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Area tracks

By MIKE READLING, MIKE STEPHENSON and LOGAN NEILL

© St. Petersburg Times, published February 14, 2003


CITRUS COUNTY SPEEDWAY

LOCATION: 3600 S Florida Ave., Inverness. Two miles south of State Road 44 on U.S. 41 at the Citrus County Fairgrounds.

HOURS: Grandstand gates open at 3 p.m.; pit gates open at 2 p.m. Heats start at 6 p.m.

REGULAR PROGRAM: Includes heats and features for Late Models, Sportsman, Mini Stocks, Street Stocks, Hobby Stocks and Thunder Stocks. The season runs through Nov. 8 with the track closed March 8-22 for the county fair.

SPECIAL EVENTS: March 29 -- Sunbelt Late Model 125; Aug. 16 -- Florida Pro Late Model; four appearances of the TBARA Sprints (Feb. 8, June 14, Aug. 2, Sept. 13), plus Figure 8s, Pro Modifieds and FAST Trucks.

DEFENDING CHAMPIONS: Late Model -- Rex Struble; Sportsman -- Mike Veltman; Street Stock -- Mike Bell; Mini Stock -- Robbie Yoakam; Hobby Stock -- Richie Smith; Thunder Stock -- Stuart Madison.

PRICES: $12 for adults; $8 for senior citizens and students; $6 for children; $2 for children under 42 inches.

PHONE: (352) 726-9339.

WEB SITE: www.citruscountyspeedway.com.

DE SOTO SPEEDWAY

LOCATION: 21000A S.R. 64 E, Bradenton. Nine miles east of Interstate 75 on State Road 64 (Exit 42).

HOURS: Gates open at 5 p.m. with racing at 7. Most events are Saturdays.

REGULAR PROGRAM: Includes heats and features in Limited Late Models, Pro Late Models, Sportsman, Street Stocks, Open-Wheel Modifieds, Modified Minis and Mini Stocks. The season opens Feb. 23, a Sunday, and runs weekly with the exception of April 26. It ends Nov. 23.

SPECIAL EVENTS: Saturday -- Several events, including World Championship School Bus Figure 8's, the TBARA Winged Sprints and Outlaw Modifieds; July 5 -- Enduro 200; Nov. 22 -- DeSoto Modifieds Race of Champions 125. Also 14 appearances of the All-American Challenge Series Super Late Models.

DEFENDING CHAMPIONS: Late Models -- Justin Drawdy; Limited Late Models -- Edward Howell; DeSoto Trucks -- Bill Davis; Sportsman -- Johnny Casady; Street Stock -- Matt Scheffler; Pure Stock -- Joe Wengerd; Open Wheel Modified -- Bill Davis; Modified Mini -- Steve Gill; Mini Stock -- Jesse Dutilly; Legends -- Ray Sasser; Cowboy Cadillacs -- Don Van Acker.

PRICES: Grandstand seats are regularly $15 for adults, $5 for children 6-12 and free under 6. Pits are $25 for all entrants.

PHONE: (941) 748-3171.

WEB SITE: www.desotospeedway.com.

EAST BAY RACEWAY

LOCATION: 6311 Burts Road, Gibsonton. Five miles south of Interstate 4 on Route 41 or take Exit 48 off of Interstate 75.

HOURS: Gates open at 5 p.m. Saturdays with racing at 6:30.

REGULAR PROGRAM: Includes heats and features in Sprints, Limited Sprints, Late Models, Limited Late Models, Mini Stocks and Street Stocks. The regular season begins Feb. 22 and runs until mid-November.

SPECIAL EVENTS: Every other week the track will feature Open Wheeled Modified racing in place of the Limited Sprint cars.

DEFENDING CHAMPIONS: Sprint cars -- Brian Maddox; Late Model -- Jack Nnsbisch Jr; Mini Stock -- Dorsey Strickland; Street Stock A -- Mike Gamache; Street Stock B -- J.D. Humphrey; Limited Late Model -- Terry Gay; Wingless Sprint car -- Tim George; Open wheel modifieds -- Bruce Watkins

PRICES: $12 for adults, $10 for seniors, children 13-17 are $7 and kids 12 and under get in free.

PHONE: (813) 677-7223.

WEB SITE: www.eastbayracewaypark.com.

SUNSHINE SPEEDWAY

LOCATION: 4500 Ulmerton Road, Clearwater. Track is just south of the St. Petersburg/Clearwater Airport.

HOURS: Gates open at 5 p.m. Saturdays with time trials at 6 and racing at 7. Pits open at 4.

REGULAR PROGRAM: Includes heats and features for Open-Wheel Modifieds, Outlaw Late Models Figure 8's, Mini Stocks, Street Stocks and Enduros. Season opens March 1 and runs through Nov. 15 with May 17, July 5 and Aug. 23 off.

SPECIAL EVENTS: March 1 -- TBARA Winged Sprints; March 15 -- School Bus Figure 8's; March 29 -- TBARA Winged Sprints Jimmy Haines Memorial; May 10 -- TBARA Winged Sprints Dick Friedley Memorial; May 24 -- SARA Late Models; June 21 -- School Bus Figure 8's; Sept. 13 -- SARA Open Wheel Modified Event; Nov. 1 -- School Bus Figure 8's.

DEFENDING CHAMPIONS: Late Model -- Dave Pletcher; Open Wheel Modified -- Chet Senokossoff; Outlaw -- Robert Crisp; Street Stock -- Roger Welch; Mini Stock -- Mike Birk Jr.; Figure 8 -- Cliff Rousseau.

PRICES: Vary weekly.

PHONE: (727) 573-4598.

WEB SITE: www.sunshinespeedway.com.

USA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY

LOCATION: Old Polk City Road, Lakeland. Head east on Interstate 4 to Exit 20 (Route 33). Go north to first left (Tomkow Road). Follow Tomkow to T-intersection and turn right onto Polk City Road.

HOURS: Grandstands open at noon with racing at 7:30 p.m.

REGULAR PROGRAM: No weekly racing but several special events, featuring the Hooters ProCup Series on Feb. 22, May 31, Aug. 30 and Nov. 29.

OTHER EVENTS: March 22 -- ASA Florida 200; April 12 -- Late Models; July 21 -- Florida State Late Model Championships; Oct. 18 -- Octoberfest 2003.

PRICES: $15 for backstretch grandstand, $20 for frontstretch lower 10 rows and $25 for backstretch upper 10 rows. Children under 10 are admitted for $5. All seating is reserved.

PHONE: 1-800-984-7223.

WEB SITE: www.usaspeedway.com.

-- Compiled by staff writers Mike Readling and Mike Stephenson and correspondent Logan Neill.

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