EVANS MILLS, NY – In today’s racing world, the decision to add a division to a track’s schedule is not one that is taken lightly, as promoters consistently work to maintain the balance between keeping fans in the stands and cars in the pits. Many tracks have found themselves “opening” rules in many of their classes to make it possible for a larger number of cars to compete. Following numerous months of research during the 2016 season, however, officials and management at Evans Mills Speedway had announced the introduction of the “Mills Modified” crate engine asphalt Modified class, an announcement that was met with plenty of excitement and enthusiasm.
The debut of that division was supposed to take place this past Saturday, as part of the Opening Night schedule at the 3/8-mile asphalt oval. Mother Nature, however, had other plans – forecasts showed differing percentages for the possibility of rain, but radar images showed that it was inevitable, and the forecasted heavy cloud cover coupled with wind chill temperatures under 35 degrees, drying the track would be impossible. The decision was made to postpone the show at roughly 9 am. Within an hour of the postponement by track management, the skies opened up, and rains persisted into the late afternoon.
This left all of the competitors disappointed, including the several Mills Modified drivers who were ready to take their first laps in competition. So far, the registered drivers include the likes of Randy Brunelle, Terry Gardner, Michael Hall, Jordan Keruskie, and Robby Newman.
Brunelle comes to the class after competing in the Pro Stock class at Evans Mills last season, picking up five wins in just eight starts, making him the winningest driver in the class for 2016. Gardner spent last season in both Legends and Pro Stock competition, and plans to do double-duty in 2017 in the Modifieds and Pro Stocks. Hall will be new to Evans Mills competition, having spent the last several seasons racing in different classes at other speedways. Keruskie has most recently competed on dirt, and will be making the switch to asphalt for the season. Newman, who is already known in asphalt circles, had his car on display in the Evans Mills Speedway booth at the Motorsports Expo in Syracuse earlier this year.
Several others have already purchased cars and are in varying stages of preparation, so early indications are that the Opening Night field will be stout.
Opening Night has been rescheduled for Sunday, May 7th. The Mills Modified, Legends, Bandolero, Pro Stock, Thunder Stock, and 4 Cylinder Truck divisions are all on the card. Gates open at 12:30 pm, with hot laps beginning at 1:30 pm, and racing set to go green at 3 pm.
More information, including a complete 2017 schedule, can be obtained online at www.evansmillsspeedway.com, or by calling (315) 221-9180.