The Chrome Horn News



    With a field of racers this strong, it should be named the Northeast All-Star Race.
    An “all-star” line-up of competitors have registered for the “Gambler’s Classic” Indoor Race presented by SoBe Life Water, to be held Jan. 18 & 19 on the concrete floor of Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall.
    The sixth running of the Len Sammons Motorsports Productions-promoted event will include racing for the M&R Products Three Quarter Midgets/600cc Micro-Sprints, Slingshots and Champ Karts.
    In the M&R Midget ranks, the entry list of over 90 includes past event winners Joey Payne of Fairlawn, N.J. (2004 & 2007); Jeff Heotzler Sr. of Wallkill, N.Y. (2005); and Aston, PA’s Lou Cicconi Jr. (2006).
    Once again, the field boasts unmatched talent and diversity, highlighted by a driver known for his versatility, NASCAR star Ken Schrader of Fenton, MO, who will drive an Alan Mollott-prepared No. 51 on Friday night only. Local talent ready for action includes asphalt Modified standout Ted Christopher of Plainville, CT; fellow pavement racers Marc Rogers of Brick, N.J.; a regular at NJ’s Wall Township Speedway; Connecticut-based SK racer Frank Ruocco; and Ransomville, NY teenager Erick Rudolph, grandson of the legendary Charlie Rudolph, who has made his name by winning in asphalt Modifieds and TQ Midgets in Western New York.
    Red Lion, PA’s Cody Darrah, one of the Pennsylvania 410 Sprint Car circuit’s most promising young drivers, will again be in competition. Darrah was victorious in a “Triple Roaring 20” during the 2006 running of the “Gambler’s Classic,” then a 16-year-old Micro-Sprint racer. Harrah’s uncle, World of Outlaws Late Model star Rick Eckert of York, PA, will fill the seat of the Mollott No. 51 vacated by Schrader on Saturday night. Trenton, NJ’s Mark Bitner, a frontrunner on the United Racing Company (URC) 360 Sprint Car tour, has filed an entry as well.
    Joining Heotzler as a leading representative from the dirt Modified circuit is Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.’s Stewart Friesen, a 13-time winner in 2007 and the Utica-Rome (NY) Speedway 358-Modified champion. The 24-year-old will pilot the famed Harry Macy No. 9 in the event. Always a frontrunner, Friesen is in search of his first A-Main triumph at Boardwalk Hall.
    Other dirt Modified contenders include Frenchtown, NJ’s Billy Pauch, the winner of over 630 races in his career; his son, young up-and-comer Billy Pauch Jr. (who races regularly on dirt and pavement); Adams, NY’s Ryan Bartlett, a leading contender in New York’s North Country; Bridgeport (NJ) Speedway regular Mike Iles of Medford, N.J., fresh off a Delaware State Dirt Track Championships win in November; and second-generation racer Jeff Heotzler Jr.
    Youthful Supermodified racer Mike Lichty of Innerkip, Ont., a dark-horse favorite, will be in action again this season, along with another rep from the Supermod ranks, Matt Seavey. Other open-wheelers include NEMA Midget racer Jeremy Frankoski, a winner during his freshman NEMA schedule; fellow NEMA talent Randy Cabral; Jimmy “Bubba” Broderick, a 1200cc Mini-Sprint winner on dirt; ARDC Midget 2007 Rookie of the Year Ryan Smith; and Micro-Sprint winner Pat Bealer.
    In the Slingshot division, 2007 National Slingshot champion Billy Van Inwegen Jr. of Port Jervis, NY, is among those pre-entered. Van Inwegen is set to embark on his rookie season driving a SpeedSTR Midget in ‘08. Familiar names on the entry list include former Rite Aid 200 Super DIRT Week winner and Slingshot by Tobias founder Rich “Toby” Tobias of Annville, PA; two-time and defending event winner Ryan Smith of Kunkletown, PA; Accord (NY) Speedway’s leading 2007 Modified rookie Jamie Yannone of Newburgh, NY; Grandview (PA) Speedway NASCAR 358-Modified racer Brad Missimer; Orange County (NY) Fair Speedway DIRTcar big-block Modified veteran Dave Werber; Iselin, NJ, dirt Mod driver Chris Grbac, Big Diamond (PA) Sportsman racer Ray Woodall Jr.; and NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour racer Rich Kuiken Jr. (who will do double-duty; he’ll also wheel a Champ Kart).
    The largest field in “Gambler’s Classic” history registered for Champ Kart competition. Included are DIRT MotorSports Hall of Fame crew chief Mike Burdick, Wall Township Speedway 2007 Sportsman champion Kevin Eyres and SK Modified racer Frank Ruocco.
    The action begins on Fri., Jan. 18 with “A-1 Products Presents Qualifying Night,” featuring M&R Midget Time Trials, three M&R Midget “Triple Roaring 20s” qualifiers, four Champ Kart 11-lap qualifiers and two Slingshot “Dirty Dozens.” Time trials will begin at 7 p.m. on Friday night, with racing at 8 p.m.
    Saturday night’s (Jan. 19) program kicks off with the Fan Fest on the track at 6:30 p.m., followed by pre-race ceremonies at 7 p.m. A pair of M&R Midget C-Mains will get underway at 7:30 p.m., followed by the Slingshot 25-lap A-Main, the M&R Midget B-Main, the Champ Kart 25-lap main and the night’s headline 40-lap M&R Midget A-Main. Also part of Saturday’s show will be a special 10-lap Behrent’s Performance Warehouse Dash for Cash.
    For further information on the “Gambler’s Classic,” contact Danny Sammons by phone at: (609) 888-3618 or via e-mail at: On the web: Select lap sponsorships for the event are now available
    Tickets are on sale now and can be obtained by calling: (609)-888-3618 (please have a MasterCard, Visa or American Express card ready) or by calling Ticketmaster at (800)-736-1420.
    The SoBe Life Water “Gambler’s Classic” at the Boardwalk Hall (January 18th and 19th) is part of a huge motorsports weekend in Atlantic City that includes the Motorsports 2008 Race Car Show presented by VP Racing Fuels (January 18-20) at the Atlantic City Convention Center and the first time ever Promoter’s Summit (January 18-19) which is part of Motorsports 2008.


Source:  Ernie Saxton/Ernie Saxton Communications PR
Posted:  December 30, 2007

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