Six 2004 dates announced for Late Model Series

Six Dates Announced for 2004 ASA Late Model Series Pendleton, Ind. (November 21, 2003) - In high anticipation of the inaugural season for the ASA Late Model Series, six event dates of a planned 12-15 for the 2004 season have been announced. ...

Six Dates Announced for 2004 ASA Late Model Series

Pendleton, Ind. (November 21, 2003) - In high anticipation of the inaugural season for the ASA Late Model Series, six event dates of a planned 12-15 for the 2004 season have been announced. The series will make appearances at Lake Erie Speedway in Pennsylvania, Mansfield Motorsports Speedway and Toledo Speedway in Ohio, Berlin Raceway in Michigan along with stops at Indianapolis Raceway Park and Hawkeye Downs Speedway in Iowa.

Five of the six announced ASA Late Model Series dates are companion events to the ASA Racing Series, taking place on the same day as the nationally touring ASA Racing Series feature event. These events are set for Lake Erie on Saturday, May 29, Mansfield on Saturday, June 5 Berlin on Saturday, June 12, Toledo on Saturday, July 24 and Indianapolis Raceway Park on Saturday, July 31.

"Each of the six race tracks have long established themselves in motorsports and those events that are companion to the National Tour are simply five of the finest short track facilities anywhere," said Joe Balash, ASA Operations Director. "I'm confident these races will be competitive and entertaining."

The state-of-the-art Lake Erie Speedway, in Erie, Pa. is a 15-minute commute from the shores of Lake Erie and offers one of the most beautiful spots for a racetrack in the country.

Mansfield Motorsports Speedway has quickly become Ohio's premier short track. Located north of Columbus and southwest of Cleveland, the track re-opened on May 9, 1999 after being converted into a .50-mile asphalt track. It retained the high banking of the original dirt track layout.

In 2002, new light poles, lights and grandstands were added to the facility. More than $16 million in improvements were made including a six-story tower, 12 suites, a press facility, ticket booth and concession stand as well as bathrooms and 7,200 permanent seats. Additional seating is being added to reach nearly 20,000 by the start of the 2004 season.

The legendary Berlin Raceway hosts the ASA Late Model Series on Saturday, June 12. In 1965 the fairgrounds facility, originally a horse track and then used for dirt motorsports, became the .438-mile paved oval that is raced on today. In 2001, Whitecaps Racing, a division of the West Michigan Whitecaps professional baseball team, purchased the track and made numerous improvements to the facility befitting its hallowed status in the racing community.

Toledo Speedway hosts the second-year series on Saturday, July 24. ARCA president Ron Drager and Detroit-area businessman Roy Mott purchased Toledo Speedway in January 1999. A track "facelift" undertaken quickly allowed the North Toledo facility to regain its famed notoriety of being one of the best short tracks in the country.

Currently the largest track on the 2004 ASA Late Model Series schedule will be the .686- mile oval of Indianapolis Raceway Park. The event at IRP will take place on Saturday, July 31.

Owned by the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) since 1979, Indianapolis Raceway Park has been a staple of the American motorsports landscape since the legendary A.J. Foyt won the first oval race there in 1961, capturing a USAC race on a dirt oval, the only dirt race ever held there. The facility, which also includes the oval, a drag strip and a 2.5- mile road course, has undergone major renovations, including new grandstands for the oval track in 1999. Along with the weekly program, IRP hosts Kroger Speedfest during August and the annual NHRA U.S. Nationals over Labor Day weekend.

The final announced date is Hawkeye Downs Speedway in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on Saturday, September 4. The former Frontier Park and Cedar Rapids Speedway, has been an Iowa racing tradition since 1925. In 1989, the old .50-mile dirt track was revamped into Iowa's first paved .5-mile oval with a .25-mile oval within the larger track. The nationally touring ASA Racing Series has an impressive history at Hawkeye Downs Speedway totaling 17 appearances since July 4, 1994.

The entire 2004 ASA Late Model Series schedule continues to be formulated with a total of 12-15 events making up the expected final slate.

Officials are planning for 100-lap green flag races with a preference to not have competitors changing tires, adding fuel or having to use pit stops during the events. The cars will include makes from three major manufacturers - General Motors, Ford and Dodge. They will utilize template bodies and engines from all three.

Rules for the 2004 ASA Late Model Series are available by contacting the ASA office at 1-765-778-8088.

Confirmed dates for the 2004 ASA Late Model Series. <pre> Date Track Location Size Saturday, May 29 Lake Erie Speedway Erie, PA 0.375 Saturday, June 5 Mansfield Motorsports Speedway Mansfield, OH 0.500 Saturday, June 12 Berlin Raceway Marne, MI 0.438 Saturday, July 24 Toledo Speedway Toledo, OH 0.500 Saturday, July 31 Indianapolis Raceway Park Clermont, IN 0.686 Saturday, September 4 Hawkeye Downs Speedway Cedar Rapids, IA 0.500

Note: The final schedule will consist of 12-15 dates.

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