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Local Sports

Street stock drivers to get taste of big track

Growing the sport of stock car racing is important to nine-time ARCA national champion Frank Kimmel. Kimmel hatched an idea in 2007 and it is growing.

Tonight at Iowa Speedway is the second race of the Kimmel Enduro-style series for I.M.C.A — type steel bodied street stock cars — on 2013. The inaugural Street Stock Nationals roar to life at 7:30 p.m.

“Some of the best racing is done on local dirt tracks and asphalt short-tracks on Friday and Saturday nights. I came up with this series idea to give these drivers an opportunity to race on larger speedway tracks,” Kimmel said.

So racing fans will get a chance to see some of the best short-track street stock drivers on the track at Iowa Speedway this weekend. Tonight’s event is 100 laps but drivers will take a break at the midway point.

“These drivers aren’t used to going 100 laps so we’ll take a short break after 50 laps. I’m expecting about 30 cars for this first one,” Kimmel said. “We were looking to draw more of the local drivers from Iowa, but we realize a lot of guys are racing for points at their home tracks on Friday nights.”

Kimmel said he came up with a rule package to modify the street stock cars slightly for racing on the larger tracks, “mostly for safety.” The first race of the series was run at Kentucky Speedway and “it has grown from there.”

The Kimmel Enduro-style series’ 2013 spring race was at Rockingham Speedway in North Carolina. Chuck Barnes won the April race in which there were 30 cars.

“We draw young drivers and older drivers. We have some of the older drivers who compete in these races because when they were younger they didn’t have the opportunity to drive a car on a track like Iowa Speedway,” Kimmel said.

“These drivers are really motivated to race well in front of a great crowd of race fans. It’s an exciting race for fans to watch.”

According to an early entry list for the event, there are several Iowa drivers competing in the race.

The Kimmel Street Stock Nationals have two practice sessions today — 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. At 4:05 p.m. starts the qualifying laps and the pre-race is at 7 p.m.

The green flag drops on the 2013 Frank Kimmel Street Stock Nationals race at 7:30 p.m.

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