Kentucky U.S. Senator Jim Bunning (R) has agreed to serve as Grand Marshal of the "Kroger 225" NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race July 14 at Kentucky Speedway. The race will be televised live coast to coast by ESPN with a green flag at 8:00 PM.

"We are excited to have Senator Bunning be a part of our weekend," said Mark F. Cassis, executive vice president and general manager of Kentucky Speedway. "He has been a strong supporter of the speedway since the initial ground breaking ceremonies. It will be an honor to have him and his family with us." Bunning is no stranger to competition as it has been the hallmark of his life. Prior to his career in government, he spent a 17 years in Major League Baseball, pitching primarily for the Detroit Tigers and Philadelphia Phillies. Bunning accumulated a record of achievement that eventually won him a seat in the Baseball Hall of Fame. He posted a career record of 224 wins and 184 losses with a 3.27 ERA. He was the second pitcher in history (Cy Young was the first) to record 1,000 strikeouts and 100 wins in both the National and American Leagues. Bunning also threw no hitters in each league.

Bunning was elected to serve as a U. S. Senator for the Commonwealth of Kentucky on November 3, 1998. Prior to that, he spent 12 years in the U. S. House of Representatives for the 4th District of Kentucky. He has been in public office since 1977.

"The Kroger 225" headlines the third race weekend at Kentucky Speedway this summer. Pre-race festivities on July 14 begin with an autograph session with the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series drivers at 4:00 P.M. A concert by country superstar Joe Diffie starts at 6:00 P.M. on concourse level Grandstand 1.

Tickets still remain for "The Kroger 225" and all other events this year at Kentucky Speedway.