Sooner Region OKC-Lawton preview

Pivotal OKC-Lawton Weekend on Tap for ASCS Sooner Region TULSA, Okla. (April 25, 2005) -- The stage is set for an intense weekend of American Bank of Oklahoma ASCS Sooner Region racing action as the series takes to Oklahoma City's ...

Pivotal OKC-Lawton Weekend on Tap for ASCS Sooner Region

TULSA, Okla. (April 25, 2005) -- The stage is set for an intense weekend of American Bank of Oklahoma ASCS Sooner Region racing action as the series takes to Oklahoma City's State Fair Speedway on Friday night, then moves on the newly-reconfigured Lawton Speedway on Saturday night.

Just three races into the 2005 campaign, which is slated for 18 events, the series points race is already heating up as Tulsa's Sean McClelland holds a narrow eight-point lead over 2002 champion Danny Jennings of Norman, OK.

After snaring victory honors in each of the series' opening two events, McClelland's bid for three in a row was foiled Saturday night by Jennings. McClelland closed the gap at the end, but Jennings held on to score his third Sooner Region triumph atop Ada's Oklahoma Sports Park clay.

While McClelland and Jennings have established themselves as early betting favorites for the 2005 Sooner Region crown, Sapulpa, OK, driver Cody Branchcomb is ready to throw his hat in the ring as well. Celebrating his 19th birthday on Wednesday, April 27, Branchcomb is chasing the Sooner Region championship after three years on the O'Reilly ASCS National Tour. Branchcomb posted a strong third place finish at Ada and is currently ranked third in points, just 30 markers out of the lead.

Foster Landon of Collinsville, OK, and Preston Peebles II of Lubbock, TX, round out the current top five in Sooner Region points entering this weekend's racing action. Other top Sooner Region contenders expected for the weekend include Tulsa-area shoes Joel Howard, Brian McClelland, Dex Eaton and Dara Morrow along with Oklahoma City-area drivers Kerry McAlister, Andy Shouse, Danny Wood and Koby Barksdale.

Former series champion J.P. Bailey, who now resides in Fort Worth, will be in action as well along with several O'Reilly ASCS National Tour contenders such as Tony Bruce, Jr., Sam Hafertepe, Jr., and Jake Martens.

A strong contingent of local cars, led by the likes of Mike Peters, is expected to bolster an already stout field for Friday night's event at Oklahoma City.

After eight combined events with the O'Reilly National Tour in recent years, the first stand-alone American Bank of Oklahoma ASCS Sooner Region event was contested at Oklahoma City's State Fair Speedway last September 3, with two-time series champion Kevin Ramey taking the win.

Lawton Speedway has hosted more Sooner Region events than any other track, with 13 features atop what was formerly a quarter-mile bullring. It could be a whole new game this time around however, as the track was reconfigured over the winter.

Jennings has snared three Sooner Region triumphs at Lawton Speedway, however his most recent was in September of 2002. Ramey has a pair of Lawton Sooner wins, with Danny Wood topping the two most recent events at Lawton. Other past Lawton Speedway ASCS Sooner Region winners include Travis Rilat, Nick Smith, Zach Chappell, Landon, Robert Sellers and Travis Scott.

Friday night's racing action at Oklahoma City's State Fair Speedway is slated to go green at 7:30 p.m. State Fair Speedway is located on the Oklahoma State Fair Grounds near the intersection of N.W. 10th and May Avenue. For more information, contact the track at 405-948-6796.

Saturday night's card atop the three-eighths mile Lawton Speedway red clay oval is set to get under way at 8:00 p.m. Lawton Speedway is located off I-44 Exit 36, then 2.5 miles west on Lee Boulevard, then 1.4 miles south on Sheridan Road. For more information, contact the track at 580-355-6417.

This year, the American Bank of Oklahoma ASCS Sooner Region will contest 18 events at seven different tracks throughout Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas.

Additional information regarding the American Sprint Car Series is available at www.ascsracing.com.

Current American Bank of Oklahoma ASCS Sooner Region Points (Top Ten): 1. Sean McClelland (Collinsville, OK) 446, 2. Danny Jennings (Norman, OK) 438, 3. Cody Branchcomb (Sapulpa, OK) 416, 4. Foster Landon (Collinsville, OK) 392, 5. Preston Peebles II (Lubbock, TX) 388, 6. (tie) Joel Howard (Collinsville, OK) and Kerry McAlister (Mustang, OK) 378, 8. Brian McClelland 335, 9. J.P. Bailey (Ft. Worth, TX) 327, 10. Andy Shouse (Oklahoma City, OK) 270.

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Series Sprint
Drivers Preston Peebles , Cody Branchcomb , Travis Rilat , Nick Smith , Dex Eaton , Danny Jennings , Kevin Ramey , J.P. Bailey , Koby Barksdale , Andy Shouse , Sean McClelland