|Dates: February 23rd-24th
Event: Battle at the Beach Series: United Sprint Car Series (USCS) Outlaw Thunder Tour Track: Southern Raceway (Milton, Fla.) Tony Stewart A-Main Finish (Start): February 23rd: 7th (12th) February 24th: 17th (13th)
BROWNSBURG, Ind. (February 26, 2018) – After a week away from sprint car competition to attend the 60th Annual Daytona 500, Tony Stewart returned to the driver’s seat of his familiar Rush Truck Centers/Textron Off Road/Ford Performance/Curb Records/Sage Fruit/J&J Auto Racing/No. 14 winged sprint car and entered a pair of United Sprint Car Series (USCS) Outlaw Thunder Tour events at the Southern Raceway in Milton, Fla., on February 23-24.
Already a two-time top-ten finisher against the Georgia-based, 360 cubic inch sprint car series in 2018, Smoke padded his recent racing resume by earning another top-ten finish on Friday night, this time advancing from the outside of row six to finish seventh on a tricky, Southern Raceway surface.
“We had a pretty good night on Friday. I think we had the potential to climb a little higher, but it was a tough track to pass on,” Tony Stewart explained. “When passing points are used to set the main event lineup, you really have to take advantage of every lap you get during a heat race. Unfortunately, only advancing one spot during our heat race on Friday wasn’t quite enough and we were buried a little bit for the feature. Jimmy and Marty made some great adjustments and we were able to recover for a top-ten.”
With USCS officials utilizing a passing points system during heat race action to determine the main event lineup, Stewart was forced to start the Battle at the Beach opener from row six, the result of a fourth place finish, after starting fifth, during the second of three heat races. United Sprint Car Series officials utilize a pill draw, held before the each evening program, to determine heat race lineups.
Stewart was on pace to secure a fourth consecutive top-ten finish against the USCS on Saturday night when disaster struck. While racing inside the top-ten during the Battle at the Beach finale, Smoke was caught up in a late-race caution, the result of a competitor driving down on top of Stewart while battling for position, ultimately forcing the Columbus, Ind., native to restart at the tail of the field. A quick recovery allowed Stewart to charge back to 12th, but unfortunately, he would fall back on the final lap, crossing under the final checkers 17th in the running order.
Stewart, who started 13th on the main event grid on Saturday night, earned his way into the 30-lap finale by finishing fifth during his respective heat race, accumulating just enough passing points to start the feature from row seven.
“That kind of stuff happens. We bounced back the best that we could,” explained Stewart regarding Saturday night’s caution involvement. “All we can do now is move forward. I’m already excited for our next start.”
Stewart’s plans for the next few weeks have not been finalized. News regarding an upcoming schedule will be posted when it becomes available.
SOCIAL MEDIA: Fans are encouraged to follow the progress of Stewart, Tony Stewart Racing and the No. 14 Rush Truck Centers/Textron Off Road/Ford Performance/Curb Records/Sage Fruit/J&J Auto Racing motorsports team on the Web and on social media. More information can be found at www.tonystewartracing.com, as well as at www.tonystewart.com.
Tony Stewart: Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TonyStewart/ or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/TonyStewart
Tony Stewart Racing: Facebook at www.facebook.com/TonyStewartRacing or on Twitter and Instagram @TonyStewart_Rcg.
2018 Tony Stewart/Tony Stewart Racing Statistics (thru 2/24/2018):
Total Races: 9
Total Wins: 0
Total Top-5s: 2
Total Top-10s: 5
CONTACT: Tyler Altmeyer Tony Stewart Racing Enterprises (724) 954-4915, firstname.lastname@example.org