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ASCoT heads for Arkansas


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O'Reilly ASCoT Set for Pair of Arkansas Bullrings


by Lonnie Wheatley


Tulsa, OK (April 23, 2007) - The stars of the O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National series are gearing up for the intense, wheel-to-wheel, breathtaking action reserved for the bullrings of America with a pair of events atop ¼-mile Arkansas clay ovals this weekend.


On Friday night, the ASCS National Tour invades Texarkana's Sixty-Seven Speedway oval located just a few miles east of the Arkansas-Texas state line. Then on Saturday night, the series migrates a couple of hours up the interstate to Little Rock's I-30 Speedway.


And with the $50,000 championship points chase beginning to take shape, there's nothing like a change of pace to shake things up after opening the season with eight events on tracks ranging from 1/3-mile in distance to ½-mile.


But don't necessarily expect the change in venue size to slow down Hooks, TX, ace Gary Wright, as he has enjoyed his share of success in ASCS action at both Texarkana and Little Rock. Wright has topped three of seven National Tour events at Texarkana's 67 Speedway, with another nine of his 110 career ASCS National Tour triumphs coming atop I-30 Speedway's high-banked clay oval.


The three-time and reigning series champion, Wright has broken out of the gates quickly in 2007 by winning four of the opening eight feature events and finishing outside the top three just once to build an early advantage of 49 points over Oklahoma City native Wayne Johnson.


Johnson, hoping to add a second ASCS National championship to his 2000 title, has reached victory lane twice this year. Two of Johnson's 22 career ASCS National Tour feature wins have come at Little Rock's I-30 Speedway.


Then just another 47 points behind Johnson, Oklahoma's Darren Stewart is engage in a tight battle for third in points with Texan Travis Rilat and Louisiana's Jason Johnson. A mere 22 points separate the trio of Stewart, Rilat and Jason Johnson. And while each driver has been among the top ten in at least five of eight feature events this year, all three will be looking to crack victory lane this weekend.


Oklahoma's Foster Landon, currently the leading Brodix Rookie of the Year contender, has climbed to sixth in points. Fellow rookie contenders Andy Shouse of Oklahoma City and Canadian Chris Schmelzle are ranked eighth and eleventh, respectively.


Burleson, TX, racer Johnny "Baja" Miller cracked the top ten in this past weekend's event, as did Broken Arrow, Oklahoma's Aaron Berryhill, both of whom are also expected for this weekend's action.


A number of other top competitors are expected for the weekend, including 2006 Rookie of the Year Nick Smith, three-time ASCS National champion Tim Crawley and four-time ASCS National champion Terry Gray.


The weekend will actually kick off night earlier, as Chili's Bar & Grill of I-30 Exit 220B in Texarkana, TX, will host a Pre-Race Party from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Thursday night, will all racers and fans invited.


Several Texarkana motels are offering racer rates as well. More hotel information is listed below.


The Series:

O' Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour (ASCoT)


When & Where:

Friday night, April 27 at 7:30 p.m. – 67 Speedway

Saturday night, April 28 at 7:30 p.m. – I-30 Speedway


Track Information:

67 Speedway (Texarkana, AR) – ¼-mile semi-banked clay oval located east of Texarkana off I-30 Exit 7, then 0.5 miles southeast on SR 108, then 2.6 miles northeast on US 67. Track phone: 870-773-0029.


I-30 Speedway (Little Rock, AR) – ¼-mile high-banked clay oval located seven miles southwest of Little Rock off I-30 Exit 126 (County Line Road), then south to frontage road, then east. For more information, contact the track at 501-455-4567.


O' Reilly ASCoT 67 Speedway History:


The series returns to 67 Speedway after a year's absence. The bullring rejoins the Tour after being an annual stop for the series from 1998 to 2005, with the exception of 1999. It marks the first of two ASCS National Tour stops in Texarkana this year, with a Speedweek date on the slate as well.


Residing just 20 miles or so down the road, Hooks, TX, native Gary Wright has reached victory lane in three of seven events at 67 Texarkana. But it was Little Rock-area driver Tim Crawley who won in the series first visit in 1998, then won in the series most recent stop in 2005 with a dramatic drive from 17th in the Speedweek event.


Last year, Jason Johnson took advantage of a late slip by Jason Sides to top an ASCS Regional event at 67 Texarkana.


67 Speedway ASCS National winners include: Gary Wright 3, Tim Crawley 2, Travis Rilat 1, Shane Stewart 1.


67 Speedway O' Reilly ASCoT Race-by-Race Winners: Tim Crawley (6/17/98), Gary Wright (7/22/00), Gary Wright (5/19/01), Gary Wright (4/12/02), Shane Stewart (5/2/03), Travis Rilat (4/30/04), Tim Crawley (6/10/05).


O' Reilly ASCoT I-30 Speedway History:


A staple of the ASCS National Tour, I-30 Speedway hosted the first official ASCS National Tour event on May 15, 1993, with Memphis shoe Mike Ward dropping in on victory lane. Since that time, a dozen different drivers have posted at least one ASCS National Tour feature win in the 31 events contested at I-30.


Gary Wright has enjoyed the most success at I-30 with nine triumphs, his most recent one coming in July of 2005. Last year, Jason Johnson's magical season included an I-30 triumph in O'Reilly ASCoT action as well as a $15,000 score in October's Short Track Nationals at I-30 Speedway.


Saturday's stop at I-30 will serve as an ideal tune-up for the second leg of the 15th Annual ASCS Sizzlin' Summer Speedweek on July 14 and then the 20th Annual Short Track Nationals on October 25-27, worth $20,000 to win.


I-30 Speedway ASCS National winners include: Gary Wright 9, Garry Lee Maier 4, Tim Crawley 3, Terry Gray 3, Mike Ward 3, Wayne Johnson 2, Travis Rilat 2, Pete Butler 1, Jason Johnson 1, Ricky Logan 1, Eric Sandage 1, Shane Stewart 1.


I-30 Speedway O’Reilly ASCoT Race-by-Race Winners: Mike Ward (5/15/93), Tim Crawley (6/24/93), Terry Gray (7/17/93), Garry Lee Maier (6/18/94), Garry Lee Maier (8/13/94), Terry Gray (5/20/95), Ricky Logan (6/24/95), Gary Wright (7/15/95), Mike Ward (5/18/96), Garry Lee Maier (6/15/96), Garry Lee Maier (8/3/96), Mike Ward (5/17/97), Gary Wright (6/14/97), Wayne Johnson (9/26/97), Wayne Johnson (9/27/97), Gary Wright (5/16/98), Terry Gray (6/13/98), Eric Sandage (8/25/01), Pete Butler (6/22/02), Gary Wright (7/13/02), Gary Wright (9/21/02), Gary Wright (6/21/03), Tim Crawley (7/12/03), Shane Stewart (9/6/03), Gary Wright (6/5/04), Travis Rilat (7/10/04), Gary Wright (8/28/04), Tim Crawley (6/11/05), Gary Wright (7/9/05), Travis Rilat (10/1/05), Jason Johnson (7/29/06).


Current O’Reilly ASCoT Points (After 8 of 46 Nights):

Top Fifteen: 1. Gary Wright (Hooks, TX) 877, 2. Wayne Johnson (Oklahoma City, OK) 828, 3. Darren Stewart (Bixby, OK) 781, 4. Travis Rilat (Forney, TX) 777, 5. Jason Johnson (Eunice, LA) 759, 6. Foster Landon (Collinsville, OK) 663, 7. Chuck Swenson (Watertown, SD) 654, 8. Andy Shouse (Oklahoma City, OK) 628, 9. Johnny Miller (Burleson, TX) 604, 10. Aaron Berryhill (Broken Arrow, OK) 558, 11. Chris Schmelzle (Victoria, BC Canada) 552, 12. Garry Lee Maier (Cimarron, KS) 520, 13. Danny Jennings (Norman, OK) 492, 14. Nick Smith (Broken Arrow, OK) 466, 15. Kevin Ramey (Fort Worth, TX) 453.


Top Ten Owners Points: 1. Wright #9 877, 2. H&H Enterprises #94 826, 3. Sparks #91 781, 4. Rilat #29 777, 6. Row #41 759, 6. Landon Racing #11F 663, 7. Swenson #X 654, 8. Shouse #27 628, 9. Downing #64J 604, 10. Berryhill #97 558.


2007 O' Reilly ASCoT Feature Winners:

Gary Wright 4, Wayne Johnson 2, Terry McCarl 1, Jake Peters 1.


ASCoT Coming Up:

May 11 State Fair Speedway (Oklahoma City, OK)

May 12 Devil's Bowl Speedway (Mesquite, TX)

May 18 Black Rock Speedway (Dundee, NY)

May 19 Black Rock Speedway (Dundee, NY)

May 24 Susquehanna Speedway Park (Newberrytown, PA)

May 25 Virginia Motor Speedway (Saluda, VA)

May 26 Virginia Motor Speedway (Saluda, VA)


Other Weekend Information:

Three motels in Texarkana are offering a racer's rate. Simply call one of the following motels, each of which is located off I-30 at the State Line Road exit, for reservations and request the racer's rate for the ASCS event at 67 Texarkana Speedway:


Holiday Inn - 866-201-2789

La Quinta Inn - 870-773-1000

Clarion Inn - 903-792-3222


Also, all racers and fans are invited to Thursday night's pre-race party at the Chili's Bar & Grill located off I-30 Exit 220B in Texarkana, TX. The pre-race party is set for 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.


The O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National series is currently slated for 46 nights of racing action at 24 different tracks throughout 16 different states, with more than $1,000,000 in purse money and point fund to be distributed during the 2007 season.


The 2007 season marks the 16th year of sanctioning Sprint Car racing for the American Sprint Car Series. With 13 different Regions in addition to the O'Reilly American Sprint Cars on Tour National series, ASCS will sanction approximately 240 nights of racing at more than 100 different race tracks throughout at least 30 different states and Canada.


Additional information regarding the American Sprint Car Series is available at www.ascsracing.com.

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