Race Weekend Central

Keepin’ it Short – Breaking the ice in Connecticut

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour has been putting on races for 26 years and, during that time, they’ve run 112 races at Thompson International Speedway, more than any other speedway on the schedule. The track itself opened in 1940 and is the oldest asphalt speedway in the United States. Thompson is one of the three oval tracks in Connecticut, all of which are very famous in the New England area. This weekend Thompson will be hosting their annual Icebreaker weekend which will include the season opening race for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour.

The Icebreaker weekend includes racing from seven divisions besides the Whelen Modifieds. There will be racing on the 5/8ths-mile track in Sunoco Modifieds, Super Late Models, Late Models, Thompson Modifieds, Limited Sportsman, Mini Stocks and Sunoco Lite Modifieds. The feature races for all of the divisions will be on Sunday except for the Sunoco Lite Modifieds which will have their feature on Saturday and the Sunoco Modifieds which will run twin features with one race on Saturday and the other on Sunday.

In anticipation of the race this weekend NASCAR sent out a statistical advance for the race which included a multitude of factoids including the following:

• Thompson has one of the oldest NASCAR affiliations in the country
• The track held Cup series races in 1951, 1969 and 1970.
• The modified tour has seen 29 different winners at Thompson with Mike Stefanik taking the trophy home 14 times, more than anyone else.
• This will be the 10th year in a row that the Whelen Modified Tour has opened their season at Thompson and 15th all time.
• Bobby Santos won last years Icebreaker from the pole with a new modified qualifying track record.
• Ted Christopher has won five of the last seven modified races at Thompson including the Icebreaker in 2009.
• Christopher and Rick Fuller are tied with the most Icebreaker wins all-time with three each.
• Jamie Tomaino will attempt to continue his consecutive start streak at Thompson where he has started all 112 races in the history of the track.

The NWMT schedule this season will visit eight different race tracks in four states and will make its first international start at Delaware Speedway in Ontario, Canada. Bobby Santos is the defending series champion and will try and become the third driver in history to open up his title defense by winning the season opener. Jerry Marquis in 2001 and Ted Christopher in 2009 are the other two drivers to pull off that feat.

For those of you in the Northeast who are tired of the Winter weather Thompson Speedway is ready to break the ice with some competitive racing this weekend. If you’re in the area it will be well worth the trip. If you aren’t close enough to hit the races at Thompson this weekend there are quite a few other races taking place around the country. Get out and enjoy some fantastic local short track racing at the following events.

Friday April 8th – Five Flags Speedway – Pensacola, FL – Modified Special
Friday April 8th – Heartland Park Topeka – Topeka, KS – Midwest Late Model Racing
Friday April 8th – Beebe Speedway – Beebe, AR – MSRA Late Models
Saturday April 9th – Ukiah Speedway – Ukiah, CA – Airport Auto Brokers Late Models
Saturday April 9th – North Wilkesboro Speedway – North Wilkesboro, NC – PASS South
Saturday April 9th – Lanier National Speedway – Braselton, GA – Super Six
Saturday April 9th – Kingsport Speedway – Kingsport, TN – UARA
Saturday April 9th – Mobile International Speedway – Mobile, AL – Pro Late Models
Saturday April 9th – Lancaster Speedway – Lancaster, SC – Carolina Clash
Saturday April 9th – 34 Raceway – West Burlington, IA – Deery Series
Saturday April 9th – Brownstown Speedway – Brownstown, IN – Lucas Oil Late Models
Saturday April 9th – Lucas Oil Speedway – Wheatland, MO – Midwest Late Model Racing
Saturday April 9th – Whynot Motorsports Park – Meridian, MS – Mississippi State Challenge Series
Saturday April 9th – Riverside International Speedway – West Memphis, AR – MSRA Late Models
Saturday April 9th – Volunteer Speedway – Bulls Gap, TN – Weekly Racing Show
Saturday April 9th – Richmond Raceway – Richmond, KY – Southern Regional Racing
Saturday April 9th – Tyler County Speedway – Middlebourne, WV – UFO Race Championship
Saturday April 9th – North Georgia Speedway – Chatsworth, GA – Volunteer Racing Series
Sunday April 10th – Yakima Speedway – Yakima, WA – Apple Cup
Sunday April 10th – Thompson International Speedway – Thompson, CT – NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour
Sunday April 10th – Quincy Raceway – Quincy, IL – Deery Series
Thursday April 14th – Elko Speedway – Elko, MN – Cornbelt Clash

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