3-TIME NASCAR SPRINT CUP CHAMPION & DEFENDING RACE WINNER TONY STEWART COMMITS TO 4TH ANNUAL LOU BLANEY MEMORIAL ALZHEIMER’S BENEFIT AT SHARON ON JULY 10
By Mike Leone
December 6, 2011
(Hartford, OH)…The Lou Blaney Memorial has quickly become one of the most popular and highly-anticipated racing events held annually throughout the western Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio region. The 2012 version has been scheduled for Tuesday, July 10 at Sharon Speedway, and already committing to the fourth annual event benefiting the Alzheimer’s Association is Tony Stewart!
Stewart, fresh off his third NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship, was the event’s inaugural winner in 2009 and finished fifth and ninth in the 2010 and 2011 Lou Blaney Memorial events respectively. His popular 2009 victory marked his first career “410” winged feature win! Stewart will look to regain his winning form on July 10 when he climbs behind the wheel of his #14 Sprint Car.
While Stewart’s record five “Chase” wins and thrilling championship have been well documented, the Columbus, Indiana native added another impressive notch to his resume capturing his first career World of Outlaw Sprint Series victory on July 27 at Canada’s Ohsweken Speedway!
As a car owner, Stewart’s Donny Schatz won the Knoxville Nationals and swept the season ending World Finals on his way to finishing second in WoO Sprint points and Steve Kinser trailed in third with a Series high nine victories. Levi Jones drove Stewart’s USAC National Sprint Car Series and Silver Crown entries to championships as well.
Stewart, who owns Eldora Speedway, is also the co-founder of the International Motorsports Industry Show, which takes place this week (December 8-10) at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis.
Besides Stewart’s 2009 victory, local racer Mike Lutz and Texan Sam Hafertepe, Jr. have captured Lou Blaney Memorial victories on the Sprint Car side. There has yet to be a repeat winner in the Big-Block Modifieds with New York legend Jack Johnson taking the 2009 race, while local Ohio drivers Jim Rasey and Rob Kristyak stole the thunder the past two seasons.
Friends of Lou Blaney will again attend the Memorial Event to help celebrate the life and accomplishments of the Hall of Fame driver, who won more than 600 feature victories during a five-decade career. The legend has at least 121 Modified wins and another 11 documented in a Sprint Car at Sharon alone. Blaney passed away in 2009 after battling Alzheimer’s.
Stay tuned for more information on the event, which benefits the Alzheimer’s Association. Sharon Speedway will get an early start to the 2012 season on Saturday, January 7 when snowmobiles take to the track. Gates open at 9 a.m. with racing at 11 a.m. Snowmobile racing will return on Saturday, January 21. The 2011 awards banquet will be held on Saturday, February 4 at the Yankee Lake (OH) Ballroom. More information on these events will be forthcoming.
Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481. Become a fan of Sharon Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sharonspeedway and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/sharonspdwy.