ESS: Season preview

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- On March 8-10, the 16th annual Carquest Motorsports Expo will be held in the Agway Building at the New York State Fairgrounds. Once again, the Empire Super Sprints (ESS) will be on hand and for the 2002 edition of the Expo comes...

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- On March 8-10, the 16th annual Carquest Motorsports Expo will be held in the Agway Building at the New York State Fairgrounds. Once again, the Empire Super Sprints (ESS) will be on hand and for the 2002 edition of the Expo comes the largest contingent of sprint cars and stars from ESS ever.

Race fans from all over the Northeast will see eight winged machines that will compete on the ESS Tour 2002. Highlighting the list of drivers is seven-time ESS champion and all-time A-Main winner Mike Woodring. Woodring will also have teammate and female sensation Erin Crocker's sprinter alongside. Also on hand will be the cars of Bill Coffey, Mike Stelter, Kyle Drum, Brian Dumigan, John Karklin Jr. and R.C. Faigle.

Woodring is coming off another championship winning season and is looking for title number eight in 2002. What will be different for the up coming season is that the Eden, N.Y. pilot will also be a car owner for the first time. Massachusetts' Erin Crocker will chauffeur the Woodring team car and will be backed by Rochester Polytechnic Institute (RPI) and sport the #16. Crocker is a junior at RPI and after getting her feet wet as a part-time driver last year on the ESS tour she is out to make a full effort for 2002.

Bill Coffey hails from Caledonia, N.Y. and is coming off his most successful season ever by placing fifth in points. The Sprinterexpress.com team always showcases one of the best looking sprinters on the ESS trail and fans will get a chance to see the sharp #13 for the first time at the Expo.

Mike Stelter's radical coil-over sprinter built and powered by Ron Buckner has been a regular fixture in the ESS booth for several years and 2002 will be no different. While going winless last year, Stelter and the Vicomp Graphics #36 will be making an all-out effort this year to get back into the winners circle.

Kyle Drum is just 17 years old and he is the current ESS rookie of the year. On his first full effort on the tour, Drum took an A-Main victory in Canada and just missed the top ten in points. The #47 machine will fly the colors of the United States Air Force and representatives from the USAF will be next to Kyle and family all weekend.

Brian Dumigan is one of the most exciting talents on the ESS trail and in 2001 he was rewarded with the Outstanding New Comer Award. Despite missing several events, Dumigan finished 19th in points and flirted with his first ever ESS feature win.

After many seasons traveling and promoting sprint cars, Freehold, N.Y.'s John Karklin Jr. ran the entire ESS tour for the first time ever. The well liked driver came home with two A-Main wins and a 14th place in the final points. Karklin Jr. is going full-bore for the new year and his #69K will be out for the fans at the Expo.

The final entry will be he R.C. Faigle owned #21A which will carry the Miller Lite Motorsports colors all weekend. The black sprinter has always been an eye catcher and that will be no different as a part of the ESS booth.

On Sat. afternoon at 2 p.m. all drivers will be ready to sign their names on anything you bring with a very special autograph session. As ESS grows, their drivers grow along with the club and have now become household names all across the Northeast. This will be a great chance to meet many of them up close and personal. Fans can also stop by and pick up a special ESS Tour 2002 schedule card while looking at some of the best looking sprint cars this side of the Mississippi.

Officials from ESS as well as the Bully Hill Nationals will be on hand all weekend to answer any questions.

Opening night of the 39 race ESS Tour 2002 is on Sat. April 13 at the Black Rock Speedway, but the first green flag for the new year will be dropped at the Carquest Motorsports Expo on March 8-10. It might be cold and snowing in upstate N.Y. but the fire will definitely be burning inside with the invasion of the Empire Super Sprints!!!

-ess-

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About this article
Series Sprint
Drivers Erin Crocker , Bill Coffey