Winchester preview 2000-10-22

Tony Elliott of Kokomo, Ind. and Jay Drake of Val Verde, Calif. will square off for the USAC Stoops Freightliner Sprint Car Championship October 22 in the 23rd Annual "Sammy Sessions Memorial" "doubleheader" racing program at the...

Tony Elliott of Kokomo, Ind. and Jay Drake of Val Verde, Calif. will square off for the USAC Stoops Freightliner Sprint Car Championship October 22 in the 23rd Annual "Sammy Sessions Memorial" "doubleheader" racing program at the Winchester (Ind.) Speedway. The event concludes USAC's midwestern racing season and will showcase the best open-wheel drivers in the nation in a pair of 33-lap features on the world's fastest 1/2-mile track. Drivers in the Stoops Freightliner Sprint Car Series will challenge Ryan Newman's record of 126.325 mph, while Brian Gerster's MCI WorldCom Midget Car record stands at 123.237. Elliott leads Drake by only 32 points with 72 available at Winchester. Drake owns 10 Sprint car wins this year, while Elliott has won only twice, but Elliott's 18 "top-10" finishes, including 10 "top-3s," has kept him in the lead most of the season. Tracy Hines won the April Sprint race at Winchester, one of five for him this year, and he comes to Winchester on a streak of sorts, having won the previous two races at Indianapolis Raceway Park and Eldora Speedway. Tracy also is the defending winner of the "Sammy Sessions Memorial." Dave Steele of Tampa, Fla., who won the 1998 "Sessions" Sprint race, is also expected to be in the field for the October 22 program. Steele holds the 33-lap record of 118.426 mph. Kasey Kahne of Enumclaw, Wash. is the MCI WorldCom Midget point leader and is headed for his first series championship. He'll have to beat Dane Carter of Brownsburg, Ind. and other top Midget pilots in the 33-lap feature. Carter won the August 20 race at Winchester with a dramatic last-lap bonzai pass of Mark Boice. Drivers will be aiming at Ryan Newman's 33-lap Midget record of 116.329 mph set last year. The October 22 event marks the 130th appearance of the USAC Sprint Cars at Winchester and the 48th appearance of the USAC Midget Cars there. Pancho Carter, Dane's father, won a record 12 USAC Sprint Car races at Winchester, while Tom Bigelow, the track's current general manager, won eight. In the Midgets, Doug Kalitta won six times, while Vogler won five and Ryan Newman has four. Sessions, who perished in a snowmobiling accident in December of 1977, won USAC's 1972 Sprint Car Championship and was one of 14 drivers to win both a Sprint Car and Midget Car race at Winchester. The others are Bob Wente, Bill Engelhart, Johnny Parsons, Rich Vogler, Billy Cassella, Jeff Gordon, Jim Keeker, Kenny Irwin, Doug Kalitta, Mike Bliss, Andy Michner, Tracy Hines and Ryan Newman. Tickets for the "Sammy Sessions Memorial" are priced at $14 for adults, $7 for children ages 13-19 and free for ages 12 and under and can be reserved by calling the Winchester Speedway at (765) 584-9704. The track is located 3 miles west of Winchester, Ind. on State Route 32. Practice starts at noon, time trials begin at 1 pm and racing gets under way at 2. Gates open to the public at 10 am.

<pre> USAC STOOPS FREIGHTLINER SPRINT CAR SERIES STANDINGS

1. Tony Elliott 1,311 2. Jay Drake 1,279 3. Tracy Hines 1,143 4. J.J. Yeley 1,078 5. Derek Davidson 1,036 6. Dave Darland 919 7. Bud Kaeding 891 8. Eric Gordon 870 9. Brian Tyler 768 10. Jonathan Vennard 630

USAC MCI WORLDCOM NATIONAL MIDGET CAR SERIES STANDINGS

1. Kasey Kahne 1,084 2. Jay Drake 843 3. Dave Darland 810 4. Michael Lewis 763 5. Tracy Hines 655 6. Aaron Fike 610 7. A.J. Fike 604 8. Clay Klepper 524 9. Ed Carpenter 511 10. Ryan Scott 488

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Series USAC
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Doug Kalitta , Ryan Newman , Kasey Kahne , Michael Lewis , Ryan Scott , Dave Darland , J.J. Yeley , Tracy Hines , Dave Steele , Brian Tyler , Bud Kaeding , Tony Elliott , Mike Bliss , Aaron Fike , Jay Drake , Dane Carter , A.J. Fike , Johnny Parsons , Jonathan Vennard , Eric Gordon , Clay Klepper , Ed Carpenter