Shawn Sharkey to Join Austin Wayne Self to Celebrate his Farewell Race at Thunderhill Raceway

Saturday, August 27th Late Model Race to Feature the “Double” 07 Cars

Austin Wayne Self hopes to give fans some great entertainment and go out with a bang at Thunderhill Raceway when he partners up to race with his good friend Shawn Sharkey, a 17-year-old multi-series karting champion from New Jersey.  In what will be Austin’s final NASCAR Whelen All-American Series race in Kyle, Austin and Shawn will drive the twin 07 Chevy Late Model cars on Saturday, August 27th.

“Austin and Shawn have raced each other in karts for the past 3 years in National Cup events and now they get to race each other in NASCAR Late Models. How cool is that? Shawn has been racing in Lee Faulk’s Racing Development program at the Hickory, North Carolina track all season so I am sure he will do well here.  There’s no doubt they will put on a good show for the fans,” says Tim Self, owner of AM Racing. “They did so in Karts and they will do so in Late Models.

“On another note, this is the end of and era for us. We are moving our NASCAR Program to Charlotte to finish out the season, and get ready for a really big 2012 NASCAR Season up there.  We will miss Thunderhill, and especially all of our really great fans here.  We hope to get back here from time to time.”

“Are you kidding me? This is Butch and Sundance! These kids raced together at the top of the game in karts in fields of 36-56 karts deep,” says Jim Sharkey, Owner of Shawn Sharkey Racing. “They know how the game is played, and I think they will show very well for the crowd. Shake and Bake Baby, Shake aanndd Bake!”

“By the way, we’re from Jersey and would just like to say that since our Governor is not in the running, we fully support Texas Governor Rick Perry in his run for the White House. We are proud to be here in the Great State of Texas. Thanks for having us.”

“I just want to say thanks to Austin, AM Racing and their crew for inviting us down and for the privilege to race here in Central Texas,” says Shawn Sharkey.  “Racing with NASCAR in North Carolina is a little different than down here. The tracks are different, the suspension, tires and motor are all different. So we have our work cut out for us. The good news is, I won the coin toss and get the primary 07 car.  Austin will drive the backup 07 car. I think it will be fun for the fans especially if we get lucky enough to run 1st and 2nd.  No one will be sure who is what car. That’s really cool.”

“Racing with Shawn again – especially in Late Models instead of Karts is going to be really cool,” says Austin Wayne Self, driver of the 07 Chevrolet.  “I’m looking forward to working with him in practice to get him up to speed on this track. Having both of the 07 Late Models on the track is going to be a wild experience for the crowd. It’ll be like double vision.  As far as working together, that may happen early in the race. But I know Shawn, and come the last 5 laps, he’s like me, and he has no friends. That’s just the way we race.”

Learn more about Shawn Sharkey at

Learn more about Austin Wayne Self and AM Racing at

Follow us on Facebook and watch for a big announcement in the next 2 weeks regarding the AM Racing Teams’ move to Charlotte, NC.



Terri Hartley
Marketing and PR Director for Austin Wayne Self
Phone 281-702-2573

Austin Wayne Self and AM Racing to move NASCAR Modified Program to Houston Motorsports Park (HMP)

After racing at HMP for the 1st time last weekend, Austin and team were so impressed with the quality of the facility, the racing program and the staff, they have decided to make HMP the new Home Track for their NASCAR Modified Program and plan to race the balance of the 2011 races there.

“HMP is a 1st class facility with a great team of people. They run a top-notch program and have the fans to prove it. We look forward to competing in the Modified field and hope to win the hearts of some of the fans. It will be tough on both counts for sure, but we are up to the challenge,” says Tim Self Owner of AM Racing.

“Yeah, we came out here to race the trucks and had a great time.  I want to thank Raymond, Jim and Eddie for giving us a fast truck last Saturday night. We were up front racing for the win and having a great time until we got spun and sent to the back. Still had a great time, and man I love the high groove on that track. Based on how well we did in trucks, I think we will be really competitive in the Modified. I can’t wait to get back there next Saturday night. I just hope we can get some of our central Texas fans to come out here. We could definitely use their support,” says Austin Wayne Self, the 15-year-old driver of the #8.5 Truck, #07 Modified and #07 Late Model.

When asked if the AM Racing Late Model Program was going to move as well, AM Racing Crew Chief David Umscheid had this to say: “ We are moving our Late Model Program to Charlotte for the 2012 season, so there are no immediate changes to our Central Texas Program. We do plan on bringing a couple of East Coast drivers down to test and maybe even race before the end of the season.”

Following a stellar run in NSACAR Trucks last weekend, in which Austin finished 5th out of 17 in his 1st ever truck race.  It was also  and 1st time on the HMP track, and  the new Home Track for AM Racing and Austin Wayne Self’s Modified Program.

Click here for the remaining 2011 season schedule:

Austin Wayne Self Gets another Win in NASCAR Modified Division

Nearly Scores Another Double Win with 2nd in Exciting Late Model Division Racing

Kyle, Texas — Monday, July 18 — Thunderhill Raceway

After starting P4 in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Modified Division, Self quickly showed he had a fast car by charging into first place using the outside groove on a restart.  By Lap 20, Self extended to a 10-car-length lead and never looked back as the balance of the race was all green flag.

“I really have to thank David Umscheid and JR for setting up the best Pro Mod out there tonight.  Once we were able to get to the front, I knew nobody could catch us. We have been using the high groove a lot this season to make passes especially in the Late Model. It’s a cool thing when your crew gives you a car that can run on top or on the bottom. We had a really good car tonight” said Self.

“I also want to congratulate the Umscheid family on their second grandchild.  Michael and his wife had a daughter earlier this week.  Their family is very close, so I appreciated that David was still there for us at the track this weekend.”

The Modified win brings Self’s NASCAR win total to 4.


After a very brief celebration in Victory Lane, Self and team ran the car through post-race tech.  After being cleared, Self hustled over to the 07 Late Model where it was waiting on the grid.  The Late Model Division then went green roughly 20 minutes after the Modified Division finish.

Self started in P6 and drove to P3 by Lap 10.  Self was then sent to the back when the car he was passing to take third couldn’t hold the outside groove and took a spin. The Thunderhill ‘All Involved’ rule sent Self to the back of the field. After another caution involving other cars, Self used the outside groove to race up to P4 and made an inside move on Lap 15 to advance up to P3.  The final 20 laps involved tight bumper-to-bumper driving between Bobby Teer, Jr., Robert Barker and Self.

On the final lap, Teer was forced up the track going into turn 3 as Barker was able to wrangle to his inside. Teer couldn’t keep his car in the high groove and ran off the track in turn 3.  No yellow was thrown and the race finished with Barker taking the win and Self finishing in P2.

“Those last 20 laps were very tight between Teer, Barker and our car.  We tried several moves to get around them, but they really fought us off each time.  We couldn’t have asked for a more fun night of good racing – I had an absolute blast,” says Self.

“We also have to thank the fans who came out to support us tonight.  It was cool to see the stands full and the crowd cheering and going crazy for some exciting racing.  That’s what it’s all about!”

Self will be back on the track at Thunderhill Raceway on Saturday, July 30th.




Terri Hartley

Phone 281-702-2573





World Karting Association National Cup Beaver Run Motorsports Park

Once again, Austin got to do his favorite thing this weekend; Start in the
back and drive to the front.

In a racing weekend stacked with the top national drivers and plagued with
incident, Austin at least had the opportunity have some fun and grab a lot
of attention.

With 35 to 40 drivers starting each race there was plenty of competition.
Saturday’s racing found Austin starting 23 in Komet and 40th (last position) in
the Yamaha Feature Races. He would end up 7th in the Komet race and 6th in
the Yamaha. That’s 16 passes in Komet and 34 passes in Yamaha!

He would then do it all again on Sunday. After a locked up wheel bearing
prevented him from qualifying Yamaha, he would start 9th in the LCQ and take
the win. That put him starting 36th and finishing 10th in the  pre-main. He
went on to finish 4th in the Yamaha Feature after being shuffled back to
16th on the start. Komet wasn’t any different. After being spun at the start
of the pre-main, he would go on to start 33rd in main and would make another
23 passes to finish 10th.

“I think the fact that one way or another we ended up in the back of every
single race with such huge fields and still managed to pull out top 10
finishes in all of them, and even a podium, says a great deal about the Arrow
Chassis and Comet Motors.” Says Austin. “Our NASCAR program doesn’t allow us
the opportunity to do any testing with Karts and motors. We just show up in
time to race and have to figure everything out during each element. You
can’t expect to win against these guys without investing the time. These
guys are the best of the best. I am just grateful that KartSport, Comet and
AKR continue to provide me such great support to allow me to at least
showcase their products. I think we proved beyond a doubt that they have
fast stuff.”

“There are a few drivers out there that worked really well with
me during the events. I want to express my gratitude to them. Thanks guys!
It’s always cool drafting with really good drivers.”

“That kid never ceases to impress. This weekend, he put on the greatest
driving display I have ever seen in this series. Everywhere we go, one way
or another he puts on a show.” Say Mike Ramirez of AKR. I am grateful to be
able to work with this kid.”

Austin returns to NASCAR Racing this weekend as he competes in the NASCAR
Whelen All-American Series Late Model and Modified Divisions in Central Texas.

Austin Wayne Self and Crew Get the Hat Trick at Beaver Run Raceway

In a Pre-National race at Beaver Run Raceway this past weekend, Austin Wayne Self, supported by KartSport and Comet Racing won 3 of the 4 races in his classes.

“ The racing was great this weekend, a lot of lead changes and passes, it couldn’t have been more fun.” Says Austin. “It was great hanging out with the KartSport and Comet crew and all my karting friends. I love this track. I think the biggest thing this weekend was the respect all the drivers gave each other. We were always two wide in the turns, drafting on the straights and one time we got 4 wide up the hill into turn 8. Even though the other drivers wouldn’t give you a break, everybody gave each other just enough room to race. There were no cheap shots. It was cool. I hope everyone comes back in two weeks with the same attitude.”

“Austin delivered for all of us this weekend. It wasn’t so much about winning as it was about learning how this new Bridgestone tire compound works and getting the kart set up for the national coming up in two weeks.” says Crew Chief Michael Ramirez. “ “This is probably the most difficult track in the series for the crew and driver. There is every type of turn you can think of and then the long uphill straights that require exact gear and carburetor setup.”

Beaver Run Raceway will host the Manufacturer’s Cup Nationals July 9th and 10th. Most of the top national teams competed in the Great Lakes Sprint Series race this past weekend in an effort to get ready for the Man Cup Nationals.

“Most of the top drivers were here this weekend with one big exception, Joel Jens. He will be here next weekend testing so we won’t have anything on him come Man Cup race day.” Says Tim Self, Owner of AM Racing, the marketing group supporting the Austin Wayne Self Brand.  “KartSport, Comet and Austin’s crew made some big progress with our karting program this weekend. We look forward to the Man Cup Nationals in two weeks. Thanks to the GLSS Team for hosting all of us this weekend. Especially to Kevin Harter who had his hands full reconciling passion and emotion all weekend. You have great resolve Kevin. Also, hey to the Ryans, fellow Texans and TCU alumnus. Go Frogs!!!”

Rumor has it that Joel Jens will be heading back to Texas with Austin Wayne Self immediately following the Man Cup to test in one of his NASCAR Late Models.

Firecracker 150 coming to Thunderhill Raceway

Contact:  Jerry Harrison, 512-970-0469,

Firecracker 150 coming to Thunderhill Raceway and Austin Wayne Self to Enter a Team

KYLE, TX (June 20, 2011) – On Track Xperience (OTX) and Thunderhill Raceway (Kyle, TX) will host one of the richest Kart Races in the country on Saturday, July 2, at 7 pm.

A total of $10,000 will be up for grabs in this 150-lap endurance race, with $5,000 in cash going to the winner and another $5,000 in cash and prizes being awarded to the remaining competitors.  Each driver will also get a complimentary haircut from Sport Cuts.

This First Annual Firecracker 150 will feature 12 teams with five drivers on each team – all competing in karts at speeds up to 65 mph on the 3/8-mile, D-shaped asphalt oval track. These karts will be provided by NasKart Racing Xperience, which currently offers wheel-to-wheel racing to the general public at the same track on a regular basis.

Teams must qualify in advance to be included in this event, and only the fastest 12 teams will move on to the Firecracker 150.  Qualifying for this event is current underway, and the final teams will be chosen based upon their best combined lap times.  Teams are encouraged to call ahead to book their qualifying sessions.

As the Owner/Promoter of Thunderhill Raceway, Mary Ann Naumann welcomes this exciting kart race to a track that normally offers stock car racing events.

“We’re proud to host this new and unique event here at Thunderhill Raceway,” said Naumann. “In fact, I believe this is the only kart race of its kind to be run on a NASCAR-sanctioned track. We currently run NASCAR races here just about every other Saturday night from March through September, and now we’ll be able to see many of the same drivers competing against each other in a totally different format.”

“This event will be entertaining for the entire family,” said Jerry Harrison, General Manager of OTX. “We’ll have rides for the kids and lots of food concessions, as well as a custom car show, beer and live music for the adults. In fact, we’ve set the admission cost at $20 per carload (or truckload) – the bigger the family, the better the bargain. We’ll even have some NASCAR Late Models and Modifieds on display for picture taking and driver autographs.”

For more information on the Firecracker 150, visit the NasKart Racing Xperience website at  To make arrangements for the qualifying sessions, call 512-828-6478.

Thunderhill Raceway is located at 24801 IH-35, Kyle (TX), just north of San Marcos and south of Austin, at Exit #210 (Yarrington Road), just behind the Roger Beasley Hyundai dealer (formerly ThunderZone). Information on Thunderhill Raceway may be found on the track website at


15-year-old Austin Wayne Self Makes NASCAR History

Texan Pulls off Double Win in NASCAR Whelen All-American Pro Modified and Late Model Divisions

Austin, TexasMay 22, 2011 – Saturday night at the races, Austin Wayne Self got to do his favorite thing in front of a rowdy Texas crowd; come from the back and win. Not once but twice. 15-year-old Austin Wayne self claimed a piece of NASCAR history when he took the checkered flag in both the Pro Modified and Late Model Divisions at Thunderhill Raceway in Kyle, Texas.

“The past four races have been very frustrating for our team and fans, and it feels so good to finally get that next big win and it’s almost unreal to think we just pulled off a double.  My crew, family and fans deserve this win more than anything. The guys always work their butts off, to give me great cars, we qualify pole, lead a bunch of laps, our fans get excited and then we get taken out on a restart. That kind of thing just kills us all. But this week, by the grace of God, we came up big, really big. You can’t imagine how cool it feels to deliver a huge night for my fans, family and team,” says Self.

“Terry James (Crew Chief) and I had a little chat about the last four races and then he told the team that we were going to race hard but we had to stay away from some of the more aggressive drivers. So that’s what we tried to do and it worked out real well in the Modified race.  But we had some problems in the Late Model Race.”

Austin Wayne Self NASCAR Pro Modified win

Self qualified off pole in the Pro Modified race after being edged out by Heath Stewart by 0.030 seconds with HE Naumann, Zac Hausler and Ryan Englehardt rounding out the top five. But a full inversion of the qualifying order put Self and Stewart at the rear of the field for the race start. Self and Stewart eventually made their way to the front by taking advantage of the double file restarts and the developing outside groove that just got better as the night went on. Self made it to the front first and the two drivers proceeded to check out on the field. Self kept his car on the bottom to protect the inside and forced Stewart to use the high line.  Stewart could not make it work good enough to get a run on Self out of the turns. It was a dash for the finish with Self holding his position for the win.

“Heath (Stewart) is a great driver and he races clean so I wasn’t worried about getting clipped. But he has a great motor so I was a little worried that he might be able to drag race me out of 2 or 4 if he could get the upper groove working for him and keep me pinned down on exit.  I give a lot of credit to Heath for keeping the race clean,” says Self.

Less than 10 minutes later, Self was climbing into the 07 Late Model and starting 3rd row outside. Self had to dive to the bottom of the track and lock it up to avoid contact when the front two cars on the front row collided on lap 1. Because he left the racing surface during the maneuver, race control would send him to the back.

Unfortunately, Self suffered damage to the front of his Late Model when he could not avoid another spin that involved the two cars in front of him. Self would eventually head to the pits to fix some of the damage and start in the back again.


With no hood, a damaged front end and a set of Goodyear Tires that had been locked up twice, Self began his amazing march to the front. He brought the crowd to a roar by choosing the outside line on every subsequent restart. That strategy paid off when he got by the 96 (Robert Barker) and then passed the 92 (Taylor Brandes) car for the lead. Self would go on to lead the balance of the race and take his second win of the night the hard way.


“The crew made all the right calls in this race. We knew our car had lost a little speed with the crash damage and we had some fast cars in front of us running the low line. We figured we couldn’t get under them so we would try to go around them. This has pretty much been a one groove track so I don’t think the 96 and the 92 thought we could get by on the outside,” says Self.

Evidently neither did the crowd that went crazy when Austin pinned the 92 car down coming out of 4 and won the drag race down the front stretch.

Self would go on to thank all the right people and give all the glory to God in the ensuing post race interviews. He spent the rest of the night hanging out with his fans and giving out autographs.

NASCAR recently lowered the age limit for drivers in the Whelen All-American Series to fifteen.  Austin’s fifteenth birthday was on March 5, which was opening day for the racing series.  As a result of that change, Austin joined the Pro Modified class and earned his first win on May 21.  By winning both the Pro Modified and Late Model class, Self becomes the first 15-year-old NASCAR driver to win two premiere Divisions on the same night.


Terri Hartley

Photo credits: Jeff Garvin

About Austin Wayne Self
Austin Wayne Self, a 15-year-old NASCAR driver from Texas, races in both the Pro Modified and Late Model Divisions of the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series.  Self is also an international Karting champion, having competed since age 5. Self’s career goal is to race NASCAR Sprint Cup and do one-off IndyCar races at the Indianapolis 500.


Austin Wayne Self Media Day – Wednesday, May 25th

Austin, Texas — Monday, May 2, 2011

MEDIA: You’re invited to join 15-year-old NASCAR driver and Austin native Austin Wayne Self for an afternoon at Thunderhill Raceway (THR) in Kyle, located on I-35 roughly 22 miles south of Austin.

The event will take place on Wednesday, May 25 from Noon-3pm.  Lunch will be provided, along with the opportunity to race Karts at an operational NASCAR-sanctioned, paved, oval speedway.  Austin and members of the AM Racing Team will also be available for interviews in the (air-conditioned) THR media room.

See Austin Wayne Self Media Day for more information.

AM Racing Team 2011

All Karting gear and safety equipment including helmets, racing suits, gloves, and of course the karts will be provided at no charge.  Just come comfortably dressed and prepared to have fun.  There will also be a brief training class to explain rules and procedures.  Then you can hit the track!

Austin, who is a multi-series Karting champion and has competed since age 4, will also join you for a race or two!

NasKart Racing Xperience


Noon-1:00 Meet, greet and eat

1:00-1:30 Brief NasKart orientation and getting suited up in your gear

1:30-3:00 Take your training to the track!

Austin and members of his crew and marketing team will be available for interviews in the Thunderhill Raceway (air-conditioned) media room.

Come and learn more about a local young man who is following his dream to drive in NASCAR Sprint Cup!  And get out of the office and have some fun!!


Questions and to RSVP, please contact:

Terri Hartley
Austin Wayne Self Public Relations
Phone 281-702-2573

Thunderhill Raceway
24801 IH-35
Kyle, Texas 78640
(512) 262-1352

Exit 210, Yarrington Rd.