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Busch North sets 2001 schedule, new director

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 6, 2000)

After a three-year absence, NASCAR Busch North Series racing returns to the "Monster Mile" of Dover Downs International Speedway.
NASCAR officials Wednesday announced a 2001 Busch North Series, NASCAR Touring schedule that features a record 20 races in eight states, highlighted by returns to both Nazareth Speedway and Dover Downs International Speedway.

Added events are also scheduled at Stafford Motor Speedway and Seekonk Speedway, each of whom hosted capacity crowds at their 2000 Busch North Series races.

NASCAR officials also announced the appointment of veteran racing administrator Phil Rowe, 42, of Scarborough, Maine, as Busch North Series Director. Rowe has a 10-year background in motorsports management and will assume his new duties immediately. He succeeds Alfred "Bunk" Sampson, who will remain with the series as a consultant as he continues to battle cancer.

The season opens on the 3/8th-mile oval at Lee, N.H., on Sunday, April 22, and concludes on the 1.53-mile Lime Rock Park road course in Lakeville, Conn., on Saturday, Oct. 13.

The races on the uniquely-shaped one-mile Nazareth track in Pennsylvania and the high-banked Dover "Monster Mile" in Delaware join with the traditional three events at New Hampshire International Speedway to give the Busch North Series five superspeedway races in 2001.

At Nazareth, where the series raced from 1996 to 1999, the Busch North teams will race on Sunday, Aug. 26, as part of a weekend that also features the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.

At Dover, where the last Busch North Series race was staged in 1998, the 200-miler on Friday, Sept. 21 is the opener of a tripleheader weekend including the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division and the NASCAR Winston Cup Series.

The races at Dover, New Hampshire International Speedway in July and September and at the Watkins Glen International road course in August place the Busch North Series in front of NASCAR Winston Cup Series weekend crowds four times during the season.

The short track portion of the 2001 slate is also enhanced by the added midsummer event at Seekonk, Mass., and by the return of the Busch North Series to Stafford's Fall Final at the half-mile oval in Stafford Springs, Conn.

Seekonk added a second date on its third-mile oval after the series' return from a 13-year absence last spring resulted in one of the largest crowds in the track's 54-year history. Stafford's season-ending classic will again feature the popular format with which it began, as the Featherlite Modified Series and Busch North Series stage twin 150-lap features on Sunday, Sept. 30.

"The Busch North Series schedule shapes up very well for the 2001 season," said Tom Deery, NASCAR vice president. "The schedule includes traditional stops, as well as the return to Dover and Nazareth. Add to that exciting events at New Hampshire International Speedway and the season looks extremely promising."

Jennerstown (Pa.) Speedway was a 2000 venue that did not return on the 2001 schedule.

Anheuser-Busch, Incorporated of St. Louis has been involved with the Busch North Series since its inception 14 seasons ago and will once again join NASCAR as a marketing partner to the series in the year 2001.