By Kenny Shupp Jr.
WOODHULL, NY- After a hugely successful maiden voyage in 2022, the 2nd Annual Honoring Alice Night will be staged again on Tuesday, August 8, 2023 at the historic Woodhull Raceway.
According to track owners, Terry and Niki Brewer, “When we arranged the 2022 schedule of events it was necessary to recognize the First Lady of the Woodhull Raceway, Alice Williams. She along with her late husband, Jim steered this facility through some exceedingly tough times back in the track’s infancy. After George Williams built the track, it was Jim and Alice that really were the go-to people and together along with a few other family members, they did it all at the facility.”
Alice could be found in the scorer’s tower early on in her career, but that was after she had spent the entire week preparing for a night of race action. Cleaning the kitchen, grounds and restrooms, taking care of ordering and inventory as well as managing a large staff, Alice was right there on every race night.
As time passed, she spent less time as a scorer and more time helping her husband Jim take care of business with Jim’s focus on the race surface and putting out fires in the pit area with Alice overseeing all the kitchen staff, officials, security and ticket sales.
In short, Alice Williams was a wonderful lady, and the fans, drivers, and employees just loved her. Even when the track was sold after thirty-three consecutive years of ownership by the Williams Family, Alice Williams could always be seen sitting in the grandstands on race night cheering on her two sons and nephews as they raced.
Even today, her son Mike, along with grandson Hunter are still weekly competitors along with other appearances by several nieces and nephews as well as other family members.
The Woodhull Raceway as well as the greater Woodhull community lost Alice Williams on November 27, 2021 after a lengthy illness.
“The 2023 Honoring Alice Night was an enormous success, and we ran it on a regular Saturday night. This season we are switching it to a mid-week show which is sure to draw large car counts in all the three scheduled classes.” That once again according to the Brewer’s.
The Insinger Performance Modifieds will race for a winner’s check of $5,500 for taking the checkered flag in the 55- lap event which pays a nifty $400 just to start.
Expect to see drivers from as far away as a 200-mile radius to be in action, including the likes of Danny Creeden from the Middletown, NY area who has had a great deal of success at Woodhull over the years.
“I really like Woodhull and if possible, I try and get there at least one time every season. The Tuesday, August 8 event will bode well with my race schedule.” That is according to Creeden.
Modified regulars like 2022 Track Champion, Joe Dgien along with his cousin Jake, Dayton Brewer, Donnie Lawson, Ajay Potrzebowski Sr. and Jr. Brady Fultz and Russ Morseman will all be there defending their home turf.
Last year, Billy VanPelt won the Inaugural Honoring Alice event, got out of his car, did his traditional roof dance and immediately announced his retirement to a stunned crowd.
With BVP on the sidelines, it opens the door to a who’s who list of both locals and invaders to see who the winner of this prestigious event will be.
Like they did last year, Brad and Kim Herrington of B H Log Hauling of Woodhull will be back to sponsor the high profile Modified portion of the program.
Brad and Kim have been involved in this sport as car owners for decades and many of the northeast’s top drivers have cinched the belts in their potent machines including Walt Mitchell, Lyle Sherwood, Don Lawson, Alan Johnson and many more. Mike Bills of Woodhull is the current pilot of their number 21 Modified while Stacy Jackson will be in the number 2 Herrington owned machine,
The Herrington’s have spent a lifetime in the cutting, logging and sawmill business and they now have a fleet of log hauling trucks catering to the local timber industry.
Also on the card, the Nationally recognized RUSH Crate Late Model Series will make their first appearance at Woodhull in many years as the Vicki Emig led organization will draw talent from no less than a three or four state area all looking for the $4,000 winner’s check.
Jason Knowles, who is a top runner in the RUSH Crate Late Model Division has stepped up to the plate along with his wife Mary Lou to sponsor the CLM portion of the August 8 program.
Through their company Empire Crushing, they will market the Darwin Davis Memorial for the RUSH Crate Late Model Touring Series. Davis, who was a top runner at the Woodhull Raceway lost his life in a traffic accident several years ago and the race will be run in his memory.
Davis Electric on Canisteo, NY will join forces with Empire Crushing to co-sponsor the RUSH CLM Series event and you can bet that Bryce Davis, flying the Davis Electric Banner will be one of the favorites to pick up the win.
Fans can expect to see all the drivers that race weekly at Woodhull including Austin Allen, the Knowles Boys (Jason and Brian), Steve LeBarron, Brett Marlatt and others as they will try and defend their turf against current and former RUSH Series Champions in John Waters, Bryce Davis and Jeremy Wonderling.
Invader, thirteen-year- old Brock Pinkerous will make the haul from Ellenville, NY to be a part of the event.
Better known as Bam Bam, Pinkerous has a great reputation among his driving peers, and he looks forward to his first appearance at Woodhull as Facebook has blown up with positive comments about his team’s arrival at the historic Steuben County oval.
Rounding out the 3 Star Attraction will be the upstart Empire Street Stock Touring Series where the winner of the feature pockets a hefty $1,000 for their effort in the thirty lap A-Main.
The Mike Welch organization will see the likes of one of the northeast’s most prolific and winningest Street Stock drivers in Glen Whritenour who lives just five miles from the track.
Albeit the fact that Whritenour has cut way back on his racing in 2023 the multi time track champion and former winner of the prestigious Woodhull 100 presented by Southern Tier Customs, GW will be the odds-on favorite to pick up the winner’s check.
However, like the Modifieds and RUSH Crate Late Models before them, the Empire Street Stock’s will find many of the top drivers in the region taking on the track regulars including the two time and defending Southern Tier Customs Track Champion, Brett Crawford along with veteran driver’s, Mick Seeley, Teddy Morseman, Mike Williams among others including rookie contender, Willy Easling.
Pit Gates for the Tuesday, August 8, 2023 Honoring Alice Show at the Woodhull Raceway open at 3:30 PM with the Main Grandstand Seating area to swing the gates at 4:30 PM. Racing begins at 6:30 PM.
Should the event get lost to weather, a built- in rain date is set for the following evening on August 9 with the same gate and start times.
As the date of the event draws closer continual updates will be posted along with any weather-related matters at www.Facebook.com/WoodhullRaceway/.
For more information including the remainder of the 2023 schedule of events, current point standings in each of Woodhull’s Regular 8 weekly Divisions, class rules, purse structures, a look at the history of the facility and much more log on at www.woodhullraceway.com.
The following Saturday, August 12, 2023 and prior to race time the New York State Stock Car Association will hold a Hall of Fame Ceremony where four former drivers will be inducted into the NYSSCA Hall of Fame. Those drivers include Herbie Layfield, Don Lawson, Herbie Wright and Steve Hartman Sr. In addition, the Morseman Family will be recognized for their many years of dedication to Woodhull and the local race community.
Members of the New York State Srock Car Association felt it would be more convenient to induct the honorees at Woodhull on the night of their sponsorship rather than have them all attend the NYSSCA Awards Banquet near Albany in January.
The Woodhull Raceway is located on Cr. 102 just off Rt. 417 in Woodhull, New York.
25 miles west of Corning, 25 miles east of Hornell, 25 miles south of Bath and 25 miles north of Wellsboro.
PHOTO: Top northeast Modified driver, Danny Creeden earlier in 2023 at Selinsgrove Speedway will make the haul to Woodhull for the Honoring Alice Event on August 8, 2023.
Photo by Joe Kaminski. JGK Motorsports.