors in 1998. While both won driving for Bobby Sparks, Johnson enters this year aboard the Fatt-Fro entry while Crawley owns his mount as well as that of teammate and California native Steven Tiner.

Other recent entries include Lewis Jenkins, Jr. (who scored a STN prelim win last year), Ernie Ainsworth (a fifth place finisher in last year's STN), Cowtown Speedway track champion Sean Jones, NCRA Rookie of the Year Preston Peebles II, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Chad Jones, Clint Garner, Jon Corbin, Cody Branchcomb and Stephen Chevallier.

A pair of "mystery" entries are also among the latest entries. Travis Jenkins has entered the Tulsa-based No. 4am machine with a driver to be determined. Also, CES Motorsports out of Proctor, AR, has submitted a TBA entry as well, with much speculation swirling as to the potential pilots of each of these machines.

Additional Short Track Nationals Information:

What: 18th Annual Team Affiliated Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires.

Where: I-30 Speedway (Little Rock, AR).

When: Thursday, Friday and Saturday, October 27-29, 2005. $15,000 to win the STN finale on October 29, with $1,800 to start the STN championship feature. Rain date is November 3-5.

Past Winners: Gary Wright (2004, 2003, 1999 and 1995), Paul McMahan (2002), Jason Sides (2001), Mike Ward (2000), Tim Crawley (1998), Wayne Johnson (1997), Pete Butler (1996), Terry Gray (1994), John Gerloff (1993), Steve Kinser (1991, '89 and '88) and Sammy Swindell (1990). 1992 finale was rained out.

Current Entries: Fifteen different states are already represented among the early entries, including Arkansas, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas.

Past winners Wayne Johnson, Tim Crawley, Peter Butler and Mike Ward have all entered, with other past winners expected to be in action including four-time and defending STN king Gary Wright and Jason Sides.

Among the current entries, the most prolific 2005 winners have been Jesse Hockett (15), Jerrod Hull (14), Mike Ward, Brian Brown, Joey Montgomery and Sean Jones (11), and Travis Rilat, Tim Crawley and Tim Montgomery (10).

Entries by State:

Arkansas -- Tim Crawley, Pete Butler, Marshall Skinner, Lewis Jenkins, Jr., A.G. Rains, Steven Tiner, Rick Pringle, Justin Sturch, Josh Lofton, Joe Young, Scott Bolden, Cody Gardner, Josh Baker, Kenny Taylor, Andy Goin.

Illinois -- Robbie Standridge, Jimmy Hurley.

Kansas -- Tony Bruce, Jr., Chris Morgan.

Louisiana -- Jason Johnson, Stephen Chevallier.

Minnesota -- Scott Winters.

Mississippi -- Jan Howard, Dale Howard, Josh Howard, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Raymond Stull, Jim Bowden, Brad Bowden.

Missouri -- Brian Brown, Tim Montgomery, Joey Montgomery, Jesse Hockett, Jerrod Hull, Toby Brown, Eric Schrock, Hunter Schuerenberg, Jon Corbin.

Nebraska -- Don Droud, Jr.

New Mexico -- Scott Box.

North Dakota -- Chris Shirek.

Oklahoma -- Daryn Pittman, Wayne Johnson, Shane Stewart, Darren Stewart, Nick Smith, Cody Branchcomb.

Pennsylvania -- Bill Brian, Jr.

South Dakota -- Jake Peters, Clint Garner, Eric Lutz, Dusty Ballenger, Mitch Runge.

Tennessee -- Mike Ward, Kevin Swindell, Ernie Ainsworth, Chad Jones, Garry Bell, Bennie Chesteen.

Texas -- Travis Rilat, Kevin Ramey, Sam Hafertepe, Jr., Preston Peebles II, Jerry Bell, Claud Estes, Skip Wilson, Sean Jones, Brad Welborn, Kent Lewis, Jr., Shawn Sander.Format: A version of the Sprint Bandits popular format of heats and qualifying races will be in place for all three nights of competition. Each night, Heat Races will be aligned according to the pre-race draw, with the passing points system in effect.

Each night, the top 40 in passing points from Heat Race competition will transfer directly into four, fully inverted Qualifying Races. The balance of the field will make up four Last Chance races, lined straight-up according to Heat Race passing points, with the top four finishers of each Last Chance race transferring to the tail of the respective Qualifying Races. Passing points only will be awarded in Last Chance races, with no finishing position points awarded.

With passing points in effect for the Qualifying Races as well, the Thursday and Friday preliminary features will be comprised of the top twenty in combined points from Heats, Qualifiers and Last Chance Races, with the top three feature finishers locked into Saturday's main event.

With six cars locked into Saturday's $15,000-to-win, $1,800-to-start main event, the top twelve drivers in combined passing points from Saturday's Heats, Qualifiers and Last Chance Races will fill positions seven through eighteen. The final two slots of the STN finale will be awarded to the two remaining drivers that have accumulated the most points through Heat, Qualifying and Last Chance racing action over the three nights of racing.

Drivers must compete in either Thursday's prelim or Friday's prelim to be eligible for passing points on Saturday. Drivers that show up for Saturday only will start tailback in their Heat Race and receive no passing points all night.

Another interesting twist to this year's Short Track Nationals will be the alignment of Saturday night's "Pack's Dash for Cash", which will include the top three finishers from both Thursday and Friday night. The Dash will be aligned by a pill draw conducted in "Cheater's Day" fashion. Thursday's winning driver will draw the first pill then give that pill to the driver of his choice. Friday's winner will draw the second pill and give that pill to one of the remaining drivers, and so on until the lineup is determined.

The finishing order of Saturday's "Pack's Dash for Cash" will then determine the starting lineup for the front three rows of the $15,000-to-win finale.

Trade Show: This year's rendition of the Short Track Nationals will include the inaugural Short Track Nationals Trade Show & Midway. Fans, drivers & crews will have the opportunity to visit vendor displays, which will be open from noon on Thursday, October 27, and from 9 a.m. on October 28-29.

Tickets: Advance tickets on sale until Wednesday, October 26, no advance sales after that. Advance tickets for Thursday (Oct. 27) and Friday (Oct. 28) are $10 per night. Advance tickets for Saturday (Oct. 29) are $20. Day of show prices are $12 on Thursday and Friday, and $25 on Saturday.Children's tickets are not sold in advance. Five and under are free, with ages 6-12 (accompanied by adult) $3 on Thursday and Friday and just $5 on Saturday.

STN on the Web: American Dirt Network will carry all three nights of racing action live at www.americandirtnetwork. Coverage begins each night at 8:30 p.m. EDT and 7:30 p.m. CDT.

For more information regarding the 18th Annual Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires, contact I-30 Speedway at 501-455-4567.

-lw-

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Series Sprint
Drivers Kevin Swindell , Steve Kinser , Sammy Swindell , Preston Peebles , Brian Brown , Cody Branchcomb , Daryn Pittman , Jason Sides , Paul McMahan , Shane Stewart , Travis Rilat , Nick Smith , Wayne Johnson , Hunter Schuerenberg , Kevin Ramey , Tim Crawley , Chris Morgan , Jason Johnson