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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Stock Car Racing


Amanda Voss
Mid American Stock Car Series
April 2, 2012

(Fort Atkinson, WI) The Mid-American Stock Car Series will kick off their season at the 35th annual Spring Classic at Rockford Speedway, and for the competitors of the MASCS it is a tradition they look forward to every year.

MASCS will be celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, and the series has been participating in the Spring Classic just as long. According to General Manager of Rockford Speedway Gregg McKarns the MASCS race is an important part of the Spring Classic tradition at Rockford Speedway.

“It is part of our Spring Classic tradition, the Mid-American Series cars put on a great show no matter what track they are at, whether it be here at Rockford or bigger tracks like Madison or during Oktoberfest at LaCrosse,” said McKarns.

For 2011 MASCS Champion James Swan starting the MASCS season at Rockford Speedway is a tradition he looks forward to every year because he said the Spring Classic is a tough race, and Rockford Speedway is a challenging racetrack.

“It’s a tradition I am really glad to be apart of. It’s one of the toughest races we go to just because of the racetrack, and the chance of crashes and durability issues,” said Swan.

Since Rockford Speedway is challenging Swan said that it is important to have a good finish at the Spring Classic or it can affect the season. He said that if he finishes bad or wrecks the racecar then he said he has to work harder to gain extra points in order to win the championship, but he said if he finishes in the top five at the Spring Classic the rest of the season usually goes smoother.

According to McKarns it is the drivers of the MASCS that make the MASCS race at the Spring Classic a big part of the event because the series has many talented veterans and newcomers.

“It is fun as a race fan to watch the series veterans continue to run strong against those young guys that continue to filter into the series, when you have talent like James Swan, Lyle Nowak and Bill Prietzel on the track, that is a pretty good measuring stick of where the new crop is in their progression,” said McKarns.

For the competitors of the MASCS winning the Spring Classic is a notable achievement in their career, and for driver of the number 5 Mid-American Stock Car Bill Prietzel winning the Spring Classic last year was a great part of his season.

“We did win the Spring Classic last year, and it was a great win. Then again all wins are great. You never know when the last win will be so I enjoy them all,” said Prietzel.

Lyle Nowak, driver of the number 32 Mid-American Stock Car, said he won the Spring Classic a couple of times, and he said both wins were special because he said that puts him in the history books with racecar drivers like Dick Trickle and Joe Shear who have won multiple races and track championships at Rockford Speedway.

Swan has been competing in the Spring Classic for 13 years, but he said he has never won the race. He said winning the Spring Classic at Rockford Speedway would be special.

“It would mean a lot to win the Spring Classic,” said Swan.

He added he has been rushing to get ready for the 2012 MASCS season opener because he said he has been helping other people with their racecars while trying to build his new racecar. He said if he could win the Spring Classic with his brand new racecar it would be a memorable win.

Fans can watch Swan, Prietzel, Nowak and the rest of the competitors of the MASCS at the MASCS season opener on Sunday, April 15 at Rockford Speedway, which is located in Loves Park, Ill.


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