Budweiser Oval Nationals Coming To MAVTV
PERRIS, Calif. – When the Kazarian family opened Perris Auto Speedway in 1996, they knew the new racing facility would need a signature sprint car event.
They came up with the name Oval Nationals and the inaugural event, which was won by National Sprint Car Hall of Famer Jimmy Sills, took place on Oct. 18-19 of that year. Little did they or anyone else know that over the years the race would become one of the most prestigious races in the sprint car world.
The race, now sanctioned by USAC as part of the AMSOIL National Sprint Car Series, will take another giant leap forward when staged this year on Nov. 6-8 when for the first time it will be shown on MAVTV as part of the “Dirty 30” series.
“We are ecstatic that the Budweiser Oval Nationals Presented by All Coast Construction will be shown to racing fans around the country on MAVTV,” promoter Don Kazarian said. “The Oval Nationals is a premiere event and this exposure will make it even bigger. It will be a tremendous boost for the drivers, the teams, fans, the track and all of the sponsors who will be exposed to millions of extra racing fans.”
Over the years, some of the biggest names in open wheel racing have visited victory circle at the Oval Nationals and it draws together top talent from around the country. In 2007, third generation Campbell, Calif., star Bud Kaeding became the first driver to win the Oval Nationals three times. Last November, Indiana’s Dave Darland became only the second driver to win it three times.
The only other multi-time winners in the first 18 runnings of the race have been Californian’s Damion Gardner and Cory Kruseman who each have two wins. Both of Kruseman’s wins came while driving cars owned by NASCAR star Tony Stewart. Drivers with single wins in the Oval Nationals are Mike Spencer, Rip Williams, Rodney Argo, Tony Jones, Rickie Gaunt, Sills, Chris Windom and the late Jesse Hockett.
“When all is said and done, nearly every driver who has won the Oval Nationals will be inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame,” Kazarian said. “Two of them, Sills and Williams, are already in there. As impressive as the list of drivers who have already won the Oval Nationals is, the list of drivers who have thus far tried and failed to win it is just as impressive. It is one of the toughest races in the world to win.”