By Tony Veneziano
Lake Odessa, MI-May 19, 2010- The battle atop the World of Outlaws championship standings continues to heat up as the 2010 season kicks into high gear, with Joey Saldana, Steve Kinser and Jason Meyers all separated by just 20 points heading into this weekend’s pair of events which wraps up at I-96 Speedway in Michigan. All three drivers have been victorious at the high speed half-mile in the past.
The Rumble in Michigan on Saturday, May 22 at I-96 Speedway, which will mark the only appearance of the year in the Great Lakes State for the World of Outlaws and the fourth consecutive year that the series has visited the half-mile.
Joey Saldana is currently on top of the standings heading into the weekend. He scored his first career World of Outlaws A-Feature win at I-96 Speedway back in 1995. He has gone on to win 62 more times since that race and is currently ninth on the series all-time win list.
Jason Meyers picked up his first career win at I-96 Speedway last season after a two consecutive third-place finishes. Meyers leads the series this season in wins with five and was victorious last weekend on a half-mile at Virginia Motor Speedway. He is currently third in points, just 20 markers out of the lead as he chases his first title.
Steve Kinser, the 20-time World of Outlaws champion, who is currently second in points, just 13 markers out of the lead has won four times at I-96 Speedway and has finished on the podium in eight of his nine starts at the track and among the Top-10 in all of his starts. The Indiana native has an average finish of 2.4 at the half-mile over the years. He has won twice this season, with both of those coming on half-miles.
Craig Dollansky was victorious at I-96 Speedway in 2007 and won earlier this season on a half-mile at Lone Star Speedway in Texas. The veteran is one of six drivers that has won with the series at I-96.
The World of Outlaws debuted at I-96 Speedway in 1995 with four different drives picking up wins in the first four races contested by the series at the half-mile.
* Steve Kinser has an amazing record at I-96 Speedway, with four wins, 8 Top-Three finishes and nine Top-10’s in nine starts, with an average finish of 2.4. He has finished on the podium in eight of his nine career starts with the series at the track and was ninth in the other start.
* Jason Meyers led all 30 laps last season at I-96 to score his first win at the half-mile. He has finished seventh or better in all five of his career starts at the track including three straight finishes of third or better.
* Joey Saldana scored his first career World of Outlaws win at I-96 Speedway in 1995. He won all four races he competed in at the half-mile that season. The veteran has won four times this season and is the current World of Outlaws point leader.
* Donny Schatz, the four-time and defending World of Outlaws champion, has four career Top-10 finishes at I-96 Speedway as he looks for his first win at the track. He was victorious earlier this season on a half-mile at Volusia Speedway Park in Florida.
* Kraig Kinser finished a very solid third at I-96 Speedway last season and has three Top-10 finishes at the track in four career starts with two of those being Top-Five runs.
* Danny Lasoski, the 2001 World of Outlaws champion, has finished eighth or better in four of his five career starts at I-96. He led a numbers of laps at the track in 2007 before finishing second as he looks for his first win at the half-mile and his first win of 2010.
* Craig Dollansky won at I-96 Speedway in 2007 and has three career Top-10 finishes with the World of Outlaws at the track. He has won once this season and is just outside of the Top-10 in points.
* Jac Haudenschild has five Top-10 finishes in seven career starts with the World of Outlaws at I-96 Speedway as he looks for his first win at the track. The Hall of Famer has one win this year and is currently seventh in points.
* Brian Ellenberger, the reigning Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year, scored his first career Top-10 finish with the series last season at I-96 Speedway.
* Ben Gregg and Toni Lutar, who are contending for the Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Award this season, will each make their first visit to I-96 Speedway on Saturday
One year ago
Jason Meyers started on the pole and got the jump going into turn one on fellow front row starter Kraig Kinser to take the lead and never looked back, leading all 30 laps to score his first career win at I-96 Speedway. Steve Kinser came from seventh to finish second with Kraig Kinser third, Danny Lasoski fourth and Joey Saldana fifth. Jason Sides opened the night by setting fast time of the 26 cars that took to the track. Meyers, Lasoski and Craig Dollansky won heat races, with Meyers also claiming the dash.
By the numbers-I-96 Speedway
0.5- Miles around I-96 Speedway
1- Race in the state of Michigan this season for the World of Outlaws
1.510- Margin of victory in seconds last season for Jason Meyers at I-96 Speedway
2- Drivers that have competed in all nine World of Outlaws races at the track- Steve Kinser and Joey Saldana
2.4- Average finish for Steve Kinser in nine career starts with the World of Outlaws at I-96 Speedway
4- Wins for Steve Kinser at the half-mile to lead all drives
6- Drivers that have won feature events with the World of Outlaws at I-96 Speedway
8- Drivers that have won on half-miles this season with the World of Outlaws; Top-Five finishes for Steve Kinser at I-96 Speedway track to lead all drivers
9- A-Feature events contested by the series at the track dating back to 1995
10- Events on half-mile tracks this season thus far for the World of Outlaws
13- Points that separate leader Joey Saldana and Steve Kinser in the series standings entering this weekend; Drivers competing full-time with the series in 2010 that raced at I-96 last season
15- Different seasons in which the World of Outlaws have competed in Michigan
15.093- Track record established by Steve Kinser in time trials in 2008
27- Drivers that competed with the series at I-96 Speedway last season
30- Laps led by Jason Meyers last season to win at I-96 Speedway
119.261- Track record in miles per hour established by Steve Kinser in time trials in 2008
225- Miles from Attica Raceway Park in Ohio where the World of Outlaws compete on May 21 to I-96 Speedway in Lake Odessa, Michigan
1995- Year the World of Outlaws first raced at I-96 Speedway
10,000- Dollars to win on Saturday, May 22
51,690- Dollars in the total purse on Saturday, May 22
On Saturday, May 22 at I-96 Speedway, general admission tickets for adults will be $30 in advance and $34 the day of the race, with general admission tickets for those ages 6-12 $15, with kids 5-under admitted free of charge in the general admission section. Adult reserved tickets will be $32 in advance and $34 the day of the race, with reserved tickets for those 12-under $15. Pit combos will also be available for advance purchase only for $38 which includes a pit pass and a reserved ticket. For tickets call SLS Promotions at 815-344-2023 or I-96 Speedway at 616-642-0555. For more information visit http://www.slspromotions.com.
The World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series is brought to fans across the country by many important sponsors and partners, including: Armor All (Official Car Care Products), Chizmark & Larson Insurance , Goodyear Tires (Official Tire), SuperClean (Official Cleaner-Degreaser), VP Racing (Official Racing Fuel); in addition to contingency sponsors, Jake’s Custom Golf Carts, KSE Race Products, Penske Shocks, Racing Electronics, S&S Volvo; Engine Builder’s Challenge participants Don Ott Racing Engines, Kistler Engines, Shaver Specialties and Speedway Engines; and Chassis Builder’s Challenge participants J&J Auto Racing, Maxim Racing and XXX Race Company.