BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — August 5, 2014 —There is no week like it the rest of the season. A preliminary night, with heavily inverted and stacked heat races, that can make or break the rest of the week. Crucial event-points earned each time a driver takes the track. Over 100 cars entered for just 24 starting spots. It is a pressure-filled equation called the Knoxville Nationals at the famed Knoxville Raceway in Iowa. Kraig Kinser conquered the biggest event in sprint car racing in 2005, joining his father, Steve, the 12-time winner of the Knoxville Nationals, and the pair remains the only father/son duo to ever win it.
The 54th Annual FVP Knoxville Nationals Presented by Casey’s General Store is set for Wednesday, August 6 through Saturday, August 9. Kinser will take to the track for his qualifying night on Wednesday aboard the Mesilla Valley Transportation/Casey’s General Store/King Racing Products Maxim. The event concludes with the 50-lap, $150,000-to-win main event on Saturday evening.
“The Knoxville Nationals is the one event that you always have circled on your calendar,” said Kinser. “It’s a one-of-a-kind atmosphere and the race that everyone wants to win. It was great winning it in 2005, and we’ve been motivated ever since to win it again. A lot of work goes into the Nationals, long before you get to the track. The pill draw for qualifying is important as well and those are probably the two most important time trials laps you take all year.”
Last season during the Knoxville Nationals, Kinser finished 22nd on the first preliminary night. He timed in 30th-fastest out of 49 cars, and finished second in the fifth heat race to earn a spot in the 25-lap main event. Kinser hit the track again as part of the revamped Friday portion of the Nationals and finished seventh in the B-main. That put him in the C-main on the final night, where he finished fifth, just one spot shy or transferring to the B-main.
Kinser has made the feature in the finale of the Knoxville Nationals six times in his career. He has recorded three top-10 finishes on the final night of sprint car racing’s biggest event. Along with his win in 2005, Kinser came home fourth in 2012 and was sixth in 2009. He has earned four top-10 finishes in his career on preliminary nights for the Knoxville Nationals, including a runner-up finish in 2009 and a third-place showing in 2012 on the second qualifying night.
“Moving forward each time you hit the track is the goal at Knoxville,” Kinser said. “You have to collect as many points as you can to hopefully lock yourself in the feature for Saturday night. Qualifying and the heat races can determine how the rest of your weeks goes, though with the new Friday format, that gives you a chance to make up for a tough qualifying night. We’ll go out and give it all we got every time we hit the track and see where the chips falls.”
The native of Bloomington, Indiana, has made one start with the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series at Knoxville Raceway in 2014. He finished 15th on June 14, in the only visit of the season by the series to the half-mile prior to the FVP Knoxville Nationals Presented by Casey’s General Store.
Kinser enters the Knoxville Nationals ninth in points with the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series. Last weekend during the Ironman 55 at Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55 in Pevely, Missouri, he finished eighth in the opener and was seventh in the finale. Kinser has 22 top-10 finishes this season.
Kraig Kinser Racing would like to thank Casey’s General Stores, Mesilla Valley Transportation, King Racing Products, Maxim, Aerodine Composites, Sander Engineering, Integra Shocks, All Star Performance, FK Rod Ends, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Bell, KSE Racing Products, ButlerBuilt, Schoenfeld Headers, Donovan Engineering, Fel-Pro, Brodix, Wilwood, Dyer’s, Barnes Systems, Ringer Gloves, Jakes Custom Golf Carts, and Ben Cook Racing Limited for their continued support.
Kraig Kinser By the Numbers: Knoxville Nationals
0.5- Distance around Knoxville Raceway in miles
1- Father/Son duo that has won the Knoxville Nationals- Steve & Kraig Kinser
2- Career main event wins at Knoxville, including the 2005 Knoxville Nationals
6- Total nights of racing for the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series at Knoxville this season, including the Knoxville Nationals
12- Average finish in six main event starts in the Knoxville Nationals
13.6- Average finishing position in 32 career main event starts with the World of Outlaws at Knoxville
14.407- Track record at Knoxville Raceway
30- Laps led en route to winning the 2005 Knoxville Nationals; Career feature event starts at Knoxville with the series, including preliminary features
50- Laps in the main event of the finale of the Knoxville National on August 9
329- Miles from Federated Auto Parts Raceway at I-55 in Pevely, Missouri, where the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series competed on Aug. 1-2, to Knoxville Raceway in Iowa
2001- First World of Outlaws start at Knoxville Raceway; Year of first appearance in the Knoxville Nationals
2003- Year of first main event start in the Knoxville Nationals
2005- Year of win in the Knoxville Nationals to join his father Steve as a champion of the event, making them the first-ever father/son duo to win sprint car racing’s biggest event
140,000- Dollars earned for winning the 2005 Knoxville Nationals
150,000- Dollars the winner of this year’s FVP Knoxville Nationals will receive
Keep up with all the action
For the latest news on Kraig Kinser, visit http://www.kraigkinser.com, and follow Kraig on Twitter at http://twitter.com/kraigkinser11k and receive live updates from the track each and every race night.
Listen live to each and every World of Outlaws event on DIRTVision.com with “The Voice of the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series” Johnny Gibson on the call. Visit www.DIRTVision.com for live audio of each and every World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series event.