Big Diamond season preview

TRACK CREW READY FOR BIG DIAMOND THAW; DONN EDGAR LIKES EARLY SPORTSMAN-MOD OPENER Minersville, PA - April 13 - While much of the Northeast struggles out of winter's grip, Big Diamond Raceway continues to look hopefully toward the track's...

TRACK CREW READY FOR BIG DIAMOND THAW; DONN EDGAR LIKES EARLY SPORTSMAN-MOD OPENER

Minersville, PA - April 13 - While much of the Northeast struggles out of winter's grip, Big Diamond Raceway continues to look hopefully toward the track's Opening Day. The speedway will be dropping the green flag on its 32nd season of auto racing with the Sunday afternoon, March 30 event. The NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series Sportsman-Modifieds and Roadrunners are slated to compete in heats races and consolation races as necessary leading up to their feature events as part of the 2 o'clock opener while the Modified, the KARS Doorways Unlimited 358 Sprints and others will be shaking down their cars for the 2003 season.

"There is still a lot of snow around the track but we are still hopeful," commented track promoter Fritz Roehrig last weekend (March 9). "I was just able to get out with the bulldozer this weekend and clear out access to all of our track equipment so we can have it ready when we get a bit more of a thaw. With the track down in a bowl, there are many areas that have more snow due to drifting. There is some snow on the track itself but the runoff onto the track from the heavier areas of snow in the pits and stands many hamper our efforts to prepare the surface."

Following the March 30 season opener, Big Diamond will host two more Sunday afternoon events before remaining dark Easter weekend and then transitioning into the weekly Friday night format. On April 6, the NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series kicks-off for the Modifieds while the KARS 358 Sprints and the NASCAR Roadrunners also see action. Then, on April 13, the full Big Diamond NASCAR line-up takes to the track with the Modifieds, Sportsman-Modifieds and Roadrunners.

One driver hoping to see things get rolling on time for the 2003 season is NASCAR Sportsman-Modified standout, Donn Edgar of Lehighton, PA and his B & E Motorsports #30 team. Donn has been a Sportsman-Modified pacesetter since Big Diamond began running the division but what's sets Donn apart is his focus on sportsmanship, both on and off the track, and his family priorities.

"We will be running about the same number of races we ran last year," commented Edgar, who down scaled his own racing in 2002 to accommodate his son's initial season racing quarter midgets. "We can run until the first Friday in June when my son's schedule gets in full swing. From there, we will be at Diamond for all the special shows and for a couple of regular shows."

Donn will have his 2002 Troyer back with a Butch Sterling Performance Engine. Pete Bowman is the #30 car's crew chief leading crew members "Clint, Todd and Glenn." Sponsors of B & E Motorsports are Ahner Furniture, Broadheadsville Chevrolet, Sterling Performance, Sunamerica Securities, Butch Green Auto Collision and Andrews Trucking.

Last season after spinning out during a feature event, Edgar was quick to stop and tell track officials he spun on his own when he heard on the in-car radio that another competitor was being sent to the rear of the field for spinning him out.

"We are out here to be competitive but we also want to be fair. We want to have fun," shared Edgar, who's not a stranger to the winners' circle. "We don't look to knock others around and they treat us the same way. I'll be the first to admit my mistake in a situation like that." Although the weather has put a damper on many planned pre-season improvements, they not hamper the track's ability to open the gates as scheduled. It will all depend on the ability to get the track race ready and the pits and spectator areas sufficiently dry.

"Many of the improvements and adjustments we hoped to make do not need to be in place for the Sunday afternoon racing," commented race director Jeff Gromis. "We actually have an additional month to get the existing track lighting adjusted and to make an assessment of possible additions. Likewise some improvements related to a safer means of keeping the competitors from running inside of the infield tire markers in the turns may be delayed but can come later in the spring."

Racing is scheduled to get underway on Sunday, March 30, at 2 PM with gates opening at noon. The NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series Sportsman-Modifieds and Roadrunners will compete in qualifying races and feature events while the Modified, the KARS 358 Sprints and others will be shaking down their cars for the 2003 season. For more information, call (570) 544-6434 or check www.bigdiamondraceway.com.

-bdr-

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Series NASCAR , Stock car