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Scott Steckly, the 2008 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series champion, has secured a ride for the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown providing international flavor for this one-of-a-kind all-star event.
Along with the 13 drivers from the NASCAR Camping World Series, who secured a guaranteed starting position in the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown by winning a series event in 2008, each of the champions from NASCAR’s other developmental series also have a guaranteed slot in the main event. This truly makes the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown, considered to be the ‘Daytona 500 of short-track racing,’ more than just any all-star event. It brings together the finest short-track racers from all over North America.
The prestigious postseason event, slated for Jan. 23-24 at Toyota Speedway at Irwindale (Calif.). It will feature two days of racing and will air live on SPEED beginning at 7 p.m. PT both nights.
Steckly’s record-setting 2008 season in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series was, at times, dominating as he collected his first NASCAR championship. He posted a series-record four victories en route to the title. He also notched four runner-up finishes. All told, the driver out of Milverton, Ont., finished in the top five nine times. He took the points lead after winning the season-opening event at Cayuga Motor Speedway and did not loosen his grip on the top spot the rest of the way.
The NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown is contested in NASCAR Camping World Series cars which are different from those used in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series meaning that, while he held a guaranteed starting position in the race, Steckly had to find a suitable fit in order to participate in the race.
Steckly will be driving a Chevrolet out of the NDS Motorsports stable based in Milton, Vt. He will be teaming up with Steve Park, who is NDS Motorsports’ regular entrant in the NASCAR Camping World Series events. Park holds the distinction of being the only driver to win races in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, NASCAR Camping World Series and NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. Although teaming with Park, Steckly will use his normal NASCAR Canadian Tire Series crew led by crew chief Greg Gibson.
Steckly is familiar with NASCAR Camping World Series cars having tested one in October. He also competed in a similar vehicle at the NASCAR Nationwide Series event in Montreal in August.
“They’re a little different, but nothing terribly drastic,” Steckly said. “We’re not as familiar with the cars or the track, obviously, as most of the other competitors, but I think we can figure it out.”
It has been a whirlwind few months for Steckly, who at the beginning of the 2008 season was not sure how deep into the season he would get, but a sponsorship package materialized in the early portion of the year.
“It really has been a dream season,” he said. “From the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series championship and everything that goes with it right up to this chance to compete in the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown. I want to thank everyone at NDS Motorsports for giving us this opportunity. We are confident we can give them a good finish.”
Steckly joins a list of top short-track drivers who have already committed to running in the event, including NASCAR Camping World Series East and West champions, Matt Kobyluck and Eric Holmes. Also confirmed to compete are 2007 NASCAR Camping World Series West champion Mike David, four drivers who have earned rookie of the year honors in the NASCAR Camping World Series in the last three season (Jason Bowles, Peyton Sellers, Jeff Barkshire, and Austin Dillon), and Brian Ickler, winner of the NASCAR Camping World Series combination race in Iowa this past May along with three-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday Jr.
In addition to Steckly, Holmes and Kobyluck, champions in NASCAR’s other developmental series include Philip Morris (NASCAR Whelen All-American Series), Antonio Perez (NASCAR Mexico Series), Ted Christopher (NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour) and Brian Loftin (NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour).
The NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown’s two days of racing will also include action in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series with Late Model and Super Late Model races.
To purchase tickets for the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown, fans can go to www.toyotaspeedwayatirwindale.com or call the track at (626) 358-1100.