competitors and spectators,” said Roth. “All we see on the horizon is ‘onward and upward.’”
“Actually,” said Robinson, a one-time sports car racer and competitive sailor, “the race track is doing better than most tracks in the country. Still, we see the potential for this place to be even better.”
According to Robinson, improved rest room facilities and grandstand repairs are expected to get underway shortly. “There is a plan in place to continue making improvements,” he added. In addition to ISMA and the True Value Modifieds, Roth said the Northeastern Midget Association, Pro4 Modifieds, AllStar Race Trucks, Allison Legacy Cars and the USAC Ford Focus Midgets have expressed interest in returning in 2007.
DIRT: AJ HONORED AT BANQUET
For the fifth time in his career Alan Johnson reached the pinnacle of Modified racing as he was honored Saturday night as DIRT MotorSports NorthEast’s overall Hoosier Tire-Sunoco Race Fuels Mr. DIRT Champion to officially close out the 2006 race season. DIRT’s coveted big-block championship crown was the first-ever for car owners Jeff Rudalavage and Tony Laughing as their no. 14J ride carried Johnson to six Advance Auto Parts Super DIRT Series victories during DIRT MotorSports’ 31st season.
51's MODIFIED MADNESS Presented by Advance Auto PartsCompiled by Mike Twist
News From Throughout The Mod-ern World - North and South, Asphalt and Dirt
MELTDOWN: JUNIOR TAKES HIS OWN CAR OUT FOR A RIDE
Junior Miller does a lot of racing during the year – but not always with the same team. The King of Southern Modifieds competes on the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour with a car fielded by Riggs Racing. At Bowman-Gray Stadium and in many open shows, he runs his own machine.
At this weekend’s Mason-Dixon Meltdown at South Boston Speedway, Miller will be wheeling his own #69 once again – just like he did earlier this month in the North-South Shootout at Concord.
“I run my own car at the Stadium, and I run their car on the Tour,” said Miller. “We each run better at our own places. I run better at the Stadium with my car and I run better on the Tour with theirs. It worked out good for both of us, I think. We’re just going to go there and try to win it and steal that money.
Miller is looking forward to competing at South Boston –
and taking on a slew of Yankee invaders.
“I’ve always liked racing there. I believe I won the last race we ran there. It’s a fun little racetrack and I think we’ll put on a good show. I always like racing against guys from all over the place, too. I’ve had a chance to race with those guys from the north a couple of times and they’re real tough. Hopefully we can go out there and win for the South for a change.
TRACKS: WATERFORD GETS NEW MANAGEMENT TEAM
Waterford Speedbowl, one of the oldest motorsports facilities in the country, will operate under new management in 2007.
Junior Miller's own #69. (Jim DuPont Photo)
In the final special presentation of the night made by DIRT MotorSports NE General Manager Jack Deery, the H&H Motorsports tandem of John Holland and Al Heinke were named as recipients of the first-ever Glenn Donnelly Award of Excellence.
Veteran master of ceremonies Marotta detailed the newest annual award in descriptive style, stating “The Glenn Donnelly Award of Excellence will honor individuals, teams, associates, sponsors and others within the DIRT MotorSports Northeast community who exemplify characteristics that Glenn himself displayed. Pride, professionalism, dedication, loyalty and a genuine desire to excel are some of the attributes that qualified this year’s recipient for the award. These qualities separate DIRT Motorsports members apart from the others and it's the dedication and love of this sport set in motion by Glenn that make this great image of DIRT racing possible. This award is earned, not won.
TVMRS: SEEKONK BACK FOR 2007
Seekonk Speedway announced this week that the True Value Modified Racing Series will return to the 1/3-mile Bay State oval on four occasions as part of the historic Bay State facility’s 2007 racing season. The open wheel touring series, which first appeared at the Cement Palace in October of 2004, will compete in four 100 green flag lap events which will be preceded by a series of qualifying heats.
For the first time unable to attend the season-ending ceremonies due to a physical ailment, Sussex, New Jersey speedster Brett Hearn, 48, captured his first-ever Hoosier Tire-Sunoco Race Fuels Mr. DIRT 358-Modified Championship by racking up four top-five finishes in eight tour events while claiming the small-block track points title at Orange County Fair Speedway. He earned $15,000 for the Hoosier-Sunoco Mr. DIRT 358 title with car owner Vinny Salerno proudly posing with his own championship trophy following Hearn's successful campaign aboard the Four Star Racing no. 4 machine.
On behalf of the family-run tradepaper publication printed continuously since 1966, Gater Racing Photo News chief editor Joe Patrick presented a special $1,000 "Gater Leads The Way" award to Alan Johnson for leading the most laps (479 laps in 9 main events, 6 wins) during the Advance Auto Parts Super DIRT Series which included 25 extra-distance races held from March through October.
the four Mr. DIRT winning cars ---parked triumphantly on the perimeter of the spacious dining room floor--- once again attracted the most attention, offering endless photo opportunities throughout the festive evening.
Top point-getters in the Advance Auto Parts DIRT Modified, 358-Modified, Sportsman and Pro Stock classes were recognized during this popular seasonal celebration and in the end more than $423,000 in cash and contingencies were handed out to well over 200 drivers in DIRT MotorSports NE's four major touring divisions.
Along with the $60,000 Mr. DIRT jackpot collected by Johnson, the Phelps, N.Y. open-wheel veteran pocketed an additional $9,000 for capturing big-block point titles at Cayuga County Fair, Brewerton and Fulton speedways. Rudalavage and his wife Mary Pat, and Don Thompson standing in for Laughing, joined Johnson in the spotlight to accept the coveted car owner's award just one year after the team claimed the overall Mr. DIRT 358-Modified Championship. “Last time when we won Mr. DIRT 358 I said next year we’ll go for the big-block win,” noted Rudalavage, from Olyphant, Pa., who owns 26 feature wins on the DIRT NE small-block Modified circuit and one track championship. “I told my wife we’ll race less, so I have to apologize to her as we went out and raced three times as much as last season. But that’s what this sport is all about. Everybody in it loves racing and there’s a lot sacrifices when it comes to family.”
Mr. DIRT Modified Champion Alan Johnson, Car Owner Jeff Rudalavage and NativePoker Race Team Receive Hardware at 2006 DIRT MotorSports NorthEast Awards Banquet. (Ken Dippel Photo)
The duo is already putting together the 2007 agenda and anticipates a continued association with NASCAR. Roth plans on 26 shows for the four regular divisions - SK-Modifieds, Late Models, Sportsman and Mini Stocks.. The Legends Cars will again be frequent visitors. The popular Wild n’ Wacky Wednesday Night series and the family fun shows will also continue.
Roth also said he is currently in negotiations with other groups including the International Supermodifieds and True Value Modifieds.
“We will concentrate on what we do well, offering an entertaining and exciting product for a very loyal group of
There has been some close Modified racing at Waterford through the years - and under new management, that is going to continue. (Howie Hodge Photo)
Glenn Donnelly Award of Excellence Recipients John Holland (L) and Al Heinke (R) from H&H Motorsports flank DIRT NorthEast General Manager Jack Deery.
The series will make their ’07 debut at Seekonk on Saturday night, June 23 and return for additional points events on Saturday, August 18, and the season-ending D. Anthony Venditti Memorial Festival of Racing on Saturday and Sunday, October 6 and 7.
The third annual Open Wheel Wednesday event has been penciled in for a 7 PM start on July 18 and will again be highlighted by a 100-lap $10,000 to win Modified Madness feature, a non-points race sanctioned by the True Value Modified Racing Series.
In 2006, two-time series champion Kirk Alexander of West Swanzey, NH captured the Viveiros Insurance sponsored
event. It was the third Seekonk win for the 31-year old racer under the True Value banner. Tyngsboro, MA’s Louie Mechalides and Dave Berghman of Seekonk, MA also captured the checkered flag in competition at the Route 6 race track in 2006.
TRACKS: STAFFORD ANNOUNCES SEASON TICKET DEALS
Stafford Motor Speedway has announced that its 2007 General Admission, Reserved Seat, Season Paddock Pass, and Jack Arute's Kids Club season ticket packages are now available with the price for each season ticket package remaining the same for the third consecutive season.
Get your tickets before December 15th to take full advantage of the early bird savings on all 2007 season ticket packages.
DIRT: DIRT PROMINENT AT PARTS PEDDLER SHOW
DIRT MotorSports returned to the New York State Fairgrounds during the past weekend although racing at the nearby Syracuse Mile track did not rank as high this time on the autumn agenda. Instead, the leading dirt short-track sanctioning body in America boasted its biggest display in the 27-year history of event promoter Corky Stockham’s National Parts Peddler Trade Show staged Nov. 17-19 in the Verizon Center of Progress Building.
“This was one of the most fun shows we’ve been a part of and definitely proved to be a worthwhile experience for everyone that paid us a visit,” said Tonya Moschell, DIRT MotorSports NorthEast Director of Sales & Marketing, who coordinated the unique DIRT ‘Pit Stop’ area which quickly became a gathering place for racers and fans throughout the three-day affair. “We wanted to offer something different, a little out of the ordinary, and give those that dropped by a chance to get involved in some kind of activity aside from just talking to our staff.”
The spacious 1,500 square feet exhibit put the spotlight on race cars representing DIRT’s three major divisions and featured the full-fendered Sweeteners Plus #39 Rocket entry of World of Outlaws Late Model champion Tim McCreadie, the open-wheel LJL Racing #91 Gypsum Wholesalers DIRT 358-Modified of Billy Decker and #51 Palm Beach Grading Inc. winged machine of ’06 ASCA Patriot Sprint Group points runner-up Bryan Howland. McCreadie was in attendance to sign autographs at the DIRT booth on Friday from 5-7 pm.
Situated around the room was the familiar DIRT apparel trailer with discounted merchandise and collectibles offered out front during the entire weekend. Hundreds of visitors took advantage of the upholstered seating and table & chair settings provided by Jonathan’s Furniture in nearby Auburn, N.Y. and were able to relax in comfort
The True Value Modifieds will be back at Seekonk in 2007. (Jim DuPont Photo)
Veteran Radio Show Host Joe Marotta Interviews DIRT NorthEast Director Of Sales & Marketing Tonya Moschell From The Popular DIRT MotorSports 'Pit Stop' Lounge At National Parts Peddler Show. (Stockham Photo)
in front of a 50” wide-screen TV that offered exclusive race video from Super DIRT Week ’06. Even more played the arcade racing games that became a popular attraction for both young and old fans alike.
Special appearances were made by Ms. DIRT MotorSports Chelsea Miller and representatives from DIRT were on hand for conversation all three days. 2007 DIRT License Applications and the minor rule changes implemented for the upcoming season were also made available along with ticket order forms for Super DIRT Week XXXVI, Oct. 3-7, 2007 at the NYS Fairgrounds in Syracuse.
"This is probably the best team I’ve ever been involved with and the results really showed," said Johnson, 49, DIRT's all-time big-block Modified feature winner and the only driver to capture at least one checkered flag every year since DIRT was established in 1976. His first Mr. DIRT title was won in 1981 and followed up with first-place trophies in 1983 and 2002-03. “And tonight, these awards are certainly the most I’ve ever received for anything I’ve done before racing cars.”
On Saturday, November 18th a solid turnout of 500 drivers, owners, crew members, officials, media members and corporate VIPs filled the Oncenter Ballroom in downtown Syracuse, N.Y. to celebrate during the annual DIRT MotorSports NorthEast “Night of Champions” Awards Banquet. Customary inclusion of