Times Sports Editor
An incredible season of racing at Lincoln Park Speedway in Putnamville, Ind. will add another high note to 2010 as the dirt track hosts its first USAC AMSOIL Sprint Car race since 2005 on Saturday night.
The USAC Sprint Car event comes on the heels of a thrilling USAC Midget show held on June 17 with Brad Sweet topping the field of 39 other midget drivers during the "Indiana Midget Week" stop at LPS. On that night, a packed house saw Sweet edge out Shane Cottle and Darren Hagen to the checkered flag.
The Lincoln Park Speedway date is the series' first since the conclusion of one of the most highly attended "Indiana Sprintweek's" in recent history. Jon Stanbrough claimed three of the seven races that were contested on tracks around the state and took home the points championship by 35 points over Levi Jones.
The ISW title was Stanbrough's second and came in the Fox Racing Team's familiar No. 54 machine. Both drivers will be one hand and looking for a victory in the 40-lap feature.
Jones currently heads up the USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car points with a 91-point lead over Damion "The Demon" Gardner. Jones is in pursuit of his record-tying fourth point crown this season.
With some of the toughest sprint car pilots in the nation on hand, the battle for the winner's share will no doubt provide another stellar night of action in Putnamville. West Terre Haute's Blake Fitzpatrick is likely still riding the exhilaration of winning his first-ever USAC National Sprint Car win and it came on Saturday night at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt during ISW competition as well.
Darland is always tough to beat when he unloads at a track and Saturday will be no different as he can claim the last USAC Sprint Car win at LPS after picking up a win on July 19, 2005, for Jeff Walker. He also has a sprint car win in Putnamville to his credit this year after winning the sprint feature following some hard lucky in the USAC Midget feature back in June. Jones can also claim a feature win at Lincoln Park this season, winning the season opener back on April 10.
Darland will be looking to join Sheldon Kinser as the all-time winningest driver in USAC events if he can claim his fifth career LPS win on Saturday. He is currently tied with Jay Drake with four wins.
Currently residing in the top-10 of USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car points are Jones (1,459), Gardner (1,368), Clauson (1,359), Jerry Coons Jr. (1,282), Chris Windom (1,261), Tracy Hines (1,214), Henry Clarke (1,143), Darland (919), Shane Hmiel (816) and Stanbrough (690).
Fans of the USAC AMSOIL Sprint Cars will also be treated to a very unique event at Lincoln Park Speedway thanks to promoter, Joe Spiker, as well as Amsoil and Gotta Race.
Following the UMP Modified feature on Saturday night, an invitation only 12-lap race will be held with a minimum $1,025 at stake in a winner-take-all, "King of the Hill" race. The top-10 in the Indiana Sprintweek standings are eligible for the race and may choose if they would like to run the race or sit out. However, the temptation of an extra $1,000-plus should bring out the competitor in all the drivers.
As for how the drivers will line-up in the special feature that will be decided by the fans at Lincoln Park Speedway. There will be 10 containers set up behind the main grandstands where fans can vote for their favorite driver with a cash donation that will be added to the race's purse. The driver that receives the most will start on the pole and the entire line-up will be decided by the amount of money for each particular driver.
Also competing with the USAC National Sprint Series will be the always exciting UMP Modifieds, UMP Super Stocks and bombers.
General admission is $20 with kids 10-and-under admitted free. Pit gates open at 3 p.m. with the main gates opening at 4:30 p.m., hot laps at 5:30 p.m. and racing at 7 p.m.
Final "Indiana Sprint Week" points
1-Stanbrough-384; 2-Jones-349; 3-Clauson-327; 4-Darland-319; 5-Windom-309; 6-Short-309; 7-Fitzpatrick-276; 8-Gardner-269; 9-Coons-263; 10-Schuerenberg-243.
2010 National Sprint Championship points
1. Levi Jones (Tony Stewart Racing No. 20) 1,459, 2. Damion Gardner (DG Racing No. 71) 1,368, 3. Bryan Clauson (RWB Motorsports No. 2B) 1,359, 4. Jerry Coons Jr. (Dynamics Inc. No. 69) 1,282, 5. Chris Windom (Jeff Walker Racing No. 11) 1,261, 6. Tracy Hines 1,214, 7. Henry Clarke 1,143, 8. Dave Darland 919, 9. Shane Hmiel 816, 10. Jon Stanbrough 690