The Herald Bulletin

March 11, 2014

Little 500 entries received

The Herald Bulletin

---- — With the temperatures in the 60s on Wednesday and activity starting at Anderson Speedway this weekend with an open practice session, the first entries for the Pay Less Little 500 have been received.

The 66th running of the world’s richest pavement race for non-wing sprint cars is set for May 24 with two days of qualifying leading up the event. The Must See Racing Winged Sprints will take to the high-banked oval on May 21.

The first entry for the Little 500 was received from Goacher Racing for 2011 race winner Chris Windom. Windom took the lead from Little 500 legendary driver Eric Gordon with five laps remaining to record the victory.

It marks the first time the Illinois driver will return to compete in the Little 500 since his victory.

The second entry was received from local driver Aaron Pierce, who has made 11 career starts. Pierce has one pole position on his resume and finished second in both the 2004 and 2007 races.

Pierce has been dominant at Anderson Speedway in United States Speed Association sprint car races over the past two years, but has yet to taste victory in the Little 500.

Pierce is always fast at Anderson Speedway but “Lady Luck” has not smiled on his efforts in the Little 500.

The third entry was received from the renowned Hoffman Racing team for Noblesville driver Bryan Clausen.

Clausen competed in his first Little 500 last year and recorded a 17th place finish. He is coming off a win in the Chili Bowl for midgets and has competed in the Indianapolis 500 in the past.

Hoffman Racing has made two appearances in the Little 500 with a career best sixth place finish in 2006 with Tracy Hines at the controls.

Traditionally the Little 500 attracts the best drivers in short track racing to Anderson and last year’s race was decided until the final laps with Jacob Wilson recording the win after Shane Cottle lost an engine with five laps remaining.

With the return of Windom and Clauson for 2014 it appears that the race will again be loaded with lots of talented drivers in competitive rides.

The USSA sprints will be in action at Anderson Speedway on April 27 for the 100-lap Glen Niebel Classic.

In other racing news: INDYCAR has announced changes in the format for qualifications for the 98th running of the Indianapolis 500.

On Saturday, May 17 all the entries are guaranteed at least one four-lap qualifying effort. The fastest nine from the first day of qualifying advance to the Fast Nine on Sunday for the run for the pole.

The remaining drivers in positions 10 through 33 will have to post a new time on Sunday for the determination of their starting position.

This format should be a fan favorite as at least 33 teams will be making qualifying runs on both days. It should be an interesting two days at IMS.

Follow Ken de la Bastide on Twitter @KendelaBastide, or call 640-4863.