Salem, IN – The entry list for Friday night’s $11,000-to-win Masters of the Pros 200 Pro Late Model event sanctioned by the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance at Birch Run Speedway (MI) already had lots of talent on it, but recently the potential field has gotten even better with the addition of some southern flavor to the list, bringing the current entry list to 35 cars for the 28-car starting field.
Topping the list of recent entries is NASCAR legend Sterling Marlin from Columbia, Tennessee. The two-time Daytona 500 winner captured 10 wins with 216 top 10’s and 11 pole awards during his NASCAR Cup Series career. The multi-time track champion at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville is still a regular competitor at that track in their Pro Late Model Division and has competed in the last four Master of the Pro’s events, getting a third-place finish in that event in 2015.
Senoia, Georgia hot shoe Bubba Pollard has also filed an entry. Pollard has won big money Late Model races all over the country and is one of the most well-known Late Model drivers in the country. Pollard is no stranger to victory lane in Michigan. Pollard won last year’s inaugural $20,000-to-win Money in the Bank Super Late Model show at Berlin Raceway, and has two JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour wins on his resume at Berlin Raceway, as well as a series win at SpeedFest 2018 this past January.
Florida’s Jeff Choquette has also filed an entry. Choquette and the Jett Racing team are always a contender when they show up at a race. This will be Choquette’s first ever Masters of the Pros event, but he has raced and won all over the South in a Super Late Model and a Pro Late Model, including two past SpeedFest victories and two Southern Super Series wins in 2017.
Other top drivers entered for Friday’s race include Birch Run Speedway JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour 2018 season opener winner Brian Campbell, who is second on the ARCA/CRA Super Series all-time wins list with 24 wins, three-time ARCA/CRA Super Series champion and the Lisa Thomas Salon Fast Qualifier at the season opener at Birch Run Johnny VanDoorn, 2017 series Rookie of the Year and three-time series winner Carson Hocevar, 2017 series Champion Jack Dossey III, 2014 series champion and former series Birch Run Speedway event winner Dan Leeck and former Columbus Motor Speedway Champion Kyle Jones who ran second to Campbell in the season opener. The entry list also includes former CRA event winners Jack Smith, Eric Lee, Kyle Hayden, Steve Dorer, Harold Fair Jr. and Robbie Pyle.
DGR-CROSLEY Rookie of the Year candidate Mason Keller comes into Friday night’s event as the series’ championship points leader and the DGR-CROSLEY Rookie of the Year points leader after two series events so far in 2018. Mandy Chick is second in championship points, 12 points behind Keller. Dossey III is in third place, four points behind Chick. Michael Clancy Jr. is in fourth place, four points behind Dossey III. Rookie Tyler Hufford is in fifth place, 10 points behind Clancy Jr. All the top five in points are entered for Friday’s event.
The Masters of the Pros 200 will pay $10,000 to win plus bonuses, making it the highest paying Pro/Crate Late Model event in the country currently scheduled for 2018. In addition, the winner will be awarded a signature green jacket, similar to the one that is known for adorning the champion of golf’s Masters event. The Masters of the Pros will be a one day show on Friday, June 8 and will be 200 green flag laps. The event will be an eight-tire max race, utilizing controlled cautions, with teams only allowed to change a max of two tires per yellow.
There will be a $1,000 cash bonus to the highest finishing driver in the Masters of the Pros 200 who has never raced at Birch Run Speedway prior to the 2018 season. There will be a $500 cash bonus to the highest finishing driver who has never raced in the Masters of the Pros event prior to 2018. There will be a second $500 cash bonus to the driver traveling the furthest to race in the Masters of the Pros 200.
The Masters of the Pros 200 will be the second event of the JAS Expedited Trucking Michigan Cup, which will include a mini point series with the five races scheduled in Michigan for the JEGS/CRA All-Star Tour. The program will also involve the season opening Dixie 100 at Birch Run Speedway, and the series events at Auto City Speedway on August 4, Berlin Raceway on August 11 and Owosso Speedway on August 25. The driver earning the most points in the JAS Expedited Trucking Michigan Cup would be the JAS Expedited Trucking Michigan Cup Champion and receive a $2,000 cash bonus and trophy at the 2018 CRA Awards Banquet. Kyle Jones is the current points leader in the JAS Expedited Trucking Michigan Cup standings, one point ahead of Campbell. The winner of the Masters of the Pros 200 will receive a $1,000 cash bonus from JAS Expedited Trucking.
The Masters of the Pros 200 events will kick off with a Party on the Patio on Thursday evening at the track for all the race fans and will feature food & beverages, driver meet and greet, race cars on display, driver souvenir sales, radio station DJ Remote, pace car rides, putting green challenge, kids bounce houses and a real race car arcade game. Thursday night’s festivities are free of charge to attend. Teams will have optional hauler parking on Thursday evening from 5 to 9 p.m.
Pits open on Friday at 10 a.m. A two-hour practice session for the Master of the Pro’s will begin at 1 p.m. Lisa Thomas Salon Pole Qualifying will begin at 5 p.m. There will be an on-track autograph session with all the participating drivers at 6:30 p.m. The racing program will begin at 7:30 p.m. with a 15-lap Last Chance Race. Driver intros for the Masters of the Pro’s will then take place. Then the Masters of the Pro’s 200 will then hit the track after intros.
More information on the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Presented by Chevrolet Performance is available at www.cra-racing.com.
-CRA Press Release
-Photo credit: Speed51.com