Red Clay Classic Info

44th Red Clay Classic to Continue Tradition of Fun, Great Racing, Big $$

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, September 8 — The ABC Raceway will host its 44th annual Red Clay Classic on Friday and Saturday, September 27-28, and plans are well underway to once again make this one of the biggest and most enjoyable stock car racing events in the Upper Midwest.

To be presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, the Red Clay Classic is considered by many to be one of the hallmark programs in all of WISSOTA – long established as a race that any driver would take great pride in winning. But the Classic also has earned a well-deserved reputation as one of the most popular and exciting events on the regional racing calendar, with so much to see and do throughout the weekend geared toward race fans. The Red Clay Classic marks the climax of the Northland’s racing season, and drivers and fans from throughout the Midwest and Canada will be on hand to watch the action and enjoy the company of their fellow race fans.

For the drivers, there is big money on the line. The biggest check will be the $5,000 paid to the winner of the 50-lap WISSOTA Late Model spotlight event, while the champions’ shares in the WISSOTA Modified (35 laps), Super Stock (30) and Midwest Modified (25) A-features will be $4,000, $3,000 and $1,500, respectively.

The winnings pay out to the drivers almost immediately upon entry to the Raceway’s pit area, as the draw fees will once again be waived. Then, during Friday night’s qualifying heats, each winner will receive a limited-edition commemorative T-shirt, donated by SSR Race Cars of Spring Valley and Champ Pans of Eau Claire.

Come Saturday, the rewards several contingency awards, including a $300 “long-haul” prize courtesy of Dirt Race Central, the event’s official pay-per-view video provider; a $125 “fast-lap” bonus paid to the driver posting the fastest timed lap in each feature from Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland; a $125 “hard charger” bonus in each feature complements of Clint Larson Trucking of Duluth, MN; a $100 bonus to any heat or semi-feature winner who also claim their division’s feature from Kleen Air Heating & Cooling of Washburn; bonuses to the top-finishing first-time RCC drivers in each feature, courtesy of GA Dalbeck Logging of Wakefield, MI; and bonuses to drivers finishing in specific positions in each feature from Lakes Gas Company of Stone Lake.

Drivers will also be eligible for a drawing to receive one of several custom shop mats, to be provided by Champ Pans.

One of the most unique and popular bonuses ever offered at a major short-track event is the “Bridesmaid’s Challenge,” in which the second-place finisher in each of the four features can earn a huge bonus if they don a formal gown (provided by the track) in Victory Lane for their post-race interviews.

Finally, the top three finishers in each feature will receive one of the unique, laser-cut and powder-coated trophies that have become symbolic of this event in recent years.

Overall, the purse for the Classic is set at over $100,000, with an additional estimated $5,000 in bonuses, contingencies and other prizes to be offered.

That kind of money has attracted huge fields of cars in the recent past. In each of the past four Classics, car counts have exceeded 190, with over 200 entries competing in each of the past two events. Last year, the pits were filled with 216 racers – the fourth-highest total in RCC history.

And the fields include quality as well as quantity. Last year’s entries included eventual WISSOTA national Late Model points champion Ricky Weiss of Headingly, MB, who won in his first-ever visit to ABC; national Modified points runner-up Dave Cain of Corcoran, MN, and third-in-points Dan Ebert of Lake Shore, MN; and eventual Super Stock national champ Dave Mass of East Bethel, MN, and runner-up Kevin Burdick of Proctor, MN.

Early indications are that drivers still in position to battle for national championships – particularly in the Mods, Super Stocks and Mid-Mods – will be in attendance for this year’s Classic.

For fans, there will be plenty to see, do and enjoy during the race weekend, starting on the Thursday night before, when the Neighborly Bar of Ashland will host a fundraiser party to build up the “Bridesmaid’s Challenge” purse.

On Friday afternoon several local and visiting drivers will bring their race cars to show to the students of the Lake Superior Elementary School, as part of the School’s “Rev Up for Reading” program. And on Friday night immediately after the heat races there will be a party at the Raceway with DJ-provided music.

On Saturday, the annual Red Clay Classic scramble golf tournament will be held at the Chequamegon Bay Golf Club beginning at 9:30 am, with prizes to be awarded afterwards at the course’s Niblick restaurant. Also, during the day on Saturday prior to the start of the semi-features, fans will be able to vote online via the Raceway’s website for a “fans’ choice” provisional to be added to each feature field.

Throughout the weekend fans can visit Ashland’s historic downtown, where local merchants will offer a variety of shopping specials. The city’s Historic Mural Walk is also located downtown for fans to enjoy, while other opportunities for entertainment, shopping, sightseeing and exploring can be found in neighboring communities such as Washburn, Bayfield, Odanah and Mellen.

Also, an autograph session is being planned for one of the two days of the Classic; more details on this will be forthcoming.

The popularity of the event is evident in the fact that the over 240 primitive camping sites on the Raceway grounds are in very limited supply, for an advance payment of $30 for the weekend; please call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com for information on availability. Access to the grounds for setting up on the sites will begin at 5 pm on the Thursday prior to the race weekend, and campers are asked to check in immediately upon arrival at the main grandstand ticket office before setting up at their sites.

For those looking to park RVs overnight within walking distance of the track, the owner of the property directly adjacent to and east of the Raceway grounds is offering sites on a first-come, first-served basis (no advance reservations), beginning on Thursday evening. Please do not contact the Raceway for information and access to these sites.

On Friday the pit gates will open to the race teams at 12:30 pm, while the main grandstand ticket windows and gates will open at 3. Hot lap sessions will start at 5:30, followed by heat races for all four divisions beginning at 7 pm.

On Saturday, the pits will open at noon, the grandstand gates will open at 2:30 pm, and racing will begin at 5 with semi-feature action before concluding with the four big features.

Adult grandstand tickets are available for just $22 for Friday’s program, $25 for the Saturday portion of the show, or $42 for a two-day pass. Tickets for kids ages 6-12 are $13 each night, while a two-day kids’ pass is just $23. A limited number of reserved grandstand seats can be purchased for $10 plus a two-day pass.

A very limited number of spots along the upper walkway of the main grandstand are marked for bring-your-own lawn chair seating. These spots are available for the price of an adult two-day pass plus the $10 additional reserved-seating charge.

To buy tickets or to reserve a seat or an on-grounds campsite, please call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com

A limited number of reserved pit spots are still available for just $30 each by calling (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date Red Clay Classic news and weather information live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. Program times will be announced soon. Fans are also encouraged to download the free Heartland Communications Group radio app to tune in on their smartphone or other mobile device.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. Additional event information is available on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. Additional Ashland area hotel and community information is available by visiting www.visitashland.com.

Seats, Sites, Spots Still Available for 44th Red Clay Classic

by Nick Gima

                Ashland, WI, August 25 — There are still a limited number of reserved seats and overnight RV parking spots available for the 44th annual Red Clay Classic, to be held on September 27-28 at the ABC Raceway in Ashland.

One of the most popular, most exciting and most prestigious events in the Upper Midwest, the Red Clay Classic has become the climax of the Northland’s stock car racing season. Presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, the weekend will feature over 200 WISSOTA Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Modifieds from throughout the Midwest and Canada competing on the award-winning three-eighths-mile red-clay oval for a share of a purse set at over $100,000, plus over $5,000 in bonuses, contingencies and other prizes.

The winner of the 50-lap Late Model spotlight event will receive $5,000, while the first-place shares for the Modified, Super Stock and Midwest Mod A-main winners will be $4,000, $3,000 and $1,500, respectively.

The Raceway has recently announced that demand for reserved seating and overnight camping sites has been strong, meaning two things – that the Classic will once again be one of the most popular, highest-attended race events of the invitational season, and that the limited number of these seats and sites still available is dwindling quickly.

Adult grandstand tickets are available for just $22 for Friday’s program, $25 for Saturday’s portion of the show, or $42 for a two-day pass. Tickets for kids ages 6-12 are $13 each night, while a two-day kids’ pass is just $23. A limited number of reserved grandstand seats can still be purchased for the price of a two-day pass plus $10.

A very limited number of spots along the top walkway of the main grandstand are marked for bring-your-own lawn chair seating. These spots can be reserved for the price of an adult two-day pass plus the $10 additional charge.

Fans who have reserved these seating areas during the regular season still need to contact the Raceway in order to retain them for the Classic, as all reserved seats are available to the general public until sold. The VIP decks are not available to the public for Red Clay Classic reservation.

A small number of the nearly 240 overnight RV parking sites on the Raceway’s property are still available for $30 each for the entire weekend. Fans who have reserved RV sites on the Raceway property will be allowed access to the grounds beginning at 5 pm on the Thursday prior to the race weekend.

For those who are unable to reserve a site on Raceway grounds, the owner of the property directly adjacent to and east of the track is offering RV parking on a first-come, first-served basis beginning on the Thursday evening before the event. These sites are not available by reservation through the Raceway or the property owner.

To buy tickets, or to reserve a seat or an on-grounds campsite, please call (715) 682-2672 Monday through Friday (evenings only) or send an e-mail to tickets@abcraceway.com.

A limited number of reserved pit spots are still available for just $30 each by calling (715) 746-2390 (evenings) or by e-mailing to tickets@abcraceway.com.

The Raceway will once again waive the drivers’ draw fees for this year’s Red Clay Classic. Entrants and their guests will need only pay the $70 two-day pit-pass fee in order to access the pit area during the race weekend.

Along with plenty of racing action, the Red Clay Classic offers fans many opportunities to enjoy themselves both at the track and around the Chequamegon Bay area, including downtown shopping and the popular “Mural Walk,” a party with DJ music at the Raceway’s grandstand pavilion area on Friday, the annual scramble golf tournament on Saturday, and more. Details on all of the activities planned for the race weekend will be released soon.

Prior to each night’s race program, “Race Night” will provide up-to-date Red Clay Classic news and weather information on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com. Program times will be announced soon. Fans are also encouraged to download the free Heartland Communications Group radio app to tune in on their smartphone or other mobile device.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. Additional event information is available on the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com. Additional Ashland area hotel and community information is available by visiting www.visitashland.com.

The Board of Directors and all-volunteer staff of the ABC Raceway will take some time over the next few weeks to prepare the award-winning northern Wisconsin oval for one of the Upper Midwest’s most exciting and prestigious events – the 44th annual Red Clay Classic, presented by FastLane Motorsports of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, to be held on Friday and Saturday, September 27-28. Over 200 WISSOTA Late Models, Modifieds, Super Stocks and Midwest Mods are expected to compete for a share of a total purse again slated to be in excess of $100,000.

Information on ticket prices and event times are available on the track’s website and will be detailed in an upcoming release, and “Race Night” will air on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and also stream live on www.wbszfm.com and via the free Heartland Communications Group radio app during both nights of the event with up-to-date track news and weather updates.

The ABC Raceway is located 3-1/2 miles south of Ashland on State Highway 13 and one mile west on Butterworth Road. For raceday information call (715) 682-4990