ACT-PASS Twin Bill to Open Oxford Plains Speedway
A joint announcement between the American Canadian Tour (ACT) and the Pro ALL Stars Series (PASS) last November came as great news throughout the short track industry, particularly in the Northeast. Principals Tom Curley (ACT) and Tom Mayberry (PASS) decided that, after a decade of competing against each other in the region, it was time to re-energize the region’s full-fendered stock car racing competitors and their fans. They formed a working alliance for the 2015 season.
In a stunning program, they announced an aggressive three-track format, which will host double features for both popular touring divisions at the same race events on three separate occasions throughout the Spring, Summer and Fall of 2015. The opening event will be twin 150 lap events for the ACT teams and PASS teams at the Oxford Plains Speedway (OPS) in Oxford, ME on Saturday, April 18. It is expected that a number of teams will pull double duty and compete in both events.
The summer event will take place at the ACT International 500 weekend on July 18/19 at the Airborne Park Speedway in Plattsburgh, NY. Twin 200 lap events for both the PASS teams and ACT teams will make up a two-day event. All qualifying will be done on Saturday night for Sunday’s feature events. There will be purse and prize money of more than $100,000.00 up for grabs. The event will include both the US and Quebec ACT teams and will be both a PASS North and PASS National point-counting event. The weekend will also feature the ACT Pro Cam Truck Series in a point-counting event. The Rev Star asphalt Sprint cars will also be featured on Saturday qualifying night.
The final doubleheader of the triple bill program of races will be held at the Autodrome Chaudiere in Vallee-Jct., QC on Saturday, September 12. The racy quarter mile hosts both PASS and ACT events to sellout crowds throughout the season, and the combination event is expected to be the largest event ever held at the facility. Each division will again race 200 laps.
In addition to the three twin bills, a first-ever PASS event will be held Memorial Day weekend at Thunder Road International Speedbowl in Barre, VT, a track co-owned by Curley. A stand-alone event on Saturday, June 27 at Oxford Plains Speedway for the ACT teams has also been put on the 2015 calendar. The agreement between the parties also calls for a no conflict date on the weekend of August 28-30 for the running of the historic Oxford 250. This will free up the weekend for teams and fans of ACT to attend one of the premier short track races of the year to close out the summer season.
“There is just all upside to this deal as far as I can see. Having the two largest and most popular Late Model touring groups working together is great for the race teams, and also for the fans who have supported each group all these years. It should provide better fields of cars, and without a doubt some of the best racing the region has ever seen in these events. I know some teams are planning to compete in both of the twins, and that will add another dimension to the event,” said Bruce Bernhardt, owner of 2012 and 2013 ACT Champion Wayne Helliwell, Jr.
OPS has been part of ACT racing since the early 80’s. In fact, the ACT organization became the management team at OPS for several years in the early 90s. Curley said, “I think we had some of our very best races at Oxford Plains for a lot of years with these Late Model cars. In fact, during Bill Ryan’s tenure, Oxford became the strongest weekly car count track in the ACT overall regional market. Obviously, we are excited about going back in a few weeks. Actually, I am interested in seeing the rivalry between the ACT teams and PASS teams who run against each other in the Super Late Model events. I am sure there will be some PASS teams getting into our momentum ACT Late Models at the doubleheaders. I think Tom and I should have a sizeable bet on some kind of point deal that has the cross over guys from each league pitted against each other during the double features. It should be a fun time for fans and teams in 2015.”
The opening of Oxford Plains Speedway on Saturday, April 18 will offer full-fendered race fans twin 150-lap events of action and a new beginning. Post time is 2:00pm. There has been tremendous support from fans and teams for this cooperative effort, and a full field of cars and stars from both leagues should not disappoint.