Salem, IN – The list of early entries to date for the upcoming 43rd Running of the Winchester 400 on the famous High Banks of Winchester Speedway on October 12th continues to grow and contains even more impressive names as the event continues to be one of the premier template late model events in the country, sanctioned by the ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS.
2013 Winchester 400 winner Erik Jones has filed an entry to defend his title and try to go for two 400 wins in a row. The 18 year old Michigan native, who was the inaugural JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Champion in 2011, will once again drive the Kyle Busch Motorsports entry, which he not only took to victory at the Winchester 400 last season, but also got his second Snowball Derby win. Jones had been racing in selected NASCAR Camping World Truck series events for Kyle Busch Motorsports were he picked up a win at Iowa Speedway on July 11th and in selected NASCAR Nationwide Series events for Joe Gibbs Racing in 2014. The Kyle Busch Motorsports Super Late Model has already been to victory lane twice this season with the ARCA/CRA Super Series with owner Kyle Busch behind the wheel at Lucas Oil Raceway and Kalamazoo Speedway.
2013 ARCA/CRA Super Series Champion and current series point’s leader Travis Braden has entered. Braden has two victories so far this season at Columbus Motor Speedway and at Flat Rock Speedway. Braden has one Winchester series victory, he picked that up in July of 2013 and has one JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Winchester victory on his resume.
2012 Winchester 400 winner Ross Kenseth has entered. Kenseth, the son of NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Matt Kenseth, is currently second in series points to Braden with two series points events left in the 2014 season. Kenseth is still looking for his first win of the 2014 season, and doing that in the Winchester 400 would make up for an up and down season.
Oklahoma native Donnie Wilson has entered as he tries to pick up his first series and Winchester 400 victories. Wilson always has a fast car at Winchester and has lead lots of laps in the Winchester 400. Wilson picked up three wins in the Southern Super Series this season at Nashville, Mobile and at Montgomery.
Georgia teenager Anderson Bowen has filed an entry. Bowen was a time winner with the Southern Super Series this year at Gresham and Montgomery and was the winner of the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour 2nd Annual Mercy Masters of the Pros 144 in May at Lebanon I-44 Speedway. Bowen was the EDCO Welding Fast Qualifier for the series event this past Labor Day Weekend. Bowen will have Ricky Turner turning the wrenches at Winchester, Turner guided Chase Elliott to several big Super Late Model wins including the 2010 Winchester 400.
Ohio teenager Cody Coughlin, the 2013 JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Champion, has entered. Coughlin lead all 100 laps of the series event on Labor Day to claim his first ever series and Super Late Model win, holding off veteran Rick Turner the whole 100 laps including several restarts. Coughlin finished seventh in last year’s 400, after only having limited Super Late Model Starts.
North Carolina veteran racer Jeff Fultz has also filed an entry. The former Ohio native has been on a quest to get a 400 win for several seasons. Fultz has two series victories at Winchester, both of those were Labor Day Weekend 100 lap events.
Entries have also been received from several CRA regulars including Senneker Performance Rookie of the Year contenders Paul Shafer Jr. and Brandon Watson along with 2013 series Rookie of the Year Ali Kern, who got a season high second place finish at the series Flat Rock Speedway event. Kil-Kare Speedway series winner Brandon Oakley has entered along with series part-time competitor Brandon Hermiller, nephew of former ARCA Racing Series Champion Tim Steele.
The drivers above join the impressive list of drivers already entered for the 400 that includes Johnny VanDoorn, Daniel Hemric, Brian Campbell, Brian Hoar, Mason Mingus, Stephen Nasse, Rick Turner, Wes Griffith Jr., Matt Hall, and Tom Woodin. This Saturday, September 27th is the last day teams can enter in advance. Teams entering the event after Saturday will have to pay an additional $50 for a late entry fee.
The Winchester 400 is 400 laps counting cautions with live pit stops. It is a 12 tire maximum race. The event will pay $15,000 to win plus bonuses, which includes $10,000 in lap leader money, which is $25 per lap lead, plus bonuses of $1500, $1000 and $500 to the top three finishing traveling non-regular CRA teams.
Things begin for the Winchester 400 Weekend with an optional load in, hauler parking and pit pass purchases on Thursday, October 9th from 3 to 8pm. Pits open on Friday, October 10th at 10am with rotating practice for all divisions beginning at 1pm. Qualifying for the Vore’s Touring Compacts, the Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman Series and Stealth Trailers CRA Street Stocks New Star events and the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour 100 lap event will start at 5:40pm. Racing action will begin at 7pm with 8 lap heat races for the Vores Touring Compacts. The JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Season Championship Winchester 100 Presented by JEGS.com will be up next. The Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman Series and Stealth Trailers CRA Street Stocks 25 lap New Star features will follow. The Vores Touring Compacts 20 lap feature will cap off the nights racing action.
Pits open on Saturday, October 11th at 8am, rotating practice for all divisions will begin at 11am. Qualifying for the Top Speed Modifieds, Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman Series and Stealth Trailers CRA Street Stocks will begin at 3:30pm. EDCO Welding Pole Qualifying for the 43rd Annual Winchester 400 for the ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS will begin at 5pm. The race program will begin at 6pm with Top Speed Modifieds Last Chance races. The 50 lap Vore’s Welding CRA Late Model Sportsman Series Season Championship event will be up next, followed by the 25 lap Winchester 400 Last Chance race if needed. The Top Speed Modifieds 50 lap Run for the Gun will follow. The 50 lap Stealth Trailers CRA Street Stocks Season Championship event will cap off this huge night of racing. The Annual Winchester 400 Party in the Pavilion will start in immediately following the races.
On Sunday, October 12th the pits will open at 9am, there will be a short warm-up session for the ARCA/CRA Super Series cars at 11am. There will be an on track autograph session with all the 43rd Annual Winchester 400 drivers starting at 12:30. Opening ceremonies will begin at 1:30 pm with the 43rd Annual Winchester 400 taking the green flag at 2pm.
– CRA press release. Photo credit: Speed51.com