Irwindale, CA -- Kelly Moore battled his way to a ninth place finish on Saturday evening during the inaugural Toyota All-Star Showdown at Irwindale Speedway. Kelly's son Ryan Moore may have had the car to beat but was spun early in the final 25...
Irwindale, CA -- Kelly Moore battled his way to a ninth place finish on Saturday evening during the inaugural Toyota All-Star Showdown at Irwindale Speedway. Kelly's son Ryan Moore may have had the car to beat but was spun early in the final 25 lap dash, Ryan did battle his way back through the field to finish in eighth.
"This was a really impressive racing event that NASCAR and Toyota put together," said Moore. "Everything that happened on and off the track was run in a first class manner, and the race track and the drivers from all over the country really put on an awesome show before a live television audience."
The top 15 drivers in the two NASCAR Grand National series -- Busch North and Winston West -- were invited along with the top 10 drivers in each of the four series in the NASCAR Elite Division to compete in a unique format, the qualifying races were lined up by alternating points positions between different series, which determined your starting position for the feature event on Saturday evening. The two segment feature, 100 laps then a short break and field inversion, culminated in a 25-lap Saturday night special dash for victory lane. The program also included a team prize to the series with the best overall performance in the first segment, which was easily won by the Busch North Series contingent.
Kelly Moore was not concerned about the West Series drivers and their perceived 'home field' advantage, as his team quickly adapted their setup, something similar to what their team put together earlier in the season at Lake Erie Speedway, and by the second practice was one of the fastest competitors in his division. Moore's NAPA Auto Parts/Bill Dodge Auto Group Monte Carlo adapted quickly at Lake Erie Speedway where he earned a pole position earlier in the season.
"Our team tried a number of different combinations that we used at various Northeast tracks, and we hit our mark during the last practice session on Friday," Moore said.
The Friday evening qualifying races were organized by the points finish in your respective series, placing Moore in the 11th spot during the second qualifying race. Moore fought his way to the front and ended up in the fourth spot overall in the 50-lap race. The finish earned Moore the eighth starting position for the 125-lap Toyota All-Star Showdown.
On Saturday evening, a live national audience was treated to some fantastic three and four wide racing during the Toyota All-Star Showdown, an awesome way to wrap up another successful campaign for the Moore Racing teams.
Kelly maintained a top-10 spot for the first 100 lap segment as he watched his son Ryan march his way to the front and challenge race leader Joey McCarthy.
"We knew we had a better car then what we finished the first 100 laps with, so we decided to make some wholesale changes during our break to compete for the top prize and bring home a victory for our Busch North team," Moore said.
For the final 25-lap segment, Moore started his challenge from the eighth position. The changes the NAPA Auto Parts team made during the break didn't help the handling enough to allow Moore to challenge for the win, but his teammate Ryan was charging to the front until he hit hard and spun out by another Busch North Series competitor, ending his opportunity for a win during his rookie season.
"This was a tremendous experience for all the competitors, all of us had such a good time both on and off the track," said Moore. "Were all grateful to NASCAR and Toyota for bringing this All-Star spectacle together and look forward to representing our series again next year."
Moore Racing would like to thank NAPA Auto Parts, Maine Lubrication Services, Bill Dodge Auto Group, Shell Rotella T, R.C. Moore, Marty's USRV and all of our product sponsors for their tremendous support both on and off the track. To our many fans, we thanks for your constant and dedicated support to our team and its drivers. We look forward to continued success in 2004 and beyond.