From Lonnie Wheatley
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (October 9, 2017) – Let’s face it. This is a week that has been circled on the calendar for quite some time now.
And now it’s finally here, as Little Rock’s I-30 Speedway is poised to dish out more than $100,000 over the course of the 30th edition of the COMP Cams Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires.
With many already en route to Arkansas’ capital city, the on-track festivities get under way with a Wednesday evening Test ‘N Tune session to whet the appetite for the following three nights of wall-to-wall racing action that culminates with a $15,000-to-win tilt on Saturday night with $2,000-to-start the premier championship event in 360-ci Sprint Car racing.
With entries still coming in and expected to do so until race time on Thursday, the count has climbed to 58 with past STN champ Tim Crawley and Hall-of-Famer Danny Smith among the latest additions.
While Sammy Swindell guns for an unprecedented fifth STN crown, Crawley makes an effort for an STN record of his own as he tries to become the first driver to race his way into 20 STN championship feature events.
Last year, the hometown hero became the first driver to crack the starting lineup for the 19th time, ultimately racing to a fourth-place finish behind Swindell, Tim Shaffer and Jason Johnson. The fourth-place run was Crawley’s tenth among the top-ten and fourth top-five run, his best since a runner-up showing in 2000 although Lady Luck has stopped some other strong efforts short along the way. Crawley earned his lone STN crown in 1998.
Now calling Chillicothe, OH, home, Indiana native and veteran racer Danny Smith makes a return to the Short Track Nationals for the first time since 2011. With hundreds of feature wins to his credit over the course of his career and at least one feature win each year since 1975, Smith has made three STN championship feature starts ranging from the second edition in 1989 to most recently in 2009.
Crawley and Smith join an already loaded field that includes past winners Swindell, Paul McMahan, Tony Bruce, Jr., Wayne Johnson and Terry Gray along with the likes of “North Pole Nightmare” Bill Balog, Cali shoes Willie Croft and Steven Tiner, Sam Hafertepe, Jr., Aaron Reutzel, Derek Hagar and 2017 I-30 Speedway track champ Brian Bell among many others.
Wednesday’s Test ‘N Tune session will be followed up two full nights of qualifying action on Thursday and Friday including a full slate of heat races, qualifying races, “B” Mains and “A” Main with the top three from each night locked into Saturday’s STN championship finale. Saturday’s card will include STN Showdowns, “C” Mains, “B” Mains, the “Red Shirt Dash” for non-qualifiers and the championship feature event.
After Wednesday’s Test ‘N Tune session from 7:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., racing action is set to get under way at 7:30 p.m. on both Thursday and Friday with Saturday’s championship card going green at 7:00 p.m.
Last year, Sprint Car racing legend Sammy Swindell matched Gary Wright atop the all-time STN win charts by racing to his fourth triumph in the prestigious event. Swindell’s fourth win, coming ahead of Pennsylvania’s Tim Shaffer and reigning Knoxville Nationals champion Jason Johnson, followed previous triumphs in 2013, 2011 and 1990.
The Pertinent Info:
The What: 30th Annual COMP Cams Short Track Nationals presented by Hoosier Tires.
The Where: I-30 Speedway (Little Rock, AR). I-30 Speedway is located seven miles southwest of Little Rock off I-30 Exit 126 (Alexander Road).
The When: October 12-14, 2017, following a Wednesday, October 11, Test ‘N Tune session.
The Entries: Entry forms are available at http://www.i-30speedway.com/flyers/2017STNFlyer.pdf. Entry is $150 for those entered by October 6, or $250 after October 6. Entries submitted by October 6 receive one free driver pit pass for Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Checks, money orders and cashier’s checks are accepted and may be mailed to I-30 Speedway c/o Tracey Clay, 13219 Interstate 30, Little Rock AR 72209, made payable to Tracey Clay.
The current field is comprised of 58 entries from 13 different states as well as Australia.
#01 Paul McMahan (Elk Grove, CA)
#1s Joey Schmidt (Ellisville, MS)
#1x Bill Balog (Hartland, WI)
#1xx Eddie Gallagher (Olive Branch, MS)
#2 Michael Day (Farmersville, TX)
#2c Wayne Johnson (Oklahoma City, OK)
#2h Wally Henson (Benton, AR)
#3s Sammy Swindell (Bartlett, TN)
#4 Tommy Snellgrove (Little Rock, AR)
#4s Danny Smith (Chillicothe, OH)
#6 Dustin Gates (Haughton, LA)
#d6 Dakota Gaines (N. Little Rock, AR)
#8 Alex Sewell (Tulsa, OK)
#9jr Derek Hagar (Marion, AR)
#10 Terry Gray (Bartlett, TN)
#10k Dewayne White (Byhalia, MS)
#10m Morgan Turpen (Cordova, TN)
#11g Mike Goodman (Broken Arrow, OK)
#12w Dale Wester (Ovilla, TX)
#14k Kyle Bellm (Nixa, MO)
#15h Sam Hafertepe, Jr. (Sunnyvale, TX)
#15J Jeremy Middleton (N. Little Rock, AR)
#16 Blake Baccus (Crandall, TX)
#17g Channin Tankersley (Highlands, TX)
#17w Harli White (Lindsay, OK)
#20g Jake Greider (Haysville, KS)
#21 Butch David (Geisman, LA)
#21k Kevin Hinkle (Cabot, AR)
#21T Ray Allen Kulhanek (Conroe, TX)
#22 Sean McClelland (Owasso, OK)
#23b Brian Bell (Gallaway, TN)
#26 Marshall Skinner (West Memphis, AR)
#28 Johnathan Cornell (Sedalia, MO)
#29 Willie Croft (Roseville, CA)
#31w Justin Webb (Drummonds, TN)
#32m Adam Miller (Hot Springs, AR)
#36 Jason Martin (Lincoln, NE)
#38 Rick Pringle (Benton, AR)
#39 Brad Bowden (Hernando, MS)
#40 Howard Moore (Memphis, TN)
#42 Andy McElhannon (Hernando, MS)
#43 Matthew Bauldwin (Little Rock, AR)
#44 Ronny Howard (Nesbit, MS)
#47 Dale Howard (Byhalia, MS)
#52 Blake Hahn (Sapulpa, OK)
#84 Brandon Hanks (Burlison, TN)
#84b Scott Bogucki (McClaren Vale, SA)
#86 Tony Bruce, Jr. (Liberal, KS)
#87 Aaron Reutzel (Clute, TX)
#88 Tim Crawley (Benton, AR)
#88R Cody Gardner (Benton, AR)
#91a Ernie Ainsworth (Bartlett, TN)
#94 Jeff Swindell (Bartlett, TN)
#94x Steven Tiner (Visalia, CA)
#95 Matt Covington (Glenpool, OK)
#99x Dalton Stevens (Scurry, TX)
#121 Jan Howard (Marion, AR)
#X Charlie Louden (Camden, AR)
The Format: All competitors will be eligible to compete on either or both of the Thursday and Friday qualifying nights (no split field) after a Wednesday night Test ‘N Tune.
The top three from each qualifying night will be locked into Saturday night’s $15,000-to-win, $2,000-to-start STN Championship Finale. Those six drivers will battle it out in Saturday’s Pack’s Dash for Cash to determine the alignment of the front three rows of the championship main event.
The balance of the field will be aligned in Saturday night heats according to their top qualifying night score. Additional points will be awarded in Saturday heats to set the balance of the Saturday night feature lineups.
While the STN finale offers a minimum of $2,000 to each starter, “B” Main non-transfers earn $700 for first non-transfer, $650 for second non-transfer and $600 for remaining non-transfers while “C” Main non-transfers earn $500 for first non-transfer, $450 for second non-transfers and $400 for remaining non-transfers.
Top non-transfers from Saturday night “C” Mains (2 or 3 depending on number of “C” Mains) move on to the “Red Shirt Dash” in honor of Lanny Edwards. The “Red Shirt Dash” will pay $500, $100, $100, $100, $100, $100.
The Past Winners:
2009-Tony Bruce, Jr.
2008-Tony Bruce, Jr.
The Tickets: Day of show prices are $20 on Thursday and Friday and $28 on Saturday plus a $1 processing fee per ticket if paying by credit/debit card.
Children’s tickets will be available at the event only for just $2 on Thursday and Friday and then $5 on Saturday plus a $1 processing fee per ticket if paying by credit/debit card.
To order tickets or for more information, check online at www.i-30speedway or call the track at 501-455-4567.
Pit passes are $15 on Wednesday, $35 on Thursday and Friday and then $40 on Saturday. Driver pit pass for Thursday/Friday/Saturday is included in the $150 entry fee if submitted by the deadline.
For more information regarding I-30 Speedway’s Short Track Nationals, check at www.i-30speedway.com or call the track at 501-455-4567.