Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

November 6, 2013

DE LA BASTIDE: Saving sprint car pavement racing

UAW is lending needed support to effort.

Back in the 1970s, when I first moved to the Hoosier State, pavement sprint car racing was sanctioned through USAC with plenty of racing on tracks in central Indiana. Since then, times have changed.

Racing fans still can remember the Thursday Night Thunder programs on ESPN that showcased pavement sprint car racing to a national television audience.

Two years ago, USAC dropped paved ovals from the schedule for the sprint car division, opting instead to run all the races on dirt tracks.

The staple for pavement sprint car racing has been and remains the annual Pay Less Little 500 at Anderson Speedway, the richest pavement in the world.

The newly formed United States Speed Association stepped forward and sanctioned several races in 2012 at Anderson Speedway and continued again this year with sponsorship from the United Auto Workers union.

During its annual banquet last Saturday, the tentative 2014 schedule was released with four sprint car races on the schedule including the Glen Niebel Classic on April 13, the Pay Less Little 500 on May 24 at Anderson, another big race on Oct. 4 at Anderson and a visit to Angola Speedway on July 26.

Champion Aaron Pierce put things in perspective when he accepted the hardware for the championship.

Pierce, who has never lost a USSA race at Anderson Speedway except for the Little 500, commented that he’s fortunate his favorite track is close to home.

“This whole series is really good,” he said of the efforts of Mel and Don Kenyon, Eric Bunn and Norm Shields and Rick Dawson, owner of Anderson Speedway, to keep pavement sprint car racing alive.

“Keep it going,” Pierce implored. “If we don’t have a place to race, there won’t be any pavement racing left.”

The USSA sprint cars need to return to such Indiana tracks as Winchester and Salem speedways and Lucas Oil Raceway. The tracks in Toledo, Ohio, and Berlin, Mich., also would be good locations for sprint cars on pavement.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • WHSTaylor golf 03 Prep Roundup for Thursday, April 24 Western boys golf coach Steve Hoppes was pleased with his team's fifth-place finish in Saturday's Twin Lakes Invitational, but knew his squad was better than the 339 it posted. The Panthers saw improvement in Wednesday's 165-215 win over Taylor on th

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT042414 - Brett Bowman column - Bowman column sig BOWMAN: Gas City gearing up for USAC sprints Heading into the new season at the Gas City I-69 Speedway, there were more questions than answers among fans as to how things were going to be run.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT042414 - Dana Neer column - Neer column sig NEER: Barley is a beneficial food It is no secret that raw fruits and vegetables are the best foods for us. Foods full of vitamins, nutrients and amino acids provide life to our cells, energy for our daily schedule and health to our minds, bodies and spirits.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sports briefs for Thursday, April 24 USF's Shurn honored with SI mention Former Kokomo standout Skylarr Shurn has been honored by Sports Illustrated with a spot on the magazine's Faces in the Crowd section, available at the magazine's website now. Shurn led the University of Saint Fran

    April 24, 2014

  • Mathis' leadership paying off INDIANAPOLIS -- An authentic set of battle armor greeted visitors to Robert Mathis' locker Wednesday at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center. The black-and-gold helmet and chest plate look more at home in one of the "300" movies, but they are the

    April 24, 2014

  • SPL - KT042314 - Prep roundup - pic Prep roundup for Wednesday, April 23 Northwestern's track and field teams swept visiting Tri-Central on Tuesday night.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT042414 - Brett Bowman column - Brett's column sig BOWMAN: Cottle has high hopes for new campaign In an era that sees superstar athletes at any sport walk around and boast how great they are, it's refreshing to see the likes of Shane Cottle. He is an open wheel racing standout who never blows his own horn and is embarrassed by the attention he receives for being considered one of the top sprint car drivers in the country.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT042214 - Prep roundup - pic Prep roundup for Tuesday, April 22 Eastern's girls tennis team beat Northfield 4-1 Monday at Greentown for its second straight win following a season-opening loss to Peru last week.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT042214 - B1 briefs - mug Sports briefs for Tuesday, April 22 The Mid-American Conference on Monday named former Kokomo Wildkat standout T.J. Weir its West Division Pitcher of the Week.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPL - KT042114 - Athlete of the week - mug Simmerman is Athlete of the Week Simmerman helped the Comets go 3-0 last week.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

NCAA Men's Basketball Poll
Featured Ads
SportsKT twitter
More kokomotribune.com
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
US Proposes Pay-for-priority Internet Standards Wife Mourns Chicago Doctor Killed in Afghanistan FDA Proposes Regulations on E-cigarettes Kerry Warns Russia of Expensive New Sanctions Mideast Peace Talks Stall on Hamas Deal Cody Walker Remembers His Late Brother Paul Grieving South Korea Puts Up Yellow Ribbons Raw: Kerry Brings His Dog to Work Raw: Girls Survive Car Crash Into Their Bedroom Three U.S. Doctors Killed by Afghan Security Yankees' Pineda Suspended 10 Games for Pine Tar Colleagues Mourn Death of Doctors in Afghanistan Ukraine Launches Operation Against Insurgents Obama Reassures Japan on China Raw: Car Crashes Into San Antonio Pool Time Magazine Announces Top Influencers List Raw: Angry Relatives Confront SKorea Officials Bigger Riders Means Bigger Horses Out West Yankees Pineda Ejected for Pine Tar Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.