(Shaun Friedrichsen, Publisher)
Tuesday night will bring with it bumper to bumper action as cars speed around the dirt track at the Jefferson County Speedway as part of the Tuesday Night Thunder races.
This race, which Jim Criner has helped to organize, is expected to draw a large crowd of people from all over the region. This is one of the races leading up to the midget national race coming later this week.
“It’s going to be a USAC midget show,” said Criner. “It’s just a race that we wanted to the USAC area to draw more cars. We’re expecting 30 to 35 full size USAC midgets, then there are support classes, like the 600 micro midget class. I think there are going to be 30 to 40 of those. Pretty good car count and hopefully a lot of people.”
The grandstand at the Jefferson County Speedway holds roughly 1,100 people, and the bleachers set up in the pits hold about 500 people. Criner hopes to see all of the seats filled on Tuesday to see the show.
“We’re hoping to have 1,000 people in the grandstand and 500 in the pits, but I think it could be more than that,” Criner said. “It could be really overwhelming, so we’ve actually added more bleachers here and there, so we’re hoping to accommodate everybody.”
The cost for an armband is $20, and kids 10 and under can enter for free as long as they are accompanied by an adult. The pits will open at 3 p.m., and the grandstands will be open at 5. Criner noted that prior to the races, they will be tailgating and will also have entertainment available.
“We’ve got Lyn the Treeslayer coming from Concordia, Kansas,” said Criner. “He’s a pretty talented individual that makes stuff out of wood with a chainsaw. We’re going to have cars set up and t-shirt trailers. People are going to start showing up at noon. Hopefully people come to tailgate. It will be a pretty busy day from noon on.”
Criner emphasized that this will be a major event for the community that can help to generate a lot of money. He hopes that this year will be successful and that the show will become a main attraction every year.
“It’s a good family event, and I hope everybody comes out,” Criner said. “It’s going to be quite a show. We’re actually going to have fireworks, we’re going to have a flyover for the national anthem. It’s going to be a big deal, and I think it will be entertaining for the whole family. It should be a good, fast-paced show.”