WEEDSPORT, NY — Fresh from this week’s huge events at Eldora Speedway, the stars of the Super DIRTcar Series continue their big event summer with a Canadian/American doubleheader. First, the Series heads over the border on Monday, Aug. 5, to Merrittville Speedway — less than an hour west of Buffalo. Then Tuesday, the Series returns to upstate New York for a 100-lap rumble at the tricky Ransomville Speedway.
Since 1972, the Super DIRTcar Series has raced at Merrittville, a 1/3-mile dirt track in Thorold, Ontario. Defending Super DIRTcar Series Champion Matt Sheppard has the most Series wins at Merrittville with six.
Last year, 29-year-old Ransomville native Ryan Susice shocked the dirt racing world by beating the best of the best, fending off a pack of snarling beasts for the upset win.
Sheppard has been working to extend his points lead, but his rivals are not far off. Larry Wight, Matt Williamson, Erick Rudolph and Jimmy Phelps are all major contenders. The rest of the top 10 has plenty of firepower, as well, including Billy Decker, Peter Britten, Mike Mahaney, Ryan Godown and Danny Johnson.
On Tuesday, Aug. 6. it’s the 35th annual Summer Nationals at Ransomville Speedway. The Super DIRTcar Series has a long history at the Niagara County race track with Jack Johnson winning the inaugural appearance in 1973.
Since then, no single driver has dominated at Ransomville. Brett Hearn, Danny Johnson, Alan Johnson and Bob McCreadie have four wins each.
Last year, Stewart Friesen, who won the NASCAR Truck Series race Thursday night at Eldora, won a Series race on his home track for the third time in his career, and three out of the past four. It all started for Friesen when his family owned the track and young Stewart wheeled a packer truck. It’s fair to say few drivers have turned more laps at Ransomville than NASCAR’s most recent winner.
A host of rookies will see both tracks for the first time in their careers including Ryan Godown, Demetrios Drellos and Jack Lehner. The Ringoes Rocket Ryan Godown leads the Series rookies with three top-10 finishes. Will Ransomville produce a first-time winner?