CARPE DIEM Kinser, Tony Stewart Racing's Bass Pro Shops Team Head East in Pursuit of World of Outlaws Wins INDIANAPOLIS (July 21, 2009) -- A racer's mentality is like a one-way street. It's always heading in the same direction with no turning...
Kinser, Tony Stewart Racing's Bass Pro Shops Team Head East in Pursuit of World of Outlaws Wins
INDIANAPOLIS (July 21, 2009) -- A racer's mentality is like a one-way street. It's always heading in the same direction with no turning back. The World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint Car Series has one of the most demanding schedules, and that typically allows the competitors to only look at what's ahead. This week, it's no exception as the traveling Outlaws race four times at three different tracks as they make their second tour of the season through Pennsylvania. Tony Stewart Racing's (TSR) Kraig Kinser is hoping to seize the opportunity of racing four times this week and notch his initial triumph of the season.
Kinser, who finished ninth on Saturday night in the 26th annual Kings Royal at Tony Stewart's Eldora Speedway, returns to the seat of TSR's No. 20 Bass Pro Shops/Chevy/J.D. Byrider Maxim Tuesday at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, Pa. The team will then travel to central Pennsylvania for the Williams Grove Speedway Summer Nationals on Friday and Saturday night before concluding the week Sunday at Lebanon (N.Y.) Valley Speedway on Sunday.
Tuesday's Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup at Lernerville continues Sprint car racing's richest month of action. This year's Silver Cup is going to break tradition. Instead of running one 40-lap "A" feature event, the program will include a pair of 30-lap races. The results of the first feature will determine the line-up for the second race. Both races will pay $15,000 to the winner. Kinser raced to his best career effort at Lernerville last July, when he charged from 22nd to finish ninth. He has seven career feature starts at the 4/10-mile dirt oval.
The return to Williams Grove Speedway in Mechanicsburg, Pa., for Friday and Saturday's races may offer the stiffest test the traveling Outlaws face all season. The Williams Grove regulars are some of the fiercest competitors and always seem motivated to prove something to the Outlaw teams each time they visit. That was evident in the Outlaws' race at Williams Grove in May, when the "Pennsylvania Posse" took the top four positions in the feature race. Kinser didn't qualify for the main event in May and is hoping to change his fortune at the historic half-mile dirt oval. His best finish at the track came in May 2005, when he finished sixth.
Sunday's annual stop at Lebanon Valley wraps up the grueling week of action at another high-speed track with long straightaways and tight corners. Finding a way to start near the front has been key during the most recent events at the track. Kinser had to settle for a 21st-place result last September after an accident. Sunday will be his fourth career start at the track.
Last week, Kinser finished fourth in the Brad Doty Classic at Limaland Motorsports Park and then was the second-fastest qualifier in Friday night's Outlaw event at Eldora. With 39 WoO races of the 2009 campaign complete, Kinser has nine top-five finishes and 19 top-10s. He currently ranks ninth in the WoO Sprint Series championship standings with 4,943 points.
Tuesday at Lernerville, the pit gates open at 4 p.m. EDT, and the grandstands open at 5 p.m. Hot laps are scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. Tickets for the race can be purchased by calling Lernerville Speedway at (724)-353-1511. For more information on the event, visit www.lernerville.com.
Friday and Saturday at Williams Grove, the pit gates open at 4 p.m. EDT, and the grandstands open at 5:45 p.m. Time trials are scheduled to begin at 7:45 each night. Tickets for the race can be purchased by calling Williams Grove Speedway at (717) 697-5000. For more information on the event, visit www.williamsgrove.com.
Sunday at Lebanon Valley, the pit gates open at 2 p.m. EDT, and the grandstands open at 5 p.m. Hot laps are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. Tickets for the race can be purchased by visiting www.lebanonvalley.com.
Race fans unable to attend this weekend's races can catch all of the action on DIRTVision.com. Fans can listen live as Johnny Gibson, "Voice of the Outlaws," calls the action as he does at all WoO Sprint Series events on the DIRTVision.com cybercast, as well as on the DIRT Radio Network. Go to www.DIRTVision.com for more information on all the site features, including updated results from each night of racing, as well as a chat room to interact with other race fans.
Kraig Kinser, Driver of the No. 20 TSR/Bass Pro Shops/Chevy/J.D. Byrider Maxim:
This is the time of the year when it seems like you are racing more than usual. Do you prefer racing more than twice a week?
"Definitely. Most racers think about being in a car all the time. It helps to race as much as you can and this is the time of the year when all the hard work the crew puts in really shows. The Bass Pro Shops guys (Mike Cool, Steve Swenson, Bob Curtis) did a good job preparing our team for this stretch. Now, our focus is on putting complete nights together -- qualifying, heat race, dash and feature event. Being good in each of them is what it's going to take for us to have the kind of success we are looking for.
"When you race more and more, it allows the team to really gel and become a machine with all the parts working together. That's why it's so important to be consistent and start building on things from one race to the next. We've got a great opportunity this week to build on good runs last week at the Brad Doty Classic and Kings Royal. The other good part about this time of the year is there is a lot of extra money out there to win, too."
The competition at both at Lernerville and Williams Grove is going to be stout. Does that change your approach?
"No, it really doesn't. We feel like we race against the best Sprint car drivers in the world every night. When we come to Pennsylvania, the field just gets a little deeper. Those guys from Pennsylvania know their tracks and how they might change throughout the night a little better than the Outlaw guys. We're resourceful, though, and most of the time can adapt pretty quickly. There's a big rivalry between the 'PA Posse' and it kind of got the best of us here in the spring, so we're hoping to change that this time around."
The "Month of Money" is right around the season's midpoint. Where do you feel like you are as a team right now?
"I think, as a team, this Bass Pro Shops team is right up there with the best of them. We've been consistent, at times, and have some good podium finishes so far this year. The biggest thing missing right now is a notch in the win column. But if we keep working together and staying focused on the goal, that will come. We've got a lot of races left and, if we are fortunate to get one of these big paydays over the next four weeks, that would really help us move forward during the second half of the season."
For complete WoO Sprint Series results from the Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup, Williams Grove Summer Nationals and Lebanon Valley Speedway events, visit www.worldofoutlaws.com/sprint. For information regarding TSR, Bass Pro Shops, J.D. Byrider, Chevy or Kinser, visit www.tonystewartracing.com, www.basspro.com, www.byrider.com, www.chevy.com or www.kraigkinser.com.