NewsOK: Oklahoma City News, Sports, Weather & Entertainment

Former NASCAR stars Tony Stewart and Kyle Larson to race in Lawton on Thursday

FILE - In this Nov. 19, 2016, file photo, Tony Stewart heads to the hauler after a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Racing practice in Homestead, Fla. Tony Stewart headlines a Joe Gibbs racing trio that has been elected to the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The three-time Cup Series champion will be inducted alongside car owner Joe Gibbs and former teammate Bobby Labonte.  (AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File)
FILE - In this Nov. 19, 2016, file photo, Tony Stewart heads to the hauler after a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Racing practice in Homestead, Fla. Tony Stewart headlines a Joe Gibbs racing trio that has been elected to the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The three-time Cup Series champion will be inducted alongside car owner Joe Gibbs and former teammate Bobby Labonte. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File)

Three-time NASCAR Cup series champion Tony Stewart and former NASCAR Cup driver Kyle Larson will be racing at Lawton Speedway on Thursday night.

The race is part of the Stewart-owned organization All Star Circuit of Champions, which was established 50 years ago as the first touring "outlaw circuit" for sprint cars. The circuit is based out of Ohio and doesn't normally race in Oklahoma.

But because tracks are closed to fans around the country as the result of COVID-19, the organization has turned to Oklahoma for racing as tracks here are now open to fans.

The All-Star Circuit of Champions also will be visiting Red Dirt Speedway in Meeker on Friday and the newly reopened Outlaw Motor Speedway in Oktaha on Saturday. On Sunday, the series will be visiting 81 Speedway in Park City, Kansas.

The Oklahoma-Kansas trek for the circuit has been dubbed "Thunder Through The Plains." The circuit's specialty is 410 winged sprint cars.

The All-Star Circuit of Champions will return to Oklahoma on June 11 for a race on Southern Oklahoma Speedway in Ardmore, which kicks off a three-state, four-race weekend that includes Texas stops in Wichita Falls and Kilgore. The weekend concludes June 14 with a race in Chatham, Louisiana.

"To allow our series, that normally doesn't get an opportunity to travel that far south, for these tracks to allow us to come down, we are very grateful and appreciative for the opportunity," Stewart told Lawton television station KSWO. "To have essentially have two months off, where we haven't really raced at all, is a long off-season for us. It's nice to be back in a car."

Stewart, a member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame, also has raced sprint cars for years. Larson returned to the outlaw racing circuit after being dropped by Chip Ganassi Racing and suspended by NASCAR for uttering a racial slur during an online race. He apologized the next day in a social media post, saying there was no excuse for it.

Larson, who finished sixth in the 2019 NASCAR Cup Series standings, won a World of Outlaws race last month in Pevley, Missouri.

Gates open at 5 p.m. and racing starts at 8 p.m. Thursday in Lawton. Because of COVID-19, attendance will be limited to only half of the track's normal capacity and wearing facemasks is recommended.

Fans are expected to maintain social distancing and bleacher grandstand seating will be limited to every other row.

Tickets are $30 and are available at myracepass.com. Pit passes are $40. For more information, call 918-247-7223.

Ed Godfrey

Ed Godfrey was born in Muskogee and raised in Stigler. He has worked at The Oklahoman for 25 years. During that time, he has worked a myriad of beats for The Oklahoman including both the federal and county courthouse in Oklahoma City for more... Read more ›

Comments