Utica-Rome ready for season opener

Utica-Rome Speedway opener less than two weeks away. VERNON, NY- In less than two weeks, racing action will return to the Utica-Rome Speedway for the 2003 season on Sunday April 27th. Gates-Cole Insurance will present the 42nd season opener ...

Utica-Rome Speedway opener less than two weeks away.

VERNON, NY- In less than two weeks, racing action will return to the Utica-Rome Speedway for the 2003 season on Sunday April 27th. Gates-Cole Insurance will present the 42nd season opener consisting of a complete show of DIRT 358-Modifieds, DIRT Sportsman, DIRT Pro Stocks, and Pure Stocks. The DIRT 358-Modifieds will compete in a 40-lap affair will a qualifying spot for the Super DIRT Week 358-Modified Championship going to the winner.

Mitch Gibbs took the opening night win in 2002 and looks to repeat the feat in 2003. Other contenders for the opening night win include 2002 DIRT 358-Modified track champion Matt Sheppard, Ryan Baye, Jeff Kotary, Jim Rothwell, Gus Schmidt, Paul Kinney, John Ramsey, JJ Michaels, Dale Planck, and a host of others.

Jamie Christian started his DIRT Sportsman championship run by taking the opening night victory in 2002, and will have to hold off Tim Clemons, Paul Carey, Jim Roberts, and many others to do so again in 2003.

In the ultra competitive DIRT Pro Stocks, Bret Belden nabbed the opening night win. Jason Rood, the 2002 DIRT Pro Stock track champion, will return to defend his title, attempting to hold off Belden, Buddy Hencke, Joe Palmer, Denny Smith, Bill Knapp, and many more.

Continuing his stranglehold on victory lane in the Pure Stock division at Utica-Rome Speedway, Dave Mannise took home opening night laurels as well as the 2002 Pure Stock track championship. Chuck Cushman, Art Newman, Jim Thomas, Rick Trexler and others look to end Mannise's reign on the Utica-Rome Speedway victory lane.

A special "Test and Tune" session is scheduled for Monday, April 21st for all divisions. Gates will open at 5pm, with practice scheduled to start at 6pm. The track will close at 9m. Pit admission is set at $10, with grandstand admission being free to all spectators.

Utica-Rome Speedway is located on Route 5 in Vernon, just a few miles from New York Thruway Exit 33. For any more information, please log on www.uticaromespeedway.com or call the speedway office at (315) 829-4557. Join us at the "Action track of the East" for a fun filled evening on opening night, April 27th.

-urs-

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Series Stock car
Drivers Jim Roberts