New tracks highlight WoO's 2010 schedule
By Kevin KovacWorld of Outlaws Late Model Series
The 2010 World of Outlaws Late Model Series promises to be a true test of drivers’ versatility. A record number of racetracks — including nearly a dozen speedways that have never before hosted a tour event — appear on the 2010 WoO schedule, which was released on Thursday during the Performance Racing Industry Trade Show in Orlando, Fla. | 2010 World of Outlaws schedule
Forty-seven events at 40 tracks in 19 states and two Canadian provinces are currently confirmed as part of the national tour's 2010 slate, including 10 previously-announced multi-day programs highlighted by the $50,000-to-win USA Nationals on Aug. 6-7 at Cedar Lake Speedway in New Richmond, Wis., and the expanded Firecracker 100 on June 24-26 at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, Pa.
The seventh consecutive WoO season under the World Racing Group banner kicks off on Feb. 11 and 13 with a pair of 50-lap A-Mains during the 39th annual DIRTcar Nationals by UNOH at Volusia Speedway Park in Barberville, Fla. It will end for the fourth straight year with the World Finals on Nov. 4-6 at the Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C.
“We're very excited about the schedule we've put together for the 2010 World of Outlaws Late Model Series,” said series director Tim Christman. “The series continues to grow stronger and stronger. In 2010, we will provide fans and race teams more big-money special events and visit more racetracks across the country than in any previous season in the history of the series.
“The number of tracks that will host World of Outlaws Late Model Series shows in 2010 is a true testament to the demand for races from track promoters — and, of course, it exposes the stars of our series to more fans and creates a battle for the championship that will be won by the driver who demonstrates the best ability to adapt to different tracks and surfaces.”
Christman said he expects to add up to five more events to the schedule released on Thursday, pushing the total number of races in 2010 to what Christman called “our magic number of 50 races.” That would put the 2010 season in position to establish new records for the WoO, which currently boasts single-season highs of 44 events (2007) and 36 different tracks (2007 and 2008).
The centerpiece of the WoO's attractive special-event schedule, unveiled earlier this week, will be Cedar Lake Speedway's 100-lap USA Nationals on Aug. 6-7. Back on the WoO itinerary for the first time since 2005 and fourth time overall in its 23-year history, the crown jewel stands as the richest race on the '10 sked with a purse of nearly a quarter-million dollars.
Lernerville's fourth annual Firecracker 100, meanwhile, will become even bigger in 2010, growing to a three-day blockbuster that includes 30-lap, $6,000-to-win preliminary features on June 24, and June 25, and the traditional 100-lap headliner paying $30,000 for first place on June 26.
The USA Nationals and Firecracker 100 are two of five 100-lappers on the 2010 schedule, joining the third annual Illini 100 on April 9-10 at Farmer City (Ill.) Raceway ($20,000 to win); the inaugural $25,000-to-win Commonwealth 100 on April 16-17 at Virginia Motor Speedway in Jamaica, Va.; and a brand-new long-distance race paying $20,000 to win on Aug. 20-21 at Mohawk International Raceway in Hogansburg, N.Y., that is touted as the biggest dirt Late Model event ever run in the Empire State.
Other multi-day programs featured in '10 include the DIRTcar Nationals by UNOH; the RaceFest World Championships on May 29-30 at reopened West Virginia Motor Speedway in Mineral Wells, which will conduct a pair of complete shows during its first WoO event since 2004; the Oil Region Labor Day Classic on Sept. 4-5 at Tri-City Speedway in Franklin, Pa. (two 50-lap, $10,000-to-win cards for the fifth consecutive year); a unique short-distance (55 laps), high-dollar ($20,000-to-win) fall festival on Sept. 17-18 at I-55 Raceway in Pevely, Mo.; and the World Finals at The Dirt Track, which will present a tripleheader featuring the World of Outlaws Late Model and Sprint Car Series and — for the first time — the Super DIRTcar Series for big-block Modifieds on Nov. 4-6.
The most critical stretch of the 2010 WoO season will once again come in June and July, when almost half of the year's scheduled events will be contested during three extended regional swings that have become hallmarks of the summer slate.
The Great Northern Tour kicks things off, beginning on June 15 at Can-Am Motorsports Park in Lafargeville, N.Y. Three Canadian events — a first-ever show at Merrittville Speedway in Thorold, Ontario, on June 17, and return engagements at Autodrome Drummond in Drummondville, Quebec, on June 19 and Cornwall (Ontario) Motor Speedway on June 20 — will be followed by the first WoO stop since 2005 at Rolling Wheels Raceway in Elbridge, N.Y., on June 22 and the swing-ending Firecracker 100 spectacular on June 24-26 at Lernerville.
For the third consecutive season the WoO's most far-flung swing will be the Wild West Tour, condensed to five straight nights of racing. Action begins July 7 with the annual Gopher 50 at Deer Creek Speedway in Spring Valley, Minn., which will be part of the WoO for the sixth year in a row. The swing also includes events on July 8 at Superior (Wis.) Speedway, which is tentatively set to welcome the WoO for the first time; July 9 at River Cities Speedway in Grand Forks, N.D., which hosts the series for the fifth straight year; July 10 at Dakota State Fair Speedway in Huron, S.D. (second straight season and third time overall as part of the series); and July 11 at first-time series track Ogilvie (Minn.) Raceway.
The series will close out the busy month of July by heading east for another series-within-a-series: a Late Model Speedweek through Ohio and Pennsylvania that appears on the schedule for the fourth straight season. Central Pennsylvania Speedway in Clearfield, Pa., launches the swing on July 27 with its first-ever series event, followed by shootouts on July 28 at Sharon Speedway in Hartford, Ohio (a midweek show after the 3/8-mile utilized Saturday-night dates in recent years); July 30 at Attica (Ohio) Raceway Park; July 31 at Muskingum County Speedway in Zanesville, Ohio, which will run on its normal Saturday night after hosting midweek affairs the last two years; and Aug. 1 at Eriez Speedway in Hammett, Pa.
July's only events that aren't part of a larger swing will come over the Independence Day weekend, when the series makes first-ever stops at Tazewell (Tenn.) Speedway on July 3 and Green Valley Speedway in Glencoe, Ala., on July 4.
Other highlights of the 2010 schedule:
• An early-season weekend in the Southeast, with events on March 19 at Ocala (Fla.) Speedway, March 20 at Screven Motor Speedway in Sylvania, Ga., and a track to be determined on March 21. Ocala will host the WoO for the first time, while Screven's annual tour date is moving from late-summer to the spring.
• A two-night Texas swing, on March 26 at Battleground Speedway and March 27 at Lonestar Speedway in Kilgore. The tour visited Battleground for the first time in 2009 and will make its first visit to Lonestar since 2004.
• Spring dates on April 30 at Fayetteville (N.C.) Motor Speedway (tentative) and May 1 at Swainsboro (Ga.) Raceway, which is on the WoO schedule for the first time.
• Traditional bundled events on May 13 at Delaware International Speedway in Delmar and May 15 at Hagerstown (Md.) Speedway. The swing, which coincides with the spring NASCAR weekend at Dover (Del.) International Speedway, brings the WoO to both tracks for the sixth time in seven years since 2004.
• Bedford (Pa.) Speedway hosts the tour for the third consecutive season, but in 2010 the fairgrounds oval's date moves up to May 28 as a lead-in to the Memorial Day weekend doubleheader at West Virginia Motor Speedway.
• A midweek date on Wednesday, Aug. 4, at Shawano (Wis.) Speedway that precedes the USA Nationals. The WoO will appear at the half-mile oval outside Green Bay for the first time since a 1989 event there during the first incarnation of the tour.
• At least two Northeastern events on the road to the 100-lapper at Mohawk International Raceway. Grandview Speedway in Bechtelsville, Pa. (Aug. 18) and Brewerton (N.Y.) Speedway (Aug. 19) return to the series after attracting huge crowds for inaugural events in 2009; an event on Aug. 17 is also in negotiation.
• The Illinois Fall Nationals at La Salle (Ill.) Speedway is scheduled for Sun., Sept. 19, following the big weekend at I-55 Raceway. It marks the fourth consecutive year that an event at La Salle appears on the WoO schedule, but rain has washed out the last two races.
Just four tracks are scheduled to host multiple WoO events in 2010. The Dirt Track at Charlotteï¿½ leads the list with three dates (including the mid-week Showdown on Oct. 13, which could pay its winner as much as $30,000 with a passing bonus), while Volusia, West Virginia Motor and Tri-City will hold two events each (all as single-visit doubleheaders).