SEPT 20/21: 4-CROWN NATIONALS NEWS & FACTS (VERSION II)
* Baltes’ USAC Hall of Fame Induction to Take Place Prior to Saturday’s Four Crown Nationals
* Saldana Enters WoO Portion of Four Crown Nationals With Confidence
* Absolute Parity in Eldora UMP DIRTcar Modified Action – 7 Winners in 7 Features
BALTES’ USAC HALL OF FAME INDUCTION TO TAKE PLACE PRIOR TO SATURDAY’S FOUR CROWN NATIONALS
ROSSBURG, OH (Sept. 17) Earlier this year it was announced that legendary Eldora Speedway founder Earl Baltes was joining seven other individuals as 2013 inductees into the USAC (United States Auto Club) Hall of Fame. Two previous attempts to present Baltes with his distinguished honor have been thwarted; so appropriately, the induction ceremony and presentation will be incorporated into the pre-race ceremonies for Saturday’s (Sept. 21) Four Crown Nationals.
The two-day spectacular is the third oldest event on the annual Eldora slate; having begun in 1981 under the guidance of Baltes and Dayton’s (OH) Johnny Vance. While Saturday’s menu includes all three of USAC’s National divisions (Midget, Sprint & Silver Crown), the busy weekend kicks off the night before (Sept. 20) with a doubleheader featuring the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Series and the UMP DIRTcar Modifieds.
During his tenure at the helm of Eldora (1954-2004), Baltes worked closely with USAC and was twice honored as the USAC ‘Race Organizer of the Year’. After introducing Eldora fans to USAC racing on April 22, 1962, Baltes then presented another 286 USAC events; not only at his beloved Eldora Speedway, but at an additional six different race tracks.
Undoubtedly the crowning moment of the Baltes/USAC pairing was in 2003 when the feisty Baltes shocked the world with the ‘Mopar Million’. With a total payoff of $1,000,000 it became the richest Sprint Car race in history.
Baltes stepped away from the promotional reigns at the conclusion of the 2004 racing season when he sold the historic facility to three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Tony Stewart.
As was the case through all those years, Earl’s wife, Berneice, will be by his side when he accepts the accolades Saturday evening.
SALDANA ENTERS WoO PORTION OF FOUR CROWN NATIONALS WITH CONFIDENCE
ROSSBURG, OH (Sept. 17) – Joey Saldana is anxious for the World of Outlaws (WoO) Sprint Car Series appearance Friday night (Sept. 20) as part of the 32nd annual Four Crown Nationals at Eldora Speedway. Since the WoO travelling series was incorporated into the two-day Four Crown in 2007 Saldana has won three feature events. No one else has one more than once.
Saldana’s most memorable of those three wins was 2011. During the July Kings Royal of that year, the Brownsburg, IN veteran was involved in a spectacular crash that left him with serious arm injuries and knocked him out of the driver’s seat until two-days before the Four Crown. He ventured to Hartford, MI and promptly returned to victory lane; a fete he then duplicated at Eldora.
At that time he was wheeling a Kasey Kahne owned Sprint Car, but now steers out of the Dan Motter stable. Although it is a new team, Saldana brings a level of confidence into Eldora. Currently fourth in the 2013 cumulative WoO point chase, the second generation driver is the third leading WoO feature winner at Eldora with 11 wins. His most recent Eldora victory came on the Knight Before the Kings Royal last season.
On the WoO trail this season, Saldana has one feature win, but 41 top-ten finishes and five quick time awards.
The WoO Sprints will be joined by the UMP DIRTcar Modifieds in Friday’s doubleheader, while Saturday’s slate includes USAC’s (United States Auto Club) three National divisions – Midget, Sprint and Silver Crown.
ABSOLUTE PARITY IN ELDORA UMP DIRTCAR MODIFIED ACTION – 7 WINNERS IN 7 FEATURES
ROSSBURG, OH (Sept. 17) –With Friday’s (Sept. 20) participation in the opening leg of the Four Crown Nationals at Eldora Speedway, it will be the UMP DIRTcar Modified’s final opportunity to garner track time prior to the richest Eldora event in their history (UMP DIRTcar National Championships October 3, 4 and 5). And it comes during the most competitive season in the 23-year history of the division at the legendary speed plant.
Thus far into the 2013 campaign there have been seven feature events completed, with an equal number of winners. No one has duplicated a victory.
Ironically of the seven wins, five were collected by former Eldora champions (Jon Henry, Jerry Bowersock, Brian Ruhlman, Joey Kramer and Jeff Babcock), while the other two were by drivers capturing their first-ever Eldora wins (Brian Post and Ryan Sutter).
That parity could very well continue into the Four Crown as this week’s announcement regarding the UMP DIRTcar National Championships and a record payoff in excess of $63,000 for the early October event is expected to bring in outsiders in their attempt to gain valuable Eldora track time.
Joining the Modifieds in Friday’s doubleheader action will be the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series, while the two-day extravaganza continues Saturday with the three National divisions of the United States Auto Club (USAC) – Midget, Sprint and Silver Crown.
Complete event information, along with ticket and campsite purchase opportunities, may be obtained by visiting the track’s website www.EldoraSpeedway.com, or by calling the speedway office at (937) 338-3815. Additionally, race fans and race teams can get behind-the-scenes access by following @EldoraSpeedway on Twitter, hitting ‘Like’ at Facebook.com/EldoraSpeedway and view video highlights at YouTube.com/EldoraSpeedwayInc. The new Eldora Speedway app for the iPhone, iPad and Android is now available for download via iTunes and Google Play.