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Tanner Carrick, who competed for Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports on the USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midget trail from 2017-19, has rejoined the team for the remainder of the 2020 season, beginning Nov. 13-14 in the Western World Championships presented by San Tan Ford at Arizona Speedway.
During his tenure with Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian Motorsports from 2017-19, Carrick won USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midget Rookie of the Year (2017) as well as his first series feature and Most Improved Driver (both in 2019).
After KKM and the Lincoln, Calif. driver parted ways following the 2019 season, Carrick teamed up with Petry Motorsports for 2020 before that pairing parted ways at the end of September.
Carrick, who currently stands 7th in the series standings, notes a close relationship with Keith Kunz, the 113-time feature winning car owner with the series (2nd all-time) who made the deal to have Carrick back in the stable.
“I’ve always been close to Keith, even after I left last year because I got an opportunity to race with Petry and try something new after racing with KKM for three years,” Carrick explained. “Keith and I always talk to each other and we’ve went on hunting trips; we just always were together. Coming into the west coast swing at all my home tracks without having a ride, Keith came to the table and asked me if I wanted to get in one of his cars and run with him and Pete (Willoughby) again for the rest of the year and see where it goes, and see what happens for next year, really. It was hard to pass up.”
In 90 career series starts, Carrick has scored one victory, in 2019 at Sweet Springs, Mo., finished in the top-five on 16 occasions and inside the top-ten 50 times, while earning fast qualifying honors twice and finishing 9th, 6th and 6th in the standings in each of the past three seasons. This year alone, all with Petry, Carrick has led 28 laps with 3 top-fives and 13 top-tens in 21 starts.
Despite feeling like he’s been plagued by bad luck at times this year, Carrick feels confident that he has stepped up his game this year, winning in winged sprint car competition in California, plus adding a pair of fourth place results with the midgets at Lanco in Pennsylvania and at Sweet Springs.
“I feel like I’ve raced the best I ever have this year, especially in our sprint car program,” Carrick said. “We’ve definitely stepped up our game all around. But with KKM bringing number one cars to the track every night and running up front, that brings a great deal of confidence to me and I know what I’ll have after racing with him these past few years.”
Carrick ran well at the 1/3-mile Arizona Speedway on the opening night of Western World a year ago, finishing 3rd for KKM and will be the most seasoned driver on the team’s eight car lineup for the 53rd annual event alongside Daison Pursley, Buddy Kofoid, Bryant Wiedeman, Kaylee Bryson, Cannon McIntosh, Brenham Crouch and Jesse Love.
Western World activities at Arizona Speedway begin this Thursday night, Nov. 12, with open practice for both sprint cars and midgets. Pits open at 3pm MT with on-track practice from 6:30-9:30pm . Adult pit passes are $30 while pit passes are $10 for kids age 7-12 and free for kids ages 6 and under. Thursday night’s practice will feature an extra treat with the Beaver Stripes Racer Appreciation BBQ dinner.
On both Friday and Saturday night, Nov. 13-14, the pits open at 1pm MT, grandstands at 3pm and racing at 6:30pm. General admission adult tickets are $30, while kids 11 and under are just $10. Pit passes are $40 for adults and $15 for ages 7-12 and free for ages 6 and under.
The previous year’s Western World Midget winners include Kevin Thomas Jr. and Brady Bacon, who each raced their way to San Tan Ford / Beaver Stripes victory lane in 2019.
Western World tickets are on sale now at www.arizonaspeedway.net.
Both nights of the 53rd Western World Championships will be streamed live on FloRacing at https://bit.ly/2ZpafUr.