Industry, CA., Jan. 22 – Almost 500 persons (497 to be exact) attended the 2012 Speedway Motorcycle preview, “meet and greet”, free BBQ kickoff luncheon Sunday afternoon from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. Industry Hills Expo Center management--the new racing promoter--hosted the affair in their spacious Pavilion Ballroom next the The Grand Arena, home of speedway cycle racing since 2003 on a one-eighth mile dirt track at 16200 Temple Ave. in Industry. More than 400 riders and mechanics completed required 2012 registration forms and 420 racing license photos were taken.
Following an hour of socializing and music by a live band, emcee/track announcer Bruce Flanders introduced two-time and reigning 2011 World Speedway Cycle Champion Greg Hancock, a surprise guest. Other speedway cycle promoters in attendance were introduced and gave their 2012 season plans. Promoters Jason Bonsignore,Shawn McConnell, Josh Larsen, Chris Ackerman, and Steve Evans spoke as did promoters from Northern California. Promoters met and discussed point fund money, a national series and the AMA. Costa Mesa Speedway promoter Brad Oxley was unable to attend.
Carol Perez, Expo Center Operations Manager, welcomed everyone and named new Industry Racing staff members who will operate the racing programs at The Grand. Howie Zechner is the new press officer. New race director Kelly Inman is a former speedway cycle rider and crew chief, co-promoter at The Grand in 2005-06 and a sprint car driver at Irwindale and Perris in 1999-2000. Mike Reed and Tom Fox will switch off as race starters. Bryan Galvin, the Costa Mesa referee, will be the Industry referee as well.
Inman announced a “lucky 13 race” season for 2012 of Wednesday night speedway cycle racing at The Grand. Opening night will be May 30 and the season will conclude on August 29. July 4 will be dark because of the Independence Day holiday. The 37th California State Speedway Cycle Championship event will be held again at The Grand for a $5,000 guaranteed purse. The race date will be announced later. Racing this season again will feature Division I, II and III racers on 500cc cycles, plus races for Junior/Youth (on 200 and 250cc cycles), pee-wees ages 5-12 (on 50cc cycles) and exciting 1,000cc sidecar races.
Inman spoke about existing plans for 2012 and planned improvements.
NEW FOR 2012 RACERS:
. Race starting time moved to 7:30 pm to complete all racing before 10:00 pm. ... Larger racer purse payout. ... Larger pit area with improved lighting. ... Free guest pass with each weekly rider sign-up. ... 75 tons of fresh DG added to the racing surface. ... Rider video introductions of statistics on the large overhead video screens. ... New crash-wall. ... New starting gate. ... More rapid Wednesday race nights with 30-35 races instead of 45-50. ... New racing format that is better for riders and fans with handicap racing returning. ... Two minute yellow flashing beacon before each race to tighten-up the show and run it more professionally. ... $30. entry fee for D-1 riders and $20. entry fee for D-2 and 3 and Junior riders. ... With every paid admission participants will receive one free grandstand seat ticket. ... The Last of the Mohicans (John and Mike) will return with cash awards to riders. ... Weekly 50-50 cash drawings will continue with half of the collected funds going to the feature winner and half to the lucky fan whose ticket is drawn. ... Permanent lighting for the pits under the front grandstand. ... Flat screen TV for riders. ... Guaranteed minimum purse of $2,200 each race night. ... More sponsors. ... A new rulebook will be available on line soon. ... A used oil collection site in the pits. ... Return of long-time sponsors Haddick's, Joker Machine and Gumball Rally among others.
NEW FOR 2012 SPECTATORS:
. Lower admission prices--$10. for adults, $5. for students and seniors. Kids under 12 free. ... Parking reduced from $5. to $3; motorcycle parking remains free as always. ... New comfortable permanent backed seating for some grandstand seats.. ... Box seats with VIP table service. New suites on the backstretch with cocktail hostess service. ...Use of overhead big screen to show racing highlights and head shot photos of riders.
WHAT WON'T CHANGE FOR 2012
. Fantastic Speedway Motorcycle racing competition with no brakes. ... Great family entertainment. ... Spectator gates open at 6:00 pm. ... Fresh food at reasonable prices. ... Live music before racing commences. ... Famous Tiki and Dirt bars for adult beverages.
The 2012 Speedway Cycle kickoff BBQ luncheon also featured drawings for more than 20 door prizes. They included Industry Racing season passes, DeWalt cordless drill, two tool boxes, portable propane heater, battery charger, tool sets and numerous t-shirts. Each attendee also received an Industry Hills Expo Center coffee cup, a 14 X 19” color speedway poster for advertising use, and a 2012 Industry Racing schedule postcard. The initial speedway cycle BBQ luncheon was held on Sunday, January 13, 2008. Expo Center management would like to make the free BBQ luncheon an annual event for all speedway cycle promoters, sponsors, competitors and fans to launch each new speedway cycle season. The second ever speedway cycle kickoff BBQ luncheon was a rousing success and a great start for the 2012 speedway motorcycle racing season.
Industry – May 30 (with a Journey tribute band performing) through August 29. The Industry track website is www.industryspeedway.com.
Victorville Speedway (at San Bernardino County Fairgrounds) – 12 race dates from Saturday, March 17 through Saturday, November 10. Gates open at 5:00 pm with racing at 6:00. Adult admission is $10, youth 12 and under $5., and a family pack is $25 for two adults and two youth. (See www.vvspeedway.com for additional information.) .