SPEEDFEST RETURNS TO USA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY FOR 2007
Open Super Late Model Show Draws Best Racers to Lakeland
Officials from the Midwest-based Champion Racing Association (CRA) Super Series, the Southern-based FASCAR/Sunbelt Super Series and USA International Speedway in Lakeland, Florida have combined to announce the dates for “SpeedFest 2007” at the beautiful central Florida facility. Super Late Model teams and fans will gather for the third annual event, January 25-27, 2007.
“We welcome teams from all over the country and different organizations to be part of this weekend,” commented CRA managing partner R. J. Scott. “Only four of the 36 starting spots are reserved for provisionals for the two sanctioning series, the other 32 spots are open to all comers, making it a truly ‘OPEN’ event.”
Series officials have also announced that the tire for the event will be the new generation Goodyear 10” slick with the yellow sidewall lettering. Don Nerone from FASCAR commented, “Tires are no longer a concern for this event. We will be running the latest generation Goodyear Short Track Eagle, from fresh inventory with plenty of size selection. We thank the racers for being patient, while we brought the event to this point.”
The format and schedule are identical to last year’s, with open practice and technical inspection on Thursday January 25th. On Friday the 26th, teams will practice, qualify by region, and race in one of the North or South 100-lap qualifying features, with the top 10 from each transferring to Saturday’s SpeedFest 200. The SpeedFest 200 winner’s check will once again be a minimum of $10,000.
In 2006, Mike Fritts (Top) won Speedfest in his homestate of Florida. The year before, Charlie Menard (Bottom) towed from Wisconsin to win the event.
In January of 2006 57 teams took part in the 2nd annual “SpeedFest” that brought the countries top teams together. The North and South had their own 100-lap qualifying features on Friday, which transferred teams to Saturday’s 200-lap main event.
“Super Mario” Gosselin won the South qualifier, while Eddie Van Meter won the North qualifier, taking his first ever super late model victory of any kind. The following night, 41 cars took the green flag for the SpeedFest 200, and when the dust settled it, was one of Florida’s toughest competitors, Mike Fritts, standing in victory lane and $10,000 richer.
“SpeedFest has been a great event for our facility and fans as well as the Late Model teams,” noted USA International Speedway promoter Bill Martino. “It has been a true battle of North vs. South, with each side claiming a victory in the first two events (Wisconsin’s Charlie Menard won the inaugural event in 2005). It is definitely something we look forward to each year now.”
The event will be under the direction of CRA’s Glenn Luckett and R. J. Scott and FASCAR’s Don Nerone. The series’ will also be co-promoting the event with the speedway. While these sanctioning bodies will direct the on-track activities, officials want to be very clear that this is an “open” event.