By RICHIE MURRAY
SPEEDWAY, IN – USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midgets will embark on their largest schedule of events in over three decades when the series hits the trail for the start of their 65th season on Feb. 7-8 at Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Fla., the opening night of Winter Dirt Games XI.
The series schedule has grown to 39 events for the 2020 campaign, the most events on the slate since 1988. It’s a schedule which includes a mix of first-time venues and returns to tracks after lengthy absences along with traditional, annual events which have seen a tweak for the coming year.
March 7 marks the season’s lone indoor event, the fifth running of the Shamrock Classic at the Southern Illinois Center in Du Quoin. April roars like a lion with two nights at “The Ditch” on April 10-11 for the series’ return to Riverside International Speedway in West Memphis, Arkansas for the first time since 2016. Meanwhile, back-to-back nights at Kokomo (Ind.) Speedway for the Kokomo Grand Prix fill the calendar on April 24-25.
The 1/8-mile bullring of Port City Raceway in Tulsa, Okla. debuts on the USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midget stage in 2020 with consecutive nights of racing on May 15-16.
Thirty-four years ago, John Andretti scored his first and only career USAC National Midget feature win at Paragon Speedway. It’s been absent from the series schedule ever since, but this year on June 2, that all changes when the 1/4-mile paperclip-shaped oval welcomes the series as the opener to the 16th edition of Indiana Midget Week. Indiana Midget Week continues to groove for each of the following five nights with Gas City I-69 Speedway on June 3, Lincoln Park Speedway on June 4, Bloomington Speedway on June 5, Lawrenceburg Speedway on June 6 and Kokomo on June 7.
Dirt Oval 66 in Joliet, Ill. is back on the tour again on June 20, leading into the third edition of the BC39 at The Dirt Track at IMS in Speedway, Ind. which will be showcased on a brand-new summertime slot, July 1-2. Mid-America USA is the next stop for the Midwest Midget Championships on July 17-18 at Jefferson County Speedway in Fairbury, Neb., followed by a yet-to-be-announced event on July 19 and Tuesday Night Thunder at Red Dirt Raceway in Meeker, Okla.
The newly-christened Eastern Midget Week has expanded beyond the state of Pennsylvania for the first time in its six-year existence, although the Keystone state still possesses four of the five nights beginning at Grandview Speedway (Bechtelsville) on August 4, Action Track USA (Kutztown) on August 5, New Jersey’s Bridgeport Speedway debuts on August 6, with the last pair of nights going back to Pennsylvania for Path Valley Speedway Park (Spring Run) on August 7 and Lanco’s Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway (Newmanstown) on August 8.
Missouri’s Sweet Springs Motorsports Complex has expanded to back-to-back nights on Labor Day weekend, September 4-5, as has Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, which has added a full midget show to Friday night’s 4-Crown Nationals festivities, followed by another round on Saturday at the famed half-mile dirt oval.
October takes the series to two tracks which witnessed two barnburner shows in 2019, Wayne County Speedway in Wayne City, Ill. for the Jason Leffler Memorial on October 9, followed by the Harvest Cup on October 10 at Tri-State Speedway in Haubstadt, Ind.
November of 2019 was the busiest stretch out west in the history of USAC National Midget racing. In 2020, the schedule gets even busier beginning with two nights of the 53rd Western World Championships at Arizona Speedway on November 13-14. Bakersfield (Calif.) Speedway moves to a new Tuesday night slot on November 17 while the Hangtown 100, which debuted with much fanfare last month at California’s Placerville Speedway, has expanded from two to three nights for 2020 on November 19-20-21. The 80th edition of the prestigious Turkey Night Grand Prix returns to the seaside oval of California’s Ventura Raceway on Thanksgiving night on November 26.
2020 USAC NOS ENERGY DRINK NATIONAL MIDGET SCHEDULE
Feb 7: Bubba Raceway Park (Ocala, FL)
Feb 8: Bubba Raceway Park (Ocala, FL)
Mar 7: (A) Southern Illinois Center (Du Quoin, IL)
Apr 10: Riverside International Speedway (West Memphis, AR)
Apr 11: Riverside International Speedway (West Memphis, AR)
Apr 24: Kokomo Speedway (Kokomo, IN)
Apr 25: Kokomo Speedway (Kokomo, IN)
May 15: Port City Raceway (Tulsa, OK)
May 16: Port City Raceway (Tulsa, OK)
Jun 2: Paragon Speedway (Paragon, IN)
Jun 3: Gas City I-69 Speedway (Gas City, IN)
Jun 4: Lincoln Park Speedway (Putnamville, IN)
Jun 5: Bloomington Speedway (Bloomington, IN)
Jun 6: Lawrenceburg Speedway (Lawrenceburg, IN)
Jun 7: Kokomo Speedway (Kokomo, IN)
Jun 20: Dirt Oval 66 (Joliet, IL)
Jul 1-2: (A) The Dirt Track at IMS (Speedway, IN)
Jul 17: Jefferson County Speedway (Fairbury, NE)
Jul 18: Jefferson County Speedway (Fairbury, NE)
Jul 19: TBA
Jul 21: Red Dirt Raceway (Meeker, OK)
Aug 4: Grandview Speedway (Bechtelsville, PA)
Aug 5: Action Track USA (Kutztown, PA)
Aug 6: Bridgeport Speedway (Swedesboro, NJ)
Aug 7: Path Valley Speedway Park (Spring Run, PA)
Aug 8: Lanco’s Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway (Newmanstown, PA)
Sep 4: Sweet Springs Motorsports Complex (Sweet Springs, MO)
Sep 5: Sweet Springs Motorsports Complex (Sweet Springs, MO)
Sep 25: Eldora Speedway (Rossburg, OH)
Sep 26: Eldora Speedway (Rossburg, OH)
Oct 9: (A) Wayne County Speedway (Wayne City, IL)
Oct 10: Tri-State Speedway (Haubstadt, IN)
Nov 13: Arizona Speedway (San Tan Valley, AZ)
Nov 14: Arizona Speedway (San Tan Valley, AZ)
Nov 17: Bakersfield Speedway (Bakersfield, CA)
Nov 19: (A) Placerville Speedway (Placerville, CA)
Nov 20: (A) Placerville Speedway (Placerville, CA)
Nov 21: (A) Placerville Speedway (Placerville, CA)
Nov 25-26: Ventura Raceway (Ventura, CA)
(A) = Appearance Points Only
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