Champion Crowned This Weekend Hanley Looks to Extend Five-Race Winning Streak Salem, IN (October 17, 2001) & ...
Champion Crowned This Weekend
Hanley Looks to Extend Five-Race Winning Streak Salem, IN (October 17, 2001) – Through 17 events in the Kendall Late Model Series, just 25 points separate 1999 series champion Brian Ross from second place Peter Cozzolino. The Key Advantage 125 Presented by Rug Doctor Rents is the final event of the 2001 season taking place at Indianapolis Raceway Park as the premier event of the Key Bank Racing Festival.
Brian Ross has led the series standings virtually all season based on consistent finishes and two series victories. Driving the Wade Construction / AT Performance Products / Sullivan R.V. Chevrolet, Ross has collected 14 top-five finishes, but the last two events a 15th and 20th finish have tightened the championship. Those two events have allowed Peter Cozzolino to close to 25 markers behind Ross. The Plymouth, IN, native is the most successful competitor in the series at Indianapolis Raceway Park capturing four victories.
The number 6 A&A Manufacturing Chevrolet piloted by Cozzolino has 14 top-ten finishes placing him solidly in the runner-up position. In his best year of his stock car racing, Cozzolino picked up victories in the season opener at Anderson Speedway and then backed that up with wins at Salem Speedway in May and Winchester Speedway in mid June.
2000 series champion Scott Hantz currently ranks third only 58 markers out of the point’s lead. Hantz from Pleasant Lake, IN, went on a mid-season tear winning three consecutive events at Angola Motor Speedway, Plymouth Speedway and the initial race at Illiana Motor Speedway. Hantz has ten top-ten finishes and leads the money won category for 2001.
Fourth place in the standings, Kenny Tweedy has surprisingly been absent from victory lane in 2001. The 1997 series champion has produced 13 top-ten finishes and has only failed to finish one race. He has also grabbed two Contractors Underground Pole Awards. In the last event at Salem Speedway on October 7, Tweedy charged from 11th position to finish in third position. The driver of the EDCO General Contractors / Keith Electric Chevrolet is one of the three competitors that have won at the .686- mile oval. Tweedy was running a strong second in August at I.R.P., but a tire problem regulated him to a 19th place finish.
Hubler Group rookie Joel Kauffman ranks fifth in the standings with Jeff Lane only two points behind. Jim Crabtree Jr. won the biggest race in his career in May at Shadybowl Speedway and has backed that up five top-ten finishes to place in seventh slot. Brent Downey, Rick Turner and Bobby Parsley complete the top-ten.
Junior Hanley has been on a tear lately winning five consecutive races dating back to the Sunoco 100 at Toledo Speedway on Friday, August 3. He then won races at Indianapolis Raceway Park, two Anderson events and then a Salem stop on October 7. His victory at I.R.P. in August was a dominating performance after grabbing his second consecutive Contractors Underground Pole Award at the oval.
A couple of drivers to watch this weekend include J.R. Roahrig in the number 24 Gaerte Engines Dodge and Chet Fillip in the number 10 Hendrick’s County Auto Parts Chevrolet. They finished fourth and fifth respectively in August.
Currently 46 drivers will be attempting to make the 32-car starting field for the season finale. Several competitors will be making their first attempts of the season including former Iceman Champion Scott Baker, Kalamazoo Speedway standout Andy Ponstein, Kyle Edwards, Mike Monroe and Bo Gordley.
On Saturday October 20, at 10 AM, a one-hour practice session will kick off the Key Bank Racing Festival. Contractors Underground Qualifications are set for 2:30PM at the .686-mile oval. The special Champion Racing Association event will also feature racing from the Outlaw Late Models, SuperTrucks and Street Stocks. On Sunday, practice begins at 11AM with the racing program rolling off at 1PM. Free camping is available all weekend. For further information on the event contact series director Glenn Luckett at (812) 883-0455 or firstname.lastname@example.org.