TRENTON, NJ -- Ayrton Gennetten, a 19 year old from Gravois Mills, MO who won the 2017 Tulsa Shootout, will be making his first start east of Ohio at the East Coast Indoor Dirt National. The third generation driver will be racing on a clay track being created on the floor of the CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton, N.J. The Dirt Nationals begins this Thursday and Friday, December 13th and 14th with split group qualifying which includes 60 racers each day running in a feature event. On Saturday, December 15th, all 120 competitors will be competing for a spot in the $5,000 to win 50 lap A-Main.
Racing against big fields of cars and national events is nothing new to Gennetten. When he won the Tulsa, OH Shootout in 2017 he outran a field of nearly 250 Winged Class A entries. In Trenton, he’ll be racing wingless.
Gennetten, who lives in a small town about 150 miles west of St. Louis, will drive a Bailey chassis 600cc Micro Sprint owned by Eric Orozoco from the Albany, NY area. The ride became available through Gennetten's work with Bailey chassis, a Haubstadt, IN, Micro chassis manufacturer.
Gennetten is proud of the achievements of his father Steve and grandfather Gene, both accomplished USAC Midget drivers. Gennetten is named Ayrton because his father greatly admired the driving talents of the late Formula 1 driver Ayrton Senna.
After that big win, Gennetten jumped into 360 Sprint racing in the ASCS 360 Warrior Region and raced in ASCS National races when they are scheduled in the vicinity. He was named ASCS National Rookie Of The Year in his first year on the strength of one win and ten top fives in limited starts. Ultimately, he would like to have his shot at running the World of Outlaws 410 Sprint Series.
Ayrton's grandfather Gene narrowly missed winning the first Chili Bowl Indoor Midget Car race in 1987, losing out late in the race to the late Rich Vogler after the two got together. It is estimated that Gene Gennetten won over 200 features.
While new to the area, Gennetten will be racing against some familiar names to him from Sprint Car and Midget competition. Open Cockpit stars entered include Lincoln Speedway 410 Sprint Car champion, Brian Montieth. The Williams Grove Speedway champion Lucas Wolfe has entered as has Kutztown Action track king-pins Billy Pauch Jr. and Tim Buckwalter. Tim’s cousin Steve, Scott Kreutter, Eddie Strada, Eric Heyenreich, Alex Bright, Lou Cicconi and Joe Trenca are also entered. These top drivers will be taking on stars from dirt Modified and Micro Sprint competition.
This year’s schedule calls for heat races with passing points and four A-qualifier feature races for split fields on both Thursday and Friday night. On Saturday, with all 120 cars on hand, Alphabet mains are scheduled, with racers having the opportunity to advance from G, F, E, D, C, and B, will precede the 50 lap A-Main. Racing will start at 7 PM on Thursday and Friday, 5 PM on Saturday.
Slingshots will run a complete program of racing on Thursday night culminating in a 20-car, 20-lap feature. On Friday, Champ Karts are the co-feature, with the same field, same distance feature on the docket.
Information, including ticket and hotel links, is available at indoorautoracing.com. Tickets are also available daily at the CURE Insurance Arena box office.
-Indoor Auto Racing Series Press Release
-Photo credit: Ayrton Gennetten