IRL: Kentucky Speedway announces 2004 schedule

SPARTA, KY. - Kentucky Speedway will expand its schedule to include 11 races and five event weekends in 2004. Expansions will bring one new race series to the facility's 1.5-mile tri-oval and include the first September event weekend. Nine of the...

SPARTA, KY. - Kentucky Speedway will expand its schedule to include 11 races and five event weekends in 2004. Expansions will bring one new race series to the facility's 1.5-mile tri-oval and include the first September event weekend. Nine of the 11 scheduled races will run at night and eight will be broadcast nationally over a combined four television networks.

Feature race events include the ARCA RE/MAX Series "Channel 5-205" in May, the NASCAR Busch Series "Meijer 300" in June, the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series "Built Ford Tough 225 Presented by The Greater Cincinnati Ford Dealers" in July and the Indy Racing League IndyCar Series "Belterra Casino Indy 300" in August. The new September "Vocational Training & Placement Services (V-TAPS) Triple Header Fall Classic" weekend will include the American Speed Association (ASA) along with the return of the NASCAR Kodak Southeast Elite Series (NKSES) and restructured Dash Series.

"Our overall theme for the season is 'More in '04!'. With more races, more entertainment and more excitement, we guarantee we will not disappoint the great sponsors and fans of Kentucky Speedway," Kentucky Speedway Executive Vice President and General Manager Mark F. Cassis said. "All five of our main events are already sponsored, which highlights the strong support this venue receives from our corporate markets. Concerts, including the return of Country Stampede in June, car shows and driving schools will all play an important role in our 'More in '04!' theme."

Racing begins May 7-8 with the return of the ARCA RE/MAX Series "Channel 5-205" and the first ASA appearance in a 125-lap, 188-mile event. On May 8, ARCA RE/MAX Series title sponsor Channel 5 (WLWT-TV, NBC) will broadcast its event live to the Greater Cincinnati market for the third consecutive year and SPEED Channel will telecast the race to a national cable audience. Last

season, young gun Kyle Busch outdueled Frank Kimmel to take "The Channel 5-205" title. ASA opens a new chapter of Kentucky Speedway race history May 7 on SPEED Channel.

The 2004 edition of the NASCAR Busch Series "Meijer 300" will take to the track on June 19. Team Marines driver Bobby Hamilton, Jr., won a closing-laps battle with Jason Keller in 2003 to capture the third Kentucky Speedway series title in front of 69,000 fans. The event is expected to play to a fourth consecutive sellout crowd and will be broadcast live on the FX Network. The weekend begins on June 18 with a 150-mile NKSES race. Last season, series driver Scott Carlson won the first caution-free race in Kentucky Speedway history.

"The Built Ford Tough 225, presented by the Greater Cincinnati Ford Dealers" will take the green flag at Kentucky Speedway on July 10. Rookie Carl Edwards took his first career series win at Kentucky last season and promptly celebrated with a backflip off of the rear of his truck. The ARCA RE/MAX Series leads off the weekend with a 150-mile race on July 9. SPEED Channel will carry both events.

The speedway shifts its focus to open-wheel racing for its August weekend when the Indy Racing League (IRL) IndyCar Series arrives for the fifth "Belterra Casino Indy 300" on Aug. 15. The race will start at 4:00 p.m. for the first time and ABC will provide live national coverage. Last season, two-time IndyCar Series Champion Sam Hornish, Jr., averaged a speed of 197.897 mph while winning the second-fastest race in series history. The weekend begins with the third running of IRL Menards Infiniti Pro Series "Kentucky 100" on Aug. 14.

Race engines will pierce the fall air for the first time at Kentucky Speedway on Sept. 18 during the inaugural "Vocational Training & Placement Services (V-TAPS) Triple Header Fall Classic." The Dash Series, NKSES and ASA will race a combined 475 miles in one evening. SPEED Channel will showcase the 225-mile ASA race in prime time.

"The Country Stampede" music festival also expands in 2004 by adding a fourth day of music and fun. The all-star event takes to the stage June 3-6. In 2003, 30 national acts including Diamond Rio, Lonestar, Brad Paisley and Travis Tritt performed before a combined three-day crowd of 90,000.

- Kentucky Speedway -

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series ARCA , IndyCar , NASCAR , Stock car
Drivers Bobby Hamilton , Jason Keller , Frank Kimmel , Carl Edwards , Kyle Busch , Sam Hornis