From the NSCHoF

KNOXVILLE, IA – For the first time in his career, Shane Stewart of Bixby, Oklahoma, was voted the 2009 “Driver of the Year” by the North American 360 Sprint Car Poll voting panel of media members, promoters, sanctioning officials and manufacturers. Stewart, the ‘09 American Sprint Car Series (ASCS) national tour champion, earned fifteen (15) of the twenty-one (21) first-place ballots cast in the year-end poll. Shane Stewart’s car owner, Paul Silva of Sacramento, California, will receive the 2009 “Team of the Year” award for his first time as well.

Those drivers ranked second through fourth, respectively, are all former ‘360’ “Drivers of the Year”: Jason Johnson of Louisiana (2006, ’08), Gary Wright of Texas (2003, ’04, ’05, ’07), and Tim Crawley of Arkansas (2002). Rounding out the ‘top ten’ for the season are ASCS Northwest regional champion Roger Crockett, Travis Rilat, Jesse Hockett, United Racing Company (URC) champion J.J. Grasso, Tony Bruce (Jr.), and United Sprint Car Series
(USCS) champion Terry Gray. In addition to Shane Stewart, others having received first-place votes were Jason Johnson (one), Jesse Hockett (one), J.J. Grasso (one), Terry Gray (one), and California Civil War Series champion Sean Becker (two).

ASCS Southwest regional racer Joshua Hodges of New Mexico earned the “Rookie of the Year” title in his first full season of winged 360-cubic-inch sprint car competition. Due to a tie in the voting, Bo Rawdon of the Cowtown Speedway in Texas and three-time recipient Glenn Styres of the Ohsweken Speedway in Ontario, Canada, will share the “Promoter of the Year” honors for 2009. Jim & Tammy Haines of Diversified Machine, Inc. (DMI) in
Pennsylvania will receive the 2009 “Builder/Manufacturer of the Year” plaque for their first-time ever.

In another tie amongst the ‘360’ voters, Kirk Elliott & Scott Traylor of and two-time recipient Lonnie Wheatley of the American Sprint Car Series (ASCS) will share the “Media Member of the Year” award honors for 2009. Jesse Hockett of Missouri will receive the “Wild Card Award” for his exciting ‘360’ sprint car performances in 2009.

The North American 360 Sprint Car Poll is an annual awards program of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum Foundation, Inc., of Knoxville, Iowa. All awards will be distributed in the spring of 2010 at tracks throughout North America. The awards were announced on the second day of the Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Midget Nationals in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Final 2009 North American 360 Sprint Car Poll

rank, driver (first place votes), hometown, state/province, points

1., Shane Stewart (15), Bixby, OK, 1570
2., Jason Johnson (1), Eunice, LA, 720
3., Gary Wright, Hooks, TX, 428
4., Tim Crawley, Little Rock, AR, 419
5., Roger Crockett, Rio Linda, CA, 235
tie, Travis Rilat, Forney, TX, 235

7., Jesse Hockett (1), Warsaw, MO, 211
8., J.J. Grasso (1), Pedricktown, NJ, 190
9., Tony Bruce, Jr., Liberal, KS, 188
10., Terry Gray (1), Bartlett, TN, 175

11., Sean Becker (2), Antelope, CA, 169
12., Justin Barger, Montrose, NY, 90
13., Paul McMahan, Oroville, CA, 85
14., Trevor Lewis, Upper Black Eddy, PA, 75
15., Jack Dover, Springfield, NE, 69

16., Wayne Johnson, Mustang, OK, 60
17., Bryan Howland, Auburn, NY, 45
18., Clint Garner, Sioux Falls, SD, 37
19., Dustin Daggett, Portland, MI, 26
20., J.R. Stewart, Bellefontaine, OH, 25

21., Danny Wood, Norman, OK, 23
22., Josh Fisher, Smithton, MO, 20
tie, Tom Huppunen, Fenwick, ONT, CAN, 20
tie, Danny Martin, Jr., Sarasota, FL, 20
25., Andy Forsberg, Auburn, CA, 18

Also receiving multiple votes: Brady Bacon, Pat Cannon, Jonathon Cornell,
Chris Coyle, Chuck Hebing, Brett Mann, Curt Michael, Kevin Ramey, Davey
Sammons, Colby Wiesz.