Accord Joins RoC Dirt; Sportsman Tour Set For Sept. 30 ACCORD, NY -- When Gary Palmer took over Accord Speedway prior to the 2001 season, he made a pledge to cater to the weekly racer. He took another step toward fulfilling that promise last...
Accord Joins RoC Dirt; Sportsman Tour Set For Sept. 30
ACCORD, NY -- When Gary Palmer took over Accord Speedway prior to the 2001 season, he made a pledge to cater to the weekly racer.
He took another step toward fulfilling that promise last Friday afternoon. Palmer reached an agreement with Race of Champions Dirt Tour administrative director Andrew Harpell to join the RoC Dirt fold in its inaugural season.
The Race of Champions Dirt Sportsman Tour will visit the Ulster County facility on Fri., Sept. 30, featuring a 40-lap, $1,000-to-win main event. All the top campaigners of the quarter-mile will be on hand, along with a healthy contingent of RoC touring stars, setting up a classic Sportsman battle on the bullring.
Accord joins Penn-Can (Pa.) Speedway, Big Diamond (Pa.) Raceway, Five Mile Point (N.Y.) Speedway, Fonda (N.Y.) Speedway, Orange County (N.Y.) Fair Speedway and Utica-Rome (N.Y.) Speedway on the RoC Dirt Sportsman Tour calendar, which boasts 11 events.
The first RoC Dirt Sportsman event is slated for Sun., April 24 at Penn-Can Speedway. Race time is 2 p.m.
All 2004 Sportsman champions from participating tracks are guaranteed starters for the first race at Penn-Can. They include: Kevin Duryea (Accord); Tom Brennan (Big Diamond); Rodney Hart (Five Mile Point); John McAuliffe (Fonda); Rick Mill (Orange County); Kevin Bates (Penn-Can); and Jessica Zemken (Utica-Rome).
"I've always tried to cater to the weekly racer," said Palmer. "That's why I really liked the concept of the Race of Champions Dirt Tour. It gives a chance for our guys to travel around a little bit and have some success without a lot of expense. I'm proud to be a part of the RoC Tour'sfirst season."
There are no membership fees for Race of Champions Sportsman Tour events. All participating RoC tracks will honor the pit licenses of the other RoC Dirt memberfacilities at Tour events. Competitors are only charged a minimal pre-race entry fee of $10 (early) or $15 (late).
Palmer also likes the idea of open communication between tracks that are not under the DIRT MotorSports, Inc. umbrella.
"They (the RoC Dirt promoters) are a great bunch of guys," Palmer added. "I spent a whole day in Binghamton (at the late-February Oakdale Mall show) talking with a lot of different promoters. It's nice to be able to pick up the phone and talk about a problem, or give somebody else an idea of what worked for you."
2005 will mark Accord's second consecutive independent season. Palmer dropped the DIRT sanction following the final checkered of the '03 campaign and entered into an agreement with American Race Tires. Once again, American Racer will be the tire of choice for the upcoming year.
Accord Speedway's 43rd season will get underway on April 1 and 8 (rain dates April 2 and 9) with practice sessions, before the Albany Avenue Garage/Trailer King Season Opener on Fri., April 15 featuring the 358-Modifieds, Sportsman, Spec Sportsman, Pro Stocks, Mini-Sprints and Pure Stocks. Gates open at 4:30 p.m. with hot laps at 6:30 p.m. and racing at 7 p.m.
For more information on Accord Speedway, contact the office at (845) 626-3478 or visit the website: www.accordspeedway.com.
Information on the Race of Champions Dirt Tour is available on the web at www.rocdirt.com