Thursday, February 12, 2009

NASCAR Season is here, Central Iowa Cooperation

The time has finally arrived! NASCAR season is upon us. While the Budweiser Shootout winner Kevin Harvick and company have completed the Gatorade Duels, the focus shifts to the biggest race of the year: the Daytona 500. I was unable to watch the first Duel and missed much of the second, but did witness the strong performace of Mark Martin. While in a new ride this season for Hendrick Motorsports, it appears as though Martin has his best shot of winning the Daytona 500. He almost won his first Duel, but got shuffled back by Kyle Busch and teammate Denny Hamlin. While I’m not a diehard NASCAR fan, I would love to see Mark Martin win the 500.

A little closer to home, a little cooperation goes a long way. It appears that the Marshalltown Speedway, Hamilton County Speedway, and Benton County Speedway have teamed up to bring a Triple Header Frostbuster to start the season off this year. The IMCA modifieds will be center of attention as drivers will be aiming for the $1000 top prize each night. In addition to that, the winning driver will be placed on the ballot for the Fast Shafts All-Star Invatational race at the IMCA Supernationals in Boone in September. Other classes involved are the IMCA Sportmods and IMCA Hobby Stocks. IMCA Stock Cars and IMCA Sport Compacts will also be on the card, although not applying to each track.

To kind of go along with this idea, the Marshalltown Speedway and Hamilton County Speedway are teaming up in another way to benefit both fans and drivers.

On specified nights during the summer, fans will be invited to bring their ticket stub from Marshalltown to Hamilton County and vice versa for a buy one get one free promotion. Fans will be notified by the announcer and or e-mails to be made aware of the dates for this promotion. Along with this, the Modified and Sport Mod drivers each have a chance to sweeten their pot on a weekly basis. If a respective driver can win back to back features at the Marshalltown and Hamilton County Speedways they will receive a $50 bonus for their efforts.”

I personally think this is a great idea for tracks to get together and try to help each other out. While there is quite a distance between tracks, this “promotion” may help both tracks gain drivers and fans. As a fan who frequently attends both tracks, I am looking forward to taking advantage of this deal.

It is now less then a week before I venture south again to Abilene, Texas for the Ice Breaker. I’m unsure as to how many drivers from the upper Midwest plan to make the journey. Nonetheless, it will be difficult to repeat the success that Iowa drivers had last year. Jay Noteboom won 2 of the 3 IMCA modified features last year, Shannon Anderson won 2 IMCA hobby stock features, and Jeremy Gettler won a feature in the IMCA stock car division. Whether several drivers from Iowa make the trip or none at all, I plan to take in 3 great days/nights of racing along with the better weather! Sunshine and 70-degree temperatures, here comes TAPFAN’s Tour!!

- Racing may be a hobby, but it’s DEFINITELY addictive!!

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