BROWNSBURG, Ind. — Celebrating four seasons under the ownership of three-time NASCAR Cup champion, Tony Stewart, the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1™ will enter the new year boasting a schedule comprised of 55 events at 36 different facilities. “America’s Series” will crisscross much of the Northeast and Midwest during their upcoming travels, visiting dirt ovals in nine different states including Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, Iowa, New York, and Wisconsin, all after a five-race stint in sunny, northern Florida.
Like years prior, Tony Stewart’s traveling All Stars will begin the new year with action in the Sunshine State, highlighting the lone trip south of the Mason-Dixon Line with three appearances during Bubba Raceway Park’s 7th Annual Winter Nationals on February 1-3, followed by a pair of DIRTcar Nationals starts at Volusia Speedway Park on Wednesday and Thursday, February 7-8.
As an added bonus to all full-time, All Star Circuit of Champions teams making the journey to Bubba Raceway Park and Volusia Speedway Park, a point fund, made possible by Panini America, the Official Trading Card Partner of NASCAR, will be distributed amongst the top-15, full-time, All Star Circuit of Champions teams entered for action during the entire Florida swing.
“We are honored to partner with Tony and the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 for their southern swing to Florida this week,” said Mark Warsop, CEO at Panini America, the Official Trading Card Partner of NASCAR. “While we produce trading cards across multiple sports, we are also sports enthusiasts, whether it be motorsports, football, basketball, soccer or baseball. We are truly excited for the opportunity to sponsor the points fund. Best of luck to all of the drivers and teams as they compete over the next two weekends.”
To be eligible for the Panini America point fund, participating teams must be committed, full-time travelers with the All Star Circuit of Champions in 2018 and must participate in all All Star events in the state of Florida. If all five events are conducted, the overall point fund will equal $15,000; $3,750 reserved for the champion. Acknowledging the risk for inclement weather, if only four of the five scheduled events are conducted, the overall point fund will decrease to $12,500 with $3,125 being awarded to the overall champion. Three events or less will guarantee a $10,000 point fund with $2,500 awarded to the champion.
Points accumulated in Florida will not count toward the 2018 All Star Circuit of Champions championship standings, nor the 2018 year-end Series point fund.
Expected to lead the All Star charge into Bubba Raceway Park and Volusia Speedway Park is six-time and defending All Star champion, Chad Kemenah. The pilot of the familiar Hunter Racing, No. 10H entry will enter his 2018 Florida campaign fresh off of a championship season with the All Star Circuit of Champions, now tied with Hartford, Ohio’s Dale Blaney for the most all-time. Kemenah sealed his 2017 title run with a display of consistency; 37 top-ten finishes in 48 main event starts, also claiming victories at Atomic Speedway, Mercer Raceway Park, and 34 Raceway.
Presumably, full-time All Star competitors expected to join Chad Kemenah during action in Florida include Findlay, Ohio, native and the 2017 Pete Jacobs Memorial champion, Caleb Helms; former All Star champion and Aliquippa, Pa., native, Tim Shaffer; Shreve, Ohio’s Trevor Baker; the 2017 All Star “Rookie of the Year,” Max Stambaugh; Vienna, W. Va., native, Cale Conley; the third generation duo of Hunter and Jordan Mackison; Dave Blaney in Pete Grove’s Premier Motorsports entry; 2017 All Star “Rookie of the Year” contender, John Garvin; Clute, Texas, native, Aaron Reutzel; and 74-time All Star winner, the “Brownsburg Bullet” Joey Saldana.
In addition, many of the nation’s finest will join the All Star Circuit of Champions during competition in the Sunshine State. Drivers expected to challenge “Amercia’s Series” during all five events in Florida include St. Helena, Calif., native and former Chili Bowl Nationals champion, Rico Abreu; defending Central PA Sprint Series champion, Danny Dietrich; 2017 World of Outlaws “Rookie of the Year,” Sheldon Haudenschild; 2017 Knoxville Raceway Track Champion, Ian Madsen; former Williams Grove Speedway National Open champion, Greg Hodnett; and three-time NASCAR Cup champion, “Smoke” Tony Stewart.
“I want to welcome the race fans, as well as the race teams, back to Bubba Raceway Park and Volusia Speedway Park. It has been a longstanding tradition to kick off the All Star season in Florida and I’m thrilled that we get the opportunity to continue just that,” Tony Stewart, owner of the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1, said. “For some, the offseason can be long, so this is a perfect opportunity to escape the winter cold and head for warmer temperatures. What better way to start a season than Florida in February.”
The All Star Circuit of Champions have made 28 prior appearances at Bubba Raceway Park dating back to February 9, 1991. The “Madman” Kerry Madsen, who won one of the three main events conducted in 2017, owns the most All Star victories (five) at the Ocala oval, followed by defending World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series champion, Donny Schatz. Schatz owns four victories at Bubba Raceway Park during All Star competition, most recently scoring back-to-back wins during the 2017 Winter Nationals.
Dominating the All Star win list at Volusia Speedway Park, Dover, Missouri’s Danny Lasoski has tamed the half-mile on 16 different occasions throughout his career, over double the amount of victories attained by Donny Schatz who is second on the All Star Volusia win list with seven. The “Brownsburg Bullet” Joey Saldana has earned five All Star victories at Volusia, followed by Dale Blaney with four triumphs. Despite conquering the win list, Lasoski has not visited victory lane at Volusia Speedway Park with the All Stars since February 15, 2012.
Bubba Raceway Park will open pit gates at 9:00 am during all three days of Winter Nationals competition. A mandatory All Star drivers meeting will be conducted at 5:30 pm on Thursday and Friday, February 1-2, followed by hot laps at 6:45.
On Saturday, February 3, starting times will move ahead one hour with the drivers meeting scheduled for 4:30 pm, followed by All Star hot laps at 5:45 pm, sharp. Those seeking additional news and notes such as general admission gate times and ticket prices should visit Bubba Raceway Park on the Web at www.bubbaracewaypark.com. An open practice session for the All Star Circuit of Champions will be conducted on Wednesday, January 31.
Volusia Speedway Park will open pit gates at 10:00 am on Wednesday and Thursday, February 7-8. A mandatory drivers meeting will be conducted at 5:00 pm, followed by engine heat at 5:30 pm, sharp. Those seeking more news and notes should visit the DIRTcar Nationals live on the Web at www.dirtcarnationals.com. An open practice for all sprint car competitors will be conducted on Tuesday evening, February 6.
-All Star Circuit of Champions Press Release
-Photo Credit: Paul Arch