The area dirt track racing season will kick off at I-80 Speedway on Friday and Saturday with the running of the Spring Meltdown featuring touring Super Late Models and touring Sprint Cars.
Two area drivers are set to defend their series championships. Omaha’s John Anderson is the defending Midwest Late Model Racing Association (MLRA) champion. Anderson also won the MLRA championship in 2008 and 2011 behind the wheel of the Manhattan, Kan.-based No. 2 Shop-Quik Super Late Model owned by Greg Junghans.
For Anderson, owner of Anderson Signs on North 84th Street in Omaha, this will not be the first action of 2013 after competing at the six-race “Winter” Extreme in January at Tucson International Raceway.
But Anderson is ready to get under way locally, saying “everybody is ready to watch some good racing.”
As for Lucas Oil buying the MLRA during the offseason, Anderson said it was a good move. “(It) will keep the series moving forward and help make it one of the best regional series in the country.”
Dan Robinson, general manager of Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland, Mo., who also will be in charge of the MLRA, said there are new and exciting things in store for the Lucas Oil MLRA series, including a new Winner’s Circle Program, an updated rule book and the addition of several new sponsors.
“I-80 is always one of the fans’ and drivers’ favorite stops on the MLRA tour and we can’t wait to kick off our 25th anniversary season there on April 5,” Robinson said.
Springfield’s Jack Dover, the 2008 and 2012 ASCS Midwest Sprint Car Series champion, is also ready to defend his title.
Dover has also been on the dirt tracks in 2013 — in Australia.
“We were in Australia from December 24 until January 30,” he said. “We were able to race 14 shows Down Under.”
In addition to complete shows each night for the MLRA, the Corn Belt Clash co-sanctioned Super Late Models and the ASCS Midwest sanctioned Sprint Cars and B Mods will also be running on Friday, with A Mods on Saturday.
For more information, visit www.i-80speedway.com or call (402)-342-3453.
Council Bluffs drag strip gets to rolling
The Rolling Thunder Drag Strip at the Mid-America Motorplex south of Council Bluffs will open on Friday night with its weekly Street Drags from 6 p.m. until 11 p.m.
“This is the premier adult playground in the Midwest,” said operator/promoter Jim Howe. “If you have not been to MAM, it’s time.”
Howe has several special events planned, including a Night of Fire, the annual Geezer Show, the Loess Hills Motorcycle Rally, Saturday night NHRA racing and more.
It will be the 11th season of action at MAM, which also features a 2.23-mile world class Alan Wilson-designed road course.
The road course is open every Friday for individuals to practice. It will also feature a number of club events, and in mid-June the Xtreme Driving Xperience comes to the track, featuring six exotic cars that fans can drive.
For more information, visit www.midamericamotorplex.com.
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