Riverhead, NY Jan. 11th.
By Bob Finan
Just prior to the holiday season third year Riverhead Raceway owners Eddie & Connie Partridge and Tom Gatz released their 2018 NASCAR Whelen All American Series and Enduro race series schedule on the track’s web page much to the delight of race teams and race fans alike. The 2018 season will get underway with opening weekend featuring the Cinco De Mayo opening night card for the NASCAR Whelen All American Series stock cars on Saturday May 5th while the next afternoon the Enduro racers will compete in their May Meltdown opening day program.
Traditionally the NASCAR Modifieds have been the premier division of the Whelen All American Series at Riverhead Raceway a tradition that will remain intact in 2018. The weekly feature event distance for the NASCAR Modifieds is set at 40-laps but the 2018 slate of events features numerous extra distance and special events. First up on the menu will be the 2nd annual Islip 300 set for Saturday May 26th, the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. Dillon Steuer of Bohemia at just 15-years old triumphed in the Islip 300 last spring scoring an extremely popular victory. In June the “Mod Squad” will run the Mullet Madness 50 on Saturday June 16th and just two weeks later they’ll go to post in the 68th Year Celebration race, part of the annual Fireworks program celebrating the 4th of July.
In July the open wheel racers will compete in the popular Baldwin, Evans & Jarzombek 77 Memorial honoring three legends of the NASCAR Modified world. In conjunction with the 77 the annual Cromarty Wall of Fame enshrinement ceremony will be presented. August find a 50-lap NASCAR Night event set for August 4th while the month will conclude on August 25th with Twin 50’s slated for the NASCAR Modifieds who join the wildly popular School Bus Demolition Derby that night. Saturday evening September 15th the Whelen Engineering Night 100 will unfold featuring a Twin 50 formal with the results of this event perhaps going a long way in determining the 2018 NASCAR Modified champion at the historic quarter mile oval.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will again visit Riverhead Raceway twice in 2018 with the first of 200-lap WMT events set for Saturday night July 7th while the second race will unfold on Saturday September 8th. One WMT championship contending team who have already circled both Riverhead WMT dates off on their schedule is the Flamingo Motorsports team and their talented driver Timmy Solomito of Islip who swept the 2017 WMT races at the track where “The Natural” began his driving career.
The six support divisions of the NASCAR Whelen All American Series have all seen an increase of schedules events in 2018 headed up by the Late Models who’ll again run 25-lap main events weekly. Three 50-lap races have been planned for the Late Models on June 23rd, July 21st and August 18th. Ever since their inception prior to the 2016 race season the Eagle Auto Modified Crate class has grown in both numbers and popularity and again will be a weekly fixture competing in 25-lap feature events. Three extra distance 30-lap time trial races are planned for June 2nd, July 14th and September 8th. The “world famous” Figure Eight troops will be back for yet another exciting campaign of racing and are booked for 14 events in ’18.
The heavy hitting racing action provided by the Blunderbusts returns in 2018 as they’ll run 20-lap main events weekly with three extra distance 30-lap races set for May 19th, June 23rd and July 7th. Super Pro Trucks like the Blunderbusts compete in 20-lap feature events weekly and will also run 3 extra distance 30-lap contests in ’18 on June 16th, August 8gth and September 15th. The INEX Legend Race Cars will be a weekly fixture at Riverhead this season as well racing in 20-lap feature events weekly. Four extra distance races have been scheduled for the Legend racers, three 30-lappers on May 12th, June 30th & August 25th will be joined by the annual INEX National Qualifier a 50-lap affair set Saturday September 22nd,
A popular addition to the pit area at Riverhead Raceway in 2017 were the Long Island Vintage Auto Racing Series racers and their vintage race cars. Starting with the Cinco De Mayo opening night show May 5th the LIVARS machines will go to post six time in 2018 with shows on May 19th, June 9th, July 28th, August 4th and September 22nd joining the May 5th opener. Former five time NASCAR Modified champion Don Howe of Water Mill swept the five race LIVARS series in 2017.
Open cockpit fans can again look forward to the NEMA Midgets and NEMA Lites making their annual visit to Riverhead on Saturday June 2nd. Last year former Riverhead NASCAR Modified champion Justin Bonsignore of Holtsville wheeled the Bertrand Motorsports entry to victory in the 25-lap Allan Cantor Memorial 25 by IGA Food Markets NEMA Midget event.
Since 1986 the Enduro drivers have thrilled the Riverhead Raceway faithful with their brand of competition and will again be a vital part of the 2018 race season. After the Sunday May 6th May Meltdown opener the Enduro race teams will be right back in action Sunday May 27th for the Spring Smack Down. Afterwards the next stand alone Sunday show will be presented with the Summer Shootout on August 12th. The Sunday series will conclude with the annual Sunday Labor Day weekend event and later on September 30th the Enduro Extravaganza will conclude the season. As in past years all of the Enduro classes will see Saturday night action in ’18.
Once again Eddie & Connie Partridge and Tom Gatz will present some great family attractions to join the weekly racing throughout 2018. Aside from the 68th Year Celebration Fireworks spectacular set for June 30th the annual I Love America Night Fireworks presentation is set for Saturday night August 11th.
School Buses will be getting a workout at Riverhead this coming season as School Bus Figure 8 races planned for Saturday May 12th and June 2nd. Later in the season the 13-ton machines will be destroyed in two hard hitting School Bus Demolition Derby events Saturday July 21stand again Saturday August 25th.
Saturday evening July 14th the Monster Trucks will again converge on Riverhead Raceway for another wild “free-style” event featuring the diesel burning & churning XDP Diesel Monster Truck along with several other top name trucks. It is sure to be a car crushing good time for young and old to enjoy alike.
Four bone jarring, car destroying Demolition Derby contests are set for 2018 with two 4-Cylinder Demolition Derbies on June 16th and again June 30th. The first 8-Cylinder Demo will unfold August 11th and then the big one, the National Demolition Derby championship Saturday night September 22nd. The Demo schedule is tentative as one of the two June dates could very well be moved.
Marketing opportunities are plentiful with the diverse 2018 Riverhead Raceway schedule of events, everything from the two NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour races, the Islip 300 or any other race for any division at Riverhead Raceway. Seasonal marketing opportunities for any class of racing along with comprehensive billboard packages also available. For further marketing information please call 631-842-RACE Monday
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