Mike Sowle has been around the sport of auto racing for a long time.
But he admits that thinking about the season-opener this Sunday at Glen Ridge Motorsports Park has got him a bit nervous.
"I am nervous, but excited," the first-year promoter said. "I have to give promoters a lot of credit. I never thought there was this much on their plate."
Sowle took over the reins of GRMP at the end of the 2013 racing season and immediately put his stamp on the facility with a new tower and new walls along the backstretch.
Work continued over the winter with upgrades to the pit area and the construction of additional bleachers on the first-turn end of the existing bleachers.
The plan originally was to flip-flop the front and back straightaways, but that has been put on hold for this season.
On Sunday, The Ridge will host its weekly classes of DIRT-sanctioned modifieds, 602 sportsman and pro stocks, along with the lightning sprints on opening night.
"Gates will open at 3:30 p.m. with a drivers meeting at 5:30 p.m., warm ups at 5:45 p.m. and the first heat race will hit the track at 6 p.m.," Sowle said.
General admission for the night is $10 for adults and $2 for children.
"We were a little behind on getting things finished up but we are all buckled up now," Sowle said. "Weather permitting, we should fire up on Sunday. I hope everybody joins us and has a good time."
CRSA sprints at Fonda
The 4-cylinder division will have the week off at Fonda Speedway this week, as the RaceSaver CRSA 305 sprint cars take to the track in their first racing event of the season.
The race also is the first of eight races for the Kennedy Towing of Troy, Northway-90 Challenge series. Last year's champion, Danny Varin, was undefeated in all three Northway-90 races that were held, and is ready to defend his title in the Dan Coumo 07p.
The admission price for Saturday's race program, sponsored by Cable Care Construction will bump up to $12 for adults, while a children's ticket remains $2.
Show up points
Several drivers will make the trip to Fulton Speedway on Saturday night for the first Super DIRT Series Big-Block modified races of the season, Highbank Holdup 100.
Among the Fonda regulars scheduled to run in the series opener are Stewart Friesen, Jimmy Davis, Lance Willix and C.G. Morey, as well as Lebanon Valley regular Brett Hearn.
"Drivers will get 20 show-up points if they attempt to qualify at either Fonda or Fulton on Saturday," Fonda Speedway promoter Matt DeLorenzo confirmed Wednesday.
In addition to the 100-lap Big-Block Modified race, Fulton also will feature a $1,000-to-win Industrial Tire Sportsman Championship Qualifier, as well as Pro Race Cars Mod Lites.
Is Fonda Speedway's racing surface fast? In his modified feature win last Saturday, Friesen turned the fastest lap of the night, 19.074, on the eighth lap of the modified feature.
Marc Johnson picked up the victory over Hearn on opening night at Albany-Saratoga Speedway.
Utica-Rome Speedway will open for its 53rd season Sunday with a full show of modifieds, sportsman, pro stocks and Pure stocks.