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Racing Around: Busy night planned at Fonda

July 23, 2009
By JAMES A. ELLIS, The Leader-Herald

The regular show scheduled for Saturday night has turned into a night of contingencies.

Originally, the Wilma Smith IMCA Dash for Tobacco Free drivers was the lone special on the regular race card.

Now the Hondo Classic for pro stocks that was rained out two weeks ago will join the Smith Dash; NYSSCA Safety Night, which was also rained out earlier this year and the inaugural Keyser Memorial sponsored by Ed and June Keyser in memory of their son Michael.

The Wilma Smith Memorial honors the mother of Howard "The Iceman" Smith, who is the driving force behind the event that originally ran as a dash for the street stock division.

The race will be the regularly scheduled IMCA feature with the winning driver, if tobacco free, will receive a $100 bonus and a trophy from Smith Motorsports. If the winner is not tobacco free, the bonus goes to the first driver who isn't. There are also cash bonuses for all drivers competing in the feature.

For an extra twist, the IMCA drivers are given the option to run their cars topless.

The Keyser Memorial will offer cash to the heat winners in the modified and sportsman divisions.

Fans and kids at the track know the Keysers from their outstanding work with the Fonda Futures. Their son Michael was killed in an accident when he was 18 years old and just graduated from high school.

The Hondo Classic has become one of the biggest paydays for local pro stock drivers and often draws many outsiders to Fonda.

Kelly Keefe has spearheaded the event that has a long list of sponsors, with money and prizes offered on every lap and various finishing spots.

Glen Ridge

Motorsports Park

Mother Nature decided to take Saturday night off but decided that she would come down the Mohawk Valley on Friday night and forced the second cancellation of racing at Glen Ridge Motorsports Park in three weeks.

Friday, the Ridge has a regular program on tap, plus the popular Kiddie Rides.

According to the schedule, Glen Ridge has four more Friday night racing event remaining, before switching the Saturday's for two weeks when Fonda Speedway is closed for the Fonda Fair.

Glen Ridge will wrap up its points chase Sept. 5.

Late Models at U-R

Utica-Rome Speedway is scheduled to host the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series Wednesday.

There will be a complete show for the touring will feature time trials, heat races, B-mains and a $10,000-to-win feature.

Some of the drivers anticipated to be on hand at the initial running of the series at the track are Scott Bloomquist, John Blankenship, Jimmy Owens, Earl Pearson Jr. and DIRT regulars Tim McCreadie, Billy Decker and Vic Coffey.

Racing is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. and a rain date for the event is July 30.

Night of Legends

Bobby Varin captured Wednesday night's 50-lap main event at Utica-Rome Speedway.

Varin withstood a late-race restart to beat Pat Ward to the checkers with Stewart Friesen third, Brett Hearn fourth and Willy Decker fifth.

Glen Ridge regulars Jeff Brownell, Paul Kinney and Danny Tyler made the trip west along with Fonda regulars Jimmy Davis, Danny Varin and Ronnie Johnson.

Kinney placed seventh, while Brownell was 18th. Tyler missed qualifying for the feature.

Davis was eighth in the main event, while Johnson was 10th and Danny Varin 16th.

In the companion 25-lap CRSA sprint feature, Mason Olmstead won his first main event followed by Mike Stelter, Chad King, Matt Tanner and J.R. Hurlburt.



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