Mar 6, 2007 07:22 PM EDT
Final Touches Placed on the Bully Hill Vineyards NY Sprint Nationals
By RICH VLECK
Chuck Hebing, the 'Cobra' (#45) and Alain Bergeron (#8B) are almost head to head coming out of turn 1 at Black Rock Speedway during the NY ESS Bully Hill 360 Fall Sprint Nationals, September 9, 2006
Dundee, NY- Snowfall in Upstate NY normally means that the nearest Bully Hill Nationals race is in the past instead of the future. This year however, as the weather starts to warm up (one of these days) so will the racing, as the ninth running of this event will take place in just over two months! This is just one of the many parts of the major facelift made to Black Rock Speedway’s largest event.
Easily the biggest component of the all-new Bully Hill Vineyards NY Sprint Nationals presented by S.P. Wilson was making this event an ASCS National Touring Series race. ASCoT tours all across the country, with at least a dozen of the best drivers from states such as Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana invading New York for the first time. Black Rock will be the first leg of the 2007 ASCS Eastern Speed Week.
Among the nationally ranked stars to run this historic event, this year to be held May 17-19, includes defending ASCoT Champion Gary Wright. Wright also won the first big sprint race in the U.S. in 2007, making him the early point leader once again.
Jason Johnson was the North American 360-Sprint Driver of the Year and will be on hand to claim the $4,000-to-win prize. Other top contenders from land west of the Mississippi include Garry Lee Maier, Travis Rilat, Nick Smith and Darren Stewart.
Drivers that reside closer to Black Rock, that have plenty of seat time at the fast 4/10th-mile will also be serious contenders throughout the weekend. Chuck Hebing is up near the top of this list. A three-time winner at Black Rock, the 2006 Patriot Region Champion has no intention on slowing down, especially that early in the season.
"Cobra’s" dancing partner this year is 2005 Patriot Champion Bryan Howland, who made the Bully Hill Nationals his breakout race in 2004, the year that George Suprick claimed his championship. Suprick won this event twice and has a record in Dundee that is unparalled to any other. Early estimations have the car count nearing an all-time high of around 70 top-notch cars running practically new equipment early in the season.
"It will be exciting to see how home-track experience factors in for the Patriot drivers," noted Black Rock Speedway General Manger Alex Hoag. "These are the best drivers in the county we are talking about here."
While so many things are different for the 2007 edition of this great event, one thing remains the same: the title sponsors. Bully Hill Vineyards have confirmed their continued partnership with this event that has often been known as "Bully Hill". Along with presenting sponsor S.P. Wilson, they help to make this event even better.
"We can’t thank Bully Hill and S.P. Wilson for enabling us to bring the best drivers to New York for the first time," noted Hoag.
Over $40,000 will be put in the purse for this great weekend, which will kick off on Thursday, May 17, with a practice session that will include free admission to the main grandstands. The action continues through Saturday with the new champion being crowned at the end of the 35-lap feature.
More information will be available in the months to come. All of this will be
available at ASCSracing.com or on BlackRockSpeedway.com