TURNING THE CORNER Tony Stewart Racing, Kinser Return to New York, Pennsylvania Looking to Finish Strong INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 24, 2008) -- Tony Stewart Racing's (TSR) Kraig Kinser is looking forward to this weekend's Advance Auto Parts...
TURNING THE CORNER
Tony Stewart Racing, Kinser Return to New York, Pennsylvania Looking to Finish Strong
INDIANAPOLIS (Sept. 24, 2008) -- Tony Stewart Racing's (TSR) Kraig Kinser is looking forward to this weekend's Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint Car Series tour through New York and Pennsylvania. The 23 year-old has been one of the most consistent racers on the Outlaw tour in recent weeks, and he hopes to continue that when he races the TSR No. 20 Bass Pro Shops/Chevy/JD Byrider Maxim on Wednesday at Orange County Fair Speedway (OCFS) in Middletown, N.Y., and then in the two-night Morgan Hughes National Open at Williams Grove Speedway in Mechanicsburg, Pa., on Friday and Saturday night.
During the past seven events, Kinser has scored four top-five finishes, which has elevated the confidence of the 2004 Kevin Gobrecht WoO Rookie of the Year as he looks to close the year with a strong run over the final 12 races.
On Wednesday night, the Bass Pro Shops driver will make his second career appearance at OCFS. On July 26, 2004, he finished seventh in the feature race on the big 5/8-mile dirt oval.
Following that event, Kinser and the rest of the Outlaws return to Williams Grove Speedway for one of the premiere events in the east, the National Open. For 46 years, the historic half-mile has hosted this late-season classic. Ironically, it was in the 41st annual Cleveland Brothers National Open that Kinser made his Williams Grove debut, finishing 11th on October 4, 2003. A ninth-place finish in the 2004 Open is his career-best in the event. During his career, he has made 12 feature starts at the half-mile dirt oval and his best finish is sixth, which he has done twice -- first in July 2004 and then again in May 2005.
This season's visits to the track have been tough on Kinser as he hasn't been able to crack the "A" feature lineup in three attempts. There is reason for optimism this weekend, as evidenced by last Friday night's run at Eldora Speedway during Chevy's American Revolution Weekend. In four previous 2008 starts at Eldora, Kinser's best finish was 17th, but on Friday, he raced into second place early in the feature and maintained the runner-up spot for most of the 30-lap event before finishing fifth.
With 55 races in the books for the 2008 WoO campaign, Kinser remains 12th in the WoO Sprint Series Championship standings. He has earned one victory, seven top-five finishes and 16 top-10s.
Saturday's National Open program at Williams Grove will be broadcast live on SPEED beginning at 8 p.m. EDT.
Race fans unable to attend Wednesday's race at Orange County or this weekend's Morgan Hughes National Open festivities from Williams Grove can catch all of the action on DIRTVision.com. Fans can listen live as Johnny Gibson, "Voice of the Outlaws," calls the action as he does at all WoO Sprint Series events on the DIRTVision.com cybercast, as well as on the DIRT Radio Network. Go to www.DIRTVision.com for more information on all the site features, including updated results from each night of racing, as well as a chat room to interact with other race fans.
On Wednesday, the pit gates at OCFS will open at 2 p.m. EDT with the grandstands opening at 4 p.m. Hot laps are scheduled to begin at 5:15 p.m. For more details, contact OCFS at (845) 342-2573. The official Web site of OCFS is www.ocfsmotorsports.com.
On Friday and Saturday, the pit gates at Williams Grove Speedway will open at 4 p.m. EDT with the grandstands opening at 5:15 p.m. for advance ticket holders and at 5:30 p.m. for all ticket holders. Hot laps are scheduled to begin at 7:15 p.m. For more information, contact Williams Grove Speedway at (717) 697-5000 or visit the official Web site of Williams Grove Speedway at www.williamsgrove.com.
Kraig Kinser, driver of the No. 20 TSR/Bass Pro Shops/Maxim:
You've only raced at Middletown once in your career. Do you remember anything about it and what do you expect this time?
"The only thing I remember is that the place is really big. It's probably one of the biggest places we go to all season. We ran decent the first time I was there, but things have changed quite a bit since then. I know they've put down some new dirt, so it will probably be just a little different, but that's what's great about racing out here. There is always something new that you have to be ready for.
"As far as what we'll need to do this time, we'll just have to keep doing what we've been doing -- qualify well, get one of the top two spots in the heat and move forward in the dash. The track is big, so the cars will get spread out quickly. Starts will be key and being in a good starting spot will also help. The guys have been doing a great job with this Bass Pro Shops car, and I know we'll have plenty of Chevy horsepower to get us around that big track. It should be fun."
The weekend offers you another shot at Williams Grove Speedway. You haven't had the kind of success you would like there this year, but you've been running well recently and that should help.
"Definitely. Williams Grove is one of those places where you have to qualify well. They have so many good cars that you just aren't going to run through the field and get a transfer spot. Qualifying has been one of our strong suits during the past couple of weeks, so we're heading in there with a lot of confidence.
"The National Open is a big race and if we can do well this weekend, then we won't feel quite as bad about struggling as much as we did there earlier in the year. I'm excited about it. SPEED will be there, so it's a great chance for us to get all the TSR sponsors some recognition and keep our momentum going as we finish up the season."
For complete WoO Sprint Series results from OCFS and Williams Grove Speedway, log on to www.worldofoutlaws.com/sprint. For information regarding TSR, Bass Pro Shops, J.D. Byrider, Chevy or Kinser, log on to www.tonystewartracing.com, www.basspro.com, www.byrider.com, www.chevy.com or www.kraigkinser.com.