October 5th, 2005
BINGHAMTON, NY.....History will be made on Oct. 14-15 as the inaugural Race of Champions Dirt Modified (overall) and Sportsman champions are decided at Five Mile Point Speedway.
A tradition-laden quarter-mile oval celebrating its 55th consecutive year of operation, the "Home Speedway of the Southern Tier" will host seven divisions of competition, deciding five series titles in the span of the two-day National Quarter Mile Dirt Track Championship Weekend.
"The National Quarter Mile Dirt Track Championship Weekend should be nothing short of huge," said RoC Dirt administrative director and FMP owner/promoter Andrew Harpell. "This weekend is developing into a true 'event' on the fall racing schedule.
"We encourage fans to camp, spend the weekend and enjoy what should be an exciting two days of racing on the quarter-mile."
The action will get underway on Fri., Oct. 14 with a three-division card of T3 All-Star Series 358-Modifieds, Race of Champions Dirt Sportsman and BRC Lazer Series Late Models. Race time is 7 p.m.
Serving as the host of the RoC Dirt Sportsman finale, the Tour's first ever champion will be crowned in Kirkwood, N.Y.
With eight of nine events complete, Erwinna, Pa., native Jason Hamilton (382 points) sits atop the standings. Penn-Can (Pa.) Speedway champion Arnie Slade (357) is second, 25 markers back. Kyle Weiss (349), Shaun Walker (317) and Jeff Geiges (276) complete the top five.
The Sportsman racers will compete in a 40-lap main paying $1,000 to the winner.
Brad Grim of Coplay, Pa., won the RoC Dirt Sportsman visit to FMP on July 13, besting Jeff Geiges, rookie Brian Puckett, Kyle Weiss and Jimmy Horton IV. Forty-one cars entered the program.
Kenny Shupp's T3 All-Star Series has enjoyed a successful first season since its debut in mid-April at Black Rock (N.Y.) Speedway. The high car counts and competitive racing should continue in the second T3 visit to the Point, with the small-block stars competing in a 40-lap foray paying $1,500-to-win.
Mitch Gibbs took the first '05 T3 event on Thurs., Aug. 4 over Danny Johnson, Joel Batzel, Rich Keehle and J.R. Crouse.
The BRC Lazer Series for the Late Models will certainly thrill the crowd as the high-speed machines go all-out for every point in their '05 finale.
A post-race bonfire with complimentary hot dogs and hamburgers (and beer on sale) will be held on the backstretch at the conclusion of the night's on-track action.
Saturday, Oct. 15's program will be highlighted by the 36th running of the Southern Tier 100 for the RoC Dirt Modifieds, offering a $5,000 top prize, along with a $400 Smith Halfway Lap Leader Bonus (to the leader of lap 50).
Joining the Modifieds on the card will be the Empire State Series for the IMCA Modifieds in a championship-deciding headliner, Street Stocks (25-laps) and Pure Stocks (25-laps). Race time is 4 p.m.
Entering the year's final RoC Dirt Modified combined event, Sharon Springs, N.Y., racer Bobby Varin sits at the head of the class with 615 points. Varin swept the Tour's North Region en route to that title and won the combined race at Fonda (N.Y.) Speedway on Sept. 25.
Only 11 markers back in second is 2002 FMP track champion Mitch Gibbs (604). 2005 Five Mile Point and Penn-Can champ Brian Weaver is third with 601 points.
Weaver, the winner of the first combined event at Penn-Can on Sept. 16, also topped the competitive South Region event at FMP on July 13 over Gibbs, Jim Crawn, Varin and Joel Batzel. That event drew 48 entries.
Jerry Higbie Jr. (560) and Ronnie Johnson (520) complete the top five in the RoC combined Modified standings.
Past winners of the Southern Tier 100 include Gibbs, Billy Decker, Brett Hearn, Bob McCreadie, Mike Colsten, Danny Johnson, Jack Johnson, Chuck Akulis, Kenny Brightbill, Stan Ploski, Gerald Chamberlain, Dave Kneisel, Don Beagell and many more.
A huge, talent-filled field will descend on a completely resurfaced facility looking to add their name to the race's prestigious list of winners.
Small-block drivers competing in both Friday's T3 show and Saturday's RoC Dirt Modified program will have an extra incentive. There will be a $500 bonus to the top finisher in Saturday's event (using a small-block) that also competed in Friday night's 40-lapper.
Camping is free for the weekend.
For more information on the huge weekend of competition at Five Mile Point Speedway, contact the track office at (607) 775-5555 or visit the website: www.fivemilepointspeedway.net.
RoC Dirt Tour info can be found by calling the RoC office at (607) 348-0432 or visiting the website: www.rocdirt.com.
Full rules, prices and entry forms are available on both websites.