Sunday, I made the trip to the newly paved Albany-Saratoga Speedway and put my money down to watch the super modifieds.
I will say that the racing surface looked smooth and fast and the racing for the super modifieds was good when they finally took the cones, which were responsible for multiple cautions, away from the edge of the track.
Unfortunately, it appeared that the impression I was left as the days event unfolded is that Albany-Saratoga was not ready.
I know it was the first complete asphalt program at the track, but there have been numerous practices and a partial program with asphalt modifieds, but when oil was left on the racing surface and the safety crew in full turnout fire gear arrived in a minivan to put down speedy dry, it was not a good sign.
Malta has always had a very good and experienced safety crew in the past that was quick to respond and they knew what they were doing. I had to wonder what happened to all the safety equipment that was readily available at the Friday night dirt shows?
I'll give the supermodified and dirt sportsman races on the track a B, the overall mark would have to be a D.
The day was capped off when after the racing was done, fans, including myself and a friend, were rudely greeted at the pit gate and told that nobody would be allowed to enter the pits even though the program was complete.
One fan with children commented she can't believe that a track would not let kids into the pits after the program to get autographs.
As we were walking away, though, apparently because some people entered the pits through another gate, fans were let in. Even at that point, the person at the gate could not resist making a comment as we passed by.
First impressions are always important and unfortunately Sunday's race did not leave a very good one on the asphalt fans who made the trek or even fans being introduced to short track asphalt racing.
The Best of Four Thunder Series for the sportsman and pro stock divisions will take to Fonda Speedway Saturday night.
The series is a joint venture between the Fonda and Utica Rome Speedways with separate points being kept for the series.
The point champion in both the sportsman and pro stock divisions receives $1,000, while the second and third place finishers will receive $600 and $400 respectively.
Mark Kislowski and David Towns shared the Thunder Series sportsman title last year after two races were run, one at each track, after rain forced cancellations of the other two events. Luke Munroe won Fonda's event, while Jason Rood won Utica-Rome's.
Tom Denton won the lone pro stock series race that was held.
Brett Hearn captured the 2010 modified Thunder Series opener, a 50-lap, $5,000-to-win race on April 25 at Utica-Rome.
Fonda Speedway will host the second leg of the modified series June 5.
Street Stock series
Glen Ridge Motorsports Park will host the opening race of the four-race Harry's Auto Street Stock Series with $250 on the line for the race winner.
The series event is part of a full card of DIRTCar modified, sportsman and pro stocks as well as cruiser division racing.