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After 7 weeks off, ASALMS South fires up again this weekend


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Lexington, Michigan (05/03/2007) - After Seven weekends off, the 2007 Racing Season in the ASA Late Model Series Southern Division Presented by GM Performance Parts returns to action this weekend. The ASALMS Southern Division contingent of crews, drivers, fans, officials, and teams are on the road and heading out to Cordele, Georgia for the weekend.

 

The cars and stars of the ASALMS Southern Division will travel to the Watermelon Capital (GA) Speedway, located South of Macon in Cordele, Georgia this Friday and Saturday May 4-5, 2007 for the running of the Watermelon Bowl 125.

 

Heading into Cordele, Georgia, Rob Partelo, who led all 100 laps of the 2007 Season Opener, the Camp Boggy Creek 100 Presented by Pennzoil, Dalton Zehr Racing, and FLF Racecars back on March 17, 2007 at the Bronson (FL) Motor Speedway in Bronson, Florida, leads both the Overall and the Rookie of the Year Points Standings after his first career ASALMS Feature win in his first ever start!

 

Partelo leads Bowling Green, Kentucky's Bo Miller by 12 points (195-183) in the overall chase for the 2007 ASALMS Southern Division Championship while also leading the ASALMS Southern Division Rookie of the Year title chase by 16 points (195-179) over fellow Floridian; Sean Murphy, who has not entered for this event!

 

The GM Performance Parts Shootout Points Standings see Blue Grass State Teenager, Josh Byrns lead the way heading into Cordele, Georgia. The Bowling Green, Kentucky freshman leads second place finisher in Bronson, Florida, Brian Blum by 11 markers (45-34).

 

The entry list for the Watermelon Bowl 125 is over 40 drivers and counting! To view the Watermelon Bowl 125 Entry List, click on the link below:

<b><a href="http://www.asalatemodelssouth.com/?p=648"> Watermelon Bowl 125 Entry List </a></b>

 

The ASALMS contingent is currently on the road and heading down to Cordele, Georgia for the second race of the 2007 season. Keep up all race weekend long from the Watermelon Capital Speedway beginning on Friday afternoon with a speedway sanctioned Test and Tune. Keep your browser locked in all weekend long on the ASALMS Southern Division website at: http://www.asalatemodelssouth.com

 

The weekend gets started on Friday Afternoon with a Watermelon Capital Speedway sanctioned Test and Tune from 4:00pm-9:00pm (EST). The ASALMS will begin the weekend with Rig Parking, Registration, and the Pit Gates all opening at 4:00pm. ASALMS Practice and Safety Tech gets going at 4:30pm while brief Drivers, Crew Chiefs, and Spotters Meetings will commence beginning at 5:00pm in 10 Minute Increments.

 

The ASALMS Southern Division contingent will get Three continuous hours of practice around the 0.375 Mile Semi-Banked Paved Oval beginning at 6:00pm. The ASALMS Tech, Tires, and Fuel will close at 8:00pm while the checkered flag falls for Friday's activities at 9:00pm.

 

Saturday is race day and it all begins at 9:30am with Remaining Rig Parking as well as Registration and the Pit Gates all opening. The ASALMS Practice and Safety Tech opens up once again at 10:30am while the ASALMS Drivers Meeting and Qualifying Draw will go at 11:00am. The ASALMS Crew Chiefs Meeting will follow at 11:20am and finally the Spotters Meeting will begin at 11:30am.

 

The ASALMS Southern Division will get 120 Minutes of continuous Practice beginning at 12:30pm with a Five minute break at the halfway marker. Once ASALMS Practice is complete, the ASALMS Qualifying Tech and Tire Impound will both open up at 3:30pm in preparation for ARP Bodies/Aluminum Racing Products-Florida Short Track Report Qualifying while the Five WCS support division conduct their Practice Sessions.

 

ARP Bodies/Aluminum Racing Products-Florida Short Track Report Qualifying begins at 6:00pm as the Top 20 in ARP Bodies Qualifying will be locked into the 100-lap Feature, saving for the Top 10 in the current ASALMS Southern Division Owners Points.

 

The next four will then also come from the 2007 ASALMS Southern Division Owners Points Standings while positions 25-26 will be reserved for Past Champions of the ASALMS. If those aren't needed, then the next Two in ARP Bodies Qualifying will fill out the 26-car field.

 

After the Invocation and National Anthem, racing begins at 7:00pm with Heat Races for the WCS support divisions of Bandoleros, Mini Stocks, Legends, Pure Stocks, and Claimers will go and will be followed by the Bandoleros and Mini Stocks Features.

 

The 25-lap GM Performance Parts Shootout, for ASALMS teams who do not make the Feature through Qualifying will go at approximately 8:15pm. The procedure for the GMPP Shootout is subject to change but as of now, no cars will transfer out of the Shootout.

 

After the GM Performance Parts Shootout, a 30 minute autograph session will take place and will be followed by Pre Race Ceremonies and Driver Introductions. The Watermelon Bowl 125 will get the green flag at approximately 9:15pm and will be followed by WCS Legends, Pure Stocks, and Claimers Features. The Schedule is subject to change at the discretion of the ASALMS and all times are in accordance with Eastern Standard Time (EST).

 

The ASALMS Southern Division made one appearance in 2006 at the Cordele, Georgia speed plant as the great state of Georgia was the stage for the ASALMS Southern Divisions 13th race of the 2006 season. In the Watermelon 100, the Top Five finishers were all teenagers while a freak accident involving the pace car hampered the start of the century grind.

 

Once order was restored, 19-year-old Ryan Lawler would walk away with his second Feature of the 2006 season to take back to Colleyville, Texas after taking the lead from outside pole-sitter, John Wes Townley on lap 19. From there, Lawler would hold off Matt Hawkins, now 19-years-old, who would finish second, to pick up his second Feature win of the season.

 

Hawkins finished second over 17-year-old Keeton Hanks. Now 17-year-old Devan Hall and now 20-year-old Sean Bass, both in their first career ASALMS South appearances, would complete the Top Five. Hawkins holds down the track record at the 0.375 Mile Semi-Banked Paved Oval with a 16.253 as an impressive 24-car field was on hand in the Peach State.

 

Watermelon Capital Speedway is owned by Speedway Motorsports, LLC and the promoter is Eddie MacDonald, Jr. The track, formerly Cordele Motor Speedway, was built as a dirt track in 1979 by the late Johnny Cape of Cordele, Georgia. Cape, Ben Sumner, Danny Evans and others operated the track until 2000 when it was sold to Tommy Marsh of Fitzgerald, Georgia.

 

Marsh completed extensive renovations to the track costing in excess of $500,000 including placing asphalt on the entire track and infield. He built new concession stands and replaced the fencing in front of the grandstand as well as replacing all the guardrails. Marsh succumbed to cancer soon after completing the renovations and his manager, George Thompson operated the track until it was sold to Marvin Ragan in early 2004.

 

Ragan has a long history in racing, beginning with his father owning race cars and racing at Daytona on the old beach course in the 1940's. Marvin drove his first race as a young man in the 1960's and raced at the then Cordele Motor Speedway in 1979 and in the 80's when the track was dirt.

 

In the early 80's through the early 90's, he owned ARCA, Busch and Winston Cup (now Nextel Cup) cars that were driven by his brother, Ken Ragan, and other notable cup drivers. Ragan has the distinction of being the owner of the first "cup" car ever raced by the late Davey Allison, which was at Daytona in 1994.

 

Marvin's son Brett and nephew David are both in NASCAR as employees of Roush Racing. Brett is a crewman of David's Busch team and David is a driver in the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series for Roush Racing taking over the familiar #6 AAA Ford Fusion driven previously by Mark Martin.

 

The elder Ragan completed additional renovations after purchasing the track and changed the tracks name to Watermelon Capital Speedway in conjunction with the Crisp County Chamber of Commerce's national advertising campaign highlighting Cordele as the "Watermelon Capital of the World".

 

He held his first race in April 2004 and has raced weekly since that time except for closing during the winter months. WCS is located on Farmers Market Road in Cordele, Georgia, a ½ mile off Interstate I-75 at exit 104. The extremely attractive facility is situated on 100 plus acres of land which includes a 12 acre lake with "free" fishing for competitors.

 

The location also includes more than sufficient grassed parking for spectators and a campground with water and electricity available to everyone. The track is a 0.400 Mile Semi-Banked "D" shaped oval, banked 12 degrees in the corners and six degrees on the straight-a-ways.

 

The track seats 3700 people on concrete bleachers, including a high view, air conditioned, VIP seating section above the grandstands. The track has no guardrails or fencing around the outside of the track (except on the front straight) with plenty of "run off" room which saves many cars from being wrecked.

 

The track runs weekly from April through October featuring Claimer Cars, Bandoleros, Legends, Pure Stocks and Super Street cars. Late Models are raced on a periodic basis as are the Sprint Cars, Florida Pro Trucks and the Pro Challenge Cars.

 

For more information about the Watermelon Capital Speedway, you can call during normal business hours at: 1 (229) 271-9301 or log onto the tracks website at:

<b><a href="http://www.watermeloncapitalspeedway.com"> Watermelon Capital Speedway </a></b>

 

After the Watermelon Bowl 125, "America's Premiere Short Track Series: The ASALMS Challenge Division swings back into action for the next two weekends beginning with their Fourth Race of the 2007 Season in the ASALMS Challenge Division, which is set for Friday and Saturday May 11-12, 2007 at the Hawkeye Downs (IA) Speedway in Cedar Rapids, Iowa for the running of the Barron Motor Supply/Crate Engine Classic 200 Presented by Cassill Motors.

 

Joining the ASALMS Challenge Division on Friday May 11, 2007 will be the Hawkeye Downs regular divisions of; Modifieds, Sportsmen, IMCA Stock Cars, IMCA Sport Mods, and Go-Karts. On Saturday May 12, 2007, the Hawkeye Downs IMCA Hobby Stocks and Hornets Divisions will join in on the ASALMS Challenge Division weekend in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

 

The Entry Form for the Barron Motor Supply/Crate Engine Classic 200 Presented by Cassill Motors is available and due to the ASALMS Home Offices in Lexington, Michigan by Monday May 7, 2007 to avoid the late fees. You can download the Barron Motor Supply/Crate Engine Classic 200 Presented by Cassill Motors Entry Form by clicking on the link below:

<b><a href="http://www.asalatemodels.com/Downloads/Hawkeye07Entry.pdf"> Barron Motor Supply/Crate Engine Classic 200 Presented by Cassill Motors Entry Form </a></b>

 

Then the following week, the ASALMS Challenge Division sticks around the Hawkeye State as

Race Number Five is set for Friday and Saturday May 18-19, 2007 at the immaculate 0.875 Mile Progressively Banked Paved Oval of the Iowa (IA) Speedway, located East of Des Moines in Newton, Iowa for the running of the Make-A-Wish 150 Presented by TMC Transportation and Northland Oil. This event will be run in a special Triple 50s format!

 

Joining the ASALMS Challenge Division for the weekend at the Rusty Wallace Signature Series track will be the combined NASCAR Grand National Series East and West Divisions as well as the United State Super Trucks Series. The Entry Form for the Make-A-Wish 150 Presented by TMC Transportation and Northland Oil will be available very soon.

 

Finally the ASALMS Northern Division will close out the month of May on Saturday May 26, 2007 as the 0.333 Mile Semi-Banked Paved Oval of the Grundy County (IL) Speedway, located West of Chicago in Morris, Illinois is the sight for the 1st annual Bob Milner Memorial 125. The Entry Form for the 1st annual Bob Milner Memorial 125 will be available very soon.

 

For more information about the 2007 seasons within all three divisions of the ASALMS, You can call the ASALMS home offices during normal business hours Monday through Friday (9am-5pm) (EST) at: 1 (800) 385-2503.

 

Also of note, the ASALMS Home Offices in Lexington, Michigan will be closed beginning at 5:00pm (EST) on Wednesday May 3, 2007 in order to travel to and from Cordele, Georgia. The ASALMS offices will reopen for normal business hours on Monday May 7, 2007 at 9:00am (EST). If needed, please call Ron and/or Sandy Varney at: 1 (810) 650-6617.

 

You can also log onto any of the three websites for more information concerning the 2007 season. For the Challenge Division, go to: <b><a href="http://www.asalatemodels.com"> ASALMS Challenge Division</a></b> For the Northern Division, log in at: <b><a href="http://www.asalatemodelsnorth.com"> ASALMS Northern Division</a></b> and finally for the Southern Division click on: <b><a href="http://www.asalatemodelssouth.com"> ASALMS Southern Division</a></b>

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