Daytona Beach, Fla. - When the Slim Jim All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring race teams roll into U.S.A. International Speedway this weekend there is the possibility of an 'East vs. West' battle. That's eastern Florida versus western Florida. If you...
Daytona Beach, Fla. - When the Slim Jim All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring race teams roll into U.S.A. International Speedway this weekend there is the possibility of an 'East vs. West' battle. That's eastern Florida versus western Florida.
If you draw an imaginary battle line down the middle of Florida you'll have drivers like Wayne Anderson, Ronnie Burkett, Mike Franklin, Shane Sawyer and rookies Casey Yunick and Kevin Bryant representing the east. Points leader Billy Bigley, Jr., David Reutimann, A.J. Frank, John Gerstner, George Ingole and Scott Carlson lead the west. And oh what a battle it's going to be.
The battleground, a 0.750-mile high banked paperclip of asphalt, is guaranteed to be the perfect venue for the late model warriors to battle it out.
In last year's inaugural visit to Lakeland, Anderson drove his Jani-King Chevrolet to victory, his first of five wins in 1999 enroute to his first career Slim Jim All Pro Series championship. Anderson led a sweep of the top four positions by Florida drivers as Eddie Mercer, Reutimann and Bigley trailed the Wildwood, Fla. resident to the stripe. Concord, N.C.'s Sean Studer rounded out the top five. Joining Anderson from eastern Florida will be Sorrento's Burkett, Homestead's Franklin, Royal Palm Beach's Shane Sawyer, Dade City's Bryant and Daytona Beach's Yunick, who earned his first career top five finish this past Saturday when he wound up fifth at Greenville-Pickens (S.C.) Speedway
This weekend could produce slightly different results, especially if Bigley has anything to say about it. The Peerless Woodworking/Nevamar Decorative Surfaces Chevrolet driver posted his second consecutive win this past Saturday night and now holds a 48 point lead over Arden, N.C.'s Lee Tissot. Also bolstering western Florida's chances at victory is Reutimann. The Pennzoil Chevrolet driver has a huge hunger for his first win and would love to take the trophy just a few miles west to his home in Zephyrhills. Frank is coming off a second place finish and has relocated his racing operation from Bluffton, S.C. to Reutimann's shops, and the improved results have been immediate. Frank and Reutimann now hold down the third and fourth points positions after three races. Throw Pensacola's Carlson, Lakeland's Ingole and Tampa's Gerstner into the mix and you have a potent recipe for racing excitement. Bud Pole Qualifying gets underway at 6:00 p.m. The Slim Jim All Pro Series drivers will sign autographs at 7:00 p.m. and the green flag will wave on the Discount Auto Parts 200 presented by ROL Gaskets at 8:00 p.m. Nine NASCAR Touring Series blanket the United States, bringing special events to many NASCAR Weekly Racing Series tracks and some NASCAR superspeedways and road courses. NASCAR Touring Series are extremely popular with fans and competitors. NASCAR Touring Series can provide a competitor with an entire career, or they can provide valuable experience to competitors moving through the NASCAR ranks. Corporate sponsors make significant contributions to NASCAR Touring Series point funds. These sponsors include Anheuser-Busch, Featherlite, Goody's Headache Powders, Raybestos Brakes, RE/MAX International, Inc., Slim Jim, and RJ Reynolds brand, Winston.