TIME TO HIT THE ROAD AGAIN After 'Taking Five' (Weeks), Tony Stewart Racing and Kinser Roll into I-55 Raceway To Resume WoO Sprint Series Season INDIANAPOLIS (April 2, 2008) -- Tony Stewart Racing (TSR) and driver Kraig Kinser will head to ...
TIME TO HIT THE ROAD AGAIN
After 'Taking Five' (Weeks), Tony Stewart Racing and Kinser Roll into I-55 Raceway To Resume WoO Sprint Series Season
INDIANAPOLIS (April 2, 2008) -- Tony Stewart Racing (TSR) and driver Kraig Kinser will head to Missouri this weekend with the hope that -- in the spirit of the state's moniker, the Show Me State -- the weather gods will show them plenty of sun.
Five weeks have passed since the last event for the Advance Auto Parts World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint Series competitors. If all goes according to plan, the waterworks Mother Nature has provided so often already this season will stay away and allow the roar of 410 winged Sprint car engines to penetrate the atmosphere.
For Kinser, this week's return to competition at I-55 Raceway in Pevely, Mo., represents pleasant memories from years past, most notably his victory at the 1/3-mile facility on April 2, 2005. In his last appearance at the track on July 9, 2005, Kinser took the checkered flag in 23rd place.
Kinser has made 10 career A-main starts at I-55 Raceway, which is co-owned by NASCAR veteran Kenny Schrader. He has the one victory in 2005, three top-five finishes and four top-10s. Kinser and his TSR teammate Donny Schatz are the most recent WoO Sprint Series drivers to have won races hosted at the facility in the month of April. Joey Saldana won the last series event held at I-55 Raceway on July 7, 2007.
Saturday's race kicks off 31 consecutive weekends of WoO racing. For the second season, the No. 20 TSR/Bass Pro Shops/J.D. Byrider team utilizes Kistler Engines-built Chevy power under the hood of Kinser's Maxim chassis. This year marks TSR's second season competing under the Chevy banner.
Kraig Kinser, driver of the No. 20 TSR/Bass Pro Shops/Chevy/Maxim:
With almost five weeks since the last racing event, what's been your entertainment during the extended break?
"I've been spending a lot of time with my son, Kash, and my wife, Danielle, at home in North Carolina. Even though the break between races has been unexpected, it's been good to get to hang out with my family. We had a pretty low-key Easter weekend, as well. We had some friends over who live here in North Carolina and we had a great time just hanging out and spending time here at home. With that said, I'm definitely ready to get back to racing and I'm really looking forward to heading to I-55 Raceway this weekend."
You won at I-55 Raceway in 2005, your last full season with the World of Outlaws Sprint Series. Does that victory give you a little added confidence heading into this weekend's race?
"I've had some success at I-55 and I'm really looking forward to racing at a track that I've won at in the past. I hope that I'm able to run as well as I normally do at I-55, we're usually pretty good on the bullrings. For the most part, I run well there, but that can also be a double-edge sword. You never know what's going to happen from race to race. I know that Jimmy Carr (crew chief) and the entire TSR team have been working hard the past few weeks to make sure we're as prepared as possible for whatever challenges may come up. I think we're going to have a good chance to put Bass Pro Shops and Chevy in victory lane for the first time this year on Saturday."
Do you think that everyone will struggle getting back into the racing groove several times a week after such a long break?
"Yes, I do. For TSR, I don't think it's going to be so much about the adjustment to working with one another. It will be more about getting back in the swing of things. The team and I won't have any trouble working together. And Jimmy (Carr) and I don't have any issues with communication. We've already begun to mesh our styles and I don't think the break will have an effect on that. All of the teams are going to go through an adjustment period after what felt like a second winter break. Our focus is going to be about getting back into racing and being on the road again."