Sontag clinches 2004 Rookie of the Year

Sontag's Birthday Gift is ASA Rookie of the Year Title HAMPTON, Ga. (October 29, 2004) -- Brett Sontag received one of the best birthday presents of his life during the running of the World Financial Group 150 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. At...

Sontag's Birthday Gift is ASA Rookie of the Year Title

HAMPTON, Ga. (October 29, 2004) -- Brett Sontag received one of the best birthday presents of his life during the running of the World Financial Group 150 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. At the conclusion of the 150-kilometer event he was named as the 2004 ASA National Tour Rookie of the Year.

The driver of the No. 71 Terry's Automotive Ford was thrilled to add his name to the Pat Schauer Memorial Rookie of the Year trophy, knowing that those drivers winning the ASA Rookie title often move on to very successful careers in stock car racing.

"It's great," Sontag said of the honor. "I just hope I can go where Reed (Sorenson) went, David Stremme and all the other 'big dogs.' It sure would be neat, but it's a dream at this point."

The title came on Sontag's birthday, making it one of the best gifts he has received, especially considering the traditional $50,000 bonus that accompanies the award.

"It's a good birthday present," Sontag said with a smile. "My little boy and my little girl were my best presents, but I appreciate it."

Team owner Terry Kunes was thrilled with the performance of his rookie driver this season, as Sontag finished seventh in the ASA National Tour points, and recorded six Top-10 finishes in the 14 races. He also won his first ASA career Jani-King pole at Lake Erie (Pa.) Speedway.

"I knew he could do it," Kunes said of winning the Rookie title. "But I wasn't sure if (the other competitors) would let us. It's a great day, a great day. It's a big birthday present for Brett."

Over the years, many of stock car racing's finest drivers have started their careers in the ASA National Tour and been Rookie of the Year title holders. Jimmie Johnson won the title in 1998, Johnny Sauter (2001), Johnny Benson Jr. (1990) and Mark Martin (1977) are all on the list. Other well-known drivers and former ASA Rookies include Ted Musgrave (1987), Kenny Wallace (1986), Tim Fedewa (1991) and Joey Clanton (2000).

The American Speed Association is based in Pendleton, Ind., and has offered stock car racing programs since 1968, including the ASA National Tour, ASA Late Model Series, several regional touring series and the ASA Member Track programs. For additional information, visit ASAracing.com.

- www.asaracing.com -

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Series Stock car
Drivers Kenny Wallace , Johnny Benson , Jimmie Johnson , Johnny Sauter , David Stremme , Joey Clanton , Brett Sontag , Mark Martin