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Published: Saturday, 4/9/2005

MIS schedules more for the fans at better prices

BY MATT MARKEY
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

BROOKLYN, Mich. - The challenge for Michigan International Speedway in the 2005 season was to fit more racing into its calendar. Mission accomplished, with three nights of racing for both its June and August weekends when the Nextel Cup drivers will be in town, and a weekend of Indy Racing League events in July.

For the June 17-19 and Aug. 19-21 NASCAR/ARCA weekends at the MIS two-mile tri-oval, there will be Friday qualifying for the ARCA RE/MAX Series, a pair of practice sessions for the Nextel Cup cars, as well as two practice sessions for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series in June and the Busch Series in August.

The ARCA race will follow the practice sessions on both weekends with a Friday evening race starting at 5:15.

In June and August, the Saturdays on race weekends will include qualifying for the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series, Craftsman Truck Series and Busch Series, with afternoon races scheduled for both the Craftsman Truck Series and Busch Series.

The Friday ticket costs $15, which includes all of the practice sessions and the ARCA race. Saturday's ticket will cost $40 for the June races and $50 for the August event.

Sunday tickets for the Nextel Cup race in June run $45-$65, while race day tickets for the August Nextel Cup event run $45, $65, and $80.

Children 12 and under get in free on Friday and Saturday of both Cup racing weekends.

"With the changes in the NASCAR weekend schedules for 2005, MIS will be able to provide more of what fans ask for all the time, more racing at a great value," MIS president Brett Shelton said.

"With NASCAR going with new qualifying procedures, it gave us a great opportunity to have races all three days at what we feel is a very attractive price."

In July, the Indy Racing League's IndyCar Series comes to MIS with qualifying on Saturday July 30 and the Michigan Indy 400 race on Sunday.

Tickets are $10 for qualifying day and $40 for IRL race day.

Tickets are available from the MIS official Website, www.MISpeedway.com, or the MIS ticket hotline at 1-800-354-1010.

MIS is in the process of adding 870 club seats, bringing its seating capacity to 137,243 for the 2005 racing season. With the additional seats, MIS becomes the eighth-largest motorsports venue on the Nextel Cup Series schedule.

TOLEDO SPEEDWAY: The ARCA RE/MAX Series will make a pair of stops at Toledo Speedway in 2005 with the Hantz Group 200 on May 22 presented by Federated Car Care and the Hantz Group 200 presented by Belle Tire on Sept. 2. The May 22 race has a 2 p.m. start and will feature NASCAR driver Ken Schrader in the competition and also will be carried live on the SPEED Channel. The racing season on the Glass City oval begins next Friday with the Home Depot season opener. The half-mile paved oval will host the ARCA late models and sportsman cars, while the ARCA factory stocks hit the short track, with full race cards planned for all three divisions. The April 15 event will be the first of seven races taped by Buckeye Cable Sports Network (BCSN) to be shown in the Toledo market at a later date. Friday night racing at Toledo Speedway continues through Sept. 16. Ticket information is available from the track at 419-727-1100. Toledo Speedway is located on Benore Road at the I-75/Alexis Road exit on the Michigan-Ohio border.

FLAT ROCK: Toledo Speedway's sister track 30 miles to the north, Flat Rock Speedway, will host its Quality Clutches season opener on April 23, as the ARCA late models, figure 8's and street stocks hit the track to begin the Saturday night race cards on the quarter-mile paved oval.

Flat Rock Speedway is on Telegraph Road, one mile south of Flat Rock, Mich. and about five minutes from I-75 or I-275. Flat Rock ticket information is available at 734-782-2480.

Contact Matt Markey at:

mmarkey@theblade.com

or 419-724-6510.



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