WELCOME TO THE SALEM SPEEDWAY FUELED BY THE HOOSIER LOTTERY....SATURDAY AUGUST 8TH CASEY'S SCOTT COUNTY VISITORS COMMISSION JOE JAMES/PAT O'CONNOR MEMORIAL PRESENTED BY JOHN JONES AUTO GROUP...TICKETS ON SALE NOW!!!
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SCOTT COUNTY VISITORS COMMISSION
JOE JAMES/PAT O’CONNOR MEMORIAL
Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series and Lucas Oil Great American Stocks.
Also featuring the Midwest Oldtimers Vintage Race Car Club
Pits Open 12:30 p.m. (EDT), Spectator Gates Open 3:00 p.m.,
Practice 3:30 p.m., Qualifications 5:45 p.m., First Race 7:00 p.m.
ADVANCE RESERVE TICKETS: $23
ADVANCE GENERAL ADMISSION TICKETS:
Adults & Teens $18, Age 7-12 $5
Call 883-6504 or 1-888-246-7223
A TRIBUTE TO TWO POPULAR DRIVERS
56th Annual Sprint Car Classic Set For Saturday Night, Aug. 8th
SALEM, IN, July 29 – The Scott County Visitors Commission Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial presented by the John Jones Auto Group is one of the oldest and most historic memorial sprint races in the nation. The 56th annual sprint classic is set to take place at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery on Saturday night, August 8th.
Originating in 1953, the brainchild of promoter Russell Barnard, as the Joe James Memorial race, the event was renamed the Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial in 1958.
Barnard got the idea of a memorial to his good friend, Joe James, after the popular 27-year-old California driver was killed in a triple-A championship race at San Jose, Calif., the final race of the 1952 season.
Barnard had gotten close to James when the Mississippi bred driver came to race at Salem. After the races, Joe would frequently stay in Salem and fish with Barnard or go squirrel hunting for a few days.
Barnard added O’Connor’s name to the race after his fatal first lap pileup at Indianapolis in 1958. Pat, of nearby North Vernon, Ind., who was just 29-years-old at the time of his fatal crash, had been particularly popular and practically unbeatable on the Salem high banks. He wrapped up two of his three sprint titles at Salem.
Barnard’s wife, Mary, fondly recalled her and Russell’s close personal relationship with the two young drivers during a newspaper interview several years back.
“They were like our children,” said Barnard; that’s just the way they were treated.”
“I’ll never forget it,” Barnard was quoted as saying in the newspaper article. “I think if was mom Ruttman who called me from out there, or one of the Ruttman’s anyway, I couldn’t talk on the phone for crying. It just broke our hearts. He was a nice young man, Joe James; you couldn’t want a better man that he was.
“Pat was a gentleman too,” said Barnard. “There were a lot of gentleman drivers back then. They weren’t rough necks like a lot of people thought they were. I don’t know of anybody I would have rather had in my home than Joey or Pat.”
James, whose only feature win on the Salem track came on October 14, 1951, captured the 1952 AAA Midwest sprint championship. He competed in two Indianapolis 500’s, finishing 33rd in 1951 and 13th the following year.
O’Connor, whose son, Jeff, who has presented the trophy to the James/O’Connor winner for the past several years, won the 1953 and ’54 Midwest sprint titles with AAA and the 1956 USAC sprint championship. He was a five time winner on the Salem high banks, including victories in the 1954 and 1957 James Memorial races.
O’Connor started five consecutive Indianapolis 500 mile races beginning in 1954 and sat on pole in 1957.
Tickets, both general admission and reserved, are currently selling for the Scott County Visitors Commission Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial presented by the John Jones Auto Group. Go to the Home Page on this site and click on Tickets or call 812-883-6504 or 1-888-246-7223.
First 55 Races Have Seen Both Triumph And Tragedy
The 56th annual Scott County Visitors Commission Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial presented by the John Jones Auto Group is set for Saturday, August 8th at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery. Following are highlights from past James/O’Connor races:
of Columbus, Ind., wins the inaugural Joe James Memorial after
posting the day’s fastest qualification lap of 20.30 seconds - over
five seconds and 30 mph slower than today’s sprint car averages at
Salem. Pat O’Connor finished second in the 50-lap event and Mike
Nazaruk was third.
1955: Bob Sweikert, who four months earlier had won the Indianapolis 500, clinched the 1955 AAA Midwest Sprint Car Championship with his victory in the 50-lap Joe James Memorial at Salem.
1957: Pat O’Connor becomes the first two-time winner of the memorial race by a huge margin as he was more than a lap ahead of the second place car of Elmer George at the end of the 50-lap event. O’Connor recorded an unprecedented string of two wins, two seconds and a third place finish in the first five Joe James Memorial races.
1958: Following Pat O’Connor’s tragic death in the Indianapolis 500 a few months earlier, the Joe James Memorial was renamed the Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial. Eddie Sachs of Center Valley, Pa., came away with the victory in the 100-lap event. Sachs, who had finished second in the AAA Midwest Sprint Car Championship in each of the three previous years, captured the 1958 title with his win at Salem.
1959: A young brash Texan named A.J. Foyt captured his very first USAC feature win in an exciting 1959 James/O’Connor Memorial. Foyt, driving the A.J. Watson Special, and Don Branson rubbed tires as they roared side-by-side into the fourth turn on the last lap, forcing Branson to momentarily brake while Foyt shot across the finish line for the thrilling victory.
1961: Parnelli Jones of Torrance, Calif., became the first back-to-back winner of the Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial. The 28-year-old driver nearly spun while battling A.J. Foyt for the lead on the opening lap, but recovered to finish two-laps ahead of second place, Elmer George at the end of the 100-lap event. Chuck Hulse finished third and Jim Hurtubise fourth.
1963: A.J. Foyt set a new “world” record during qualifications, with a one-lap time of 17.98-seconds, and led the first 67 laps before being sidelined with a shredded right rear tire as Roger McCluskey breezed home one lap ahead of second place Bob Wente in the 11th annual classic.
1964: Mario Andretti wins his very first USAC event. The Nazareth, Pa., driver passed pole-sitter, Jud Larson on the 20th lap and proceeded to build a one-lap advantage. He coasted at the end, finishing nearly a quarter-lap in front of second place Don Branson of Champaign, Ill.
1965: Bobby Unser sped by the disabled car of Mario Andretti on the fourth turn of the last lap to capture the 13th annual James/ O’Connor Memorial. Andretti, who had led the first 99 laps, hit the wall after blowing a tire on the final lap.
1967: Local favorite, Sonny Ates of nearby Sellersburg, Ind., drove the Iddings Auto Glass Special to victory in the 100-lap race. Ates led the final 54 circuits around the .555-mile oval and finished half-a-lap in front of Bill Puterbaugh, who finished second.
1969: Sammy Sessions of Nashville, Mich., roared past a faltering Larry Dickson on the next to last lap to win the 1969 classic. Dickson, who led from the opening lap, experienced mechanical woes late in the race and Sessions grabbed the lead as the front-runners came off the fourth turn on the white flag lap.
1971: Rollie Beale of Toledo, Ohio, become the sixth two-time winner of the fall classic.
1973: Tom Sneva, a junior high school principal from Spokane, Wa., demolished the barely three month old one-lap track record of 17.32-seconds, set by Gary Bettenhausen, with a sizzling 16.97-second clocking in the Gehlhausen rear-engine sprinter during time trials. Tom Bigelow of Whitewater, Wi., drove the Elder Cadillac car to a wire-to-wire win in the 40-lap James/O’Connor Memorial.
1975: Pancho Carter joins Parnelli Jones as the only back-to-back James/O’Connor winner with a victory in the 50-lap event. Sam Sessions finishes second and Larry Dickson ends up third.
1976: Pancho Carter, who dominated the 1976 USAC Sprint Car Division with 12 feature victories, became the first three-time winner of the memorial. After posting fast time during qualifications, Carter started sixth in the 50-lap race and passed Bruce Walkup for the lead on the 18th circuit and was unchallenged the rest of the way.
1977: Pancho Carter’s incredible string continues on the high banks as he goes to the front on the seventh lap and stays there for the remainder of the 50-lap race in capturing his fourth straight James/O’Connor Memorial. Larry Moore finished second and Chuck Gurney was third.
1979: Steve Chassey was the fastest, setting a new one-lap track record of 16.074-seconds in the Jet Engineering roadster during time trials, but Greg Leffler, driving the Armstrong Mould car, was the winner of the 27th annual James/O’Connor race. It was the first of what would be two straight memorial wins for Leffler.
1988: Bob Frey of Wickenburg, Ariz., held off a late charging Rich Vogler to win the first James/O’Connor race since Salem Speedway reopened after being closed for nearly seven years. Frey’s V-6 powered car owned by Glen Niebel, beat Vogler’s machine to the to the finish by a mere 61 heundredths of a second.
1990: Rich Vogler was fatally injured as he was breezing to his second James/O’Connor victory. The event, being shown live on ESPN, was red flagged with two-laps remaining and Vogler was named the victor posthumously since he was leading the last green flag lap. Jeff Gordon, making just his third career start on the Salem high banks, finished second and Bob Frey was third.
1995: Tony Stewart and Kenny Irwin Jr. staged a stirring dual over the final 10 laps with Stewart outgunning Irwin for the win in an exciting shootout on the high banks. Irwin, who set fast time in qualifications with a run of 15.703-seconds, pulled alongside Stewart on the white flag lap but was unable to complete the pass and had to settle for second, ending his hopes of back-to James/O’Connor victories.
1996: Chet Fillip spun on the eighth of 50-laps and dropped to the tail of the field. The Indy 500 veteran then roared back through the pack to capture his first victory in three James/O’Connor starts. Early leader Kenny Irwin Jr. was sidelined with a cut tire and fast qualifier, Andy Michner, banged the second turn wall while running second.
1997: Dave Steele led flag-to-flag in capturing his first career win on the Salem oval in dominating fashion. The Tampa, Fla., driver was nearly a half-lap in front of the second place car of Pat Abold, who was making his first Salem start, at the end of the 50-lap race. Brian Tyler finished third.
1999: Dave Darland, known for his mastery of a sprint car on dirt, recorded his first career pavement win in the 40th annual classic. He led the final 24-laps around the .555-mile oval and finished five car lengths in front of Ryan Newman at the checkers. Jason McCord finished third, with Billy Putterbaugh Jr. fourth and Steve Surniak fifth.
2001: Tracy Hines passed defending race winner Eric Gordon on the 38th lap and went on to record his first James/O’Connor Memorial victory. The race featured an abundance of dicing and wheel-to-wheel racing and will go in the record books as one of the most competitive and exciting in the last several years.
2002: Ed Carpenter took advantage of lapped traffic to pass Eric Gordon for the lead just past the midway point of the race on his way to his first James/O’Connor victory. The 50-lap race began with a bang as a spin by Jay Drake caused a seven-car pileup. Gordon finished second for the second consecutive year after winning the race in 2000.
2003: Michael Lewis capitalized on J.J. Yeley’s late race mistake and went on to win his first James/O’Connor Memorial. Yeley, driving for Tony Stewart Racing, had a half-lap lead on the rest of the field when he spun exiting turn four on lap 35. Lewis took over the lead and never looked back. Eric Gordon finished second for the third consecutive year.
2004: Dave Steele passed Brian Tyler for the lead and then checked out on the field, leading the final 32 laps, to claim his second career James/O’Connor victory. The Tampa, Fla., driver won the 30-lap midget main earlier in the evening to join Pancho Carter and Jeff Gordon as the only drivers to have won feature events in both divisions on the same day at Salem.
2006: On his first visit to Salem Speedway, 17-year-old Bryan Clauson put on quite a show, winning both USAC sprint and midget features. Clauson, a California native and high school senior, became just the fourth driver to win both Salem races in the same night, joining David Steele, Jeff Gordon and Pancho Carter.
2007: For the first time in 47 previous races no winner emerged from the 2008 Memorial, as rain halted the night’s activities 10 laps short of an official race. The 50-lap main event was stopped by a red flag after Kevin Swindell flipped on lap 15. While the red waved, the rains came and ended the race. Cameron Dodson was leading at the time of the accident.
2008: Jacob Wilson turned in a flawless performance in winning his first career USAC race. The Crawfordsville, Ind., driver raced to the front of the field from his sixth place starting position and held off veteran Tracy Hines at the end to pull off the stunning victory.
2009: Tracy Hines caught Shane Hmiel seven laps from the finish and then proceeded to take his Tony Stewart Racing Chevy to the front of the pack on his way to his second Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial victory. Hmiel, who was making his first start on the Salem oval, led the first 43 laps and finished second ahead of third place Jacob Wilson.
2011: The first James/O’Connor Memorial under the sanction of the Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series turned out to be a big night for Californian JoJo Helberg. Helberg raced to the front from his fifth place starting position and then had to hold off a torrid charge by Aaron Pierce at the end to claim the win. Pierce finished second one car length back of Helberg.
2013: Brian Olson held off a hard-charging Brian Gerster to capture his second consecutive Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial. It marked the first back-to-back winner in the sprint classic since Greg Leffler won the 1979 and 1980 races.
HUDSON NOTCHES FOURTH
FIRECRACKER 200 WIN ON SATURDAY
SALEM, IN, July 12 - Brett Hudson charged past Will Kimmel for the lead with 59 laps remaining and went on to capture the 26th annual Firecracker 200 presented by the Scott County Visitors Commission on Saturday, July 4th.
Hudson, who now stands alone as the all-time race win leader with four victories to his credit, collected $5,000 for the victory. He also pocketed an additional $100 for being the half-way leader and $88 for leading lap 88, the Jerry Norris Memorial Award.
The Owensboro, Ky., driver, who is also a three-time Halloween 200 winner at Salem, led 113 of the 201-laps.
Hudson entered Saturday’s race tied with Craig Cookingham and Chuck Barnes Sr. as the all-time Firecracker 200 win leaders.
Blake Hillard of Owensboro finished second, with Jeffersonville’s Will Kimmel third, Artie Ware of Louisville fourth, and Tony Conway of Louisville fifth.
Shawn Smith, Jeff Berg, J.J. Schafer, A.J. Kempf and Sammy Davis rounded out the second five in that order.
The race was slowed eight times by cautions for a total of 47 laps.
Craig Rogers of Louisville won the Freedom 50 for the O'Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks with Jamie Bierman of Floyds Knobs, Ind., capturing the Independence 50 for the Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks.
Mike Kestler finished second in the Pure Stock feature with Justin Davis third, Jamie Goodman fourth and Donnie Blanchard fifth. Alex Bube, Doodle Farris, Jesse Allen and Carl Higgins Jr. rounded out the top five in the Front Wheel Drive main in that order.
Racing returns to Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery on Saturday night, July 25th. The Casey’s General Store Summerfest 2015 presented by ACE Hardware of Salem features three divisions – the Lucas Oil Great American Stocks, O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks and Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks.
The July 25th race has been designated as “Hoosier Lottery Night” at the track with many fun-filled activities planned, including a cruise-in, burnout contest and live music – featuring Lanny Hatt and the Hickbillys. It’s also dollar beer and dollar hot dog night at the track.
TIRE RULE ANNOUNCED FOR JULY 4th FIRECRACKER 200
SALEM, IN, June 26 - Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery announced today that a six tire per team limit will be in effect for the July 4th Firecracker 200 presented by the Scott County Visitors Commission.
This cost containment measure comes after on-going discussions between Salem Speedway officials and race teams scheduled to participate in the 26th annual Independence Day race.
Teams will present six tires to be marked before Firecracker 200 qualifications. The marked tires will then be used for qualifications and the race.
As in the past, teams will only be allowed to change two tires per pit stop during a caution period.
26th ANNUAL FIRECRACKER 200 HEADLINES
JULY 4th RACING ACTION AT SALEM
Brian Bayer Looking For Third Straight Win In Independence Day Race
SALEM, IN, June 29 – Racing returns to Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery on Saturday, July 4th, as the Firecracker 200 presented by the Scott County Visitors Commission continues a holiday tradition on the famed southern Indiana high banks.
The 26th annual Lucas Oil Great American Stock classic, paying $5,000 to win, also includes the Freedom 50 for the O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks and the Independence 50 for the Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks.
“We’re looking forward to a great evening of outstanding racing action,” said track general manager Richard Deaton. “The Firecracker 200 is a mainstay on the Salem schedule and one of the most popular races of the summer.”
Two-time defending Firecracker 200 winner, Brian Bayer of Birdseye, Ind., tops the list of formidable drivers entered for the 2015 edition of the Independence Day race.
Bayer, who passed Shawn Smith for the lead with less than three laps remaining one year ago, says the key to winning the Firecracker 200 is “hard work and luck”.
“I seriously don’t think there is another small team that puts in as much effort as team 99,” said Bayer. I have a great group of friends and close family that makes this possible.”
Throw in some successful race strategy and you have a receipt for victory.
“200-laps at Salem in July is a very long and demanding race,” said Bayer, who is content to let others set the on-track pace early.
“The lap that pays the money is lap 200,” said Bayer, a two-time Lucas Oil Great American Stock track champion (2013-2009). “We feel no need to lead all the laps in the middle stages (of the race) as others do. We’re content just riding around in the top 10, letting everyone else use up their cars and tires. We then make our charge at the end.”
Bayer’s race strategy has worked to perfection the past couple of years.
“We won the past two years by passing for the lead with less than 10 laps to go,” said Bayer, who is looking to join Chuck Barnes Sr. and Brett Hudson as the only three-time winners of the race. “I believe Shawn and I put on one hell of a finish last year.”
Smith of Louisville, the defending Lucas Oil Great American Stock track champion and 16-time winner at Salem, and Hudson of Owensboro, who is also a three-time Halloween 200 winner, are expected for the 2015 edition of the Firecracker 200.
They can expect plenty of competition from the likes of Will Kimmel of Jeffersonville, Todd Kempf of Huntingburg, Ind., and Curtis Peeples of Round-O, S.C.
Kimmel, who is scheduled to make his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut at Kentucky Speedway on July 11th, captured the Circle Track Great American Racing Series (GARS) event at Salem Speedway on May 9th, while Peeples pocketed $5,000 for winning the GARS race at Illiana Speedway on June 20th.
Kempf, the winner of the 2001 Firecracker 200 and 2013 Halloween 200, currently leads the Lucas Oil Great American Stock season standings on the strength of posting back-to-back wins in the first two races of the year.
Other top drivers expected include Dan Banker of Des Moines, Iowa, Johnny Magee of Carthage, Ind., and Phil Jenkins of Greenfield, Ind. All three are former Halloween 200 winners at Salem.
The O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks and Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks are set to kick-off the racing action on July 4th with 50-lap feature events for both divisions serving as a prelude to the Firecracker 200.
Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery will once again be giving away free Hoosier Lottery prize packs to several lucky fans, age 18 and older, during the July 4th event.
Spectator gates open at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 4th, with practice getting underway at 3 p.m. and the first race rolling off at 5:30 p.m. (EDT).
Advance general admission tickets are priced at $14 for adults and $3 for children (age 7-12). Kids, age 6 and under, are admitted free when accompanied by an adult. Advance reserved seat tickets are priced at $19 each. All prices are $2 more on the day of race. For tickets or more information to www.salemspeedway.com or call 812-883-6504 or toll free 1-888-246-7223.
RAIN HAS IMPACTED FOUR OUT OF FIVE
SCHEDULED RACES AT SALEM IN 2015
Weather can play havoc with racing as we all know. Unfortunately many race tracks have suffered the wrath of Mother Nature already this season. Four of the five races to this point on the 2015 Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery schedule have been impacted by rain. The John Jones Auto Group Midwest 150, featuring the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour late model series, scheduled for this past Saturday at Salem, had to be cancelled due to the weather conditions. Sunshine prevailed on Saturday afternoon, but at that point the damage had already been done, as heavy overnight rain (up to 5-inches in some areas of the county) had swamped the Speedway grounds. The decision to postpone or cancel a race is often a tough call, as forecasting the weather is not an exact science. Sometimes we make the right decision, sometimes we don’t. This past Friday after spending several days looking for a favorable weather forecast with none to be found we made the call to cancel Saturday’s race. Making such a decision more than 24-hours in advance of a race is something we don’t like to do, but in this case we had many race teams and fans traveling several hundred miles to the track. Calling a race early can make you look awfully dumb if the forecast is wrong and you end up with great weather. This time we got it right, but not without a lot of agonizing. Thank you to all of our fans and race teams for your support. Hopefully the rest of the season turns out better, beginning with the Firecracker 200 presented by the Scott County Visitors Commission on Saturday, July 4th. Hope to see you all here for this great holiday event. Don’t forget, free weekend camping.
Road Work In
Salem To Cause Possible Rerouting
Of Traffic During Spring And Summer Months
SALEM, IN, March 20 - Reconstruction of Highway 56 East in the Salem city limits will cause minimal rerouting of traffic during the spring and summer months. For extended periods of time during the construction period Highway 56 East in Salem may be closed to through traffic.
DIRECTION TO SALEM SPEEDWAY - For those heading west into Salem on Highway 56 take the Salem bypass to Highway 60. At the intersection of Highway 60 and the Salem bypass turn right and take Jackson Street to State Road 135 (South Main Street). Turn right on Highway 135 and proceed to the Salem square. Go halfway around the square and proceed north on North Main Street to the stoplight. Turn left at the stoplight (Hwy. 56 & 60) and proceed to Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery.
This rerouting adds 3-miles to your trip from Scottsburg to Salem Speedway. Access to local businesses (restaurants, hotel, etc.) will be available during the construction period.
If you have any questions regarding the highway situation please call the Speedway at 812-883-6504 or toll free 1-888-246-7223.
COMP PERFORMANCE GROUP RETURNS AS
SALEM CONTINGENCY SPONSOR IN 2015
COMP Performance Group is set to continue as a contingency sponsor for the Lucas Oil Great American Stock division at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery in 2015 reports track management. “We are certainly pleased to have the continued support of COMP Performance for one of the fastest growing short-track divisions in the Midwest,” said a Salem track representative. COMP Cams and TCI will be awarding product certificates at each 2015 Lucas Oil Great American Stock event and to the top three finishers in the final season standings. For more information on COMP Performance Group and “The Brands That Power The Performance Automotive Aftermarket” go to www.compperformancegroup.com.
2015 SEASON TICKETS NOW SELLING
SALEM, IN, Jan. 14 – Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery season tickets are currently selling for the 2015 racing season. They are priced at just $190 for reserved seats and $160 for non-reserved seating.
Season tickets are good for admission to all 2015 motorsports events at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery, including the spring and fall ARCA races, both sprint races, including the Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial, the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Midwest 150, the Firecracker 200, the Halloween 200 and much, much more.
Now is the time to take advantage of substantial savings, while ensuring that you don’t miss a lap of breathtaking action during the 2015 season at Salem Speedway.
To order your season tickets or for more information call 812-883-6504 or toll free 1-888-246-7223. Most major credit cards are accepted.
HEADLINE 2015 RACING SCHEDULE
Traditional Races And New Events In Place For Upcoming Season
SALEM, IN, January 12 – Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery gears up for its 69th year in 2015 with a full slate of action to include 12 events and 16 days of on-track activity.
The varied schedule of racing events includes a combination of national and regional programs, featuring the .555-mile high banked oval, the quarter-mile infield track and the “Roval” road course.
“We are certainly excited about our 2015 schedule,” said track general manager Richard Deaton. “We’ve beefed up the schedule with more races on the high banks, including a second sprint car race, the Circle Track Magazine event and additional races for the Lucas Oil Great American Stocks.”
Among traditional events returning to the high banks in 2015 are spring and fall visits by the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards and the 56th annual Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial, featuring the Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series.
The Federated Auto Parts ARCA 200 is set for Sunday, April 26th and the Federated Car Care ARCA Fall Classic will take place under the lights on Saturday, September 19th.
The spring race will mark the 97th appearance of the ARCA Racing Series at Salem. No track has appeared more on the series schedule through the years than Salem.
The Scott County Visitors Commission Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial, one of the most historic and longest running memorial races in the nation, headlines August action at Salem. The 56th annual sprint classic is set to unfold on Saturday night, August 8.
The winged sprint cars of the Auto Value Super Sprints Series are scheduled to visit the high banks for the first time in a number of years on Saturday night, May 30th. The Eddie Gilstrap Motors Sprint Car Legends Classic will pay tribute to former Salem open wheel racers.
The JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour late model series returns to Salem on Saturday night, June 20th for the John Jones Auto Group Midwest 150.
The 2014 edition of the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour race was one of the most exciting of the season at Salem. 15-year-old rookie Grant Quinlan of Harrison, Mich., passed fellow teenager Garrett Jones of West Palm Beach, Fla., with the white flag in the air and went on to capture his first JEGS/CRA victory.
The Circle Track Magazine Great American Racing Series visits Salem for its inaugural event on Saturday night, May 9th.
A $30,000 purse and $5,000 winner’s share will be up for grabs as the much anticipated street stock type series makes its debut on the famed high banks.
Race fans and car aficionados will want to mark their calendar for Saturday, July 25th, as Summerfest 2015 presented by ACE Hardware of Salem takes center stage. The summer fun event, featuring on-track activity from all three Salem racing division, also includes a cruise-in, burnout contest, live music and more.
Other traditional events planned for 2015 include the 26th annual Firecracker 200 presented by the Scott County Visitors Commission on Saturday, July 4th and the 27th annual Smoker Friendly Discount Tobacco Halloween 200 on Sunday, October 25th.
Road racing is set for a return to Salem with the Redneck Enduro 100 on Sunday afternoon, October 4th, featuring the Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Cars competing on a circuit utilizing the infield short-track and a portion of the half-mile high banks.
The 2015 Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery season kicks-off on Sunday afternoon, April 12th with the High Banks & Short-Track Season Opener. The Lucas Oil Great American Stocks and Midwest Thunder Roadsters will be providing the action on the high banks, while the O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks and Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks headline the infield short-track activity.
Additional information concerning the 2015 activities at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery, including ticket information, may be obtained by calling 812-883-6504 or 888-246-7223.
BANKS & SHORT-TRACK SEASON OPENER
Lucas Oil Great American Stock 75, O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks, Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks and Midwest Thunder Roadsters
CIRCLE TRACK’S GREAT
AMERICAN RACING SERIES
100-Lap Street Stock Feature (Possible Support Divisions)
SPRINT CAR LEGENDS CLASSIC
Auto Value Super Sprints, Lucas Oil Great American Stocks, O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks and Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks
JONES AUTO GROUP MIDWEST 150
100-Lap Late Model Feature - 50-Lap Great American Stock Feature
JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour, Lucas Oil Great American Stocks, O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks and Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks. Friday, June 19 – JEGS/CRA Practice
Presented by Scott County Visitors Commission
$5,000 to win Lucas Oil Great American Stock race on the high banks (non-points), plus O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stock 50 and Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stock 50 on the short-track.
Presented by ACE Hardware of Salem
Lucas Oil Great American Stocks, O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks and Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks. Plus, Cruise-in, Burnout Contest, Live Music - Dollar Beer & Dollar Hot Dogs
SCOTT COUNTY VISITORS COMMISSION JOE JAMES/PAT O’CONNOR MEMORIAL
Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series and Lucas Oil Great American Stocks.
Also featuring the Midwest Oldtimers Vintage Race Car Club
Lucas Oil Great American Stocks, O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks, Portland Recycling
Front Wheel Drive Stocks and Midwest Thunder Roadsters. Kids Night – Free admission
all kids age 12 and under, plus free Hot Dog for all kids.
FEDERATED CAR CARE ARCA FALL CLASSIC
ARCA Racing Series 200, plus Lucas Oil Great American Stocks 50
REDNECK ENDURO 100
Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks on the Roval
ANSELL / MENARDS SHIFT ARCA TEAM
SPONSORSHIP TO VENTURINI MOTORSPORTS
(TOLEDO, Ohio - January 15, 2015) - Officials from Ansell Protective Products and Menards announced today that they will move their ARCA Racing Series team sponsorship program to Venturini Motorsports in 2015.
In addition to the team sponsorship announcement, Ansell and Menards disclosed that 10-time ARCA Racing Series champion Frank Kimmel would run a 10-race schedule in 2015, with development driver Brandon Jones driving the Venturini Motorsports Toyota Camry in the remaining 10 events. The car will be the No. 25, the flagship car of Venturini Motorsports.
"I'm really excited to have the opportunity to run for Venturini Motorsports," Kimmel said. "Bill, Sr. was a hero of mine growing up ... certainly when I first started racing in ARCA. Billy and I had a more competitive relationship, but that's only because we were racing against each other every week. He wanted to beat me and I wanted to beat him ... that's the way it should be."
Kimmel has been sponsored by Ansell and Menards since 2009, including a championship season in 2013. Kimmel has finished among the top 10 in driver points for 23 consecutive seasons, dating back to 1992. In 490 career starts since 1990, Kimmel has 268 top-5 finishes and 368 top-10s, more than any other active driver in both categories.
"As the sponsorship world changes, we all know how difficult it is to run a full season, so we had to get creative with our sponsors Ansell and Menards," Kimmel said. "It's a situation where we all had to pool our resources to make this program go."
Ansell and Menards will be co-primary sponsors on the No. 25 Venturini Motorsports Toyota for 15 events and each will serve as associate sponsors on the remaining five events.
"We're really honored to have the opportunity to represent Ansell and Menards," said Venturini Motorsports General Manager Billy Venturini. "They've done so much for the series over the years and we're excited to continue that winning tradition this year in the ARCA Series. Working with Frank (Kimmel) will be incredible as we've never had a driver in our program as accomplished or experienced. It's going to be quite a ride and I'm expecting great results. The combination of Kimmel and a talented, young and exuberant driver like Brandon Jones creates a great driver tandem which no doubt will translate to many on-track victories in 2015."
Kimmel, ARCA's all-time victory leader with 80 series wins, will attempt to capture his first victory at Daytona International Speedway when ARCA opens its 63rd season of competition on February 14. Daytona is one of just a handful of tracks the ARCA Racing Series visits where Kimmel has not won a race.
"Venturini Motorsports is competitive on the racetrack no matter where it is, and I know I'm very fortunate to be in their equipment," Kimmel said.
"We are excited to continue our official category sponsorship in the ARCA Racing Series" commented Jon Peddie, Director of Retail and Auto Aftermarket Sales for Ansell. "We are looking forward to working with such a strong team of Venturini Motorsports and our drivers, the incomparable Frank Kimmel and Brandon Jones. Our customers are big race fans and so are all the people at Ansell. We can't wait for the season to begin."
Kimmel will be a driver, mentor, coach and spokesman at Venturini Motorsports. In addition to Daytona, Kimmel is expected to compete at Toledo Speedway; both Pocono events; Michigan International Speedway; Chicagoland Speedway; Berlin Raceway; the mile dirt tracks at both Springfield and DuQuoin, and the fall Salem event.
"It was a little hard for me at first knowing I wouldn't get the chance to drive the 44, but the more I thought about it ... the opportunity to drive the 25 is huge. That number has been in ARCA for a long time, and after I started thinking about it, it's really a privilege to be able to drive the car. I'm actually really excited about it."
Jones, the Richard Childress Racing development driver who won two of the three ARCA events he entered in 2014, will mix his 10 ARCA races in with starts in both the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and the NASCAR Xfinity Series.
"I am very happy to be joining Venturini Motorsports for the 2015 ARCA season. Venturini has consistently been the premier ARCA team for many years," said Jones. "I am equally excited to have 10-time ARCA Series champion Frank Kimmel as a teammate. With Frank's and Venturini's experience I am confident I can win more ARCA races this year."
Jones, who will turn 18 on February 18, 2015, will kick off his 2015 ARCA schedule at Mobile International Speedway on March 14. His ARCA schedule will include the April Salem race event; Nashville; Talladega; New Jersey; Winchester; Iowa; Lucas Oil Raceway; Kentucky and Kansas.
"It's really neat to be able to weave Brandon Jones into the fold," Kimmel said. "He's a very exciting and talented young racer."
SMOKER FRIENDLY CONTINUES AS
HALLOWEEN 200 TITLE SPONSOR
Smoker Friendly Discount Tobacco has renewed its agreement with Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery and will again serve as title sponsor of the 2015 Halloween 200. The popular season ending race, that celebrates its 27th anniversary in 2015, is scheduled for Sunday afternoon, October 25th. Smoker Friendly Discount Tobacco, with 26 Kentuckiana locations, is known throughout the region for large selection and “Everyday Low Prices” on all of your favorite tobacco products.
FEDERATED AUTO PARTS RETURNS AS SPONSOR
OF BOTH 2015 ARCA RACING SERIES EVENTS
SALEM, IN, January 6 - Federated Auto Parts has renewed its title sponsorship of both ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards events at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery for the 2015 season.
The spring race, scheduled for Sunday afternoon, April 26, will be the “Federated Auto Parts ARCA 200,” while the fall race on Saturday night, Sept. 19, will be the “Federated Car Care ARCA Fall Classic.”
Federated Auto Parts is a nationally known auto parts distribution network with more than 4,000 stores across the country.
"We are certainly pleased to have the continued involvement of Federated Auto Parts with two of our biggest races of the season at Salem,” said track general manager Richard Deaton. “For many years we have enjoyed a great partnership with Federated Auto Parts, a company that is well respected in the automotive field with an extensive history of motorsports involvement.”
When ARCA converges on the small, southern Indiana city of Salem, it will mark the 97th and 98th appearances at Salem since debuting on the historic half-mile oval in 1955. Over the years, no track has appeared on ARCA's annual schedule more than Salem has.
Veteran race car driver Ken Schrader won at Salem in 1999 and won the pole for the ARCA race in September. He announced in December that Federated Auto Parts would return as sponsor for Ken Schrader Racing in 2015.
“It’s just so neat to see all the people come out to see those ARCA races at Salem, all the support from the campers that come out and make a weekend of it,” Schrader said.
Tickets, both reserved and general admission, are selling for both 2015 ARCA events at Salem. To place your ticket order call (888) 246-7223.
LUCAS OIL CONTINUES AS TITLE SPONSOR
OF GREAT AMERICAN STOCK DIVISION IN 2015
SALEM, IN, Dec. 1 – Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery track management announced today that Lucas Oil will continue as title sponsor of the Salem Speedway Great American Stock division for the 2015 season.
“We’re certainly pleased to have the continued support of Lucas Oil at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery,” said track general manager Richard Deaton. “This is a company recognized throughout the motorsports industry for top quality products and a commitment to customer satisfaction.”
Lucas Oil Products are among the fastest growing additive lines in the consumer automotive industry. A premium line of oils, greases and problem solving additives has helped establish Lucas as a prominent figure in this marketplace.
Lucas has long been directly involved in the American racing industry through multiple vehicle sponsorships and racing event promotions, at all levels. Seeing a need for better lubricants in this industry, the Lucas people went to work again. The end result being a line of high performance engine oils and gear oils that are second-to-none in the racing industry.
The Lucas success story has been built upon hard work, an unparalleled line of premium products and an unwavering commitment to customer satisfaction. This single formula for success will continue to guide Lucas Oil Products as it grows in the years to come.
The Lucas Oil Great American Stocks enjoyed a banner year at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery in 2014. The popular division averaged nearly 30 cars per race during the just completed season with six different winners in eight races.
For more information on Lucas Oil products visit the Lucas Oil web site at www.lucasoil.com.
SPEEDWAY SET TO HOST THE ARCA
RACING SERIES FOR 97th AND 98th TIME IN 2015
Tickets Now Selling For April 26th And Sept. 19th Events
TOLEDO, Ohio – November 24, 2014 – Salem Speedway is inching closer to a milestone like none other on the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. When the renowned stock car tour converges on the small, southern Indiana city of Salem, it will mark the 97th and 98th appearances at Salem since debuting on the historic half-mile oval in 1955. The 2015 races will be April 26 and Sept. 19.
Over the years, no track has appeared on ARCA's annual schedule more than Salem has.
"We are certainly pleased that the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards will once again be visiting the famed high banks of Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery during the 2015 season," said track general manager Richard Deaton. "The long and storied history between ARCA and Salem Speedway plays a significant role in the annals of both organizations."
Frank Kimmel is the all-time ARCA winner at Salem with nine wins between 1998 and 2008. Other Salem ARCA winners over the years reads like a who's who in motorsports, a list that includes Indy 500 winner Troy Ruttman, NASCAR champions Bobby Allison and Benny Parsons, ARCA champions Nelson Stacy, Jack Bowsher, Benny Parsons, Iggy Katona, Ramo Stott, Tim Steele, Justin Allgaier and Chris Buescher, as well as Bob Schacht, Brian Keselowski, and Alex Bowman. Newly-crowned NASCAR Nationwide Series champion Chase Elliott won an ARCA pole at the track in 2012.
Jack Harrison, in a Ford, won the first-ever ARCA race at Salem on October 9, 1955. Harrison, who was afflicted with stomach ulcers, drank milk continuously to ease his ailment.
More recently ARCA veteran Tom Hessert has won three of the last four races at the track, including in September when he nosed out ARCA Racing Series champion Mason Mitchell in a wild finish that saw Mitchell cross the finish line in second, but backwards.
NASCAR veteran Ken Schrader won at Salem in 1999 and won the pole for the race in September. He says the ARCA Racing Series is perfect for Salem Speedway.
“I remember the first time I went to Salem, I thought it was such a big deal, and I still do. When you consider the history of the place and all the guys that have won there over the years, it’s just incredible. Every driver wants to be on that list,” he said. “It’s just so neat to see all the people come out to see those ARCA races at Salem, all the support from the campers that come out and make a weekend of it.”
The track received a face lift prior to the ARCA race in September when track owner Owen Thompson put new asphalt on a good portion of turns three and four, greatly improving the track and drawing rave reviews from drivers.
The two Salem races are part of the 2015 schedule now being released by ARCA Racing Series officials. The full 2015 ARCA Racing Series schedule will be released Wednesday.
Advance tickets, both reserved and general admission, are now selling for both 2015 ARCA Racing Series events at Salem. For tickets call 812-883-6504 or 1-888-246-7223.
The Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) is among the leading auto racing sanctioning bodies in the country. Founded in 1953 by John and Mildred Marcum, the organization administers about 100 events each year in multiple racing series, including the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards, the ARCA/CRA Super Series, the ARCA Truck Series and the ARCA Midwest Tour, plus weekly racing at Toledo and Flat Rock Speedways.
SMITH, KESTLER AND KAELIN HONORED
AS 2014 TRACK CHAMPIONS ON SUNDAY
SALEM, IN, Nov. 17 – Track champions were crowned and numerous other honors were handed out at the 26th annual Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery Awards Ceremony on Sunday afternoon.
Over 150 drivers, owners, mechanics, sponsors and guests gathered at Cornerstone Hall in Salem for the season ending event. The top 10 finishers in all three Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery divisions were among the honorees.
Season champions honored were Shawn Smith of Louisville, Lucas Oil Great American Stocks; Mike Kestler of Louisville, O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks; and Dillon Kaelin of Louisville, Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks.
Rookie of the Year honors went to Tim Rivers of Salem (Great American Stocks), Jeremy Hopper of Memphis, Ind., (Pure Stocks) and Dillon Kaelin (Front Wheel Drive Stocks).
Six Sigma Crew Chief of the Year Awards were presented to Richie Alexander (Great American Stocks), Jarrett Waddell (Pure Stocks) and Carl Kaelin Jr. (Front Wheel Drive Stocks).
Smith was awarded the Lucas Oil Performance Award for the Great American Stock division, as he was the only driver to complete 100 percent of available laps (325 of 325) in feature competition during the 2014 season.
The Duragloss Car Care Products “Jerry Norris Memorial” Best Appearing Car Award was presented to Brian Bayer.
Salem Speedway technical director Travis Kern was the recipient of the Boyd Smedley Memorial Award presented annually by radio station WUME-FM.
Hoosier Lottery draw game host, Chayzee Smith, was a special guest at Sunday’s season ending awards ceremony. Chayzee, who appears weekly on TV throughout the state of Indiana, talked briefly about the Hoosier Lottery and also assisted with the award presentations.
Prior to the awards ceremony Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery track owner Owen Thompson addressed the gathering about the just completed season and the upcoming year. The 2015 season, that will be the 21st under the direction of the Thompson family, is schedule to kick-off in April.
HUDSON RIDES THE
HIGH BANKS TO THIRD CAREER
SMOKER FRIENDLY DISCOUNT TOBACCO HALLOWEEN 200 WIN
SALEM, IN, Oct. 27 – Brett Hudson added another Smoker Friendly Discount Tobacco Halloween 200 trophy to his growing collection on Sunday by capturing the 26th annual Lucas Oil Great American Stock race at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery.
With the victory the Owensboro, Ky. driver, who started second in the field of 47 cars, joins Chuck Barnes as the only drivers to win more than two Halloween 200 races. Hudson, who visited victory lane in 2010 and 2012, has now won three of the last five fall classics.
Hudson worked traffic to perfection all afternoon long and stayed in the top five for most of the race before taking the lead for good with about 35 laps remaining. He then was able to outdistanced Frank Kimmel II of Borden, Ind., who had his car out front for a good portion of the race.
Kimmel, the 2011 race winner, finished second with Todd Kempf of Huntingburg, Ind., third, Johnny Magee of Carthage, Ind., fourth and Chuck Barnes, a seven-time race winner, fifth.
Brian Hopkins, Blake Hillard, Erik Brooks, Jason Thompson and Phil Jenkins made up the second five in that order.
GERSTER HANGS ON TO WIN THRILLING
JOE JAMES/PAT O’CONNOR MEMORIAL
Rivers Wins Great American Stock Feature And Smith Claims Season Title
SALEM, IN, Oct. 4 – Brian Gerster would not be denied a win in Saturday’s 55th annual Scott County Visitors Commission Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery despite a failing car. The event was the final race on the 2014 Must See Racing Xtreme Sprint Series (MSRXSS) calendar. The speedway was recently repaved in turns three and four and the new pavement insured plenty of side-by-side racing the entire night. A healthy crowd was on hand for the event despite cool race time temperatures.
2011 Joe James/Pat O’Connor Memorial winner Jo Jo Helberg earned the night’s qualifier award with a lap of 14.300 seconds. Unfortunately, he would have to start eight in the feature by virtue of a number eight pill being drawn for the feature inversion.
Troy DeCaire made quick work from his inside row four starting position and gained the lead by lap three. DeCaire was determined to be in control of his own destiny and looked strong early. With Gerster and Helberg lurking, DeCaire became overly aggressive in heavy lapped traffic. He made contact with a lapped car on lap twelve and cut a right rear tire down. This misfortune would end his bid for the win. Gerster then assumed the point until his motor began to miss on lap 18, allowing Helberg to make the pass for the lead. The top spot was short lived as Gerster roared back to take the lead a handful of laps later in strong fashion, as the duo ran wheel-to-wheel through turns three and four. Gerster would narrowly hold a hard charging Helberg off the final five laps as Gerster’s left side wing panel began to peel back.
An excited Gerster explained the James/O’Connor Memorial is one of the few pavement sprint car events left that Gerster badly wanted to win.
”I’ve never won here at Salem and this is a big win for me. To add your name to the list of former winners of this event is an honor” explained Gerster.”I’ve wanted to win this race. I’ve had some strong finishes here in the past. I lost the lead early tonight when my motor sputtered. I finished the race on seven cylinders and the sideboard of my wing began to peel back with about five laps to go. We’ll take it” concluded a happy Gerster.
Following Gerster to the checkered flag were: Helberg, Aaron Pierce, Davey Hamilton Jr., and Anthony McCune rounding out the top five.
Tim Rivers of Salem captured Saturday’s Mid-Southern Savings Bank 50 for the Lucas Oil Great American Stocks and Shawn Smith of Louisville wrapped up the 2014 season championship.
Rivers, a Papa John’s Rookie of the Year candidate in the popular Salem division, led flag-to-flag in capturing his first victory on the high banks. The former dirt late model champion had to hold off a determined Tony Conway and Todd Kempf over the last several laps to secure the win.
Conway finished second, with Kempf third, David Bayens fourth and Kyle Hadley fifth in the 25-car field.
Smith, who entered the race with a comfortable 45 point lead in the standings, was involved in a first lap crash that nearly ended his championship hopes. Some excellent pit work by his crew got Smith back in the race and he finished in 11th place. That was good enough to keep him 29 points in front of Rivers and Kempf, who tied for second place in the final season standings.
Racing returns to the high banks on Sunday afternoon, October 26th for the Smoker Friendly Discount Tobacco Halloween 200. Tickets, both reserved and general admission, are currently selling for the 26th annual race. They are available on-line at www.salemspeedway.com or by calling 883-6504 or 1-888-246-7223.
WINS IN WILD ARCA FINISH AT SALEM
Barnes Makes Late Race Pass To Capture Great American Stock Victory
(SALEM, Ind. - Sept. 13, 2014) - Tom Hessert won for the fifth time in his career Saturday and third time at Salem Speedway, but it's safe to say he has never won like this before.
Hessert grabbed the lead from Mason Mitchell with 12 laps to go, then held on and beat Mitchell despite both cars bouncing off each other and the wall coming out of the final turn of the 200 lap event.
"I was bouncing off the fence and the wall, but I just kept the throttle down," Hessert said. "Crazy, crazy finish. I was just thinking 'don't hit that pit gate, that might hurt.'"
Austin Wayne Self finished third, the only other car on the lead lap, with Grant Enfinger fourth and polesitter Kenny Schrader fifth in the Federated Car Care Fall Classic presented by JayC Food Stores.
Hessert's No. 77 Barbera's Autoland Dodge scrapped the wall but beat Mitchell to the finish line after the No. 98 TTS-Musselman's-Wildlife Foundation of Florida Ford spun and crossed the finish line backwards, nearly five seconds after Hessert took the checkered flag. The two drivers laughed and hugged after the race.
"I was really good in turns three and four and he was really fast in turns one and two," Hessert said of the finish. "I got a lead on him, but he was right on my bumper. We were side-by-side. We both drove it into four and we just were beating and banging."
Mitchell, who now leads Enfinger by 45 points heading to Kentucky, said he just drove the car in hard and gave it his best shot.
"I was doing everything I could," he said. "I knew what happened to me at Winchester and I didn't want to do that to anyone. I respect these guys too much. I just didn't want to hit that wall after I spun. I'm happy to leave here with a bigger points lead. I had to think big picture, too."
Mitchell finished second for the sixth time of the season.
The race went caution free for more than 100 laps, putting numerous cars on a variety of pit strategies. Hessert was one of the final cars not to pit when the first caution came out.
"Kevin (crew chief, Kevin Caldwell) kept telling me to stay out, stay out," Hessert said. "We needed tires so bad, but it worked out for us."
Once the caution did come out, Hessert was able to stay near the front, although Mitchell would regain the lead. Mitchell led 127 laps. Hessert (28), Schrader (44) and Kyle Benjamin (1) also led laps. Officially, Hessert, from Cherry Hill, N.J., led the final 12 laps.
Hessert's Cunningham Motorsports teammate Self was third and watched the two cars in front of him battling for the win.
"I had a great vantage point from where I was," he said. "What a great day for Cunningham Motorsports. I knew that something was going to happen ... you knew that two guys racing that hard that something would happen. I was just there, waiting."
Enfinger said his car was just a little off in the beginning and once it was better, the No. 98 Allegiant Travel Chevrolet regained some of the laps he lost early on. Eventually he was able to get to within one lap down before the race ended.
"This was one of those races where we needed a caution," he said. "That hasn't happened to our GMS Racing team much, because there have been races where we didn't want a caution. Today, we did."
Enfinger said his team remains confident, despite slipping 25 more points behind Mitchell for the championship point battle.
"GMS has great cars for both Kentucky and Kansas," he said. "We'll go there and see what happens."
Brennan Poole finished sixth in the Zaxby's Toyota while defending race winner Kyle Benjamin was seventh. Bill Catania was eighth - his first top 10 finish in ARCA in the No. 18 State Line Speedway/ Stacks Original Wings & BBQ Sauce Chevrolet. Indiana native J.J. Haley, in the No. 55 BraunAbility-Braun Auto Group Toyota, was ninth and Blake Hillard, from nearby Owensboro, Ky. was 10th in the Blake Hillard Racing Chevrolet.
James Swanson tied his career high by finishing 12th in the GreatRailing.com Dodge while rear axle trouble relegated nine-time Salem winner Frank Kimmel to 24th place. Kimmel, in the No. 44 Ansell-Menards Toyota, finished only 66 laps.
Minnesota native Cody Erickson finished 14th in his ARCA debut, driving the No. 82 Performance Auto Ford for Empire Racing.
Will Kimmel had hoped to start the race in the No. 69 Kimmel Racing Ford, but due to the length of the NASCAR Nationwide race at Chicagoland Speedway that he raced in earlier in the day Saturday, he did not make it to Salem Speedway until well after the race had begun.
The race had only one caution for 8 laps and took just 1 hour and nine minutes to complete.
One of the wild cards to the race was the new pavement in turns three and four. Hessert - who won the fall race at Salem in 2012 and spring race in 2013 - said once the race settled in, the pavement had little effect.
"It's still the same old Salem," he said. "The
grooves might be a little bit different, but it's still Salem."
In the prelude to the ARCA 200 Chuck Barnes of Louisville returned to victory lane for the first time in over two years at Salem by capturing the JayC Food Stores 50 for the Lucas Oil Great American Stocks.
Barnes, the all-time win leader at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery, passed Tim Rivers of Salem with 15 laps to go and went on to claim his 55th career win on the high banks.
Rivers, a Papa John’s Rookie of the Year candidate in the Great American Stock division, held on to finish second with Roger Williams third, Todd Kempf fourth and Kyle Hadley
ENFINGER CONQUERS SALEM; TAKES
FIRST THREE WINS OF ARCA SEASON
Smith Captures Season Opening Lucas Oil Great American Stock Race
SALEM, IN - Grant Enfinger made ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards history Sunday afternoon, winning his third race to start the 2014 season, becoming just the second driver in series history to do so.
"The stars are just lining up for us," Enfinger said. "It's pretty unbelievable."
After leading the first 100 laps of the Federated Auto Parts 200 presented by Crunch'N Nutter at Salem, Enfinger moved back to the front late in the race and took the lead when Ken Schrader hit the wall in turn one on the last re-start. Schrader was leading when the re-start began with Enfinger in second.
"I wanted the chance to drag race him to the finish," Enfinger said. "I think he just blew a right front there. That's what happened. It was a lot of fun racing up front against him."
Spencer Gallagher finished second, Frank Kimmel third and Cunningham Motorsports drivers Austin Wayne Self (fourth) and Tom Hessert (fifth) rounded out the top five.
Josh Williams, making his season debut in the No. 6 Southwest Florida Cable Construction Ford, finished sixth, just in front of Mason Mitchell in the Thermal Technology Services Ford. Schrader ended up eighth with Cody Coughlin ninth in the Jegs.com Toyota. Kyle Weatherman finished 10th.
Gallagher was happy with his best finish of the season and tying his career-best in the No. 23 Allegiant Travel Chevrolet.
"I love this place," Gallagher said. "It is such an exciting track. I am happy with how we finished."
Kimmel's team worked late Saturday to make repairs to his car after he hit the wall in qualifying Saturday. The No. 44 Ansell-Menards Toyota had to start at the back of the field, but was eventually able to make his way to the front.
"I'm sure we passed more cars than anybody," Kimmel said.
Self, in winning the SCOTT Rookie of the Race, pleased a throng of about 50 family members who made the trek to Salem from the French Lick, Indiana area.
"I think I gained a tenth of a second every time they cheered," Self said of his Hoosier Scale Dodge.
Hessert, in the No. 77 Caregard-AxiomWarranty.com Dodge, earned a top five finish despite going a lap down twice.
"We did what we could," he said. "It's a little bit frustrating because we know we could have been better. We know what we have to do when we come back here in the fall."
Enfinger grabbed the lead out of the gate, sailing past polesitter Justin Boston. He built a huge early lead and led for the first 104 laps until Mitchell grabbed the top spot and he immediately pulled away from the rest of the field until a caution flew on lap 124 for debris.
After a series of cautions and restarts, Schrader finally grabbed the lead. He and Enfinger raced tight for several laps until Karl Weber spun on lap 191, putting out the caution. That came just after Weatherman and Schrader got together, damaging Schrader's right front corner. He stayed on the track rather than pit and hit the wall after his tire finally went down.
"I wanted to get one more," said Schrader, referencing his last win at Salem in 1999.
Enfinger, meanwhile, took the lead and held off Gallagher to win his third consecutive ARCA Racing Series race. He is just the second driver in series history to win the first three ARCA races of the season and first since Ramo Stott accomplished the feat in 1970.
"I can't think Howard and Paula Bixman enough for giving me such great cars and allowing me to do this," Enfinger said. "We have such great equipment. The cars are so good right now and Kelly Kovski made some great calls about the car.
"We were not very good out of the trailer," he continued. "We cut our first practice short and kind of had to just sit back and re-group and give us a chance to think about it. He had a list of changes and I had a list of changes. It just came together. I was shocked at how well we qualified."
Enfinger now heads to Talladega with a chance to win the first four races of the season - something that has not happened in the 62-year history of the series.
"That's going to be tough," Enfinger said. "You just never know what is going to happen at Talladega. But, we have a great plate program and I know we'll be fast."
NEW SALEM SPEEDWAY CAMPING
REGULATIONS FOR ATV’s, SCOOTERS, ETC.
Due to insurance regulations and our desire to keep the Salem Speedway camping area a safe family friendly atmosphere, ATV’s, go-karts, motorized scooters, mopeds, mini bikes or dirt bikes will no longer be allowed in the camping or parking lot area. Golf carts will be allowed if operated in a responsible manner by those with a valid drivers license. Race teams may still use ATV’s for work related purposes.
Dear Race Fans,
We welcome campers at Salem Speedway for all of our racing events.
We ask your cooperation in making this a great experience for everyone involved. To help keep camping free at Salem Speedway we ask that you please observe a few rules.
- Don’t abuse camping space. Please do not take more space than absolutely necessary for your campsite. No campers allowed on site or saving of spaces more than 7 days prior to event.
- Respect those camping around you. Keep music at a lower volume during the late evening hours. Keep pets leashed at all times. No pets allowed inside track.
- Do not camp outside the marked boundaries.
- Salem Speedway reserves the right to refuse camp ground entrance to individuals and campers.
- NO ATV’s, GO-KARTS, MOTORIZED SCOOTERS, MOPEDS, MINI BIKES OR DIRT BIKES ALLOWED ON PREMISES. Golf carts will be allowed if operated in a responsible manner by those with a valid drivers license. This will be strictly enforced. Race teams may still use ATV’s for work related purposes. Those not in compliance with this rule face eviction from grounds.
- Please be extra careful with campfires during dry and windy conditions.
- Illegal drugs, explosives, fireworks, firearms, potato launchers, sling shots, guns of any type are prohibited. Excessive drunkenness, lewd or obscene behavior is grounds for eviction from Speedway property.
- Salem Speedway assumes no responsibility for loss, theft or damage of individual’s private property.
- All trash and waste to be removed by camper.
- Please be aware of all carbon monoxide dangers that can be harmful to you or other guests. Vehicle and generator exhaust MUST be expelled safely away from adjacent campsites.
- Salem Speedway property must be vacated by Tuesday at 6 p.m. following weekend race. Exception for those with paid season long spots.
- Due to insurance regulations Salem Speedway is prohibited from towing motorhomes, campers, etc. For towing services call – Wilcox Towing 812-883-3888. All towing at campers expense.
- Obey the rules. Failure to observe rules may result in eviction and possible prosecution.
- For emergency services – fire, police, ambulance call 911
We hope you have a great weekend at one of America’s most historic race tracks. Please accept our invitation to join us for some great racing action at Salem Speedway during the 2012 season..
Salem Speedway Management
Indiana Alcohol Beverage Commission Regulations prohibit alcohol carry-in through spectator gates.
CASEY’S GENERAL STORE SUMMERFEST 2015
Presented by ACE Hardware of Salem Speedway
Saturday, July 25, 2015
Lucas Oil Great American Stocks
Fast Qualifier: Kyle Hadley, 19.829
Casey’s General Store 75: 1. Todd Kempf, 2. Kyle Hadley, 3. Ronnie Basham III, 4. Tim Rivers, 5. Justin Pirtle, 6. Justin Bex, 7. Mike Sharp, 8. Josh Brading, 9. Heath Helton, 10. Troy Ashbaugh, 11. Matthew Stice, 12. Jonathan Ziegler, 13. Noll Staff, 14. David Bayens, 15. Brian Bayer, 16. Tony Conway, 17. Shawn Smith, 18. Taylor Webb, 19. Greg Hubbuch
O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks
Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. Kestler, 2. Whitfield, 3. Rogers, 4. Ferguson, 5. Davis
ACE Hardware of Salem 30: 1. Mike Kestler, 2. Justin Davis, 3. Craig Rogers, 4. Brian Ferguson, 5. Todd Whitfield
Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks
First Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. Allen, 2. #86, 3. Parsons, 4. Vaughn, 5. Campbell, 6. Josh King
Second Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. John King, 2 Abbott, 3. Carl Higgins Jr., 4. C. Meek, 5. B. Meek , 6. #41
Casey’s Homemade Pizza 25: 1. Jesse Allen, 2. Max Abbott, 3. #86, 4. John King, 5. Chuck Meek, 6. Bryan Meek, 7. David Parsons, 8. Travis Vaughn, 9. Josh King, 10. Carl Higgins, 11. Andrew Campell, 12. #41 (DQ for failure to provide correct driver information, resulting in incorrect starting position)
Presented by the Scott County Visitors Commission
Saturday, July 4, 2015
LUCAS OIL GREAT AMERICAN STOCKS
Fast Qualifier: Blake Hillard, 19.747
Firecracker 200: 1. Brett Hudson (201), 2. Blake Hillard (201), 3. Will Kimmel (201), 4.
Artie Ware (201), 5. Tony Conway (199), 6. Shawn Smith (198), 7. Jeff Berg (196), 8. J.J. Schafer (196), 9. A.J. Kempf (189), 10. Sammy Davis (176), 11. Kyle Hadley (172), 12. Scott Caudell (171), 13. Todd Kempf (162), 14. Matt Stice (137), 15. Johnny Magee (125), 16. Phil Jenkins (107), 17. Curtis Peeples (104), 18. David Bayens (102), 19. Josh Brading (100), 20. Ronnie Basham III (92), 21. Skeeter Crum (90), 22. Tim Rivers (84), 23. David Powell (72), 24. Justin Pirtle (24), 25. Roger Williams (60), 26. Jeremy Adkisson (53), 27. Brian Bayer (19), 28. Jesse Cottrell (17), 29. Troy Ashbaugh (16), 30. Dan Banker (DNS), 31. Beau Hendrich (DNS).
O’REILLY AUTO PARTS PURE STOCKS
Freedom 50: 1. Craig Rogers, 2. Mike Kestler, 3. Justin Davis, 4. Jamie Goodman, 5. Donnie Blanchard, 6. Brian Ferguson, 7. Todd Whitfield, 8. Ken Sumner (DNS).
PORTLAND RECYCLING FRONT WHEEL DRIVE STOCKS
Independence 50: 1. Jamie Bierman, 2. Alex Bube, 3. Doodle Farris, 4. Jesse Allen, 5. Carl Higgins Jr., 6. Bill Growe, 7. Max Abbott, 8. Collin Worrall, 9. Derick Bradshaw, 10. Travis Vaughn, 11. Kevin Vaughn, 12. Tracey Nicholson, 13. John King, 14. Andrew Campbell (DNS), 15. David Parsons III (DNS).
Firecracker 200 presented by the Scott County Visitors Commission
Dallas Center, IA
St. Paul, IN
RONNIE BASHAM III
New Albany, IN
Eddie Gilstrap Motors Legends Classic
Saturday, May 30, 2015
Lucas Oil Great American Stocks
Fast Qualifier: Shawn Smith, 19.689
Eddie Gilstrap Motors Ford EcoBoost 75: 1. Shawn Smith, 2. David Bayens, 3. Roger Williams, 4. Kyle Hadley, 5. Ronnie Basham III, 6. Tony Conway, 7. Mike Sharp, 8. Justin Pirtle, 9. Tim Rivers, 10. Todd Kempf, 11. Jonathan Ziegler, 12. Heath Helton, 13. A.J. Kempf, 14. Beau Hendrich, 15. Noll Staff, 16. Greg Hubbuch, 17. Troy Ashbaugh, 18. Taylor Webb, 19. David Powell, 20. Josh Brading, 21. Brian Bayer, 22. Artie Ware (DNS).
O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks
Heat Race (10-Laps): 1. Rogers, 2. Kestler, 3. Davis, 4. Goodman, 5. Whitfield, 6. Ferguson
Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center 30: 1. Mike Kestler, 2. Jamie Goodman, 3. Craig Rogers, 4. Justin Davis, 5. Todd Whitfield, 6. Brian Ferguson
Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks
Heat Race (10-Laps): 1. Allen, 2. King, 3. Abbott, 4. Growe, 5. T. Vaughn, 6. K. Vaughn
Built Ram Tough 25: 1. John King, 2. Jesse Allen, 3. Max Abbott, 4. Bill Growe, 5. Travis Vaughn, 6. Kevin Vaughn
GREAT AMERICAN RACING SERIES
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Circle Track Great American Racing Series
Fast Qualifer: Chuck Barnes
First Qualifying Race (25-Laps): 1. Barnes, 2. Bayer, 3. Hillard, 4. T. Kempf, 5. Bayens, 6. Rivers, 7. Berg, 8. Stice, 9. A.J. Kempf, 10. Cotton, 11. Short, 12. Brading, 13. Jenkins.
Second Qualifying Race (25-Laps): 1. Kimmel, 2. Smith, 3. Hudson, 4. Williams, 5. Conway, 6. Elliott, 7. Ware, 8. Hendrich, 9. Pirtle, 10. Todd, 11. Lux.
Circle Track Great American Racing Series 100: 1. Will Kimmel, 2. Blake Hillard, 3. Shawn Smith, 4. Todd Kempf, 5. Brian Bayer, 6.Curtis Peeples, 7. Roger Williams, 8. Chuck Barnes, 9. David Bayens, 10. Loren Short, 11. Artie Ware, 12. Brett Hudson, 13. Jeff Berg, 14. Marcus Elliott, 15. Justin Pirtle, 16. Matt Stice, 17. Ronnie Lux, 18. A.J. Kempf, 19. Tony Conway, 20. Ronnie Cotton, 21. Beau Hendrich, 22. Tim Rivers, 23. Mike Todd, 24. Josh Brading, 25. Brandon Tregembo, 26. Kyle Hadley
O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks
O’Reilly Auto Parts 25: 1. Justin Davis, 2. Todd Whitfield, 3. Jamie Goodman, 4. Mike Kestler, 5. Craig Rogers, 6.
Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks
Portland Recycling 20: 1. John King, 2. Jesse Allen, 3. Max Abbott, 4. Travis Vaughn, 5. Kevin Vaughn, 6. Ronnie Gathof.
Federated Auto Parts ARCA 200
Sunday, April 26, 2015
ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards
Fast Qualifier: None, rained out
Federated Auto Parts 200: 1. Ken Schrader, Kyle Weatherman, 3. Dominic Ursetta, 4. J.J. Haley, 5. Austin Wayne Self, 6. Brandon Jones, 7. Tom Hessert, 8. Clayton Weatherman, 9. David Levine, 10. James Swanson, 11. Michael Lira, 12. Sarah Cornett-Ching, 13. Grant Enfinger, 14. Darrell Basham, 15. Thomas Praytor, 16. Brandon McKenzie, 17. Brad Smith, 18. Bobby Hamilton Jr., 19. Josh Williams, 20. Will Kimmel, 21. Bo LeMastus, 22. Con Nicolopoulos, 23. Josh White, 24. Frank Kimmel II, 25. Mark Meunier, 26. Wayne Peterson.
Lucas Oil Great American Stocks
Fast Qualifier: None, rained out
Federated Car Care 50: 1. Todd Kempf, 2. David Bayens, 3. Ronnie Basham III, 4. Brian Bayer, 5. Tony Conway, 6. Shawn Smith, 7. Dr. Travis Wilson, 8. Justin Pirtle, 9. Roger Williams, 10. Tim Rivers, 11. Troy Ashbaugh, 12. Beau Hendrich, 13. Greg Hubbuch, 14. Mike Sharp, 15. Johathan Ziegler, 16. David Powell, 17. A.J. Kempf, 18. Matt Stice, 19. Kyle Hadley, 20. Heath Helton.
2015 SEASON OPENER
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Lucas Oil Great American Stocks
Fast Qualifier: Chuck Barnes, 19.809
Hoosier Lottery 75: 1. Todd Kempf, 2. Ronnie Basham III, 3. Justin Pirtle, 4. Travis Wilson, 5. Artie Ware, 6. Troy Ashbaugh, 7. Heath Helton, 8. Mike Sharp, 9. Shawn Smith, 10. Brian McDonald, 11. Brian Bayer, 12. Taylor Webb, 13. Matt Stice, 14. Roger Williams, 15. Loren Short, 16. Chuck Barnes, Sr., 17. Jonathon Ziegler, 18. David Bayens, 19. Beau Hendrich, 20. Tim Rivers, 21. Mike Basham, 22. Greg Hubbuch, 23. Kyle Hadley (DNS), 24. Noll Staff.
Midwest Thunder Roadsters
Fast Qualifier: John Robbins, 20.028
First Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. Dugger, 2. Robbins, 3. Brown, 4. Dietzen, 5. Griffin, 6. Oliver, 7. Kendall.
Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center 25: 1. John Robbins, 2. Marty Griffin, 3. Darrell Brown, 4. Dan Dugger, 5. Mark Dietzen, 6. Brian Kendall, 7. Rodney Oliver.
O’Reilly Auto Parts Pure Stocks
Fast Qualifier: Mike Kestler, 16.912
First Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. Whitfield, 2. Ferguson, 3. Warren.
Second Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. Goodman, 2. Kestler, 3. Davis, 4. Rogers.
The Edge Collision Center 30: 1. Mike Kestler, 2. Todd Whitfield, 3. Jamie Goodman, 4. Justin Davis, 5. Craig Rogers, 6. Brian Ferguson, 7. Frank Warren.
Portland Recycling Front Wheel Drive Stocks
Fast Qualifier: Jamie Bierman, 17.355
First Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. King, 2. Abbott, 3. Lewis, 4. K. Vaughn, 5. B. Meek, 6. C. Meek.
Second Heat Race (8-Laps): 1. Allen, 2. Bierman, 3. Worrell, 4. Fiedler.
Six Sigma 25: 1. Jamie Bierman, 2. Collin Worrell, 3. Jesse Allen, 4. John King, 5. Justin Fiedler, 6. Bryan Meek, 7. Ruben Lewis, 8. Kevin Vaughn, 9. Max Abbott, 10. Chuck Meek, 11. Dennis Thompson (DNS), 12. Tim Crawford (DNS), 13. Travis Vaughn (DNS).
"WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GENERAL ADMISSION AND RESERVED SEATING?"...
- General Admission seating is located on the bottom twelve rows of wooden bleachers. Guests may sit anywhere in that section that they would like. Reserved Seating is located on the top ten rows of metal bleachers. There are backs on these seats, and seats are guaranteed for the ticket holders.
"CAN I BRING COOLERS INTO THE SALEM SPEEDWAY?"...
- While Salem Speedway offers a wide variety of concessions, guests are permitted to bring coolers into the track area. Coolers should be no larger than 14" x 14". Glass bottles and alcohol are prohibited.
"WHEN CAN I GET ADVANCED TICKETS?"...
- Salem Speedway offers Advanced Tickets prices for fans who order tickets prior to the race. Fans may purchase Advanced Tickets any time until 5 pm on the Friday before the race. Ticket prices increase $2.00 at the gate the day of the race. Fans purchasing Advanced Tickets can have them maiedl directly to their home for a $2.00 fee, or place their tickets in Will-Call. On the day of the race, tickets and credit card receipts can be picked up at the Will-Call window. Please have a photo ID available. Tickets will not be mailed the week of a race.
"HOW CAN I GET ADVANCED TICKETS?"...
- Fans may purchase tickets by calling Salem Speedway, purchase them using the "EVENT TICKETS" page of this website, or by stopping by the office located on the second floor of the tower. A credit card number will be required for orders taken over the phone. Salem Speedway strongly discourages fans from sending credit card information via email. If you would like to place a ticket order via email, please include your phone number and someone from our office will gladly contact you to take the order. We accept all major credit cards, cash and personal checks.
"IS THE INFIELD OPEN TO SPECTATORS?"...
- Spectators are welcome to enjoy the races from the infield of Salem Speedway for most of our events. Fans can get into the infield with a general admission ticket, however, they will not be able to cross the track if practice, qualifications, or racing is underway. There is a concession stand, and restroom facility in the infield, and spectators are permitted to have tents, portable grills, lawn chairs, and other equipment to make the races enjoyable.
"CAN I CAMP OUTSIDE OF THE TRACK?"...
- Camping is permitted in the grassy areas outside of the track free of charge. Fans wishing to camp on the grounds should be aware that there are no hook-ups for RV's. Portable restroom facilities are available near the track entrance.