ARA Hickory "Bobby Issac Memorial" preview

HICKORY, NC - Hickory Motor Speedway is long-time favorite of short track drivers everywhere, so track experience won't favor anybody in the Bobby Isaac Memorial 200 Saturday. But don't blame either Scott Kilby or Keith Bumgarner if either thinks...

HICKORY, NC - Hickory Motor Speedway is long-time favorite of short track drivers everywhere, so track experience won't favor anybody in the Bobby Isaac Memorial 200 Saturday. But don't blame either Scott Kilby or Keith Bumgarner if either thinks he's got the best chance of winning. After all, they are the front-runners in the American Racing Association (ARA) Kool Seal Challenge Series, ranking 1-2 in the points. And both have won Kool Seal races at Hickory already this year.

In the four previous ARA Kool Seal races at Hickory this season, Bumgarner has fared best, winning twice in his #95 Carolina Chair Ford and finishing second and third in the other two ARA events. In four Hickory starts this year, Kilby has one win, a second, a fourth and a disastrous 18th. But Kilby is a four-time Bobby Isaac Memorial 200 champion, having won in 1991, 1993, 1994 and 1995 when the race was part of Hickory's weekly lat model program.

"Winning at Hickory is always nice because of the history of the track, and winning a race like the Bobby Isaac Memorial will be really special," says Bumgarner, of Conover, NC. "Hickory is the home track for a lot of us."

The entry field should be stellar for this special event that will pay $5,000 to-win. Among the entries is 14-year-old sensation Stephen Leicht of Asheville, NC, who won an ARA Kool Seal race at Hickory in his #99 Action Racing Collectibles Ford on June 9th (Kilby was second and Bumgarner third that day).

"I want to win the Bobby Isaac more than any other race this year," says Kilby, "just because it's a race that everybody wants to win. There will be a lot of guys we don't see every week, and all of 'em know how to drive Hickory."

The Bobby Isaac Memorial 200 is presented by Galaxy Foods and Pillsbury, and is scheduled for a 7:30 p.m. start Saturday. Pit gates will open at 10 a.m., with ARA practice starting at Noon. Grandstands open at 4 p.m., with qualifying at 5:15. The Carolina Vintage Racers and the Hickory Pro Minis will also run.

Tickets are $13 in advance and $15 on race day.  Family ticket packages are
available.  Call 828-464-3655 for more information.

-ARA

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Series Stock car
Drivers Stephen Leicht