Isaac Chapple Returns to Rice Racing for Little 500 Bid
The 2021 runner-up in the Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series (BOSS), Isaac Chapple, returns to the Lucas Oil Little 500 presented by UAW for his fourth attempt in six years. Chapple competed in 2017 and 2018 before taking a brief hiatus and returning to the high banks in 2021. Chapple will be driving for Rice Racing, owned by Pat and Patrick Rice.
“It’s such a big event,” Chapple said when asked why the Little 500 is special to him. “The whole week, the atmosphere of it, the fans that come from everywhere for it. It’s a neat event and you want to be a part of it…It’s special and unique. I look forward to it every year”.
The 2016 USAC National Sprint Car Rookie of the year, who is chasing a championship in BOSS, is taking a break from his busy dirt schedule to compete at Anderson’s renowned pavement oval for one of the most cherished trophies in all of Sprint Car racing. After competing with two different teams in his first two Little 500 attempts, Chapple will be coming into this Memorial Day weekend with a level of familiarity and readiness. We asked Chapple what a whole year with Rice Racing has done for his confidence and preparation going into the Month of May.
“It’s huge,” Chapple said. “We had to wait for a lot of parts to come in, so we aren’t super ahead of the game like we wanted to be, but we are still in a lot better shape than we were last year…Having our own hands on it (the car), it makes a big difference”.
In 2021, Rice Racing, in their inaugural season, put their entry together roughly two weeks before the Lucas Oil Little 500 Presented by UAW, and were happy to make the race with such little preparation. This year, Rice Racing will compete in a brand new car that comes with new aspirations as well. With only a few weeks to go before the green flag drops on the 2022 Little 500, Chapple and his team are setting their sights on their primary goal of the month, qualifying.
“This year we have our ducks in a row a little better,” Chapple proclaimed. “So the goal is to lock ourselves in on pole day. We do not want to do anything on bump day and then to finish the race. We feel if we finish the race, we can compete for a top ten”.
Once the Month of May is over, it is back to business as usual for Chapple. Back to dirt tracks and competing for a BOSS Championship. After missing races on the BOSS schedule last year to compete in other events, Chapple and his team decided over the winter not to miss any races this year and focus on the Championship. With the inception of the new 500 Sprint Car Tour, Rice Racing and Chapple are prepared to compete in multiple tour races this season. With the exception of the Little 500, the 500 Sprint Car Tour presented by Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper events he plans to compete in will not interfere with his regularly scheduled BOSS events. The team will look to potentially be involved in the tour full time in 2023.
After five straight wins last season, and a close finish in the BOSS Championship, Chapple is coming into the Month of May as confident and prepared as he’s ever been. He will be looking to qualify for his fourth Little 500, and his second in as many years with Rice Racing. The 74th Annual Lucas Oil Little 500 Presented by UAW will be held on Saturday, May 28th at 8pm. Fans can watch the Race LIVE on Mavtv Plus with a special rebroadcast taking place on Sunday, May 29 at 9:00am – 12:00pm on MAVTV Motorsports Network.
Practice for teams begins on Wednesday, May 25. CB Fabricating Pole Day is scheduled for Thursday, May 26 from 11:30am – 1:30pm. Tin Plate Fine Food & Spirits Bump Day is set for Friday, May 27. Grandstand Admission, Wednesday – Friday is FREE for fans. Tickets for the 74th Annual Lucas Oil Little 500 presented by UAW can be purchased by calling (765) 642-0206 ex. 121 or by stopping by the track ticket office.