Route 66: Event preview

Hines-Yeley Sprint battle continues at Route 66 Friday. Tracy Hines of New Castle, Ind. and J.J. Yeley of Phoenix, Ariz. renew their torrid battle for the 2002 USAC Stoops Freightliner Sprint Car Championship Friday night when the series joins...

Hines-Yeley Sprint battle continues at Route 66 Friday.

Tracy Hines of New Castle, Ind. and J.J. Yeley of Phoenix, Ariz. renew their torrid battle for the 2002 USAC Stoops Freightliner Sprint Car Championship Friday night when the series joins the USAC National Midget Car Series for a "doubleheader" at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Ill.

The two drivers have 16 total USAC victories between them so far this season, Yeley 12 and Hines four. They also rank 1-2 in the Earl's Pro-Lite 350 Fast Qualifier Championship, which is worth $20,000 to the winner at season's end. Yeley has six Sprint Car wins this year, while Hines has three, but Hnes holds a 32-point lead over Yeley with 72 points available at Joliet.

Yeley finished second and Hines fifth behind Bud Kaeding in last year's Joliet Sprint. Kaeding is slated to make his return to USAC National competition at Route 66 Raceway after recovering from injuries suffered in a crash at Terre Haute, Ind. this spring.

A 30-lap feature event caps each division's program at the 1/2-mile dirt track, following practice at 5 pm, qualifying at 6 and preliminary races, beginning at 7.

Also expected to return to the series at Joliet after a hiatus is 2002 "Indiana Sprint Week" Champion Cory Kruseman of Ventura, Calif. Kruseman won four of the seven races which made up this year's "Indiana Sprint Week" series.

USAC STOOPS FREIGHTLINER SPRINT CAR SERIES STANDINGS
1. Tracy Hines 1,363
2. J.J. Yeley 1,331
3. Derek Davidson 993
4. Jay Drake 910
5. Dave Darland 883
6. Levi Jones 816
7. Tony Elliott 690
8. A.J. Fike 592
9. Brian Tyler 584
10. Cory Kruseman 581

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Series USAC
Drivers Dave Darland , J.J. Yeley , Tracy Hines , Brian Tyler , Bud Kaeding , Tony Elliott , Cory Kruseman , Jay Drake , A.J. Fike , Levi Jones