Tag Archives: Race of Champions

GEOFF BODINE TO RETURN AS GRAND MARSHALL FOR THE 65TH SUNOCO RACE OF CHAMPIONS 200

 logo for web cropped

 

BODINE A NATURAL FIT FOR CHEMUNG SPEEDROME EVENT.

BINGHAMTON, NY…Two-time Sunoco Race of Champions winner Geoff Bodine will be returning to the place he grew up as the Grand Marshall of the 65th Sunoco Race of Champions 200 this Sunday, October 4th.  For the first time the Chemung Speedrome will host the storied event, a race track originally built by the Bodine family and later re-built and opened by Bob Stapleton.

Bodine, a two time winner of the Sunoco Race of Champions will be returning to his roots for the 65th edition of the RoC.  His victories in the 1972 RoC at Trenton Speedway and the 1978 edition at Pocono solidified his standing as one of the greatest open wheel Modified drivers of all time.  His victory in the 1986 Daytona 500 came as no surprise to the northern race fans that saw him in action behind the wheel.  Bodine also had three International Race of Champions victories which pitted the best names in the world auto racing scene during the 1980’s and 1990’s.

“I’m looking forward to returning home for the RoC weekend,” said Bodine.  He added, “It will be great to be part of the first ever RoC 200 being hosted at Chemung.”  Race of Champions Director Andrew Harpell commented, “Geoff has provided our race fans with some amazing drives during his career and we are thrilled to have him returning for the weekend.”  He added, “This clearly has special meaning to him and his family with their connection and contributions to Modified racing.”

In July Race of Champions Director Andrew Harpell announced the change of venue from the long time host Oswego Speedway to the Chemung Speedrome.  After 20 plus years Harpell will conclude his involvement with the event this October as western, New York auto racing industry leader Joe Skotnicki has purchased the rights to the event. The sale will become official in January.  Harpell commented on the venue change, “We wanted to bring the event to the loyal fans of the southern tier region of New York and the Chemung Speedrome was a great fit.  We cannot wait to put on the 65th RoC this Sunday.”  He added, “So many great teams and fans have come out of our region to support the race over the years.  This is my personal way of saying thanks by hosting the event in this area.

The Sunoco Race of Champions Weekend will take place this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Chemung Speedrome in Chemung, New York.  On Friday there will be no racing activities but there will be a Chicken BBQ presented by Phil’s Chicken House famous BBQ.  Driver registration and pre-event ticket sales will continue on Friday at the Chemung Speedrome offices.

On Saturday the Race of Champions Sportsman 125 lap feature event will take center stage highlighting many of the weekly Chemung stars in competition.  Teams from all over the northeast will be on hand for that event.  The biggest INEX Legends Car event in the northeast will also be on the Saturday evening card.  Their 30 lap event will see one of the richest purse payouts in the entire northeast for the teams in competition.  Chris Zacharias has posted bonus money for the “Shirley Shootout” B-Main event that will see every non-qualifying Legend Car driver receiving some cash for their attempt to make the show.  Teams from six different states have shown interest in the Legend Showdown at the Drome presented by PA Notary Services.

Also on Saturday the Bandolero division will be in competition along with a Four Cylinder Open.  Area businessman Jerry Sinsabugh has raised over $700 in bonus money and gift certificates for all of the young competitor’s in the Bandolero division.  This will be an outstanding event for both of those classes as well.  Racing on Saturday will get underway at 6 p.m.

On Sunday the Chemung Speedrome will become the focus of all eyes in northeast auto racing as the 65th running of the Sunoco Race of Champions Modified 200 will take center stage.  The 200 lap event will pay a minimum of $10,000 to win with a driver able to walk away with well over $15,000 with additional posted bonus lap money.  The Race of Champions is the second longest consecutively run auto racing event in the United States.  Second only to the Indy 500.  The Super Stocks and Front Wheel Drive Four Cylinders will be part of the Sunday action with racing set to begin at 2:15 p.m.

The Race of Champions offices can be contacted at 607-775-5555 or by emailing the office at rocpavement@aol.com.  Tickets can be purchased by phoning the speedway offices and using your major credit card.  A full weekend schedule and pricing can be found at www.raceofchampionsweekend.com.  Kids 5 and younger will be admitted FREE of charge both days!

 

SUNOCO RACE OF CHAMPIONS MODIFIED 200 NEXT SUNDAY, OCTOBER 4TH AT THE CHEMUNG SPEEDROME.

logo for web croppedMODIFIED WINNER TO EARN $10,000 PLUS OVER $18,000 IN ADDITIONAL LAP MONEY NOW POSTED.

 

BINGHAMTON, NY…The second oldest consecutively run auto racing event in the United States will take place this Sunday, October 4th at the Chemung Speedrome.  The Sunoco Race of Champions Modified 200 will see over $18,000 in bonus lap money on top of the nearly $50,000 payout.  The race winner will earn a minimum of $10,000 for the victory in the traditional 200 lapper.  This year will mark the 65th consecutive running of the event, second only to the Indianapolis 500.  The race is being held in the southern tier region of New York for the first time ever with the Chemung Speedrome set to host the prestigious event.

Race of Champions Hall of Famers Marilyn and Don Toal have once again done an outstanding job of raising the bonus lap money for the Modified 200.  This year’s total is an impressive $18,340 and all of the money collected will go directly to the Modified teams competing in the 200 lap event.  The total is even more impressive as the announcement of the race changing venues from Oswego Speedway to the Chemung Speedrome only occurred in July.  This certainly did not leave a lot of time for the lap money raising efforts.  The Toal family has had a huge impact on the event over the years and in 2014 Marilyn and Don were awarded the Eastern Motorsports Press Association Junie Donleavy Spirit of Racing Award.

Marilyn Toal was also awarded the Gater Racing News Dirtcar Hall of Fame Outstanding Woman Award in 2008.  Both Marilyn and Don are also Race of Champions Hall of Fame Members and were inducted in 1998.  They are looking forward to many more years of fund raising efforts for the race teams.

Race of Champions owner Andrew Harpell commented on the annual lap fund, “Marilyn and Don are such an important part of the event.  Their contributions over the years have spanned all of the venues the race has been held at and the drivers have benefited immensely from their efforts.”  “Being able to raise what they have for this year’s event is remarkable especially with our venue change.”  Harpell added, “This year to honor both Marilyn and Don the Race of Champions staff worked with our race teams to do our own fund raising effort to present to them at Chemung.”  Fellow RoC Hall of Fame Member Jim Burleigh helped to spearhead the effort.

The top three drivers in the running order on each of the 200 laps will randomly earn the bonus lap money posted for that lap.  This change was made a few years ago and has given many more drivers the opportunity at bonus lap money.  Along with the top three bonuses a number of other contingency bonuses will be in place.

A number of special bonus awards have been posted in additional to the lap sponsor fund. Once again this year Harpell will pay a bonus to the leader of lap 68 in Memory of Alex Friesen.  Friesen and Harpell purchased the event from Joe Gerber in 1996 and moved the race to the location that has proven to be the longest tenure of the race – Oswego Speedway.  The energy and vision that Alex Friesen brought to the event lives with the traditional lap 68 bonus award each year.  The leader of that lap will receive $500.  Harpell will close out his involvement with the event with the 65th edition as the rights to the race have been purchased by Joe Skotnicki and officially change hands in January.

Tommy Baldwin has posted an additional $500 for the “Tiger Tom Baldwin” Hard Charger Award from Baldwin Automotive, Inc. in East Patchogue, NY.  That bonus will award the driver that advances the most positions in the 200 lapper.  E.J.M Energy Services/Ed McGuire will award $100 bonuses to the following:  the leader of lap 100, the 10th place runner on lap 100, the winner at lap 200 and the last car to take the checkered flag on lap 200.  The first car out of the race will receive a $100 bonus from Chuck Boos and the last car to cross the finish line on the lead lap will also earn $100 courtesy of Frank & Dave Varecka.  Other $50 contingency bonuses have been posted by John Markovic, Tom Fecteau and Ed & Chrissy Simon.

 

For a complete schedule of events please log on to www.raceofchampionsweekend.com or phone 607-775-5555.  Tickets may also be reserved using your major credit card and phoning the RoC offices at 607-775-5555.

RACE OF CHAMPIONS MODIFIED TOURS PURCHASED BY JOE SKOTNICKI. ANDREW HARPELL TO REMAIN IN PLACE FOR REMAINDER OF 2015.

Kirkwood, NY – (June 29, 2015) – For the past 22-years Andrew Harpell has fostered the Sunoco Race of Champions Modified Tour and the Race of Champions event at Oswego (NY) Speedway each season. It has been his passion for those years. Harpell, now wants to focus on his life-long family interest, Five Mile Point Speedway in Kirkwood, NY which has left a challenging balancing act between the weekly facility and the Race of Champions Modified Tours which includes an asphalt and dirt modified tour.
Harpell decided to seek an interested party with the same passion for carrying on the bright future of the Series, who has knowledge of the region and the programs.
“We have worked extremely hard over the past 20 years to make the Race of Champions Asphalt Modified Tour and 200 a viable option for all of the race teams.  I’m proud of the success we have had and the strong state that the series is currently in,” stated Harpell. “In 2004 I purchased Five Mile Point Speedway a track built by my grandparents in 1951, the following year we started the RoC Dirt Series.”  “With those additions, the amount of energy that we as a group have put forth the last eleven years has been strenuous to say the least.  As someone that grew up in racing and at the tracks weekly, it wasn’t easy to find an individual that shares the passion and understands the rich history of the RoC.  Joe certainly fits that description as someone that respects the history and has strong goals for the continued success and growth of the program.”
Joe Skotnicki, who has been involved in the sport for nearly 25-years in a professional capacity will be the new owner of the Series beginning with the 2016 season. Skotnicki approached Harpell and the two negotiated a program that will keep Harpell involved, but let him move the program forward as he sees fit.
“Andrew Harpell has done a great deal for the sport of modified racing and never truly received the recognition he deserves,” offered Skotnicki. “This is not an easy decision on either part, there is much more involved than anyone truly recognizes, but Andrew and I were able to negotiate through the important items and bring this together. Our intent is that we continue the success that Andrew has established and build upon it for the future.”
Skotnicki and Harpell have worked with each other in difference capacities through their careers and this program provides a natural fit for a change of this magnitude.
“We are both excited to move forward,” stated Harpell. “This will provide me time to do some of the things I’ve always wanted to do and it gives the series new energy that I want it to have.”  “I’m confident in what Joe and I have put together moving forward and will certainly be willing to assist in anyway moving forward.”  “I have always said that the Race of Champions is bigger than myself and I will always believe that, I’m proud just to have had the opportunity to continue the rich tradition.”  “I’m equally proud to have Joe taking over the program.”
For more information contact the Race of Champions offices at 607-775-5555 or log on to www.raceofchampions.net or www.rocdirt.com.