USAR: Five Flags: Event preview

Five Flags Speedway Prepares for Hooters ProCup Fayetteville, GA (March 11, 2002) - As the USAR Hooters ProCup Series prepares for the Naturally Fresh Foods 250 presented by NAPA Auto Care Centers this weekend at historic Five Flags Speedway,...

Five Flags Speedway Prepares for Hooters ProCup

Fayetteville, GA (March 11, 2002) - As the USAR Hooters ProCup Series prepares for the Naturally Fresh Foods 250 presented by NAPA Auto Care Centers this weekend at historic Five Flags Speedway, two drivers are ready to return for obvious reasons - to win. Last year, Bobby Gill returned to an arena where he had won two Snowball Derby races to become the first driver to win a Hooters ProCup Series race on a track known for being hard on tires and equipment.

"You have to keep your tires on the car all day long," said Gill. "The track has a rough surface that is really hard on tires and how you manage your equipment will determine how you finish."

Gill took advantage of a late caution flag last season to hold off a hard-charging Derrick Kelley for the win. Gill was able to hold on for his second win in three races to start the season on the way to his third consecutive USAR Hooters ProCup Series championship. Gill hopes he can repeat the trend this weekend.

"We go to the track to win every time we are there, so this weekend won't be any different than the other ones," Gill said. "I want to win every race I can. We don't have a big money sponsor so we need to win as much as we can to keep racing."

While Gill is definitely one of the favorites this weekend another driver is also focused on the win - with different reasons. Shane Huffman won the pole award last season at Five Flags Speedway and led the first 45 laps of the event. Huffman was in the top-five when battery problems forced him into the pits. He lost a lap and was never able to contend again.

"If a track owes us one from last year, it could be Five Flags," said Huffman. "My Jennie-O Turkey Store team put a great car under me, but we had some mechanical problems that ended our chances a little early."

Huffman agreed with Gill on what would be the toughest challenge this weekend - the track itself.

"A lot of places we run at in the (Hooters ProCup) Series have rough surfaces but Pensacola (Five Flags) might have the worst surface when it comes to eating up tires," Huffman said. "We are happy to get a good start on the season with a new sponsor in Jennie-O Turkey Store and we are confident we can have a chance this weekend."

As the talk of all the drivers seems to be tires and tire management USAR has taken steps to assist the drivers. USAR has a limit of only (8) eight tires per event, however, the Series will allow (10) ten tires this weekend only.

"We allowed the extra tires last year and it seemed to work well for all of the teams," said USAR President Gene Cox.

The Naturally Fresh Foods 250 presented by NAPA Auto Care Centers will begin activities with practice at 10:30 am and concludes at 1 pm. Qualifying for the Hooters ProCup Series scheduled to begin at 5 pm and the green flag will fall at 7:30 pm.

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