Monday, May 13 2013 @ 02:29 PM EDT
Mooresville, NC 5/13/13 – After getting washed out at Anderson Motor Speedway two weeks prior, the drivers and teams of the X-1R Pro Cup Series will turn their attention to the track deemed the “concrete jungle”, Kingsport Speedway in Kingsport, Tennessee. The Friday night event will be the series first of two visits to the 3/8th mile concrete track throughout the 2013 season. Unlike the first two events of the season, where series regulars battled amongst themselves to decide a race winner, this weekend’s MAHLE 250 will see at least a pair of area regulars make their bid to take home the $10,000 winner’s check. Blake Jones, driving for last year’s winner Wade Day, and Coleman Pressley, son of track owner Robert Pressley, have both filed entries with plans to give series regulars a “run for their money” once the green flag waives.
MAHLE 250 Notes and Quotes
Track/Location: Kingsport Speedway-Kingsport, TN Track Size: .375
Event Name: MAHLE 250 Laps/Distance: 250 Laps/ 94 Miles
Event Schedule: Series Standings: AFR Rookie Standings:
Practice: 1:30-2:30pm, 3-4pm 1) Clay Rogers 340 1) Eric Gerchak 275
Qualifying: 6:30pm 2) J.P. Morgan -60 2) Brady Boswell -38
Autograph Session: 7:15pm 3) Eric Gerchak -65 3) Reid Wilson -82
Race: 8:30pm 4) Dalton Hopkins -87
5) Brady Boswell -103
Pre Entered Drivers: #1 Dalton Hopkins, #2 Brady Boswell, #8 Mark McFarland, #15 R.S. Senter, #16 Clay Rogers, #21 Eric Gerchak #23 J.P. Morgan, #41 Rusty Skewes, #53 Joey Jones, #56 Gus Dean, #59 Coleman Pressley, #62 Andrew Smith, #66 Reid Wilson
Different Roles Same Goals :
Last August the X-1R Pro Cup Series made its return to the Kingsport Speedway for the first time since 1997. Wade Day dominated the day setting fast time in qualifying before claiming the victory after being sent to the back for jumping a restart midway through the race. This year Day will be calling the shots for local driver Blake Jones, who exited the race early last season due to engine woes. According to Jones when he looks back to the race a year ago; he is glad that Day is on top of his pit box rather than a fellow competitor.
“Last year we ran the race with our own car and had some motor problems pretty early on that knocked us out of the race. This time I’ll be behind the same car my crew chief (Wade Day) won with last year when the Pro Cup Series raced Kingsport. It’s a pretty good feeling when you can head to the race track knowing you’ll be behind the wheel of a car that can win. Having a guy on top of your pit box that knows what it takes to win is even better. I can tell you right off it’s a better situation than trying to beat him out on the track.”
From Zero to Hero:
The Kingsport Speedway, often referred to as the “Concrete Jungle” wasn’t the best track for Air Flow Research Rookie of the Year Dalton Hopkins in 2012. Last season the West Virginia native qualified dead last in the field and only improved four positions. However; flash forward to 2013 and the results couldn’t be more different for Hopkins thus far this season. As he and new crew chief Steve Byrd prepare for this weekend’s MAHLE 250; a totally different outlook and mindset on the weekend ahead has Hopkins actually looking forward to getting back behind the wheel at Kingsport.
“Kingsport wasn’t my favorite track last year. We struggled the entire weekend and never could get the car to handle. It’s a neat little track that’s close to home but it doesn’t matter how close it is when you struggle as bad as we did - you don’t get too excited about going back. However, this year has been totally different than last year. I’ve got a great crew chief in Steve Byrd that has given me fast cars no matter what track we’ve been to. The chance to go back to Kingsport with a fast car to see how much we’ve improved is probably going to be the best part of the weekend. The Kingsport area is about as close to home as we get all season so a good run there would mean a lot and I think we should have the car to do it.”
Just a Family Tradition:
Coleman Pressley, son of Kingsport Speedway owner and former NASCAR driver Robert Pressley, will be making his X-1R Pro Cup Series debut at Friday night’s MAHLE 250. Always a tough competitor no matter what he has driven over the year, fans can expect the youngster to be a contender for the win amongst series regulars. Even though it might be a new series Pressley doesn’t anticipate any problems getting up to speed at a track he’s very familiar with.
“I guess you could say I’ve got a good idea of how to get around the place (Kingsport Speedway). I haven’t got to race there as much as you might think, but I have been able to test their with the Pro Cup car some and I think we’ll have a good piece to race with Friday night. I haven’t raced against too many of these guys before, and this will be my first race in the series so I’m sure there will be a few things I’ll need to get familiar with. I’ve heard nothing but good things about the series; that’s one of the reasons why we went out and got a car to run with them. Plus paying $10,000 to win each and every weekend makes it the best paying short track series there is. It should be a good weekend for us and all the fans in the Kingsport area.”
For more information on the X-1R Pro Cup Series including news, results, and photos visit the series website at www.x1rprocup.com
. For series operations and marketing information contact Chris Ragle at [email protected]
or call 940-393-3167. For general information about the X-1R Pro Cup Series contact the series office at 704-662-9212.