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Racing Around: Midweek show draws large crowd

July 29, 2010
By JAMES A. ELLIS, The Leader-Herald

Fonda Speedway promoter Ric Lucia had some concerns heading into last Tuesday's race program that featured the first ever appearance of the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series and a 50-lap, $5,000-to-win Thunder on the Thruway Series main event for modifieds.

His concerns were not without merit.

A month earlier, the Track of Champions hosted the O'Reilly All-Star 410 sprint cars. The racing was very good, but the attendance was not. The weather played a factor in that, as rain pushed the event back one day.

However, everything clicked Tuesday night for the late model show. The weather was good, the racing was good and the fan turnout was exceptional.

The Lucas Oil Late Model Series people, as well as many of the other traveling series, should be commended for their efforts to promote racing. The fan interaction with meet-and-greets are a great idea and becoming more common with the traveling series. The series promoters even helped out by providing bags of promotional products to the fans in line.

Another thing that is becoming increasingly popular at local tracks is the Frisbee toss.

The sponsors for the night walk through the grandstand tossing discs with numbers on them and the fan that gets the one with the feature-winning driver's number on it either is brought to Victory Lane to join in the celebration or wins a prize.

So simple, yet effective.


Last Saturday, a day of fishing and racing was made possible for a group of Capital Region kids.

The Varin Racing team played host to a group of young fans by hosting a day of fishing at a local lake before heading to Fonda Speedway for a night of racing.

Kudos to the Varin team for sponsoring the event, the Hanson/Sampson race team for making sure the kids had fishing poles and the Lucias for arranging for the bus to bring the kids to the track.

Davis will be back

Saturday night Jimmy Davis destroyed the No. 41 modified in a wreck that saw his car flip numerous times before coming to rest inches from the Mohawk River.

Tuesday, Davis returned to the track with his familiar No. 73 and picked up a top-10 finish.

Davis said he would be back Saturday night with a new No. 41.

"We picked up the new Bicknell and have been working on it to get ready for Saturday," he said. "Some of my crew have been on vacation this week, so that has made it easier. I am a little sore from the crash. Guess you get a little sorer when you're 40 than when you're 30."

Third time a charm?

After being rained out three weeks ago with the modified feature on the track, Glen Ridge Motorsports park again has double features on tap Friday night.

The program will open with the modified feature that was halted on lap six along with double DIRTcar sportsman features and double DIRTcar pro stock features, plus two rookie sportsman and cruiser features. The street stocks will run two features, including the third leg of the Harry's Auto Street Stock Series.

Unfortunately, the kiddie rides had to be dropped from the card.

James A. Ellis is a sports reporter for The Leader-Herald. We invite your feedback on this or any other sports-related topic. E-mail your opinions or ideas to us at



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