MWS: Defending champion looks toward first race

DIERCKS HOPES FOR BETTER ROCKFORD RESULT AS HE SETS TO DEFEND NASCAR AUTOZONE ELITE DIVISION, MIDWEST SERIES CHAMPIONSHIP DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 4, 2005) -- In 2004, Justin Diercks (Iowa-Illinois Taylor Insulation Chevrolet) captured his...

DIERCKS HOPES FOR BETTER ROCKFORD RESULT AS HE SETS TO DEFEND NASCAR AUTOZONE ELITE DIVISION, MIDWEST SERIES CHAMPIONSHIP

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 4, 2005) -- In 2004, Justin Diercks (Iowa-Illinois Taylor Insulation Chevrolet) captured his first career NASCAR AutoZone Elite Division, Midwest Series championship. He scored a division leading six wins and had just two finishes outside of the top five. But as much as he dominated the season, Diercks got his 2004 campaign off to a slow start at the traditional Midwest Series opener at the Rockford (Ill.) Speedway.

Diercks posted Bud Pole fast qualifier honors but saw his hope for victory go up in smoke when a broken wheel on his Chevrolet sent him down pit lane and cost him two laps to the leaders.

"The record books will show that I didn't have a great finish at Rockford," recalls Diercks. "But that doesn't tell the whole story."

Diercks battled back in the race and made up one of his two laps. He ran out of time and couldn't make up the second lap, but he did serve notice that he and his team were going to be heard from again on the 2004 Midwest Series trail.

"I felt like we had the fastest car there the whole weekend but we only finished sixth," said Diercks. "That would get some people down, but it actually gave me and my team momentum and confidence. We knew that if we ran the whole season with that intensity and determination that good things would happen and they did."

Diercks will have another crack at the rugged Rockford Speedway oval when the Midwest Series once again opens its campaign, April 2-3 with the 28th annual running of the speedways Spring Classic weekend. Practice, qualifying and time trials are slated for April 2 with the 150-lap main event scheduled for April 3 at 1:00 p.m. (CT).

"We're just going to go back there and do what we did last year; work hard and try to win races and let the points take care of themselves," said Diercks.

In addition to the Midwest Series, the Mid-American Stock Cars, Northern Late Models and Big 8 Limited Late Model Series will also see action as part of the Spring Classic weekend.

Rockford Speedway is located at the intersection of Forest Hills Road and Hwy. 173 in Rockford, Ill. Further weekend schedule information and ticket prices can be obtained by visitingwww.rockfordspeedway.com or calling (815) 633-1500.

Fast Facts

What: Spring Classic 150 (NASCAR AutoZone Elite Division, Midwest Series, Race 1).

Where: Rockford (Ill.) Speedway.
When: 1:00 p.m. (CT), Sunday, April 3.

Track layout: .29167-mile banked paved oval.
Race length: 150 laps, 43.75 miles.

2004 winner: Steve Carlson.
2004 Bud Pole winner: Justin Diercks

-nascar-

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About this article
Series NASCAR
Drivers Justin Diercks , Steve Carlson