By: Eric Huenefeld
Once again this year, the Big 8 Late Model Series Spring Classic at Rockford Speedway will be a “Clash of the Champions.”
The 37th Annual event, happening this Sunday April 13 at the high banked quarter mile in northern Illinois, boasts an entry list featuring a combined 30 track and series championships between the 35 entrants.
The “Best Weekly Warriors in the Country” kick off their tenth anniversary season at Rockford Speedway this weekend, with a 108 lap feature race headlining the afternoon. Spring Classic is the first of ten races on the 2014 Big 8 Series schedule, making it the busiest Big 8 season ever.
Rockford Speedway regulars have enjoyed great success at their hometrack through the years; winning 13 of the 21 Big 8 Series events held at Rockford, including the last four. One year ago, Alex Papini started his 2013 campaign with a win at Spring Classic, Papini’s first Big 8 triumph. ‘Driver X’ Jon Reynolds Jr has won five Big 8 Series races at Rockford, including the last two National Short Track Championships and the 2012 Spring Classic.
Papini is also the defending Rockford Speedway Track Champion, joined this weekend on the entry list by past Rockford Speedway Track Champions Ricky Bilderback, Bobby Wilberg and Tim Sargent. They’ll be joined by drivers who have captured track championships throughout the region, like ‘The Cruiser’ Chris Marek (Elko), Casey Johnson (Madison, Jefferson), Mike Ehde (Dells), ‘Rocketman’ Dan Lensing (Dells), Mike Meyerhofer Jr (WIR), J Herbst (LaCrosse), ‘Insane’ Wayne Freimund (Slinger) and Reynolds Jr (Slinger).
Joining the Big 8 Series on Sunday afternoon will be the Mid-American Stock Car Series and the Illinois Vintage Racing Series. The Mid-American cars open their season at Rockford for the 22nd consecutive year with a 50 lap feature event, while the Illinois Vintage racers race for 20 laps in their ‘Hall of Fame Classic.’
Spectator gates open at 11 AM this Sunday, with qualifying getting underway at 11:30 AM. The first green flag flies at 1 PM. Adult general admission is $20, Students age 12-17 are admitted for $10, Children 6-11 admitted for $5 with ages 5 and under admitted for FREE.
For more information on Rockford Speedway and the 37th Annual Spring Classic, please visit www.rockfordspeedway.com or please call 815-633-1500.
For more information on the Big 8 Late Model Series, please visit www.big8series.com.
Big 8 Late Model Series – Entry List
37th Annual Spring Classic at Rockford (IL) Speedway
Sunday April 13, 2014
(as of 4/9/13)
02- Ricky Bilderback Rockton, IL
2- Kyle Kirberger Ramsey, MN
2- Tim Sargent South Beloit, IL
3- Chris Marek Lakeville, MN
5- Dave Edwards Salem, WI
5- Casey Johnson Edgerton, WI
7- John DeAngelis Jr. Hubertus, WI
9- Tony Brutti Dyer, IN
X- Jon Reynolds Jr Rockford, IL
14- Austin Nason Roscoe, IL
17- Eric Connell Ft Atkinson, WI
17- Gregg Pawelski Muskego, WI
18- Mike Ehde Prairie du Chien, WI
19- Dan Lensing Roscoe, IL
23- Casey Strese Johnson Creek, WI
27- Collin Olson Hugo, MN
28- Jesse Bernhagen Markesan, WI
28- Bobby Wilberg Beloit, WI
30- Mark Hartline Gilberts, IL
32- Mike Meyerhofer Jr Hilbert, WI
38- Jeff Holtz Muskego, WI
39- Alex Papini Machesney Park, IL
46- Ryan Miles Crystal Lake, IL
46- Tom Jasinski Pewaukee, WI
50- Jake Gille Machesney Park, IL
51- Sam Redmond Crystal Lake, IL
52- Steve Dobbratz Rio, WI
55- Craig Phillips Edgerton, WI
57- Mark English Edgerton, WI
66- Michael Bilderback South Beloit, IL
66- Adam Peschek Oconomowoc, WI
79- Jeff Nowak Weston, WI
82- J Herbst West Salem, WI
84- Jake Vanoskey Hartford, WI
95.3- Wayne Freimund Elkhorn, WI