18-Year-Old Reed Sorenson and Veteran Mark Martin Fastest as 38 ASA Teams Prepare for Oct. 14 Aaron's 99 CONCORD, N.C. (Oct. 5, 2004) - Two race cars drivers at different ends of the experience spectrum shared the spotlight Tuesday night...
18-Year-Old Reed Sorenson and Veteran Mark Martin Fastest as 38 ASA Teams Prepare for Oct. 14 Aaron's 99
CONCORD, N.C. (Oct. 5, 2004) - Two race cars drivers at different ends of the experience spectrum shared the spotlight Tuesday night at Lowe's Motor Speedway as 38 American Speed Association teams prepared for the Aaron's 99 on Thursday night, Oct. 14.
The 99-lap race, which is part of Bojangles' Pole Night and follows NASCAR NEXTEL Cup qualifying for the Oct. 16 UAW-GM Quality 500, will be the first Lowe's Motor Speedway appearance for the Indiana-based sanctioning body and its unique brand of late model stock car racing.
Reed Sorenson, an 18-year-old from Forest Park, Ga., was fastest on the unofficial stopwatches with a lap at 164.875 mph around the 1.5-mile superspeedway. Sorenson is part of the Chip Ganassi Racing driver development program and drives the No. 29 Target-sponsored Dodge.
"We just tried a lot of little things here and there to get better because you're pretty much wide open around here," said Sorenson, a two-time Legends Car champion in Lowe's Motor Speedway's Hardee's Summer Shootout Series. "We've been on the same set of tires all day, so we've got a pretty good car on old stuff, and we're really happy about that.
"I think these cars will put on a really good show," Sorenson added. "There's a whole group of us close to the same speed, so I think the race will be really good."
At the other end of the experience spectrum, four-time ASA champion and NASCAR NEXTEL Cup title contender Mark Martin was second fastest at 164.264 in the No. 6 Ford.
"Man, I love this series and running with these guys," said Martin as he enjoyed an evening away from the pressure of the NASCAR circuit. "I really wish we were going to run this car here, but we have a lot going on that week and we'll have to wait for the Atlanta race."
1995 ASA champion Bryan Reffner was third fastest on the unofficial time sheet at 164.024 mph in the No. 80 Chevrolet.
"We had no baseline and we started with the car way too soft," Reffner explained. "We finally got the car where it needs to be and stopped grinding off the bottom of it. This test gives the guys some experience and we'll have a great race. Competing at this track is what this series needs."
Kyle Krisiloff, one of the Hendrick Motorsports development drivers, had the fourth fastest unofficial lap at 161.764 mph.
"We struggled at first, but our guys really got after it," said Krisiloff. "Racing at Lowe's Motor Speedway is great for the series. What can you say? Late models running on a big track like this during a NASCAR weekend is a great opportunity."
Mike Garvey, currently second to defending champion Kevin Cywinski in the ASA championship chase, rounded out the top-five on the speed chart at 161.594 mph.
"A lot of people are having issues with turn three, but our Jani-King Monte Carlo's going through turn three really well. I can't wait for the race."
The yellow flag was unfurled several times during the seven-hour testing session with four cars making wall contact. Jimmy Henderson, Greg Barnhardt, Blake Bjorklund and Peter Cozzolino hit the SAFER barriers, but none of the drivers were injured.
The runs concluded testing for next week's UAW-GM Quality 500 Week activities which will conclude with round five of the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup.
Tickets for all events during UAW-GM Quality 500 Week at Lowe's Motor Speedway are still available and can be obtained online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com or by calling the speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS.