Epping, NH — The pavement Modified division experienced a boom in popularity in the 1970’s, largely because of events known as “Open Shows”. They offered competitors who raced at numerous home tracks a chance to compete against each other for a purse larger than their normal weekly payout. These events were fun and memorable for both fans and competitors alike. In the parking lot, license plates proved the interest was widespread.
Touring series events, with points, and strict rules have largely taken over the racing scene as of late, with open shows becoming small in numbers. All-Star Speedway and it’s new owner Bobby MacArthur are aiming to put the “Open Show” back on the map, with a four race series in 2008 titled the ‘WaterSnoGo All-Star Modified Showdown’.
MacArthur stated, “Last year’s event was a starting point. The quality of the racing was so good by bringing teams from all over the east together at All-Star Speedway that I decided to make it a four race series paying big money to win, and a large point fund. We learned last year that All-Star is most suitable for this type of an event. With the help of sponsorship from WaterSnoGo and LATICRETE, we were able to make it happen.”
The first of those events takes place on May 10, with the running of the 2nd Annual LATICRETE Modified Thunder 150. The race will pay $5,000 to win, plus lap money and bonuses. With caution laps not counting, it will truly be a 150-lap race. There will be a halfway break to allow teams to make adjustments and change two tires if desired.
These two factors alone make it a Modified race like no other.
The race payoff, plus an additional $20,000 in point fund money, has generated interest from competitors across the Modified map. The top five finishers from the 2007 event will all be returning for this race. Rob Summers, Jon McKennedy, Andy Seuss, Ronnie Silk and Chris Pasteryak will each be looking for another good finish.
In addition to that, several drivers and teams will be competing for the first time ever at All-Star. Jimmy Blewett, Eric Beers, James Civali, and Danny Sammons head the list of confirmed entrants that have never even seen All-Star Speedway.
Blewett admitted, “I’ve never been to All-Star, but I heard that everybody liked the race last year. I’m definitely looking forward to it. If you just run the tour it’s the same thing week in and week out. It’s nice to do something a little bit different. It’s no pressure, but we’re going there to win.”
Add to that Ted Christopher, who earned more money with a sixteenth place finish in the 2007 All-Star event than he was given for winning a recent touring series event. The winner of the All-Star Nationals last fall, Matt Hirschman is also entered.
Among other drivers stating their intentions to compete are Three-Time TVMRS Champion Kirk Alexander, Mike Stefanik, Ryan Preece, Bobby Grigas, Louie Mechalides, Jimmy Kuhn, Ken Barry and Tommy Cravenho to name a few.
Guaranteed starters for the race are Chuck Hossfeld, David Pinkham and Mechalides as point leaders of the NASCAR Whelen, True Value, and NASCAR All-Star weekly Modified standings respectively.
Four heat races prior to the LATICRETE 150 will be lined up by the luck of the draw, running 15 laps in length. One or two consolation races and a B-Main to determine the balance of the field are also on the schedule.
With no other Modified Touring Series events scheduled this weekend, the number of entries are expected to double in comparison to the 2007 event.
This Saturday night at 6:00 PM it’s the return of the “Open Modified Show”. It’s a format that made Modified racing in the northeast one of the most popular forms of motorsports, with Geoff Bodine and Richie Evans among the past open show winners at All-Star Speedway in the 1970’s.
The LATICRETE 150, as part of the $20,000 WaterSnoGo All-Star Modified Showdown Series is sure to bring new memories to pavement Modified enthusiasts that could last a lifetime. Racing begins at 6:00 PM this Saturday night.
For more information call (603) 679-5306 or log on to: www.all-starspeedway.com.
Sources: All-Star Speedway PR