Anderson 'Little 500" preview

USAC veterans Dave Darland and Eric Gordon have separate missions in USAC Sprint car racing at the Anderson (Ind.) Speedway next week. Darland, of Lincoln, Ind., hopes to extend his lead in the Stoops Freightliner Sprint Car Series standings ...

USAC veterans Dave Darland and Eric Gordon have separate missions in USAC Sprint car racing at the Anderson (Ind.) Speedway next week.

Darland, of Lincoln, Ind., hopes to extend his lead in the Stoops Freightliner Sprint Car Series standings after Wednesday night's (May 23) "USAC 50" at the 1/4-mile paved oval. Gordon, of Indianapolis, hopes to become only the sixth three-time winner of the prestigious Pay Less/Delco Remy "Little 500" at the same track on Saturday night, May 26.

Darland holds a 15-point lead over J.J. Yeley and an 18-point lead over defending Stoops Freightliner champion Tony Elliott going into the 50-lapper on Wednesday which will serve for many as a "tuneup" for Saturday's "Little 500" spectacular. Practice starts at 3:30 pm and qualifying gets under way at 5:45. The first race is at 7.

The 53rd Pay Less/Delco Remy "Little 500" on May 26 concludes four days of sprint car activity at Anderson's 1/4-mile oval and the 2001 event marks USAC's initial role as the sanctioning body of one of America's greatest short-track racing traditions.

Gordon won the "Little 500" in 1993 and 1998 and a victory May 26 would place him in the history books alongside Bob Frey, Tom Cherry, Darl Harrison, Jeff Bloom and Jim Childers, all of whom have at least three wins in the classic. Frey won five times, including four straight from 1987-1990, while Cherry won four in the 1950s.

Childers, of Tampa, Fla., won last year's race and has his sights set on becoming the third four-time winner when the 500-lapper starts at 8 pm. Practice for "Little 500" participants starts Wednesday and qualifying to set the 33-car starting field is slated Thursday and Friday. A "last chance" qualifying race is also scheduled Friday night.

<pre> LITTLE 500 WINNERS

1949    Sam Skinner
1950    Tom Cherry
1951    Red Renner
1952    Tom Cherry
1953    Bob King
1954    Tom Cherry
1955    Tom Cherry
1956    Bob Cleberg
1957    Johnny White
1958    Wayne Alspaugh
1959    Ronnie Duman
1960    Ronnie Duman
1961    Jim McElreath
1962    Arnie Knepper
1963    Johnny White/Bob Coulter
1964    Dick Good
1965    Bob King/Chuck Taylor
1966    Rollie Beale
1967    Darl Harrison/Cy Fairchild
1968    Karl Busson
1969    Buzz Gregory
1970    Darl Harrison
1971    Herman Wise
1972    Jeff Bloom
1973    Dick Gaines
1974    Larry Dickson
1975    Darl Harrison
1976    Dick Gaines
1977    Jeff Bloom
1978    Don Mack/Curt Kelley
1979    Wayne Reutimann/Danny Smith
1980    Bob Frey
1981    Greg Leffler
1982    Marvin Carman
1983    Marvin Carman
1984    Frank Riddle
1985    Frank Riddle
1986    Dave Scarborough
1987    Bob Frey
1988    Bob Frey
1989    Bob Frey
1990    Bob Frey
1991    Jeff Bloom
1992    Jim Childers
1993    Eric Gordon
1994    Jim Childers
1995    Bentley Warren
1996    Dave Steele
1997    Bentley Warren
1998    Eric Gordon
1999    Chet Fillip
2000    Jim Childers

-USAC

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About this article
Series USAC
Drivers Dave Darland , J.J. Yeley , Dave Steele , Tony Elliott , Bentley Warren , Chet Fillip , Eric Gordon , Jim McElreath , Wayne Reutimann