By Richie Murray
Nashville, Tennessee (December 14, 2019)………The 2020 USAC Silver Crown Champ Car season will open with the series’ debut at Tennessee’s Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway on Sunday afternoon, May 3.
The half-mile, high-banked pavement oval has hosted six previous USAC National events, but none yet thus far with USAC’s Silver Crown division. The last visit came during the 2004 season with Sprint Cars, a twin bill of 77-lap main events won by Bobby East and Dave Steele.
USAC National Midgets have raced on the famed track three times. The first such meeting came in a 100-lap event won by three-time series champ Jimmy Davies in 1960. Dale Swaim captured the Nashville victory the following year in 1961 while 2017 National Midget Hall of Fame inductee Tommy Copp took the final series visit there in 1963.
Ken Schrader took a victory in the city of Nashville in 1988, winning indoors at the Municipal Auditorium in a 100-lap midget feature on the concrete surface.
Silver Crown cars tested at nearby Nashville Superspeedway in 2001, but not yet has a Silver Crown car made a lap in competition in the Music City.
The Silver Crown Champ Cars have made five previous appearances in the state of Tennessee, all of which have occurred in Memphis. Dave Steele won the first in 1998, followed by Brad Noffsinger in 1999, Brian Tyler in 2000, Steele again in 2004 and Kody Swanson just last year during the 2019 season opener.
Kingsburg, California’s Swanson, a five-time Silver Crown champion who is the series all-time leader in wins and poles with 29 in each category, is among the expected entries along with 2019 series runner-up Justin Grant (Ione, Calif.), May 2019 Lucas Oil Raceway winner Kyle Hamilton (Danville, Ind.), 10-time Silver Crown winner Bobby Santos (Franklin, Mass.) and 2019 third-place driver David Byrne (Shullsburg, Wisc.) among many others.