ESS: Two countries, one weekend June preview

Empire Super Sprints visit two countries in two nights. SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The Empire Super Sprints (ESS) Tour 2002 gets busy on June 14 and 15 with a visit to the Little Valley Speedway on Friday night in the U.S. and then the Merrittville ...

Empire Super Sprints visit two countries in two nights.

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The Empire Super Sprints (ESS) Tour 2002 gets busy on June 14 and 15 with a visit to the Little Valley Speedway on Friday night in the U.S. and then the Merrittville Speedway on Saturday in Western, Ontario, Canada. It will be the first of two visits to both tracks this season with a rich sprint car history to be told at both tracks.

Little Valley is a big , long half-mile located on the Cattaraugus County Fairgrounds which held open cockpit events back in the 40's and 50's. After being closed for decades, John Charlesworth took over the duties in bringing back auto racing to the Western, N.Y. oval. In 1997 the winged machines of ESS toured the clay at Little Valley in a sold out return.

Under the new promotional efforts of Gary Montgomery, the June 14th event will rein as an open cockpit reunion with many special guests and classic cars to be on hand. While the fans will get a chance to step back into history, they will also see top ESS stars such as Mike Woodring, ESS' driver at Little Valley with the most wins, Lance Yonge along with local favorites Tom Taber and Tim Zimbardi to do battle in quest for the rich ESS points title.

After spending a night where horsepower will be key, it's of to the tricky, d-shaped oval located just outside Thorold, Ont. The Merrittville Speedway also boasts a long history of sprint cars as ESS has run events here every year since 1984 with a total of 33 events held. Last year Mike Woodring took the win in the lone event held, Woodring will once again be in the pits along with former winners Lance Yonge, Tim Kelly, Tom Taber, Rob Dietrick and Dan Kaszubinski.

With the ESS rain out at Brockville on May 31st, the event at Merrittville will now kick off the VSM Abrasives Canadian Invasion Tour. Not only will representatives from the London, Ontario plant will be on hand, but also the VSM backed #6 of Ryan Coniam will be among the favorites. Merrittville can be considered Coniam's "home track" and many fans of the second generation driver will be in the stands.

It's two nights, two countries, the very best of "America's Race Cars". Little Valley and Merrittville, the stars and cars from the Empire Super Sprints are coming to your dirt track and it will be excitement guaranteed!

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Series Sprint