Racing Around: Season set to begin this weekend

Is it possible that the local racing season may finally hit the track this weekend?

Race fans got an appetizer last weekend when approximately 140 cars showed up at Albany-Saratoga Speedway for a practice and inspection session.

Now this week “The Great Race Place” will get down to business with its season-opening 44-lap, $7,500-to-win main event for the modifieds along with features for all the weekly divisions.

To no surprise with the spring weather, they have put Tuesday on the schedule as a rain date for the program.

I stopped by Fonda Speedway on Tuesday and Pete and Matt Demitraszek were busy working the track and getting the area spruced up for the 65th consecutive season opener Saturday.

“The Track of Champions” will drop the green flag on the season with the annual 50-lap, $5,500-to-win Ice Jam for the modifieds along with feature events for all the weekly divisions.

It also marks that start of the points battle for division championships.

Unfortunately, last year’s Ice Jam winner Justin Boehler will not be on hand to defend his title as he has been forced into retirement due to a back injury.

Pit gates are scheduled to open at 1 p.m. and the gates swinging open for the grandstands at 2 p.m. Racing is scheduled to start at 4 p.m.

Adult general admission for Saturday’s race program will be $15. With race fans 12 and younger admitted free.

Then on Sunday afternoon, Glen Ridge Motorsports Park will try again to get its inaugural season-opener under the promotership of Ray Sefrin and Mike Parillo.

A pair of practice sessions and last week’s scheduled season-opener was pushed back a week.

Racing at The Ridge on West End Towing & Repair night is scheduled to hit the track for hot laps at 3:30 p.m. with heat races scheduled to roll off at 4 p.m. for the Crate modifieds, limited sportsman, pro stocks, street stock, 4 cylinder mini stocks, slingshots and junior slingshots

General admission for the grandstands is $8 and kids 11 and under $2.

Racing also gets under way this weekend at Caroga Creek Speedway.

After having its practice sessions washed out, the Ephratah go-kart facility is ready to get its 2018 season going.

Gates will open at noon on Saturday with practice starting at 2 p.m. and racing hitting the track around 4 p.m.

The stock heavy division will headline this weekend’s program with a $500-to-win payback on the line. Entry fees are $20 for all classes and $40 for the Stock Heavy Clash.

Unfortunately, the scheduled season-opener at Utica-Rome Speedway has already been cancelled.

“With all the rain that has fallen this week we can’t get on the track,” promoter Bill Shea said in a press release. “Plus the parking lot and pit areas are just saturated. Unfortunately there is no way we can get the racing in this weekend.”

Now the April 29 program will feature the DIRTcar 358-Modifieds, Broedel Energy DIRTcar Sportsman, the Rookie Sportsman and the only appearance in 2018 at the track by the DIRTcar Pro Stock Series with a $1,000 going to the winner.

By Paul Wager

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