Nov. 8 – There was encouraging news last week for open-wheel racing in Indiana and surrounding states.
After a successful inaugural season, the 500 Sprint Car Tour has already announced five dates for the 2023 season.
The series returns to Anderson Speedway for three events starting in April, and of course the biggest event of the year will be the 75th running of the Lucas Oil Little 500 in May.
What was encouraging was that the 500 Sprint Car Tour teamed up with the revitalized Kenyon Midget Series.
The ad has the Kenyon Midgets competing against the sprint cars at all three events at Anderson Speedway and two at Berlin Raceway in Michigan.
It makes sense that the two series would work together. This will allow Kenyon Midget Series competitors to take the next step up the racing ladder.
At the Kenyon Midget Series banquet last weekend, it was announced that 2022 champion Dameron Taylor had received $2,000 to apply for a possible sprint car race with the 500 Sprint Car Tour in the future.
Taylor has raced a sprint car in the past and attempted to make the starting field for the Little 500.
Kenyon Midget series owner Brad Hayes said the $2,000 will be awarded annually to the champion to further his racing career.
At the banquet, it was announced that the Kenyon Midget Series would return to the Indianapolis Speedrome for one or two races and add the dirt oval Paragon Speedway to the schedule.
Hayes is planning up to 15 races next year with an attempt to split events between pavement and dirt tracks in 2023.
The Kenyon Midget Series took a big leap forward in 2022 with an increase in the number of cars and 30 drivers making at least one start, including 19 rookies.
Hayes hopes to average 20 competitors at each event in 2023.
OTHER RACING NEWS
It was a bittersweet weekend for Joe Gibbs Racing.
In some surprise, Ty Gibbs won the Xfinity Series championship as many expected he would be taken out of competition following his aggressive move to Martinsville the previous week.
Gibbs was competing for the title with three drivers from the Dale Earnhardt Jr. stable.
But, before the race, Earnhardt said none of his drivers would intentionally destroy Gibbs to win the championship.
Sadly, that night, Ty’s father, Coy, passed away.
Joey Logano won his second NASCAR Cup championship on Sunday, capping the season with a win at Phoenix to claim the title.
Penske Racing also won the IndyCar Series championship with driver Will Power claiming top honors.
Follow Ken de la Bastide on Twitter @KendelaBastide, or call 765-640-4863.
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