David Gravel Gears Up for the Knoxville Nationals in the Capitani Classic & Front Row Challenge

August 4th, 2012

By DDR Motorsports PR 
Watertown, Conn.—August 3, 2012 — With the 52nd Annual Goodyear Knoxville Nationals less than a week away at the famed Knoxville Raceway in Iowa, drivers from near and far have been converging on the legendary half-mile for the last few weeks in hopes of getting some extra laps in at the venue and that includes David Gravel. The 20-year-old will compete in the inaugural Capitani Classic at Knoxville this weekend, on Sunday, August 5. He’ll also race in the 17th Annual Musco Lighting Front Row Challenge at Southern Iowa Speedway in Oskaloosa with the UNOH All Star Circuit of Champions on Monday, August 6.
The Capitani Classic honors Ralph Capitani, the longtime Race Director at Knoxville Raceway, which is located at the Marion County Fairgrounds. A $5,000 to prize awaits the winner. The Capitani Classic is part of the 11th Annual Cox Design & Metal Fabrication Iowa Speed Week, which encompasses a number of events this week and next, culminating with the Knoxville Nationals. The Capitani Classic will follow the normal Knoxville Raceway weekly format, with time trials setting the field for heat races, followed by a 25-lap main event.
“I haven’t been to Knoxville yet this year, so it will be good to get a race in there,” said Gravel. “This will also be my first time racing there with Tyler (Swank) as my crew chief. I’m pretty anxious to get there and get some laps in. Hopefully we are fast and can learn a few things for the Nationals next week.”
A special $1,000-to-win dash will take place during the Capitani Classic, and will be open to the quick qualifier from each state/province represented that night, with starting positions drawn by selected fans and given to the drivers. The dash will have no bearing on the A-Feature starting line-up.
Gravel made his debut at the legendary half-mile in the 2010 Knoxville Nationals, earning the Rookie of the Year honors at the event, following a run to the B-main. Last year he finished eighth in the B-main on Saturday night, coming up just four spots short of making the 50-lap A-Feature. He raced his way into the preliminary feature on the first qualifying night.
“I always go out to win,” he stated. “Tyler (Swank) may try a few different things on the car on Sunday night to see what works for the Nationals, and I’ll try my hardest to get to the front. We’ll then go back after the race and see what we did right and what we did wrong, so that we are ready for the Nationals.”
The native of Watertown, Conn., made his first start in the Front Row Challenge at Southern Iowa Speedway also in 2010, finishing third behind three-time World of Outlaws champion Sammy Swindell and veteran Paul McMahan at the half-mile. Gravel opened that night as the sixth-fastest qualifier and finished fifth in the third heat race, which put him on the outside of the second row for the main event. He also competed in the first round of the “King of the Hill” match-race, falling to Joey Saldana. Last year, Gravel finished 13th in the Front Row Challenge.
“The Front Row Challenge is a pretty neat event,” shared Gravel. “They give out a lot of products and different contingency awards. They have the foot race as well, which I won last year. People have a lot of fun at that event, and it’s a great atmosphere. I’ve run well there before and just really enjoy going to Oskaloosa.”
Gravel is currently third in the UNOH All Star Circuit of Champions points standings, on the strength of one win, along with 18 Top-10 finishes. He has set fast time with the series six times this season aboard his Kistler-powered J&J with Tyler Swank and Kyle Ripper turning the wrenches.
David Gravel and DDR Motorsports would like to thank: J&J Chassis, JRC Transportation, Kistler Engines, Musco Fuels and P&M Transportation for their continued support.
Keep up-to-date with David Gravel and DDR Motorsports by visiting www.DavidGravel89.com. Follow David on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/DavidGravel89g. Like David on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/David-Gravel-Racing/143538695709198

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