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Holley treats fan, Checkers to victory at Kil-Kare

Prior to racing action at Kil-Kare Speedway last week, a young fan gave Tipp City driver Amber Holley a stuffed bear to ride along on her No. 88 Ford Probe. It’s not unusual for Kil-Kare Speedway drivers to tie small stuffed animals to the passenger side of their cars, making it easier for younger fans to pick a driver to root for.

Holley, though, wasn’t sure what to name the bear. She had the perfect one a few hours later.

“How about Checkers for winning?” Holley said after her second career compact victory. “We’ll go with Checkers.”

Holley gave the little brown bear, clad in a green shirt with Holley’s No. 88 painted on it, quite the ride. She started on the outside pole and led every lap. She nearly lost it with five to go when the back end of her Ford got loose.

“I was staring at the infield about halfway down the front stretch,” Holley said. “How I came out of that I have no idea. I never lost ground and managed to keep the lead. I was waiting for cars to come flying around me.”

Celebrating her victory in front of the grandstands, Holley had a chance to get a photo taken with Melody, the fan who gave her Checkers the bear.

“A special fan. This little girl has followed me about three or four years” Holley said. “I always talk to her dad and her whenever we see them. She bought me a bear to put in my car for good luck and even painted my number on it with glow in the dark paint so everybody can see it while I’m racing.”

Stewart running with Outlaws: NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Tony Stewart plans to make the trip from Talladega, Ala., to Eldora Speedway to race with the World of Outlaws winged sprint car series Friday and Saturday, chasing that elusive WoO at the track he owns. Stewart has three WoO wins overall. A feature win Friday or Saturday would add to his impressive haul at Eldora. He already has wins running against the USAC sprints and midgets, UMP DIRTcar modifieds and late models, NRA Sprint Invaders and three Prelude to the Dream late model victories.

Hot laps: Waynesfield Raceway Park opens its season Saturday highlighted by the non-wing sprints. … Troy’s Greg Stapleton swept the late model and modified features at Shadybowl Speedway last weekend. The modifieds run a special show Saturday with the 40-lap Bill Lewis Memorial. … Mid-Ohio hosts its FanFest today from 4-7:45 p.m. As part of the open house, fans can take pace car rides around the road course for a $10 donation to Nationwide Children’s hospital.

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