Hultgren Forms Midget 'Super Team' of the Northeast; Fornoro to Compete in TV Races Across the Nation BELMONT, N.H., Jan. 15 - Car owner Paul "Skip" Hultgren of Belmont, N.H., announced today that he will bring two...
Hultgren Forms Midget 'Super Team' of the Northeast; Fornoro to Compete in TV Races Across the Nation
BELMONT, N.H., Jan. 15 - Car owner Paul "Skip" Hultgren of Belmont, N.H., announced today that he will bring two of the most famous names in midget auto racing - Fornoro and Seymour - together on a team that plans to compete with Autocraft VW engines in some of the nation's biggest midget races in 1998.
The printing industry executive will put six-time American Racing Drivers Club (ARDC) CARQUEST Midget Series Champion Nick (Nokie) Fornoro Jr. of Reeders, Pa., behind the wheel of one of his midgets in most if not all of the televised midget races of 1998, starting with the prestigious United States Auto Club (USAC) Skoal Copper World Classic at Phoenix International Raceway Jan. 30-Feb. 1. Since the team is the only midget team based in the Northeast which has announced such an illustrious national schedule and Fornoro is one of the most popular midget drivers ever to come out of the region, fan interest is expected to be very high.
At Phoenix Fornoro will drive the 1996 Boston Hawk which was campaigned in Northeastern Midget Association (NEMA) races in 1996 and 1997 by Bobby Seymour of Marlboro, Mass. Hultgren plans to purchase a brand-new car after the Phoenix race that Fornoro will drive in the other TV shows. Seymour, a former NEMA champion, will be back in the '96 Boston Hawk later in 1998 for selected NEMA events which don't conflict with his work schedule, and he may compete with it in some of the TV shows too. In addition to his business, nationally renowned race car parts company Seymour Enterprises, Seymour works with the Seymour Enterprises USAC Silver Crown car driven by Bentley Warren.
Hultgren plans to field both cars for both men in selected ARDC and NEMA events at Oswego, N.Y.; Thompson, Conn.; and Flemington, N.J. Neither of those clubs' schedules have been released yet, but the teammates are looking forward to those races and hopes are high for dynamic showings.
Between events both of Hultgren's midgets will be housed at Seymour Enterprises. Bobby Seymour and his brother Mike, also of Marlboro, Mass., will share the crew chief responsibilities.
The team is looking for sponsorship partners, and Hultgren noted that in addition to having championship-winning drivers and being based out of the Northeast, it is one of the few teams that will be campaigning VW engines in the televised events. The TV broadcasts are primarily on ESPN2, which has an estimated 53.1 million subscribers.
"The VW powerplants in fields made up mostly of Chevys will make the team unique and newsworthy," Hultgren said. "Nokie and Bobby are contenders in any race, and we hope that the Northeastern fans in particular will be cheering us on."
The team will use tires manufactured by Hoosier Racing Tire, Lakeville, Ind. That company is a long-time sponsor of both Fornoro and Seymour's racing efforts.
The USAC national midget series schedule released Jan. 9 in Indianapolis shows five televised shows. In addition to the race at Phoenix Jan. 30-Feb. 1, those events are: the "Night Before the 500" race May 23 at Indianapolis Raceway Park; June 17 at Anderson (Ind.) Speedway; July 11-12 at Pikes Peak (Colo.) International Raceway; and Aug. 12 at Indianapolis Raceway Park. The team is also looking forward to competing in the USAC midget race at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway on July 24 prior to an Indy Racing League (IRL) Indy car event. Hultgren expects to field cars for both of his drivers in that event, which reportedly will also be televised.
Fornoro is fifth on the all-time ARDC feature-winners' list with 44 victories and he's third on the NEMA list with 36 feature triumphs. In addition to his six ARDC titles, he also won the NEMA championship in 1981. He has six USAC career midget feature victories, and he is a two-time winner of the prestigious "Night Before the 500" race at Indianapolis Raceway Park (1985 and 1987) and the indoor race at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis (1986). He's driven everything from Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) stock cars to America Racing Series (ARS) formula cars (now Indy Lights), and when counting his career feature victories in all types of cars he has over 170 triumphs.
Seymour won the NEMA drivers' championship in 1987 and he finished second to his brother Mike in 1994. Bobby Seymour is tied for 13th on the NEMA all-time feature-winners' list with 16 triumphs. He also has two ARDC victories. In addition to being a driver he is a car owner, designer, builder, chief mechanic and even a past NEMA president.
Both drivers have a rich family legacy in the sport. Both have brothers (Drew Fornoro and Mike Seymour) who are also midget stars. The Fornoro brothers' father, Nick Fornoro Sr. of Rockaway, N.J., won the 1950 ARDC championship and was the starter for Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) events for many years. The Seymour brothers' father, the late "Boston Louie" Seymour, was a car owner who got his nickname for faithfully making countless trips from New England to the Midwest to compete in USAC events.
Hultgren is also involved in the Seymour Enterprises USAC Silver Crown car and the NEMA midget of young charger Jon Barrows.
The team's public relations representative is Linda Mansfield of Mansfield, Shand & Katz Public Relations, Flagtown, N.J. For sponsorship or other information on the team, please contact her at (908) 281-7542.