Ashland, WI — The 40th annual Red Clay Classic is coming up soon, and the ABC Raceway has announced several incentive programs to tempt the drivers of WISSOTA to come to northern Wisconsin for this prestigious event.
The Northland’s traditional season-ending stock car racing special, to be presented by FastLane Motorsports & Custom Powdercoating of Ashland and Tim’s Automotive Machine of Bloomer, will feature WISSOTA-sanctioned Midwest Modifieds, Super Stocks, Modifieds, and – in their only visit of the season – Late Models for heat-race action on Friday, October 2, before finishing up with last-chance qualifying races and four huge A-features on Saturday, October 3.
Of the various incentive programs, first and foremost, of course, is a generous purse. The Raceway has increased the overall payout to an estimated $86,000 – the highest purse ever offered for the Classic. And while the impressive feature winners’ shares have not changed from recent years – $4,000 for the Late Model feature winner, $3,000 for the Modified champ, $2,000 for the winner of Super Stock main event, and $1,000 for the Mid-Mod winner – the roughly $6,000 increase from last year’s Classic offering has been spread out over most of the other finishing positions for
each of the divisions’ A-main and qualifying events.
That will give more drivers a chance to make more prize money – and that could attract more drivers for the weekend.
“The Raceway’s Board of Directors felt that we had not increased the purse in recent years, so this was due,” stated ABC Raceway president Eric Erickson recently. “The majority of the (purse) increase will be paid from fifth place on back in the features.
“We think that it’s good for all the feature starters to receive a nice check, as well as the top finishers.”
another benefit will be offered in the form of a fast-lap bonus, to be offered by Northern Clearing Inc of Ashland. The drivers that post the fastest laps in each of the four features, based on the track’s electronic scoring and timing system, will each receive an extra $150.
There will be other opportunities for drivers to gain from coming to the Red Clay Classic this year. The track will present a $125 “long-haul” bonus to the driver in each of the four classes who travels the furthest to compete at the Classic, and every 2015 WISSOTA track points champion who comes to compete in the division they won their title in will have their draw fee waived by the track.
Also, in an effort to attract drivers who haven’t attempted to run at the Red Clay Classic in the past five years, the ABC Raceway will offer to pay the draw fee for the first five drivers in each class who have not come to compete at the Classic since the 2010 edition or earlier. In order to qualify for this bonus, drivers need to pre-commit to racing at this year’s Classic by contacting Erickson at (715) 209-2102.
“We’d love to see some drivers return to this event that haven’t been here for a few years, or have never been here,” stated Erickson recently. “That’s why we added this bonus.”
To continue a fun twist started at last year’s Classic, the second-place finishers in each of the four features will be offered a “Bridesmaid’s Challenge” bonus if they are willing to wear a bridesmaid’s dress for their Victory Lane interview immediately following their race.
both the fans and the drivers took to this incentive enthusiastically last year.
“It’s all about having fun,” Erickson explained. “We encourage our fans to have fun at this event. Just like with the fans who come to the Red Clay Classic dressed up in costumes – we always hear great positive comments from fans who are new to our track and to the Classic and see the fun that folks are having.
“The Eric Olson race fans from Ladysmith started that whole deal (dressing in costumes for the Classic), and it has been really well received, and the number of fans who participate in that has grown each year. We hope a lot more folks get into the spirit of the event in that way.”
The Raceway will offer live music at the track after the Friday night portion of the program, and the annual Red Clay Classic scramble golf tournament is tentatively set for Saturday morning at 9:30 at the Chequamegon Bay Golf Club. Also, merchants in the Historic Downtown Ashland shopping district will be offering many specials throughout the weekend.
The Raceway will open its pit gates at 1 pm on Friday, and the grandstand gates will open at 3:30. Hot laps are scheduled for 5:30, followed by heat race action at 7 pm. The draw cut-off time on Friday will be 6 pm sharp.
On Saturday the pit gates will open at noon, and the grandstands will open at 2:30 pm. Last-chance qualifying will begin at 5 pm, and the program will conclude with the four big main events.
For grandstand seating, adult admission is $20 for Friday’s show and $25 for Saturday’s races, but fans can purchase a two-day pass for just $40. Younger fans ages 6-12 will be charged $12 each day, or $20 for a two-day pass. Kids ages 5 and under are admitted free both days when accompanied by a paying adult.
A limited number of reserved seats are still available, priced at $50 for adults and $30 for fans ages 6-12, and include a two-day pass.
Pit passes are available for $30 for Friday and $35 on Saturday, while two-day pit passes are just $60. Several pit spots are still available as well and can be reserved in advance.
there are still a few camping sites available on the Raceway grounds, but they are going fast at just $30 for the weekend. There is also free camping available on the private property adjacent to the east of the track on a first-come, first-served basis.
For information on reserved seating and camping, please contact Mary at (715) 682-2672. For information on reserved pit spots, please call Cheryl at (715) 746-2390 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For motel information, please contact the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce at (715) 682-2500.
“Z-93 Race Night” will air live from the track on WBSZ, 93.3 FM, and online at www.wbszfm.com, starting at 3 pm Central on both Friday and Saturday with up-to-date raceday and weather information
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, or log on to the track’s website, www.abcraceway.com, for more information year-’round.