Indianapolis Speedrome season opens

The Indianapolis Speedrome opens its 18th season of USAC Midget Car racing under the organization of John Stiles next Wednesday night (April 26) and this year's series promises to produce yet another group of talented racers with...

The Indianapolis Speedrome opens its 18th season of USAC Midget Car racing under the organization of John Stiles next Wednesday night (April 26) and this year's series promises to produce yet another group of talented racers with ambitions of climbing up the ladder of racing success. A number of new young drivers are slated for competition in the 20-race series which will make its home at the 1/5-mile paved oval but will venture for at least one race to the Mount Lawn Speedway in New Castle, Ind. (August 9). The regular Wednesday night program of racing continues until August 30, with 50-lap feature events on tap. This year's talented group of newcomers will have the bonus of being tutored by one of auto racing's most persistent competitors, whose driving career spanned a record six decades and included everything from Midget Cars to Stock Cars to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Stiles has named veteran Ralph Ligouri of Tampa, Fla. as his chief steward for the 2000 USAC series. "You can't appreciate what we have in racing today unless you started like me in the 1940's," says the ageless Liguori, who won several USAC races during his career. Liguori looks forward to guiding the fortunes of the Speedrome's new talent in the series which will present its 300th race this year. In the 290 races prior to 2000 a total of 69 drivers have scored victories, including USAC champions Michael Lang, Rich Vogler, Mel Kenyon, Mack McClellan, Ted Hines, Tom Bigelow, John Sluss, John Andretti, Steve Lotshaw, Tony Stewart, Russ Gamester, Sleepy Tripp, Larry Rice, Ken Schrader, Robby Flock and Kenny Irwin. Liguori also graces the impressive list of Speedrome Midget Car feature winners. Michael Lang's dominance of recent Speedrome Midget Car championships could be at an end. Lang plans to be a regular competitor in the USAC MCI WorldCom National Series in 2000 after recording a record 54 feature wins, so this year's point race, with a new system in place, could be the best in years. An open practice session is scheduled at the Speedrome this Saturday (April 22). Practice starts at 5 pm each Wednesday night, with racing commencing at 7.

--USAC--

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Series USAC
Drivers John Andretti , Tony Stewart , Russ Gamester , Robby Flock