UARA Season Opener is March 12th at Hickory
New Teams, New Drivers & New Attitude for UARA in 2011
UARA Press Release
The UARA is in high gear preparing for the season opener at the famed Hickory Motor Speedway this coming Saturday, March 12, 2011.  There will be a mixed bag of new faces with the familiar UARA veterans.  There will be an abundance of talented drivers on hand for the season opener.

NASCAR star Marcos Ambrose has joined forces with FHR to field a car in the UARA. George Miedecke a 24 year old Australian will be the driver for the Ambrose team.  Miedecke is scheduled to run the full schedule with the UARA for 2011.  Ambrose will be at HMS to watch Miedecke at the season opener. Ambrose will be giving advice and guidance to Miedecke and the team.  Ambrose will be present during the UARA's pre race autograph session for the fans along with Miedecke and the entire field of drivers.

Four past UARA Rookie of Year winners will be racing the season opener.  Robert Johnson (2010), Brennan Poole (2009), Matt DiBenedetto (2007 )and  Kyle Grissom (2005).

Brennan Poole who set records for the UARA in 2010 and finished second in the final standings is in hot pursuit of the championship that slipped thru his fingers in 2010.  Poole won more races in a single season than any other driver will be under the watchful eye of a new team with a lot of determination for 2011.  After pre season practice the team feels confident in their ability to continue where they left off last season - out front and being the man to beat.

Grissom is no stranger to the front of the pack and will give Poole, Johnson, DiBenedetto and a host of talented drivers a good challenge for the win.  Andy Mercer, a HMS Champion with many wins under his belt is making his debut as a full time UARA driver for 2011 will  be another force to be reckoned with for the win. 

Johnson will be cutting it close this weekend.  He will have his car in place Friday for practice but on Saturday he is scheduled to take his SAT test.  SAT testing is a vital part of a young persons education and is an extended test taking up to six hours to complete.  Once he has completed his SAT in Winston-Salem, he will then have to rush to get to HMS in time for racing.

Several teams were at HMS Thursday March 3rd shaking down their cars.  Don Satterfield of the Julia Dawson team predicts this weeks race to be a barn burner and says a new track record could be set when the STARS qualify Saturday.  Matt McCall holds the  current UARA HMS track record at 15.023 set in Masrch of 2005.

Another exciting part of this season opener is the fact that three young ladies will be competing.  Julia Dawson, Candace Muzny and Becca Kasten.  Muzny and Kasten will be making their first UARA appearances.

Some of the pre entries for HMS are listed below.

01Andy Mercer
04Ronnie Bassett, Jr.
1Julia Dawson
2Tyler English
3Adam Long
5Matthew Piercy
7Brennan Poole
7Brandon Rogers
9George Miedecke
11Robert Johnson
12Becca Kasten
17Austin McDaniel
18David Roberts
20Matt DiBenedetto
26Joey Herques
33Leigh Caruthers
36Harrison Rhodes
48Scott Turlington
54Kaleb Pressley
77Alex Yontz
92Candace Muzny
99Brandon Dean

The UARA teams will hit the track on Friday for the season's first controlled practice from noon until 6 p.m.

Saturday, March 12th  the Grand stand gates open at 5 p.m.
Adult Admission: $15
Students: (13-17) $10
Family Pass: (Parents & children under 12) $25
Children 12 and under: Free

Also on the racing card will be the Carolina Vintage Racers for a twenty lap shootout.  This fun loving group is always a crowd pleaser.

Kyle Grissom (#32) and Brennan Poole are among the standouts starting the UARA season on Saturday at Hickory.  (51 Photo)