The CRA Super Series will be in action this weekend as part of the famed All American 400 at the Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville. This event has been one of the most famous stock cars events in the country for many years, and according to Nashville Mayor Carl Dean, this could be the last one held at the Fairgrounds, as the Fair Board will cease to manage the property as of December 31st. The track has had an uncertain future for many years, but thanks to promoter Tony Formosa, there will be at least one last All American 400 event in Nashville.
The CRA portion of the All American 400 will be a 200 lap event with a halfway break at lap 100 on Saturday night. Prior to the CRA 200 lapper, there will be a 200 lap Pro Late Model event also with a halfway break. The traditional Guitar Trophy presented to the event winners at Nashville has become one of the most coveted winners trophy’s in stock car racing, which has attracted drivers to that awesome racing facility for years. Saturday’s event will be a CRA Super Series and CRA Southern Six-pack Tour points’ event for the first time ever.
To date there are already 40 teams pre-entered for the CRA All American 400 event, lead by former NASCAR Sprint Cup competitor Sterling Marlin, a Columbia, Tennessee native, who will make his CRA debut Saturday night. The NASCAR connection doesn’t stop there, Chase Elliott, the 14 year old son of NASCAR legend Bill Elliott, announced today that he will pull double duty this weekend by racing in the CRA All American 400 event on Saturday and the USAR Pro Cup race on Sunday at North Wilkesboro. Elliott is coming off three big late model wins including the Blizzard Series finally Friday night at Five Flags Speedway, which also gave him the Sunoco Gulf Coast Championship. Elliott also won a Super Late Model event at Gresham Motorsport Park on September 18th that was named for his grandfather and he won a PASS Series event at North Wilkesboro Speedway on Labor Day Weekend.
The NASCAR connection for Saturday’s race doesn’t end there, Ross Kenseth, son of NASCAR competitor Matt Kenseth is also entered for this weekend’s event. Kenseth is coming off a win at the CRA Super Series last event at ORP on September 18th. Kenseth also got a CRA win in May on the High Banks of Winchester Speedway. Ryan Blaney, son of NASCAR competitor Dave Blaney, is also entered. Blaney is currently leading the PASS Series Championship points with one event left for 2010 and is second in CRA Southern Six-Pack Tour points. Blaney has scored three PASS wins this year and got his first CRA win in the CRA Southern Six-Pack Tour event at Hickory Motor Speedway in May. NASCAR competitor David Stremme, a former full-time CRA competitor, will have his late model team at Nashville with brother Bobby behind the wheel. Kyle Busch Motorsports will also be on hand with KBM Development Driver T.J. Reaid competing in the famed #51 car.
Two former CRA All American 400 winners are entered including 2009 CRA Super Series Champion and current series point’s leader John VanDoorn who won the CRA All American 400 event in 2007. VanDoorn has won a series leading three CRA events so far this season for the Kaos Motorsports Team and is looking to become the first ever back-to-back CRA Super Series Champion. 2004 series Champion Chuck Barnes Jr. is also entered, he won the 2004 CRA All American 400 event. He is entered in his own #55 Chevrolet. Brian Campbell is another former All American 400 winner that is entered. He won with the ASA Southeast Series All American 400 event in 2008.
The rest of the entry list is packed with names recognized through out the country as some of the best asphalt late model drivers competing today. The event will be a true North/South battle, the South is lead by multi-time Snowball Derby Champion Augie Grill who is the current point leader with the CRA Southern Six-Pack Tour, were he has two wins, both coming at Gresham Motorsports Park. Other top Southern drivers who are entered include Bubba Pollard, Jeff Fultz, Mike Garvey, Dennis Schoenfeld, Johnny Brazier, John Bolen, Randy Gentry, Allen Karnes, multi time Nashville Champion Mark Day, Nashville veteran Sammy Sanders and Ken-Ten Series Champion Mason Mingus. The other top North drivers that are entered include Robbie Pyle, Tommy St. John, Terry Fisher Jr., Jason Dietsch, Jimmy Weller, Blake Brown, Kris Kelly, Greg Boone and leading CRA Rookie’s Nick Gullatta, Colin Nickolai and Jay Niewiek.
CRA has had several companies step up to be sponsors of the CRA portion of the All American 400. Those sponsors include Five Star Stockcar Bodies, Port City Racecars, Hamner Racing Engines, AR Bodies, Team Construction, VDL Fuel Systems, J & J Interiors and Hoosier Racing Tire South. Without these sponsors help, there would not have been a CRA race with the possible final All American 400.
The weekend events will start off with an open practice on Thursday from 4 to 7pm Central Time. Pit gates open on Friday at 8am, CRA will have two one hour practice sessions beginning at 11am. Pro Late Models will alternate sessions with CRA. Nashville Super Street’s, Frontrunner’s and Dwarf Cars will be practicing and competing on the quarter mile track Friday night, with the race program starting at 6pm. CRA and Pro Late Model All American 400 qualifying will be part of Friday nights race program.
Pits open on Saturday at 10am. There will be a 30 minute practice session for CRA and Pro Late Models beginning at 12:50pm. There will be a 50 lap Super Truck race at 5pm. The Pro Late Model 200 lap All American 400 event will take the green flag at 7pm, the CRA Super Series 200 lap All American 400 event will take the green flag after the Pro Late Model event concludes. Additional information on the event is available at www.fairgroundsspeedwaynashville.com. More information on the CRA Super Series is available at www.craracing.net.