Bloomington, Ind. — March 5, 2012 — If it was up to World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series drivers, they would race every night of the week, especially when they are running strong and have momentum. That’s exactly how Kraig Kinser feels right now, following a pair of Top-10 finishes to open the World of Outlaws season a couple of weeks ago in Florida.
Following a trio of contests for the World of Outlaws and five races overall during the 41st Annual UNOH DIRTcar National Presented by Summit Racing Equipment, Kinser and his team headed back to the Steve Kinser Racing shop in Bloomington, Ind. to prepare for the eight-race West Coast swing. That stretch opens this week on Thursday, March 8 at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, followed by the NAPA Know How SoCal Showdown at Perris Auto Speedway in California on Saturday, March 10, which marks the series first visit to the high-banked half-mile since 2007.
“After starting the year with five straight races and then having a two week break, I’m ready to get back to racing,” said Kinser. “Hopefully we’ll still be in the swing of things and just as fresh as we were at the end of the five nights in Florida.”
The third generation driver, who pilots the Mesilla Valley Transportation Maxim made his debut at Las Vegas in 2003. He was victorious at the state-of-the-art half-mile in 2005 in a preliminary feature. Last season he finished seventh in the opener of the two-day event and was 13th in the finale. Kinser has competed in 11 feature events with the World of Outlaws at Las Vegas, picking up six Top-10 and two Top-Five finishes.
“Going to be a place like Las Vegas, where I’ve won in the past, you know what it takes and what you need driver-wide and car-wise,” explained the 2005 Knoxville Nationals winner. “If we get our car right, we know we can win there, based on how we’ve done in the past. They always have a great crowd there and that adds to the excitement as well.”
Kinser has raced once at Perris Auto Speedway in his career, with that coming in 2004. In that event, he qualified third with a very strong field in attendance. The 2004 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year award winner finished third in the third heat race that night, to earn a spot in the first dash, where he finished fourth. He lined up on the inside of the fourth row for the main event, and would finish eighth in that 30-lap contest.
“I think everyone kind of has to treat it like a new track,” noted Kinser. “The last time I was there, we didn’t have a tire rule. We didn’t have a wing rule. We didn’t have a lot of the rules that we have now. The cars are different than how they were the last time I raced at Perris. You have take all of that into account when you come up with a baseline setup. Hot laps will be important to get a feel of the track and what changes to make to the car.”
Kinser begins the West Coast swing ninth in the World of Outlaws championship standings, just 13 markers out of the Top-Five. He is one of 10 drivers that picked up at least two Top-10 finishes in the season opening trio of races in Florida.
“We had a pretty good start to the year in Florida and look to build on that during the races out west,” shared Kinser. “When you are running good, you always look forward to being at the track and hopefully we can continue to turn in good performances.”
Kraig Kinser By the Numbers: The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
0.5- Miles around The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Perris Auto Speedway
1- Career win at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
2- Career Top-Five finishes in Las Vegas
3- Races contested on half-mile tracks this season by the World of Outlaws
6- Career Top-10 finishes at Las Vegas
8- Finishing position in one career start at Perris Auto Speedway
9- Position in points following the opening three races in Florida
10- Average finish in two feature events at Las Vegas last year
10.9- Average finish at Las Vegas in 11 starts including preliminary features
11- Starts at Las Vegas with the World of Outlaws; Total nights of racing in California this year for the World of Outlaws
13- Laps led en route to winning a preliminary feature at Las Vegas in 2005
48- Races contested by the World of Outlaws at Las Vegas dating back to 1996
252- Miles from The Dirt Track at Las Vegas to Perris Auto Speedway
389- Points earned in the first three races of the season
1816- Miles from the Steve Kinser Racing shop in Bloomington, Ind. to Las Vegas
1996- Year The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway first hosted the World of Outlaws
2003- Year of first start at the half-mile
2004- Year of only career start at Perris Auto Speedway
2005– Year of victory at Las Vegas in a preliminary feature
2007- Year the World of Outlaws last competed at Perris
5700- Dollars earned through the first three races this season
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