ASA Midwest Tour Season Opener Honors a Legend
Joe Shear Classic Set For This Weekend
By Kari Shear-Carlson, Series PR Report
The season opener for the American Speed Association® Kwik Trip Midwest Tour presented by ECHO Outdoor Power Equipment and grandstay.net is a race built on the history of a legend. Joe Shear was a man of few words off the track, but his success on the track spoke volumes. The eight-time National Short Track Champion lost a hard-fought battle with cancer in March of 1998 at the age of 53.

In December of 2008, Vice President of the ASAMT, Steve Einhaus contacted me (Kari Shear-Carlson) about the possibility of having an event in honor of my late father, Joe Shear. Without hesitation, I contacted my family and we agreed that we were ready for this type of event. In 2009, the First Annual Joe Shear Classic took place at Madison International Speedway, a track my dad had great success at including a seven-week winning streak in 1982.

In 2009, Nathan Haseleu took home the checkered flag to become the first name etched in the plate of this historic race. The driver of The Swiss Colony Ford Fusion started on the outside of the front row of the 136-lap feature. Steve Carlson, 2009 ASAMT Champion, took over the lead on lap 15. However Haseleu found himself in the lead again heading into the 100-lap break and never looked back. Carlson finished a disappointing 18th. The battle between the two for the championship continued through to the final race of the season.

This Sunday the two will meet again to battle for the 2nd Annual "Joe Shear Classic presented by ECHO Chain Saws." Haseleu has found success on the asphalt of MIS since he picked up his very first super late model career victory at the ½-mile oval. Carlson, many times referred to, as "King of the Short Tracks," is no stranger to success at the track either. Both teams have spent countless hours in the shop preparing for the ASA Midwest Tour season opener where the winner will take home $3636.36 in honor of the late great Joe Shear's famous number 36 car. With an entry list of 45 of the top drivers in the Midwest, Haseleu and Carlson are sure to have their hands full of competition.

Not only will drivers be looking to have their name etched in the history books for this annual event, but it also marks the first of several televised races on Fox Sports North and Fox Sports Wisconsin in the 2010 season. "Sunday is going to be a special day for everyone. This event is getting bigger and bigger every year and the car count shows how important this race is. Along with this being the first televised event and a whole list of great sponsors that are involved, it is sure to give our fans something to remember every year. The competition level is so high; it is going to be a battle to the end," added Steve Einhaus, ASAMT VP.

The feature event will be 136 laps in length with a break at lap 100 creating a special 36-lap shootout once again in honor of car number 36. Along with the ASA Midwest Tour late models, the ASA OREGON® Midwest Truck Tour and ASA Midwest Sportsman Tour will debut in their inaugural events. The OREGON® Midwest Truck Tour is scheduled to qualify at 5:00PM on Saturday while the Sportsman will qualify at 2:00PM on Sunday, followed by a full racing program for both divisions. The day is sure to be a great time remembering a great man and great driver in the way he would have wanted to be remembered; allowing the track do the talking.

To learn more about the American Speed Association® Kwik Trip Midwest Tour presented by ECHO Outdoor Power Equipment and grandstay.net, log on to www.asamidwesttour.com or call the ASA Midwest Tour office at (262) 514-3880 or e-mail Tim Olson at tim@asamidwesttour.com or Steve Einhaus at steve@asamidwesttour.com.

If you would like to learn more about the ASAMT series title sponsors, please visit their websites: Kwik Trip, Inc. (www.kwiktrip.com), ECHO Outdoor Power Equipment (www.echo-usa.com), and GrandStay Residential Suites Hotels and Crossings by GrandStay Inn & Suites (www.grandstay.net).

To learn more about the Midwest Sportsman Tour log on to www.asamidwestsportsman.com.

To learn more about the ASA OREGON® Midwest Truck Tour log on to www.asamidwesttrucks.com.

To learn more about the Daytona Beach, Florida-based Racing Speed Associates or the American Speed Association® Racing Member Track program, call (386) 258-2221 or send an e-mail to info@asa-racing.com. For news and information from racetracks and regional tours involved in the American Speed Association®, visit www.asaracing.com.

ASA®, ASA Racing®, and American Speed Association® are registered trademarks of Racing Speed Associates, LLC. ASA International, LLC or Racing Speed Associates, LLC are not related to or affiliated with the ASA Late Model Series, LLC.