SALEM, Ind. – official series release — Bruce Nuttleman/Speed51.com photo —
Champion Racing Ass’n Powered by JEGS officials announced an impressive first group of entries Wednesday that have arrived for the upcoming SpeedFest 2016, which will be held on Jan. 30-31 at Watermelon Capital Speedway.
SpeedFest 2016 will once consist of a 200-lap ARCA/CRA Super Series Super Late Model special non-points event and a 125 lap JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Pro Late Model special non-points event. The ARCA/CRA Super Series event will have a break at lap 100 and will count yellow flag laps up to lap 175.
The 125-lap JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour event will be a four tire only event and will count yellow flag laps up to lap 100.
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competitor John Hunter Nemechek, son of NASCAR veteran competitor Joe Nemechek, tops the list of entries to date for SpeedFest 2016. Nemechek will pull double duty by competing in both late model events with SpeedFest 2016. Nemechek is the two time defending winner of the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Pro Late Model event at SpeedFest.
Nemechek had a great 2015 season, winning his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event at Chicagoland Speedway. He also picked two additional CRA events, including the Mercy Masters of the Pros 144 JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour event at Lebanon I-44 Speedway and his first ARCA/CRA Super Series victory at Lucas Oil Raceway. Nemechek, the 2014 Snowball Derby winner, got the win in the 2015 Snowflake 100 at Five Flags Speedway to close out his 2015 season.
Bubba Pollard, one of the most successful late model drivers in 2015, is also entered for the 200-lap event. The 2014 Southern Super Series Champion picked up a couple of huge paying late model West Coast wins in 2015. He won $25,000 at the Winter Showdown at Kern County Raceway Park in California last February, then walked away with $36,000 for winning the Summer Showdown at Monroe, Washington’s Evergreen Speedway last June.
Wisconsin native Ty Majeski is also entered for the Super Late Model SpeedFest 2016 event. Majeski had a remarkable 2015 season, racking up a total of 19 Super Late Model wins including a record six wins in claiming his second consecutive ARCA Midwest Tour Championship. Majeski closed the season with a big win in New Smyrna Speedway’s Governors Cup and set a new track record in claiming the pole for the Snowball Derby in December.
California racer Zane Smith is also entered to do double duty at SpeedFest 2016, Smith won three PASS South wins and one CARS Late Model Tour event in 2015. Harrison Burton, son of former NASCAR standout Jeff Burton, is entered for the Super Late Model SpeedFest 2016 event. The North Carolina teenager won two events at New Smyrna during Speed Weeks last February and was a winner with the Southern Super Series in 2015.
Other top Super Late Model drivers entered to date for the ARCA/CRA Super Series Super Late Model SpeedFest 2016 event includes Florida native Steve Dorer, a multi time CRA winner, Oklahoma competitor Donnie Wilson, Alabama racer Bret Holmes, who will also do double duty at SpeedFest racing in both late model events, Georgia’s Kyle Plott, and CRA regulars Brandon Oakley from Ohio, a 2014 CRA winner and Wes Griffith Jr. from Illinois.
Florida native Stuart Dutton is also entered to make his ARCA/CRA Super Series debut, Dutton was the Watermelon Capital Speedway 2015 Outlaw Late Model Champion and is now looking to run more Super Late Model events in 2016.
Other top Pro Late Model drivers entered to date for the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Pro Late Model SpeedFest 2016 event includes North Carolina native Chris Dilbeck, a former Outlaw Late Model Champion at Watermelon Capital Speedway, Georgia natives Dalton Grindle and 13-year-old Chandler Smith. Wisconsin native Joshua James will be making his JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour debut ahead of his run for the series 2016 Rookie of the Year.