HAMILTON JR. WINS THE TROPICANA TWISTER 300 AND BLISS WINS ROUND THREE OF IROC XXVII

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For Ed Rensi, there?s no place like home.

Rensi, one of the nine founding owners of Route 66 Raceway and part-owner of Chicagoland Speedway, proudly watched as driver Bobby Hamilton Jr. dominated Saturday?s Tropicana Twister 300. Rensi owns the winning race team.

?(The win is) really, really special for a lot of reasons,? Rensi said. ?We?ve got a lot of young Marines that are scattered around the world right now, defending our Constitution, defending our country, and being affiliated with the United State Marine Corps is a very special thing anytime.

?Living in Downer?s Grove, Ill., and being at your home track we?ve got a nice, easy drive home tonight to sleep good, feeling good. I?m proud of Bobby, proud of Harold, but I?m just proud to be a surrogate Marine.?

Hamilton took the lead from pole-sitter Casey Mears on the third lap and piloted the Team Marines Ford to the front for 186 of 200 laps. He relinquished only during pit stops.

NASCAR Winston Cup Series points leader Matt Kenseth finished second; Brian Vickers finished third. Mears finished fourth and Michael Waltrip rounded out the top five.

"I know you've got to try to make it sound interesting, but it just wasn't," Kenseth said. "It was like an old-fashion whipping we took today. He had the whole field covered."

The win was Hamilton?s second of the season and third of his career.

Scott Riggs now holds a 23-point lead over David Green in the season standings.

Following the Tropicana Twister 300, the True Value International Race of Champions hit the track for some racing action in equally prepared cars.

Mike Bliss, representing the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series but who currently drives in the NASCAR Busch Series, won the event, scoring his first IROC victory. It was also the first win by a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver.

?I guess that just shows everyone how good the talent in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series is,? Bliss said.

NASCAR Winston Cup Series standouts Ryan Newman and Kurt Busch finished 2-3, respectively.

?The track was actually really good as far as race-ability; top side, bottom side, you weren?t scared to stay on the top side and try to run wide open with somebody else so that was a good thing to look forward to tomorrow,? Newman said.

Busch leads the IROC points standings 57-49 over Bliss.

Click here for more information about Round Three of IROC.

Click here for more information about the Tropicana Twister 300.

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