This Track in ACT History: Sanair Super Speedway/Sanair International Raceway

This Track in ACT History: Sanair Super Speedway/Sanair International Raceway

Location: St-Pie, QC

Track:

Sanair International Raceway: 1/3-mile oval

Sanair Super Speedway: 0.826-mile (1.3 km) triangle

Opened: 1971 (oval), 1983 (triangle)

# of ACT Races Held: 40

ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North – 32 (8 oval, 24 triangle)

ACT Late Model Tour – 8 (triangle)

Most Wins:

ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North – Junior Hanley, 7

ACT Late Model Tour – Brian Hoar, 2

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This Track in ACT History: New Hampshire Motor Speedway

This Track in ACT History: New Hampshire Motor Speedway

Location: Loudon, NH

Track: 1.058-mile oval

Opened: 1990

Also Known As: New Hampshire International Speedway

# of ACT Races Held: 1 point-counting event for ACT Late Model Tour/Serié ACT; 9 invitational events

Most Wins: Eddie MacDonald, 5

 

A Brief History of New Hampshire Motor Speedway

The story of New Hampshire Motor Speedway begins where the story of Bryar Motorsports Park ends. The latter had been a prominent facility on both the national stock car and motorcycle circuits in the 1960s and 1970s with its 1.63-mile road course and 5/8-mile oval. But by the late 1980s, it had fallen into disrepair and largely been reduced to motorcycle racing. Enter Bob Bahre. With NASCAR looking to expand into the Northeast market, the already-legendary Maine businessman and track promoter saw the potential for the property, which was located just an hour north of Boston. So he bought the facility in 1989 and bulldozed the old tracks, paving the way for a new modern racing facility.

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Kruczek, Webber Jr. Racing First to Enter ACT Commonwealth Classic

Kruczek, Webber Jr. Racing First to Enter ACT Commonwealth Classic

Newmarket, NH’s Bryan Kruczek has filed the first official entry for the American-Canadian Tour (ACT) Commonwealth Classic 65 at Virginia’s Richmond Raceway on Saturday, March 30. The 2-time Pro All Stars Series winner will pilot the #19NH Little Webb’s Fuel/Sunoco Chevy Camaro for Bobby Webber Jr. Racing in ACT’s maiden voyage at the ¾-mile D-shaped oval.

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This Track in ACT History: Bryar Motorsports Park

This Track in ACT History: Bryar Motorsports Park

Bryar Motorsports Park

Location: Loudon, NH

Track: 1.63-mile road course; 5/8-mile oval

Opened: 1964 (road course), 1968 (oval)

Closed: 1989

# of ACT Races Held: 6 (3 road course, 3 oval)

Most Wins: Chuck Bown & Robbie Crouch, 2

A Brief History of Bryar Motorsports Park

The history of racing in Loudon actually begins around 1962 (or 1963; it’s not entirely clear). Keith Bryar, the owner of Belknap Tire in Laconia (which is still open today), also owned a property in nearby Loudon where he kenneled the sled racing dogs that powered his favorite pastime. He also ran a small kid’s amusement park on the property, which included a go-kart track. In the early 1960s, Mr. Bryar noticed the success of various new short tracks opening up in the area and decided to build one for himself.  Thus 106 Midway Raceway was created, a small clay over that quickly became a hit, regularly drawing crowds of 5,000 or more.

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This Track in ACT History: Oxford Plains Speedway

This Track in ACT History: Oxford Plains Speedway

Location: Oxford, ME

Track: 3/8-mile semi-banked oval

Opened: 1950

# of ACT Races Held: 77

ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North – 44

ACT Late Model Tour – 31

ACT Sunoco Regional Series, Region 1 – 2

Most Wins:

ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North – Robbie Crouch, 9

ACT Late Model Tour – Eddie MacDonald, 5

ACT Sunoco Regional Series – Ralph Nason/Mike Rowe, 1

A Brief History of Oxford Plains Speedway

The story of Oxford Plains Speedway begins in April 1950, when George Damon bought 200 acres of flat, lightly wooded land in the town of Oxford. Six weeks later – thanks in large part to the work of engineer Harold Small – the most modern racing facility in Maine hosted its first event, with “Hutch” Hutchins winning the first feature. But it wasn’t on the track we know today. In fact, the original Oxford Plains Speedway was a ½-mile dirt track. It continued to host events on this configuration throughout the 1950s, drawing a then state-record 12,000 fans on May 27, 1950 for their Memorial Day race.

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This Track in ACT History: Thunder Road Speedbowl

This Track in ACT History: Thunder Road Speedbowl

Location: Barre, VT

Track: ¼-mile high-banked oval

Opened: 1960

# of ACT Races Held: 124

ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North – 53

ACT Late Model Tour – 71

Most Wins:

ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North – Robbie Crouch, 13

ACT Late Model Tour – Brian Hoar, 8

A Brief History of Thunder Road

Thunder Road opened its doors for the first time on June 30, 1960 with a crowd of more than 5,000 on hand. Built on former farm land on Quarry Hill, the track was conceived by local radio station operator (and future NASCAR Hall of Famer) Ken Squier and Reginald “Spade” Cooley, a paving contractor and owner Cooley Brothers Construction. Squier had been the announcer for other tracks in the state, including the Northeastern Speedway in Waterford, VT that opened the previous year. While most tracks of the time were dirt tracks that bordered on temporary, Squier envisioned a paved facility that would be constructed to provide decades of racing entertainment.

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This Track in ACT History: Autodrome de Val Bélair

This Track in ACT History: Autodrome de Val Bélair

Location: Quebec City, QC (née Val Bélair, QC and Val-St-Michel, QC)

Track: 1/3-mile semi-banked oval

Also Known As: Autodrome de Quebec, Quebec Modern Speedway

Opened: 1961

Closed: 1987

# of ACT Races Held: 19 (ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North)

Most Wins: Jean-Paul Cabana, 6

A Brief History of Autodrome Val Bélair

Autodrome Val Bélair, then known as Quebec Modern Speedway, first opened its doors on July 19, 1961. At the time, the only track in the Quebec City area was the clay oval Autodrome Ste-Thérèse-de-Lisieux. In response to pleas from many fans and competitors for an asphalt track, local race team owner Omar Briére borrowed some money and oversaw construction of the new 1/3-mile asphalt oval in just eight weeks. Under Briére’s ownership, the track raced three days a week – oval racing on Wednesdays and Saturdays followed by Figure-8 racing on Sunday. Innovative features such as covered grandstands and seat warmers also allowed him to extend racing season all the way to the end of October.

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This Track in ACT History: Catamount Stadium

This Track in ACT History: Catamount Stadium

Location: Milton, VT

Track: 1/3-mile semi-banked oval

Opened: 1965

Closed: 1987

# of ACT Races Held: 51 (ACT Pro Stock Tour/NASCAR North)

Most Wins: Robbie Crouch, 12

A Brief History of Catamount Stadium

The idea of Catamount Stadium was first planted in 1964. Thunder Road Speedbowl, the track in Barre owned by radio station owner Ken Squier and paving contractor Reginald “Spade” Cooley, had opened in 1960 and was well-established by this point. At the same time, NASCAR was growing beyond its Southern roots and becoming a household name thanks to its national Late Model Sportsman and Modified series. Squier, Cooley, and others realized that a track located in the right place could be even more successful by bridging the gap between Thunder Road and Plattsburgh, NY’s Airborne Speedway.

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