Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Demise of the National Sprint Tour

Question about the National Sprint Tour
If you check out the NST link you will see that the web page is no longer up.National Sprint Tour Recently NST drivers Steve Kinser, Danny Lasoski and others decided to rejoin the World or Outlaws, maybe sealing the fate of the NST. In checking out the Internet I couldn't find much in the way of news either to report either way.

The Fresno Bee is reporting that the NST is done.
Link To article
The National Sprint Tour has folded.

The 410 sprint car series — which was co-owned by a Clovis businessman and made stops at central San Joaquin Valley tracks in Tulare and Hanford last season — couldn't survive the departure of its marquee attraction.

Steve Kinser, a NST co-owner and its most decorated driver, decided in November to return to the rival World of Outlaws. That caused NST co-owners Guy Stockbridge of Clovis, Don Lamberti and Lonnie Parsons to pull the plug on the series before the start of its second season.

"I'm brokenhearted it failed and tickled pink it's over," Stockbridge said. "The stress and efforts are no longer needed as far as running a national sprint tour.

"Good or bad, the NST served its purpose. Sprint car racing across the U.S. is better because of it. The drivers have a better position, the owners have a better position, the fans have a better position and the World of Outlaws are better for it. I have no regrets."

What if Kinser had not returned to the Outlaws, a series he won a record 20 times and essentially helped create?

"The NST would have continued," Stockbridge said. "I don't know if that was best for the sport, but we were going to continue."

Clovis' Jason Meyers — the driver for Stockbridge's Elite Racing national team — also has returned to the Outlaws. So has Danny Lasoski, who drives the sprint car owned by Fresno's Dennis Roth.

Meyers is in Australia, where he held off defending Outlaws champion Donny Schatz to win the feature race Saturday at Parramatta City Raceway. Meyers will race three more times in Australia, Friday through Sunday, before returning to the states in advance of the Outlaws' season-opening DIRTcar Nationals Feb. 9 at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla.

Meyers is expected to run 90 to 100 races in the United States and Australia this season with an eye on winning his first Outlaws points title. Meyers finished second on the Outlaws' tour in 2005 before running with the NST last season.

The demise of the NST has allowed Stockbridge and Meyers to refocus on racing. And without the demands of operating a national sprint car series, Stockbridge and Meyers will field two drivers on the Golden State Challenge series — veteran Ronnie Day and rookie Rick McCormick.
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