KNOXVILLE, Iowa (Aug. 10, 2000) - After two days of Pennzoil World of Outlaws preliminary action at the 40th annual Amoco Knoxville Nationals at Knoxville Raceway, two Mopar-powered Maxims have scored enough points to nab top-10 starting positions...
KNOXVILLE, Iowa (Aug. 10, 2000) - After two days of Pennzoil World of Outlaws preliminary action at the 40th annual Amoco Knoxville Nationals at Knoxville Raceway, two Mopar-powered Maxims have scored enough points to nab top-10 starting positions for Saturday's finale. Mark Kinser took his Team Mopar Maxim to fourth overall with 480 points following Thursday night's preliminary feature and the Team Amoco Mopar of Dale Blaney collected 471 points and the ninth slot after Wednesday night's action. The duo will have an opportunity to improve their starting positions through tonight's "A" Scramble.
Kinser earned fourth overall on the strength of his 12th Vivarin Fast Time Award of the season with an impressive 15.452-second lap around the venerable Knoxville dirt half mile. In the feature, Kinser maneuvered his way from the 22nd-starting position to capture fifth.
"We had a pretty good run," said Kinser, the defending Amoco Knoxville Nationals champion. "It's really hard to come form the 22nd position and win a 20-lap race. I was almost passing a car a lap to run fifth, so it was a good showing. As the night went on, we had more success at putting this Mopar power to the ground."
It could have been a lot worse for Kinser. The Indiana native had to compete in the "B" Main after a second-lap incident with Pennzoil WoO veteran Aaron Berryhill in the second heat. Kinser, who started on the pole for the "B" Main, led wire-to-wire and outdistanced Jac Haudenschild at the stripe.
On Wednesday night, Team Amoco Mopar Maxim ace Blaney brought home third in the feature. After advancing with a solid fourth-place effort in the fourth heat, Blaney battled 15-time Pennzoil WoO champion and eventual feature winner Steve Kinser and North Dakota hot shoe Donny Schatz for the podium. A late-race charge by Schatz dropped Blaney to third on the final circuit.
"We're happy that we've made the "A" Main, but happier that we get a chance to improve our position," said Blaney, who will be competing in his second "A" Scramble in the last three years. "It gives us another chance to get on the track. We'll try a few different things including another one of our Mopar engines. We're going to put in one that we feel races a little better, and we'll work with the setup. I think the track conditions on Friday are going to be very similar to how they'll be on Saturday. As long as we can learn something, we'll be happy."