MARYSVILLE, Washington — The American Speed Association Northwest Late Model Tour is ready to get the 2009 season underway on Saturday March 28. Thirty teams have registered for this history making event. Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, WA will host the event as they did 26-years ago when the original Northwest Tour started. The new ‘Thunder in the Northwest’ the ASA NWLMT was formed when the former Late Model Challenge Series and Northwest Tour came together to become the only premier traveling series in the northwest.
Over 36 year’s total of experience has been melded. The excitement of the merger is showing with 30-teams already registered and more are attempting to be a part of northwest racing history. What was thought to be impossible until LMCS Director Jerry Losch and NWT Director Scott Ellsworth were able to bridge the gap between the two series. Their dream of one touring division and large car counts is coming true.
The combined series is affording many different types of cars to be equally competitive. The old tour, spec headed compression and crate motors will be racing together on Saturday night. Losch said “We feel we have come up with a rules package that is equitable for everyone. Scott and I envisioned a traveling series that would let almost any type of Super Late Model Stock Car to be a part of the biggest touring series in the region. Our goal is to have our regular core of drivers be joined by teams from the different areas the series visits during the season.” Ellsworth went on to say, “We have not only brought the best teams together but are putting the best officials together to present a well seasoned knowledgeable crew that has the same vision we do.”
Among the 30 teams registered are former champions, veterans and rookies from each series. Names that have been a fixture of northwest touring division racing have readied their skills to not only challenge the monster .625-mile oval of Evergreen Speedway but also be the first champion of the new Tour.
Former Touring Series Champions Gary Lewis, Pete Harding, Wes Rhodes and Brad Stanwood will be in top form to get the eleven race series started. Veterans with strong credentials are set to go such as: Harold Raczynski, Jason Fraser, Jay Sauls, Darrell Midgley, Brent Harris and Kelly Mann.
Throw into the mix Mike Longton the 2008 Yakima Speedway champion. A total of seven Evergreen Speedway Super Stock Championships have been garnered by two drivers readying for the opener Tom Moriarity (5) and Shane Harding (2).
A talented group of rookies will be led by Joey Tanner, Amanda MacDonald and Allen Cress.
The American Speed Association Northwest Late Model Tour season opener is scheduled for Saturday March 28, 2009 at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Washington at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds. The distance on the .625-mile oval is 125-laps. The popular Northwest Legends traveling series will have their season opening race in conjunction with the tour. ASA registration begins at 9:30am, back gate opens at 11:00am and practice starts at 1:00pm. Front gates open at 4:00pm with qualifying beginning at 4:00pm. Racing gets the season officially started at 7:00pm.
Drivers Registered as of March 25:
Jared Vorse – Olympia, WA
Gary Lewis – Snohomish, WA
Tom Moriarity – Rochester, WA
Mike Kenyon – North Bend, WA
Kelly Mann – Monroe, WA
Grant Brown – Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
Rod Schultz Sr – Woodland, WA
Rod Schultz Jr – Kalama, WA
Brent Harris – E. Wenatchee, WA
Joey Tanner – Portland, Or
Dan Rhodes – Rainier, WA
Wes Rhodes – Yelm, WA
Don Vickery –
Mike Holden – Bothell, WA
Allen Cress – Albany, OR
Darrell Midgley – Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Pete Harding – Surrey, British Columbia, Canada
Amanda MacDonald – Ephrata, WA
Jay Sauls – Puyallup, WA
Brad Stanwood – Portland, OR
Shane Harding – Langley, British Columbia, Canada
Jason Fraser – Snohomish, WA
Mike Longton – Moxee, WA
Shane Sawin – Snohomish, WA
Mark Sundberg – Seattle, WA
Rick Hager – Mt Lake Terrace, WA
Korbin Thomas – Williams Lake, British Columbia, Canada
Mitch Franklin – Puyallup, WA
Harold Raczynski – Duvall, WA
Darin Stordahl – Marysville, WA
For more information call Evergreen Speedway at 360-805-6100, The ASA NWLMT at 253-312-1080 or 360-659-5910.