TSR HITS THE PAVEMENT FOR USAC MIDGET MAYNIA TOUR Hines, Jones and Chevy Head to Wisconsin, Illinois For USAC National Midget Series Action INDIANAPOLIS (May 14, 2008) -- In racing circles, the words "Month of May" are loaded with...
TSR HITS THE PAVEMENT FOR USAC MIDGET MAYNIA TOUR
Hines, Jones and Chevy Head to Wisconsin, Illinois For USAC National Midget Series Action
INDIANAPOLIS (May 14, 2008) -- In racing circles, the words "Month of May" are loaded with tradition, especially to those fans who patronize the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) the fifth month of each year. For Tony Stewart Racing's (TSR) Tracy Hines, Levi Jones and their fellow USAC National Midget Car Series competitors, this week in racing's most historic month has taken on new meaning.
TSR's Hines and Jones head to Wisconsin Friday and Saturday and to Illinois Sunday to compete in the first three events of the Midget Maynia Tour. Kicking off the weekend's racing action with be Friday's 30-lap event at LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway in West Salem, Wis. The USAC Midgets will compete on the 5/8-mile oval for the first time in series history.
Saturday's second leg of the Midget Maynia Tour takes the USAC Midgets to Slinger (Wis.) Superspeedway for the series' first appearance at the facility since 1984. The 50-lap Stan Fox Memorial will be the first career start at the quarter-mile paved facility for both TSR drivers.
Sunday's third and final leg of the Midget Maynia Tour takes the USAC Midgets to Rockford (Ill.) Speedway, a quarter-mile paved oval that Jones and Hines will be tackling for the first time in USAC Racing Series competition. It will be the first time since 1979 that USAC has sanctioned an event at the facility. The weekend will be capped off by a 50-lap feature event.
Hines and the No. 21 TSR/Chevy/Spike team enter this weekend's tripleheader tied for first place in the USAC Midget Series standings. He has earned three top-five finishes in USAC Midget Series competition this year. Jones and the No. 20 TSR/Chevy/Spike team have earned one top-10 finish thus far this season.
Adding to this month's festivities for TSR, the team also took part in the historic announcement of the new Chevy Midget engine on May 7 at IMS. The brand unveiled its new four-cylinder Midget powerplant with the help of Hines, Jones and team owner Tony Stewart. TSR will debut the new engine in the near future and already has been testing it with Chevy Racing engineers.
Competitors taking part in this month's four-event Midget Maynia Tour have a unique incentive in the way of a $5,000 point fund to be distributed after the fourth and final race of the mini-series May 30 at Dodge County Fairgrounds Speedway in Beaver Dam, Wis. The event will be the only race of the mini-series to be held on a dirt track. The Midget car owner earning the most points in the four events will receive a $1,000 bonus. The remainder of the point fund will be distributed among those teams that compete in all four Midget Maynia Tour events.
Friday at LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway, racing will begin at 7:30 p.m. CDT. For more information regarding the track, call 608-786-1525 or visit www.lacrossespeedway.com. Saturday at Slinger Superspeedway, racing is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. CDT. More information can be found at www.slingersuperspeedway.com or by calling the track at 262-644-5921. Sunday's event at Rockford Speedway will see qualifying begin at 2 p.m. CDT. Race fans can call the track at 815-633-1500 for more information. The official Web site of the track is www.rockfordspeedway.com.
Levi Jones, driver of the No. 20 TSR/Chevy/Spike -- USAC National Midget Car Series
Was it exciting to be a part of the Chevy Midget Engine announcement last week at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway?
"Being part of the whole Chevy engine program, from the development and testing to the actual announcement last week has been really exciting. Everyone at TSR is really looking forward to competing with this new piece. Chevy has put a lot of time and development into making it really good right out of the box. Even our competitors are excited about the engine. It's really cool to see Chevy become an option in terms of engines in the Midget Series ranks. Everyone is talking about the new product and we've had a lot of questions about when they may be able to purchase the engines for their race teams to use, as well"
You're going to compete at three new race tracks this week in USAC Midget Series competition. What do you expect heading into these events?
"I'm really looking forward to running with the USAC Midget Series for three nights in a row. Any time you run the same type of car on the same surface, it helps you get into some kind of a flow. I've not seen any of these three tracks before, but I think that we've really stepped up our pavement racing program and that we'll be good on both the quarter-mile and the 5/8-mile track. Working with Tracy (Hines, teammate) has been very helpful and I think TSR has a good chance of putting Chevy and Bass Pro Shops in the winner's circle one, if not more than one, time this weekend."
Tracy Hines, driver of the No. 21/TSR/Chevy/Spike -- USAC National Midget Car Series
Are you looking forward to bringing USAC Midget Series racing action to three relatively new facilities for the series this weekend?
"I have competed at Rockford Speedway. It's been a long time ago, but I have raced there, so I do remember a little about the track. The other two tracks, LaCrosse and Slinger, I talked to some friends who have competed there and I was able to get some information from them about those facilities. I'm pretty excited about running three pavement races in a row this weekend. We've learned a lot in our first three Midget races this season and I know we'll be ready for these tracks this weekend. Hopefully, things will go well and it will be another good weekend for TSR, Chevy and Bass Pro Shops.
Having worked with the Chevy engineering team on the development of the new engine, are you looking forward to competing with the new powerplant in the near future?
"I've been excited about the whole development process, in general. In working with the engineering team from a junior engineer standpoint, without any formal education, it's been really good to learn about the different components and development that have gone into these engines. This group has a lot of really intelligent guys working on the program and it's been great to have every question I've ever had about a motor be answered and explained during this process. This team doesn't just work on the racing engines. It also works on the Corvette program and on the production side, as well. They've taken what they've learned in those areas and applied it to their racing engines and really made some great powerplants. It's very cool to have been part of this process. I love driving my Chevy truck, and now I have had an opportunity to meet the great brains behind making it and the other great Chevy products on the road today."
For complete results from this weekend's USAC Racing Series events, log on to www.usacracing.com. For information regarding TSR, Chevy or Bass Pro Shops, please visit www.tonystewartracing.com, www.chevy.com or www.basspro.com.