(From Thunder Road press release)
West Haven –- There will be a new challenge for the American-Canadian Tour/Thunder Road Late Model teams when they begin pursuit of the 2010 “King of the Road” title. With the announcement of the Sunday, May 23rd opening event at the newly renovated and paved Devil’s Bowl Speedway in West Haven, the ACT Late Models from Thunder Road have been invited to compete at the historic speedway. It will be the first point-counting event of the season for the Thunder Road Late Models.
An announcement by the Champlain Valley Racing Association (CVRA) in the fall of 2009 said that the Richards family ownership intended to redesign both their dirt tracks for the 2010 racing season, converting them to asphalt. Sister track Albany-Saratoga Speedway in Malta, N.Y., was completed late last fall, and Devil’s Bowl expects to have pavement down by the first week of May. It was a natural for the most popular asphalt Late Model division in the northeast to join in the opening day celebration at Devil’s Bowl.
“We had already committed to run the ACT Late Model Tour at the Malta track, and with the increase of ACT U.S. events, we were in some kind of bind when we found out Devil’s Bowl was also going to go through a conversion to asphalt," said Tom Curley, President of ACT. “We very much wanted to be a part of the Devil’s Bowl program, and the Thunder Road group of Late Model racers have all had plenty of touring experience over the years, so this became very doable. There are a lot of excited teams to be able to open the big ½-mile, and that is good for Devil’s Bowl and for asphalt racing in the region."
Three-time Thunder Road champion Cris Michaud of Northfield likes the new twist on having the Devil's Bowl race points awarded toward the Thunder Road championship. “I think it is kind of neat that we get to open the new track. It will certainly be a change from the high-banked ¼-mile to the relatively flat half-mile, but it should be fun. Our team is looking forward to the challenge,” said Michaud.
The 100-lap event will be a Devil’s Bowl traditional Sunday early evening twilight race for the opening of the new facility. “We wanted to make sure we scheduled it early enough so that the traveling teams and fans that come and support our opening at Devil’s Bowl can get home at a reasonable hour Sunday evening,” said Jerry Richards, a CVRA partner and General Manager at Devil’s Bowl. On Sunday, May 23, front gates will open at 11:00am and racing will begin at 2:00pm for the grand opening of the new Devil’s Bowl Speedway. Admission for the ACT Thunder Road Late Model 100 lap event is only $15 for adults and kids are free of charge. All the regular Devil’s Bowl divisions will also begin their season on opening day.