Wheatland, Missouri (November 18, 2019) - With the final chapter of the 2019 Lucas Oil MLRA season firmly in the record books, series officials have hit the ground running and are excited to release their upcoming schedule for the 2020 racing season. Comprised of twenty-three events the series will tackle a total of eleven different venues across five different states.
The full 2020 schedule will also feature a change in qualifying format, transitioning from the traditional passing points system used in recent years, to time trial qualifying. Series officials piloted the best of two lap qualifying format in select events this past season and will now use it moving forward at all MLRA sanctioned events.
The 2020 series will get under way in traditional fashion on April 10th - 11th with the running of the 7th Annual "Spring Nationals" at the Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland, MO. 2019 MLRA Champion Will Vaught will look to begin his title defense in an event that he previously won back in 2017, while mother nature claimed the season opener in each of the past two seasons. An open practice is planned for Thursday night April 9th, before two complete shows take center stage on Friday and Saturday.
For the third consecutive year, weekend number two of the 2020 tour will have teams converging on a pair of Eastern Iowa facilities. Friday night April 17th will showcase the historic ½ mile facility of the Davenport Speedway in a $5,000 to win main event, before teams head south to the 34 Raceway in West Burlington, IA for Saturday nights annual "Slocum 50". This marquee event, now in its 12th season, was nearly standing room only in 2019 and will again feature its traditional $10,555 top prize, most recently claimed by Bobby Pierce in 2019.
The month of May will find the series making a popular return to the exciting ¼ mile Stuart International Speedway in Stuart, IA. This rare Thursday night event on May 7th will pay $3,000 to win and launch the tours first three-day swing of the season. Friday night May 8th will take teams back to the familiar Davenport Speedway for the second time in just a matter of weeks. This second and final visit to Davenport will transition drivers to the confines of the facilities inner ¼ mile racing surface. The weekend will conclude on Saturday night the 9th as teams swap gears and take on the fast half-mile West Liberty Raceway on the grounds of the Muscatine County Fairgrounds for the second year in a row. Saturday nights winner will drive off with a cool $5,000 pay day.
The Lucas Oil MLRA along with the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series (LOLMDS) will conclude the month of May with their biggest weekend of the season, the 28th Annual "Show-Me-100" at the Lucas Oil Speedway May 21st - 23rd. Severe storms just days prior to the start of the 2019 event resulted in the cancellation of the Memorial Day weekend classic, but speedway and series officials are eager to re-start the tradition. Thursday night May 21st will be the first of two qualifying nights, headlined by the $6,000 to win, "Cowboy Classic". Friday nights $6,000 to win "Tribute to Don & Billie Gibson" will lead teams into Saturdays Annual Show-Me-100 finale and it's $30,000 top prize.
Robert Wagener and his team at DRT Trak Racing, Inc. will again welcome drivers and fans on Saturday June 13 to an Eastern Iowa facility that will be announced at a later date. Sunday night June the 14th will mark the series inaugural visit to the "Bullring" located at the Rock Island County Fairgrounds in East Moline, IL. This ¼ mile high banked oval is currently receiving multiple upgrades by new promoters Peterson Family Promotions, and will thrill fans with a $5k pay day on the line.
For the 6th year in a row, the Salina High Banks Speedway in Pryor Creek, OK will play host to the "Freedom Classic" on June 26th - 27th. This annual pre-4th of July weekend event has historically showcased some of the most exciting racing of the season, and will again offer up a pair of complete shows paying out $3,000 and $5,000 to win respectively.
Teams and drivers will have a short turn-around before returning to action for another trifecta weekend July 2nd thru July 4th. The 4/10th mile high banked Cresco Speedway, will fire off the holiday weekend salute on Thursday July the 2nd. Chad Simpson picked up the 2019 win in the series first ever visit to the "Mighty Howard County Fairgrounds", which will offer up the first of three $5,000 pay days on the weekend.
Following the popularity of the "Slocum 50", late model fans will be excited for a second visit to the 3/8-mile facility dubbed "Southeast Iowa's Premier Place to Race", 34 Raceway in West Burlington, IA on Friday July 3rd. Race teams will celebrate their freedoms on July 4th when the MLRA makes a return visit to Farley, IA and the 300 Raceway. This will mark the series' first appearance on the reconfigured track, and first since Chris Simpson prevailed there in 2016.
July 10th returns to another long time staple on the series schedule, the Lakeside Speedway in Kansas City, KS for a $3,000 to win bout. Series officials are excited to return to Lakeside after the facility was plagued by flooding in 2019 resulting in the cancellation of the MLRA event.
The Lucas Oil MLRA will again match up with the LOLMDS for the 14th Annual Diamond Nationals on July 18th at the Lucas Oil Speedway. Returning to a one-day show in 2020, this star studded event will feature a $15,000 to win A-Main.
September 5th will find drivers returning to the Lucas Oil Speedway for the inaugural "Ron Jenkins Memorial", a tribute to the original builder of Wheatland Raceway. Labor day weekend will conclude the following night when the series makes its way to the Quincy Raceway in Quincy, IL for the "Scottie 45". Both weekend events will hold a $5,000 to win top-prize.
The MLRA series title will again be on the line October 9th - 10th at the 7th Annual "Fall Nationals" hosted by the "Diamond of Dirt Tracks" in Wheatland, MO. A pair of complete shows paying $3k and $5k respectively will bring the 2020 campaign to a close.