Nearly 170 race car drivers from across the Southeast converge on Lowe¿s Motor Speedway each Tuesday night for the 10-week Summer Shootout Series. The competitors range from third graders with NASCAR Winston Cup aspirations to Social Security recipients.

While several Summer Shootout racers such as Dale Earnhardt Jr., Ricky Hendrick, Reed Sorenson and Devon Scites have graduated to more visible roles in the sport, a majority of the competitors will never make national headlines.

But that¿s not to say each and every competitor doesn¿t have a story to tell. One is a professor of exercise physiology, another has a black belt in karate while yet another is a descendent of Abraham Lincoln.

A sampling of the Summer Shootout Series competitors follows:

¿Dr. Mark Moskowitz, 52, Gastonia, N.C., is a surgeon and claims to be the only Summer Shootout competitor who can ¿fix an aneurysm and teach a course on hernia repair.¿ His Legends Car is sponsored by Herniainfo.com.

¿Derrick Long, 14, Gastonia, N.C., has accumulated 131 tackles as an outside linebacker in Pop Warner football.

¿Max Gresham, 10, Milner, Ga., is an avid fisherman and once caught a Blue Marlin that tipped the scales at 150 pounds, twice his weight.

¿Tom Van Wingerden, 57, Huntersville, N.C., is originally from the Netherlands and has 15 brothers and sisters. He also has six children, two of whom join him in the Summer Shootout field each week.

¿Joey Logano, 13, Alpharetta, Ga., enjoys preparing flies for fly fishing.

¿Kyle Grissom, 13, Concord, N.C., holds a black belt in karate. His father, Steve Grissom, was the 1993 NASCAR Busch Series champion.

¿Richie Steamboat, 15, Mooresville, N.C., is the son of former professional wrestler Ricky Steamboat and a descendent of Abraham Lincoln. His great grandmother was Ethel Lincoln.

¿Scott Knox, 30, Cornelius, N.C., manages Verdict Ridge Golf Club in Denver, N.C. He also sings in a southern gospel quartet.

¿Bill Mathers, 53, Charlotte, N.C., coached wheelchair basketball teams for nearly 10 years, winning 90 percent of his games.

¿Dr. W. Gary Shannon, 57, Salisbury, N.C., is known as the ¿Voodoo Doctor¿ because he is a physician specializing in pain management, anesthesiology and acupuncture.

¿Dr. Tim Lightfoot, 43, Concord, N.C., chairs the Department of Health Promotion and Kinesiology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He teaches exercise physiology and researches cardiovascular physiology and the genetics of physical activity.

Scheduled to run each Tuesday night through Aug. 12, the 10th annual Summer Shootout Series features three classes of Legends Car racing, three classes of Bandolero action and the sleek Thunder Roadsters.

Admission is just $5 for adults. Children 6-12 are admitted for $3 with kids under 6 free. Tickets are available in advance at the speedway ticket office and at Gates 4 and 5 the night of the event. Parking is free. For information, contact the speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS or visit www.charlottemotorspeedway.com.

Spectator gates open at 5 p.m. with preliminary action at 5:25 p.m. Feature racing begins at 7:30 p.m. and will conclude by 10:15 p.m.