CONCORD, N.C. – In less than a month, more than 100 racers will unload their Super and Pro Late Models at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla., with hopes of becoming a Snowball Derby winner.
Among them will be three marquee names from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
NASCAR racers Kyle Busch, Aric Almirola and Landon Cassill have all filed entries for the 45th Annual Snowball Derby weekend, Nov. 28 – Dec. 2
Busch comes into this year’s event with the most credentials of the three at the Snowball Derby, having won the event back in 2009 over Pensacola veteran Eddie Mercer. Busch has already won SpeedFest and the Rowdy 251 this year in Super Late Model action and nothing would cap the season off better then another Snowball Derby win.
“We are very excited to get back to Pensacola to run the Snowball Derby,” said Busch. “The last time we were down there it was special. I am a big fan of short track racing and the Snowball Derby is the best of the best in Super Late Model racing.”
“What can you say about Kyle Busch? He’s coming down to run after a long NASCAR season and he’s already a winner here,” said Tim Bryant, General Manager of Five Flags Speedway. “Busch is showing his true dedication to short track racing and the sport. Fans recognize that and appreciate that. The Snowball Derby will always be known as one of the premier short track events in the county. To have the best short track world go head-to-head with the NASCAR flavor that we have creates a great mix for the fans.”
Aric Almirola will return to the driver’s seat for Richie Wauters, a Snowball Derby winning car owner from 2004 with driver Stephen Wallace. Wauters prepared a car for Almirola to run at The Milwaukee Mile in June and they have been itching to try it again ever since.
This will be the first Snowball Derby for the Tampa, Florida driver.
“Anytime a driver can strap into a Richie Wauters ride at the Snowball Derby, they are going to be a contender,” said Bryant. “Aric is hard charger in the cup series and even though he’s not familiar with the Snowball Derby being a rookie, I think he’ll fit in well.”
Returning to Pensacola with unfinished business is Landon Cassill. The Cedar Rapids, Iowa driver has been fourth in each of the last two editions of the Snowball Derby. 2010 was especially painful for Cassill as he was spun out of the lead with only a handful of laps from the finish.
“Landon Cassill has run extremely well here before,” said Bryant. “He has a Snowball-winning Tom Dawson trophy on his bucket list. With the help of two-time Snowball Derby winner Gary St. Amant we look for him to be a real contender.”
In addition to these three, fellow Sprint Cup Driver David Ragan has already filed an entry for the 45th Annual Snowball Derby.
The current entry list for the Snowball Derby on Dec. 2 has 59 of the best Super Late Model racers in the country on it. More than 40 entries have been submitted for the Pro Late Model Allen Turner Hyundai Snowflake 100 at Five Flags on Dec. 1.