SWS: 2002 NASCAR Touring schedule announced

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 11, 2001) --The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) today unveiled the 2002 Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring schedule. Consisting of 14 events, the schedule opens at Phoenix (Ariz.) ...

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 11, 2001) --The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) today unveiled the 2002 Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring schedule. Consisting of 14 events, the schedule opens at Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway on February 2. The 2002 calendar also features a return to Stockton 99 Speedway, a .250-mile oval in Stockton, Calif., on April 27. The 2002 season marks the 17th year for the Featherlite Southwest Series.

"The Featherlite Southwest Series always features some of our best competition, and we're confident that this schedule will produce nothing less," stated Chris Boals, director of NASCAR Touring and the NASCAR Weekly Racing Series. "These are exciting tracks, and the schedule offers such a wide variety from short tracks to intermediate speedways to the road course at Sears Point. It'll be a tough season for all the competitors, but at the same time, that's what makes it so great for the teams and Featherlite Southwest Series fans."

The schedule encompasses a total of nine tracks in three states, including three races at Mesa Marin Raceway in Bakersfield, Calif. and two events at Irwindale (Calif.) Speedway. A road course event at the 1.949-mile Sears Point Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. will challenge Featherlite Southwest Series teams on June 22.

Throughout its 16-year history, several elite drivers have made a name for themselves in the Featherlite Southwest Series. Ron Hornaday, Jr., a two-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion and 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup rookie contender, was the series champion in 1992 and 1993. Kevin Harvick, the 2001 NASCAR Busch Series, Grand National Division champion and 2001 Raybestos rookie-of-the-year in the Winston Cup Series, was the Featherlite Southwest Series rookie-of-the-year in 1995. Many other drivers in NASCAR's three national series, including Rick Carelli, Lance Hooper, Kurt Busch and Matt Crafton have also raced successfully in the Featherlite Southwest Series.

In 2002, Craig Raudman, of Bakersfield, Calif., will work to defend his title throughout this 14-race campaign. Raudman captured his first series championship after recording four wins and 11 top-5's in 2001. Seeking to enter his name in the rookie-of-the-year records alongside Harvick and Busch, is rookie challenger Adam Andretti, of Brownsburg, Ind. Andretti, the younger brother of Winston Cup Series star John Andretti, will make his NASCAR Touring debut after several years of open wheel and sports car competition throughout northern America.

-nascar/fsws-

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Series NASCAR
Drivers John Andretti , Kevin Harvick , Kurt Busch , Ron Hornaday Jr. , Matt Crafton , Lance Hooper , Rick Carelli , Adam Andretti , Craig Raudman