By David Smith Jr.OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – A huge weekend double-header awaits the Sprint Series of Oklahoma IMCA RaceSaver Sprint Car Series presented by Smiley’s Racing Products.The tour will make a Friday, Aug. 18 appearance at Southern Oklahoma Speedway in Ardmore before making its inaugural appearance at Lawton Speedway for a Saturday, Aug. 19 event atop the famed red clay quarter-mile oval.The SSO has been scheduled four previous times this 2017 race season with Mother Nature having its way twice. Michael Day won the last time the series visited Ardmore back on June 23 while Chad Koch took the series opener back on March 25. Dating back to last year’s inaugural season, Southern Oklahoma Speedway has hosted a total of six series events without a repeat winner.Season-long point leader Jake Martens comes into the two-race weekend with a slim 13-point advantage over defending tour and IMCA national champion Andy Shouse. Shouse also has a series-leading four feature victories on the season while Martens remains winless.Despite missing one event, Joe Wood Jr. sits 46 points out of the point lead and third in the standings while Loyd Clevenger is fourth. Chris Kelly sits fifth while Koch, Blake Dacus, Justin Fisk, Cody Whitworth and Tristan Oakes round out the top 10 in points.Joining the above-mentioned drivers for this coming weekend’s events are Dillon Laden, Steven Shebester, Jerry Jumper, Gary Owens, Blake Scott, Brandon Anderson, Josh Toho, Justin Mowry and Cody Jarvis.Several North Texas drivers are also expected to make the trip across the Red River to do battle and one or both venues.Friday night’s event opens at 5 p.m. with racing action slated for 7:30 p.m. Grandstand admission prices are $15 for adults and $10 for ages 6-12. All pit passes are $30.Saturday night’s inaugural appearance at Lawton Speedway will see gates open at 6 p.m. with race action at 8:30 p.m. Adult grandstand admission is $15 while seniors 60 and over and students ages 12-15 are $10, children ages 6-12 are $2 and five and under are free. All pit passes are $30.
Virat Kohli was on Saturday chosen as the international player of the year by England’s Barmy Army. Kohli accepted the honour and thanked the staunch England supporters with a witty video message.Kohli is currently in Sri Lanka for a full-fledged tour. After recording India’s first-ever Test series whitewash overseas, Kohli’s men will take part in the limited-overs series with the first of five ODIs starting in Dambulla on Sunday.”I am really honoured to be chosen by the Barmy Army as the international player of the year. It feels nice to be recognised by the fans of other countries and cricket lovers from all over the globe which makes you feel great as a cricketer. Specially from the Barmy Army who made my life hell in England in 2014 when I had a tough time.”They always support their team very passionately and I am sure it will be a challenge when we go to England. But to have received such an honour from them makes me feel proud of playing for my nation. I want to thank you all once again from the bottom of my heart and look forward to catching up with all of you when we come to England next year. Hopefully, we can have some interaction of the field also, cheers thank you,” Kohli said.ICYMI #Barmies2017 International Player of the Year – the brilliant @imVkohli. Thanks for being a great sport & thanks @BCCI @goransaxena ?????? pic.twitter.com/sMFhAW2Lxg- England’s Barmy Army (@TheBarmyArmy) August 19, 2017Kohli has had a dream run over the last couple of years. He was at the peak of his powers in 2016, smashing hundreds against Australia in the ODIs before turning his focus to T20 cricket. After hammering Australia, Pakistan and West Indies to submission, he enjoyed a record-breaking IPL, amassing 973 runs including four hundreds.advertisementKohli also became the first batsman in history to score double hundreds in four successive Test series. For a short while, he also happened to be the only batsman to average over 50 in all three formats.The Delhi dasher has so far scored 8257 runs from 189 ODIs and 4658 runs including 17 hundreds from 60 Tests. In 49 T20 Internationals, Kohli has 1748 runs.As captain, Kohli has been on a roll – he has so far led India to eight successive series wins. He had also led India to ODI and T20 series triumphs over England before overseeing the journey to the final of the Champions Trophy in England.