American Speed Association (ASA) President and CEO Steve Dale oversaw a one-day tire and set-up test at Kentucky Speedway today with driver Mike Garvey in preparation for the series move to superspeedway racing in 2004.

The short track series plans to stage up to 30 percent of its 2004 races on superspeedways to expand exposure for its drivers and sponsors. The association is touting facilities such as Lowe's Motor Speedway and Kentucky Speedway as future race sites.

"A third of our 2004 schedule will be run on larger tracks than we'll race in 2003," Dale said. "Our goal is to take the bottom 25 to 30 percent of our tracks off the schedule and add some nicer, newer, larger facilities. From a marketing standpoint, I wanted to add facilities where we could bridge the gap for our young guys who want big track experience. This also gives our fan base the opportunity to enjoy some new facilities like Kentucky Speedway. It's a beautiful place and we need to be here."

The association is in its 36th season and currently stages 17 races at short tracks such as Indianapolis Raceway Park, Lake Erie Speedway, Hawkeye Downs and others throughout the Midwest, Southeast and South Central United States. ASA cars feature spec engines and center sections along with lightweight bodies made of Kevlar and fiberglass.

Garvey said those elements combine to create competitive events.

"Our cars will qualify very tight. They're very well matched and that places a lot of the ingenuity in the hands of the driver and crew chief. Our car is set up a lot like a (NASCAR) Busch car and drives a lot like those cars. I think that's what makes it such a natural step from ASA to Busch. Jimmie Johnson, Joey Clanton and Johnny Sauter are guys who have come out of ASA lately and are running well in other series. That's a testament to ASA.

"The next natural step is to get on these (superspeedway) tracks to prove what we can do and how good the motors and cars run. I think you'll see a lot more younger kids coming up to ASA to get the opportunity to run some of these bigger tracks."

Kentucky Speedway will announce its 2004 schedule during the coming weeks. The NASCAR Busch Series, NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, ARCA RE/MAX Series and Indy Racing League IndyCar Series will be among the featured events.

~ Kentucky Speedway ~