One of the biggest weeks for Outlaw Super Late Model racing in the Midwest is set to roll off tonight at Indiana’s New Paris Speedway in the 15th Summer Sizzler. The field for 2016 has an impressive variety of former race winners and champions from all across Indiana, Michigan and beyond with 24 drivers already hitting the track for an evening of practice on Wednesday in preparation for racing on Thursday.
Former race winner Jack Landis led the way in practice with a best time of 13.169 seconds around the fast quarter-mile. Though Landis is a past winner of the Sizzler, that triumph last came back in the race’s fourth running in 2005. Landis has run consistently in the first three Outlaw races at New Paris in 2016 but has yet to find victory lane trailing behind the two members of the Roahrig family.
Tyler Roahrig is still the driver to beat in the Summer Sizzler as the three-time and defending winner clocked in third on the practice charts at 13.177 seconds, just eight thousandths off Landis’ best time. Roahrig is also in a deadlock for the points lead in the 2016 track standings with his father JR Roahrig, who won the Summer Sizzler in 2011, but only clocked in 11th on the charts Wednesday night.
A number of other former Sizzler winners are looking to add to their win total tonight. 2010 winner Phil Bozell showed some speed as well Wednesday clocking in at 13.284 seconds, good for fifth on the board. His dad, 2003 winner Andy Bozell is looking for his second race triumph as well and looked good clocking in at seventh on Wednesday at 13.413 seconds. 2014 winner Jeff Ganus appeared at ninth on the charts while 2009 Scott Hantz did not practice, but has filed an entry for show.
Bobby Stremme is one of several drivers going for their first Sizzler checkered flag Thursday, he ended up right between Landis and Tyler Roahrig on the board at 13.174 seconds. Bud Perry came in just behind the top three at 13.272 seconds.
TK Whitman, Andrew Morrissey, and Steve Stacy were top ten on the practice charts Wednesday in their quest for their first Summer Sizzler win. Todd Harrington, Mike Brooks, Kevin Sauer, Jason Timmerman were in the top 15.
Dustin Lundren, Brent Jack, Brian Ross, Corey Ryman, Donny Klotz, Scott Ross, Vern Sauer, Tanner Terry, and Wade Berger also went out to take time.
There are more teams expected to take part Thursday night at New Paris Speedway. Be sure to stay with Speed51.com for Trackside Now coverage and all throughout the next week as the Outlaw drivers also head to Kalamazoo Speedway for the Kalamazoo Klash on next Wednesday.
-By Connor Sullivan, Speed51.com State Editor (CT, MA, Long Island) – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo Credit: Speed51.com