As the 2016 racing season quickly approaches, the work on race cars has intensified. The same can be said for the local speedways, and that’s certainly the case for the Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, NH.
Owner-promoter Larry Cirillo and his team have been busy with maintenance and pit expansion. Race fans are going to see a variety of classes coming to the fast, high banked 1/4 mile track, as each month Monadnock will offer a different touring series.
Cirillo commented “I hope it’s not too much on our package or too much of a burden on our customers, because each series coming in is a special event. We’ll not only host our weekly competitors which includes the sportsmen-modified’s, super stocks, thunder stocks, mini stocks and young guns, but we will add a touring series each month.”
On April 30 when Monadnock opens for the first event in 2016, the exciting Valenti Modified Racing Series will be on tap, like they have been for the last 12 years for the Bond Auto Parts 100.
The VMRS will also invade the high banks on July 2 for the Firecracker 100 and August 20 for the popular Victor Johnson Memorial 100.
“The open wheel modifies have always been a popular division with the race fans in this area, and I think they’re becoming more popular because of the Tri-Track series; a series that has been drawing in the neighborhood of 40 cars or more with a real good payoff that the owners and drivers seem to be happy with.” Cirillo said.
Other touring divisions that will see action includes the Granite State Pro Stocks on May 28th and August 13,
“Show Me The Money”- Tri-Track Modifieds on June 11, New England Midget Association “Iron Mike Memorial”- June 18, and Whelen Modifieds- July 23. Other specials will include New England Antique Racers, STAR antiques, Pro four modifieds, Vintage Outlaws, Classic Lites, New England Truck Series and the New England Street Stock Tour.
On top of all that for the first time ever, the new Modified Touring Series will highlight the May 21st event with the Winchester 200, a race paying $15,000 to win and a payoff exceeding $72,000.
Cirillo said, “Gary Knight is an energetic local racer who loves the modifies and he approached me wanting to promote a modified race with sponsorship from American race tire. Race dates were at a premium because we didn’t want to interfere with any other series. I hope for Gary’s sake this series becomes a popular one. You have to remember years ago, Jack Bateman came to me with the idea of the MRS and asked me for a race date, but I did him one better. I gave him six dates for that first year, but told him don’t forget where you came from when this gets big and it did get big. Now this is what Knights MTS is trying to do. Gary is an aggressive person with some great ideas. Bringing on different series hopefully will bring out new race fans.”
As for the weekly program, Monadnock race director Michele Cloutier said “it looks like we will have a pretty hearty field of sportsmen-modifies again this year. We have made a rule change in that only a crate 602 will be allowed, we have dropped all the open motors, we think that will make it more equal, that’s going to make a huge difference. We’ll also see Cameron Sontag in a modified sportsmen after his move up from a mini stock.
As for the mini stocks I hope to see growth there, we did some rule changes to be more in line with other area tracks and series. It also makes it easier for someone local to purchase a car from anywhere in New England and race it at Monadnock. Our superstock field last year had nine or 10 different winners, so were not changing a thing with them or the thunder stocks, those rules seem to be working fine. And our young guns division are a bunch of great kids that hopefully move up in division after a few seasons.”
The expanding pit area will accommodate a larger field of cars with an easier traffic flow. All good things seem to be happening at the Monadnock Speedway for the April 30 opening date.