WS: Sills to compete at Roseville

SILLS RETURNS FOR MAY 26 USAC SPRINT RACE AT ROSEVILLE; FIRST USAC APPEARANCE IN FIVE YEARS! The only three-time champion in USAC Silver Crown Series history, Jimmy Sills of Placerville, Calif. will return to USAC competition...

SILLS RETURNS FOR MAY 26 USAC SPRINT RACE AT ROSEVILLE; FIRST USAC APPEARANCE IN FIVE YEARS!

The only three-time champion in USAC Silver Crown Series history, Jimmy Sills of Placerville, Calif. will return to USAC competition for the first time in five years when the Lucas Oil Western Sprint Car Series visits the All American Speedway in Roseville, Calif. May 26. The race is co-sanctioned by CASA and is the first USAC race at Roseville in 30 years.

Sills will pilot the #1 Alan Kaiser 2006 championship car at Roseville, since defending Western Sprint Car Champion Tony Hunt will be in Indiana competing in the 59th PayLess "Little 500" at Anderson Speedway. Hunt will drive as a teammate to Shane Cottle for the Contos Racing Team at Anderson.

Sills' last USAC appearance came at Altamont Raceway Park in 2002 when he finished sixth behind race winner Tony Stewart in a 40-lap Western Sprint race. Hunt was fifth in that event.

Sills, who operates the Jimmy Sills School of Open Wheel Racing at nearby Marysville Speedway Park, says "Tony called and asked if I could run the car and obviously I jumped at the chance. My biggest challenge is conditioning. I had a collar bone injury four weeks ago and will be training to get ready because I just found out it's a 100-lapper! Actually, some of my school graduates are competing regularly with the series now, including Ryan Kaplan and Jessica Helberg. So it'll be fun and the car is capable of winning the race."

Sills ran a couple of races last year, including finishing second to Shane Carson in the Masters Classic Sprint race at Knoxville, Iowa and he drove a non-wing sprinter at Chico, Calif. late in the season. "I ran a Midget at Roseville about 20 years ago but the track has changed since then," says Sills. "The straightaways are longer and turns three and four have been lengthened somewhat."

Hunt is second in the Western standings, 17 behind leader Kody Swanson, but after finishes of second, third and fifth at Anderson, hopes to add the nation's richest pavement Sprint race to his resume of victories this year.

"It's an honor to have Jimmy drive the car in my absence," says Hunt, who recognizes the importance of Jimmy's local ties. "Alan (Kaiser, the car owner) wants to pursue the car owner's title and we couldn't think of anyone better to fill the seat for this race than Jimmy. It gives me peace of mind to know the car will be in good hands. When Contos Racing called and offered the Little 500 ride, I couldn't pass it up. I really want to win that race and their equipment will give me that opportunity. They've got a great track record at Anderson."

Sills owns 14 USAC National feature victories, including 12 in the Silver Crown series, where he won titles in 1990, 1994 and 1996. His lone USAC Sprint car victory came at the Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio in 1996 and his final USAC win so far came at Bakersfield, Calif. in a Midget in 2000.

USAC's California Pavement Ford Focus Midget Series is also part of the May 26 schedule at the 1/4-mile paved Roseville oval.

-credit: --USAC--

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Series USAC
Drivers Tony Stewart , Shane Cottle , Jimmy Sills , Ryan Kaplan , Kody Swanson , Tony Hunt