Three former race winners among first 14 drivers elected to Fast Shafts All-Star field

BOONE, Iowa (July 28) – The winners of the last three Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational events are among the first 14 drivers elected to start the 2015 race.

Defending winner Kyle Strickler of Mooresville, N.C., 2013 winner Todd Shute of Des Moines and 2012 winner Jordan Grabouski of Beatrice, Neb., will take the green flag on Friday, Sept. 11 dur­ing the IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals fueled by Casey’s at Boone Speedway.

Elected to the All-Star field from the Western Region were Ricky Thornton Jr. and Tim Ward, both of Chandler, Ariz.; Jimmy Gustin of Marshalltown and Richie Gustin of Gilman from the North Cen­tral Region; Grabouski and Jeff Taylor of Cave City, Ark., from the Central Region; William Gould of Calera, Okla., and Keith White of Little River Academy, Texas, from the South Central Region; and Strickler and A.J. Ward of Ionia, Mich., from the Eastern Region.

The four at-large candidates elected were Kelly Shryock of Fertile; Shute; Ricky Alvarado of Delta, Colo.; and Hunter Marriott of Brookfield, Mo.

Jimmy Gustin was the top overall vote recipient with nearly 107,000 ballots cast for the first 130 candidates. A.J. Ward takes the starting spot of Ken Schrader, who is unable to attend Super Nation­als.

Marriott and Shryock will both start their first All-Star Invitationals. Richie Gustin and A.J. Ward are second-time starters.

Alvarado, Gould, Grabouski, Strickler and Thornton are each in for the third time, Jimmy Gustin and Shute for the fourth.

Taylor and White are now five-time All-Stars. Tim Ward will start the Invitational for the sixth time.

Finishing fifth through 14th in the at-large voting were Darin Duffy of Urbana, Chris Abelson of Sioux City, Mark Elliott of Webster City, Dylan Smith of Osceola, Neb., Jesse Sobbing of Glen­wood, Mike Jergens of Plover, Johnny Saathoff of Beatrice, Neb., David Murray Jr. of Oberlin, Kan., Terry Phillips of Springfield, Mo., and Zane DeVilbiss of Farmington, N.M.

Round two voting, with the field of candidates including all winners of 40-point Modified features held between June 19 and July 16, begins Wednesday, July 29 and continues to Aug. 5.

The 12th annual invitational is 30 laps and pays $1,000 to win and $200 to start.

Completing the starting grid will be All-Star candidates with the top national point total and the most 40-point feature wins as of Sept. 4 competing at Super Nationals.