SES: Nashville preview

NASHVILLE, TN. . (March 31 2001) - Scott Carlson has made only 12 starts with the Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring since 1993, yet he will be leading the field into the $55,260 NASCAR Gatorade All Pro 200 on April 14 at Nashville...

NASHVILLE, TN. . (March 31 2001) - Scott Carlson has made only 12 starts with the Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring since 1993, yet he will be leading the field into the $55,260 NASCAR Gatorade All Pro 200 on April 14 at Nashville Speedway USA.

This event closes a busy weekend in the Nashville, Tn. area with the NASCAR Busch Series, Grand National Division Pepsi 300 presented by Mapco Express and Williams Travel Center event at the new Nashville Superspeedway on Saturday at 12:00 p.m. and the ARCA Re/Max Series race on Friday, April 13 at 4:00 p.m at the Superspeedway.

Carlson dominated the 32-car field in the season opener at Mobile, earning his second career Bud Pole, but more importantly he recorded his first NASCAR career stop in victory lane and is the series points leader entering the NASCAR Gatorade All Pro 200. The Cantonment Late Model Short Track ace, has competed primarily at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla., and Mobile International Speedway in Irvington, Al. throughout his racing years as well as many other prominent short tracks throughout the south.

Carlson, who earned the nickname "Long Race Ace" at Mobile International Speedway will be making an all out charge toward a possible NASCAR Championship in 2001.

"We were so fortunate to be in the race at Mobile," commented Carlson. We lost our previous sponsors who had been with us for the past several years and we still didn't have a sponsor for the race. We thought we could run here since it is so close to home but past Mobile things were in doubt."

"Then Jeff Hamner entered the picture and thanks to his Hamner Engine we had a good race. Leading a NASCAR Touring Series is a new thing for us but after winning against the field at Mobile we have renewed confidence." Nashville Speedway USA is not new to Carlson. He earned his first Bud pole award at the .596-mile oval in the Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring event last September where he finished third.

The starting field for the NASCAR Gatorade All Pro 200-lap race will be one of the strongest starting grids for Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring drivers at Nashville Speedway USA in a non-All American 400 event.

Behind Carlson will be five former NASCAR Champions or All Pro Super Series champions. Three-time Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring Champion and three-time All Pro Super Champion Jody Ridley finished third at Mobile and will be after yet another series title. Billy Bigley Jr., 2000 Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring Champion finished second at Mobile and will return to the track where he wrapped up his first ever championship last October. Wayne Anderson, 1999 Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring Champion and a two-time winner at Nashville will be in the field.

Stanley Smith, 1989 NASCAR All American Challenge Series Champion has returned to NASCAR competition in 2001 and enters this event ranked 10th in points. Smith, went NASCAR Winston Cup Racing in 1991, so this will be his first event at Nashville with this division of NASCAR.

Darrell Brown, longtime short track ace from Birmingham and the 1984 All Pro Super Series National Champion, is competing full-time with the series in 2001. He enters this event 13th in series points.

These five champions will be joined by many series regulars from 2000 in addition to eight 2001 Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring Rookie of the Year Contenders. Road Ammons, Acworth, Ga., Richie Beasly, Brewton, Al., Wayne Bowen, Concord, N. C., Charlie Bradberry, Chelsea, Al., Michael Britt, Cumming, Ga., Chris Fontaine, Lakeland, Fla., Jody Lavender, Hartsville, S. C. and Roger Parker, London, Ky., will be trying to make the 36-car starting field.

Action gets underway at Nashville Speedway USA on Saturday, April 14 with practice for the Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring cars at 12:30 p.m. Qualifying for the Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring drivers is set for 4:30 p.m. Preliminary races will start at 6:30 p.m. with the NASCAR Gatorade All Pro 200 taking the green flag at 8:00 p.m.

Grandstands will open on Saturday at 4:00 a.m. Ticket prices will be $20.00 for adults and children 11 and under, Free.

Billy Bigley Jr., driver of the Peerless Woodworking/Nevamar Decorative Surfaces Chevrolet is the defending champion of the Gatorade All Pro Series, NASCAR Touring.

-Bill Desmond

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Series NASCAR
Drivers Billy Bigley , Jody Lavender , Wayne Anderson , Charlie Bradberry , Chris Fontaine
Teams Williams