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RACING AROUND: Glen Ridge ready for its opener

The local racing season gets into full swing this weekend as the cars will take to the track at Glen Ridge Motorsports Park for the first time this year Sunday night.

Gates open at 3 p.m. with hot laps scheduled to take to the track at 5:30 p.m. and the first heat race of the night taking the green at 6 p.m.

And YES — after being locked out last season by COVID-19 mandates — fans will be allowed in the stands. Masks will be required as well as proper social distancing.

The help celebrate, it will be $1 hot dog night compliments of one of the Ridge’s biggest fans, Jim, with the Red Chair.

Admission will be $10 for adults, $4 for kids 7 and under and pit admission will be $25.

Travis Green and Andrew Buff finished the 2020 season tied in the point standings and were declared co-champions in the Red Chair 602 Sportsman division, while Cousin Luke Horning took home his fourth-straight Pro Stock championship and Damon Anderson drove to his first career championship in the street stock division. Stephen Gray took home the limited sportsman championship last year, while Danny Ballard won the Northeast Paving and Sealcoat All-Star Slingshot title and Lucas Duncan topped a highly competition Northeast Paving and Sealcoat Junior Slingshot division.

Drivers will get their chance to try out the new clay at Utica-Rome Speedway Friday night as the track will open for practice sessions both this Friday and Tuesday night from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.

During the off season, Fonda Speedway and Short Track Super Series promoter Brett Deyo took over promotership of the track and has upgraded many of the track’s amenities and moved race night from Sunday to Friday night.

The first Friday night race is scheduled for May 7 with a regular race card featuring Modifieds, Crate 602 Sportsman, Limited Sportsman, Pro Stocks and Four Cylinders. The Slingshot division will compete every other week on the inner oval track starting opening night.

With two weeks of competition in the books, Fonda Speedway has given fans plenty to cheer about.

Opening night, the track surface was fast and had plenty of bite as proven by Stewart Friesen breaking the 18-second barrier with his modified. Last week, the cars modifieds added sail panels and the track came up hard, slick and black.

However, the night produced some big winners as Rocky Warner notched his first win at Fonda since winning the track championship in 2019, giving car owner Jake Spraker and the No. 1J team a $12,000 pay day and a guaranteed starting spot in the $53,000-to-win Fonda 200 on Sept. 18.

Defending track champion Chad Edwards got a jump on the Crate 602 Sportsman division, winning his second straight feature, while Devon Camenga stood in Victory Lane for the first time, picking up the win in the Pro Stock main event.

The Pro Stocks will take center stage this week with the first of the six-race American Racer/Lias Tire Super Six Series for the Algonkin Motel Pro Stocks featuring a $1,000 to win main event.

Race time has also changed as the gates will open at 4 p.m. with hot laps scheduled for 6 p.m. and racing at 7 p.m.

O’Connor Motorsports will present Southern Adirondack Night at the speedway with $1 hot dogs at the concession stands and $5 off grandstand admission for Hamilton County resident with ID.

Of course, social distancing and masks are required.

The Infield Drive-In feature continues to be a big hit, having sold out the first two weeks. There are 45 spots available again this week at $60 per spot for up to four people, who must arrive together. Reservations will be accepted until 8 p.m. tonight unless already sold out.

Fans with infield parking privileges may enter the track between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m.

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