SPENCER, Iowa – Following an early season trip to Central Pennsylvania, Justin Henderson and car owner Mike Sandvig are shifting gears toward the middle of the country, taking part in the Knoxville Raceway season opener this Saturday.
The event will serve as the beginning of a 15-race weekly schedule at the famed race track in Knoxville, Iowa, where Henderson and Sandvig will again be regulars in search of their first track championship.
“I feel like we have a really good idea of where we are at as a team and hopefully we can kind of jump right into things and be fast,” Henderson said. “We’ve seen glimpses of knowing how good we can be and this year it’s about consistency and running up front as much as possible.”
Henderson and Sandvig are coming off a season that saw the duo pick up their first victory together at Knoxville Raceway. They also finished seventh in the championship standings in a season that was shortened because of COVID-19. Henderson believes the team is ready to take the next step in being championship contenders.
“I’ve never won a championship at Knoxville and I know it’s on Mike’s list as an owner to accomplish,” he said. “Mike gives me so much as an owner and I want so badly to do well for him. Of course the goal is to win races and if we can do that the points deal will take care of itself.”
Knoxville Raceway has raised its point fund to a track record $114,000 to the drivers and teams with the champion owner and driver receiving $10,000. As an added bonus, six of the 15 events will pay $5,000 to win.
Henderson appreciates the track upping the ante for the drivers after a difficult season and he is hoping to be able to cash in on the added incentives for himself and Sandvig.
“Knoxville is always trying their hardest to support us as racers and teams and that never goes unnoticed to us,” he said. “They are always coming around and handing out tear-offs, giving out tires throughout the year and the facilities are almost unmatched for our sport.
“Now they are upping the purse and supporting the teams in that way, too. We love supporting Knoxville Raceway and it makes it really easy to feel good about that decision when they are putting in that kind of effort.”