SWS: Phoenix III: Auggie Vidovich preview
SW Champion Vidovich Heads To Phoenix Desert For Final Series Race LAKESIDE, CA (November 1, 2004) - As all the NASCAR Nextel Cup, Busch and Craftsman Truck Series drivers and teams head out west for the big weekend of racing at Phoenix ...
SW Champion Vidovich Heads To Phoenix Desert For Final Series Race
LAKESIDE, CA (November 1, 2004) - As all the NASCAR Nextel Cup, Busch and Craftsman Truck Series drivers and teams head out west for the big weekend of racing at Phoenix International Raceway this coming weekend - current NASCAR Elite Division, Southwest Series champion Auggie Vidovich will cross only one state line into the adjoining state of Arizona to race. A race that always looks into the bright southwestern sun and it will shine bright for one lucky finisher - hopefully for Auggie Vidovich. The Southwest Series returns to PIR and where the series has been racing at the "desert jewel" since the late 1980's - 1988 to be exact.
With the "Cruise America 125" race Thursday, November 4, rounding out the final race of fourteen for the series, the support-series race always draws a large field usually including a handful of Cup, Busch and Truck series drivers to test the track before their races the same weekend. This week's 125-lap race lists forty-three potential entries including two NASCAR Nextel Cup drivers, drivers from thirteen states, and three NASCAR Southwest Series champions including Vidovich.
PIR has special meaning for the twenty-three-year-old champion as this is where he won the 2003 NASCAR Elite Division, Featherlite Southwest Series championship last November ending an exciting year where he held the points lead from the second race to the fourteenth and final race of the series held at the one-mile PIR superspeedway.
However this week, Vidovich will be focusing on a good qualifying position and another top-five finish and hopefully a win with crew chief, Mike Harvick, while driving the No. 11 Centrifugal Technologies Chevrolet in the field of experienced drivers. "All eyes are on PIR when the top NASCAR teams come to town so a great finish would mean a lot. Racing with NASCAR Cup drivers Kenny Schrader and Kyle Busch adds excitement to our race and steps up the competition," said Vidovich.
Running up front in most of the past races he has entered this year, Vidovich continues to display that he is back in the hunt for wins in 2004 - posting three top-5 and four top-10 finishes. With PIR hosting three Southwest Series races in 2004, it marks the only time the series races three times at one track this year. Vidovich started his season with a DNF in January at Phoenix and recently finished forth at PIR October 3.
The two-time series runner up in 2000 and 2001 and most popular driver in the Southwest Series in 2003 is looking to move up to one of NASCAR's other popular divisions such as Grand National, Craftsman Truck or Busch Series in 2005.
The "Cruise America 125" takes to the track at 3:30 P.M. PST Thursday with scheduled televised coverage on HDNet TV. Viewers should check their local satellite listings for exact times and channels. You can also go to racingwest.com for race updates.
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