Saldana, McMahan and Gravel to Debut with New Teams at Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown

ILP Inside Line Promotions

Inside Line Promotions

SOMERTON, Ariz. (Nov. 18, 2015) – A trio of World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series stars switched rides last week following the conclusion of the 2015 season.

Joey Saldana, Paul McMahan and David Gravel will each drive for a new team in 2016 and all three drivers have confirmed that their debuts will be at the 2 nd annual Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown Jan. 1-2, Jan. 5 and Jan. 8-9 at Cocopah Speedway.


Saldana, who finished third in the inaugural Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown standings, has returned to Roth Motorsports for the third time in his storied career. The team, which also worked together in 1996 and in 2001, will hit the track on New Year’s Day at the 3/8-mile oval in the desert.

“The Cocopah event is awesome for our team,” he said. “You get to get a good feel what everybody is thinking and doing. The one thing I’ve learned in racing is it’s about respect. If you show the respect and effort it reciprocates off each other.

“It’d be huge (to run well). Last year I jumped in Kevin Rudeen’s car and we ran second the first night out. That set the precedent for the whole week. We were very consistent every single night. I’m looking forward to it. It pays well and it’s a great race track.”


McMahan, who won the first Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown feature and led the 2015 event standings entering the final night before finishing fourth, has teamed up with Destiny Motorsports beginning in 2016.

“Winter Heat went really good for us,” he said. “We started off the season with a win and ran very well for four out of the five nights. The final night we stubbed our toe a little bit and lost the championship.

“It’s a good time. It’s a non-stressful event. Greg (Burgess) and everyone at Cocopah do a fantastic job making sure the racers and the fans are very well taken care of. It was an event that I think will turn into something very large. It’s the Chili Bowl for sprint cars. It was a fun atmosphere to be a part of.”

Gravel will return to the event driving for CJB Motorsports after he used a late-race rally to earn a podium during the 2015 Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown finale.

ILP Inside Line Promotions

“I had a really fun time last year,” he said. “I’m excited to come this year. It’s a great time staying at the (Cocopah Resort and) Casino and hanging out with everyone.”

The Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown features $12,000-to-win, $1,000-to-start races on Jan. 1-2 and Jan. 8-9 with a $5,000-to-win midweek event on Jan. 5.

A tentative driver roster of competitors who have either sent in preregistration forms or verbally committed to competing is posted at

Tickets for the Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown, which include a free fan pit pass, are on sale at


Dates: Jan. 1-2, Jan. 5 and Jan. 8-9, 2016

Track: Cocopah Speedway in Somerton, Ariz.

Prize: $12,000-to-win, $1,000-to-start each night (Jan. 1-2, 8-9); $5,000-to-win (Jan. 5); approximately $250,000 total prize money

Type: 410ci sprint cars






General admission tickets for the event are on sale by visiting Kids 12 and under get in free. There is a discount for military members and senior citizens.


Speed Shift TV will be broadcasting live Pay-Per-View video of the 2nd annual Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown for only $24.95 per night. Also, a 20-percent discount is available for those who purchase all five nights. Visit for more information.


The 2nd annual Winter Heat Sprint Car Showdown will showcase the top sprint car drivers in the world in sunny Southwest Arizona during the first two weeks of January in 2016. The four weekend races pay $12,000 to the winner and at least $1,000 to every driver who advances to the main event with the midweek show paying $5,000 to win.


Cocopah Speedway is a semi-banked, 3/8-mile dirt track located in Somerton, Ariz. It has a concrete wall perimeter, television-quality lighting and the pits are located outside turns three and four. There is also dry camping free of charge on the property. For more information, visit


Cometic Gasket, Inc., is a leading worldwide supplier of shelf stock, custom and short-run gaskets for the performance aftermarket, original equipment and motor sports industries. The company, which is located in Concord, Ohio, was created in 1989 and ships out more than 5,000 types of gaskets to customers worldwide. For more information, visit


JE Pistons is the leader in high performance forged pistons. Based in Irvine, Calif., the company has more than 60 years of experience and has a history of manufacturing the highest quality pistons and components that professional engine builders, race teams and high-performance enthusiasts trust and rely on. For more information, visit


K1 Technologies , which is located in Mentor, Ohio, has many years in the field of designing, engineering and manufacturing connecting rods and crankshafts. For more information, visit


Inside Line Promotions specializes in affordable public relations and media management for motor sports drivers, teams, sponsors, tracks, series, events, organizations and manufacturers. ILP Founder Shawn Miller leverages professional journalism with new media technologies and social networking to improve your exposure and the return on investment for your sponsors.

To meet the media relations needs of your program by joining Team ILP, contact Shawn at 541-510-3663 or For more information on Inside Line Promotions, visit