World Figure 8? Racing Tour
January 29, 2009
The Figure 8 world will migrate south in just a few weeks to the sunshine state?s Auburndale Speedway for the Florida Figure 8 Championship series. The most exciting spectator sport has a talented roster of southern stars preparing for the challenge from many anxious northern drivers. Thursday February 12th is the beginning of this four-day festival of racing headlined by the World Figure 8? cars. Two generations of Norton?s will leave the Hoosier state to compete in this upcoming crossover challenge.
A diverse variety of successes are on the racing resume of Midwest short track veteran driver RJ Norton Jr. The recently crowned champion of the West Coast Figure 8 World Finals at California?s Irwindale Speedway began racing in 1986. In that first year he claimed a share of the Indianapolis Speedrome Stock class title. A move up with the ?big boys? saw RJ become the first rookie driver to win on the tracks Figure 8 course. Over the years, he was a three-time Speedrome Late Model point runner-up and claimed many victories highlighted by a pair of Jake?s 150 triumphs.
This 1992 Jeffersonville Sportsdrome Figure 8 Madness champion is also the all-time leader in Outlaw Figure 8 feature wins at Indiana?s Anderson Speedway. He was also a crossover winner at the now defunct Charlestown Speedway. Norton spent several years chasing the Super Late Model circuit in the Midwest where he saw checkered flags at the Winchester and Salem Speedways. The veteran additionally raced an open wheel Modified with a signature win in 2004?s inaugural North vs. South Shootout at Riverview Speedway in Tennessee. RJ even piloted a Dirt Modified this past season.
RJ Norton III is relatively new to the Figure 8 planet as a driver. The man who has turned wrenches for his father for several years has spent enough time behind the wheel. Beginning in the Speedrome Hornet division, RJ3 picked up many feature wins before taking over as driver in the families Modified. He earned the division?s rookie-of-the-year award after capturing the season?s biggest event, the CSI 100. Over the past few years, he has sporadically competed on the Figure 8 in Late Model and Stock class machines. RJ3 will campaign a car for Eddie VanMeter in the Florida series.
The Florida Figure 8 Championship is sanctioned by the World Figure 8? Racing Tour. It has dates set for February 12th to the 15th, 2009 at the Auburndale Speedway. These events evolved from the legendary World Figure 8? Championship held each year at the EDCO Welding Indianapolis Speedrome?. The $20,000 to win, 33rd Annual World Figure 8? Championship is September 10th to 12th, 2009.
Posted by The “Racing Insider” Donald Walton