After spending the bulk of the 2023 season traversing the country chasing races with the ASA STARS National Tour and other marquee events, Billy VanMeter will get a chance at some home cooking when the series heads to Anderson Speedway on Saturday, July 15 for the Redbud 400.
He’ll have the benefit of a home track for the Redbud 400, sitting just under an hour up I-69 from his hometown of Indianapolis, IN. In a year of learning for VanMeter, July 15’s race at Anderson and the Winchester 400 in October will provide some reprieve.
“I’m pretty excited, honestly. I think it’s going to go well as long as we don’t have any issues like we did last year. We had fuel issues that took me out but we had some pretty good speed,” said VanMeter. “I had a pretty good track record there for a while with the Sportsman and the JEGS (CRA All-Stars Tour). Hopefully I can do what my dad does and make it look cool and end up winning it.”
VanMeter has been a top CRA Late Model Sportsman competitor for close to a decade, winning at tracks like Anderson, Winchester, and Indianapolis Raceway Park. After dabbling in Pro and Super Late Models during that time, he made the jump to Super Late Model racing full-time a year ago with the ASA CRA Super Series, finishing second in points to father Eddie VanMeter. During the year, his best finish was a fifth at Winchester during the World Stock Car Festival Labor Day weekend.
With the elder VanMeter’s driving days appearing limited at most due to his ownership of Circle City Raceway, the younger VanMeter’s sophomore season in Super Late Model racing has been an ambitious one, chasing the full ASA STARS National Tour schedule to this point.
“It’s a big jump but it’s easier than it looks once you get a handle on the power difference. The mechanics are the same, it’s just the closing rate and horsepower and keeping the tires on it that’s the biggest difference. Going to ASA this year, it’s been quite hard because there are the top of the line guys. It’s not running home track stuff, it’s the best of the best of Super Late Models.”
The 2023 season has been a year of ups and downs to this point. He was a DNQ for the Joe Shear Classic at Madison, but also has a pair of 14th-place finishes at Five Flags and Hickory. VanMeter had his strongest run yet last time out, finishing 10th and running in the top-ten all day in his first trip to the Milwaukee Mile.
After that strong run at The Mile, he is excited to see what Anderson will bring.
“Besides the bad luck and qualifying mishaps and getting caught up in other people’s wrecks, we honestly have had pretty good finishes in the races that we’ve got to run the right way. In the last race we finished 10th; I thought that was pretty good we had never been (to Milwaukee) before. We didn’t have the best handling car but it had the characteristics to hang with the top guys during the race.”
VanMeter comes from a line of Outlaw Figure-8 racers, with Eddie having won nearly everything there is to win in the discipline, including the World Figure-8 Championship Three Hour race at Indianapolis Speedrome. When the return of ASA was announced, Billy VanMeter was excited to follow in his footsteps.
“I was happy considering my dad ran it way back when. He did pretty good then but he was very underfunded at the time. I was happy to get to keep on carrying the torch for him and maybe make him proud if we can continue having good points days like we did at the Milwaukee Mile and keep moving forward.”
This year’s Red Bud 400 will be held in conjunction with the 50th Anniversary ASA Racer’s Reunion at the speedway. A host of former ASA drivers and officials will be in attendance to relive their past memories while celebrating the future as ASA returns home to Anderson Speedway. Tickets for the 50th Anniversary ASA Racers Reunion are available for a special price of $50. These tickets include access to the Racers Reunion luncheon, a Q&A session with ASA legends, an autograph session with these same legends, and a ticket to the 57th Annual Greg Hubler Automotive Group Redbud 400. Tickets for the ASA Racers Reunion can be purchased by calling Anderson Speedway at 765-642-0206 or by visiting the trackside ticket office located at 1311 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, Anderson, IN 46016.
On-track activities for the 57th Annual Greg Hubler Automotive Group Redbud 400 will kick off on Friday, July 14th with inspection and practice for the ASA STARS National Tour. Go Fas Pole Qualifying is scheduled for Saturday afternoon, July 15th, with the Redbud 400 set to go green at 7:30PM Eastern Time. Tickets for the event are currently being offered at a special price of $20 for an adult ticket until Friday, July 14th. Tickets for children aged 6-12 are $10 and children aged 5 and under are free. To purchase tickets, or for more information, contact or visit Anderson Speedway’s main ticket office.
The Redbud 400 will be co-sanctioned with the ASA CRA Super Series, which will be the third race of the CRA season. Gio Ruggiero won the opener at Salem Speedway, while race two will be contested on Sunday, July 2 at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway.
The ASA STARS National Tour opened the ten race, six-state schedule at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, FL on March 11. Ty Majeski is the most recent winner, claiming the victory in the Father’s Day 100 at the Milwaukee Mile.
For the full ASA STARS National Tour schedule, plus Super Late Model rules and other information, please visit the series website at starsnationaltour.com, or be sure to follow the series on social media (Facebook: STARS National Series | Twitter: @racewithstars | IG: @starsnational).
ASA STARS National Tour
The ASA STARS National Tour debuted in March of 2023 for Super Late Model racing in America. Announced last October, many of the best drivers in America will compete in the ten-race national tour with a minimum $100,000 point fund. The championship team will be guaranteed $25,000.
The ASA STARS National Tour is made up of three races from each of the regional pavement Super Late Model Series under the Track Enterprises banner; the ASA CRA Super Series, the ASA Midwest Tour and the ASA Southern Super Series.
The Team Construction Winner’s Circle program has been announced as a part of the ASA STARS National Tour for licensed drivers/teams with perfect attendance. The program provides additional financial incentives to those teams who support the Series, thanks to Team Construction.
Track Enterprises, a Racing Promotions Company based in Illinois, will operate the ASA STARS National Tour. It announced the acquisition of the CRA sanctioning body in January and followed that up with the purchase of the Midwest Tour in July. In October, Track Enterprises President, Bob Sargent announced a partnership with the Southern Super Series which set the table for the formation of the ASA STARS National Tour.