Hudson, New Hampshire has a strong racing community built around the Hudson Speedway, where most of the town’s homegrown drivers race every Sunday. Pole has watched more races there in his life than actually competed there, choosing to race New England’s Late Model and Pro Stock tours which have rarely made visits to Hudson over the years.
WATCH LIVE: Granite State Pro Stocks at Hudson
But since 2018, Hudson Speedway has thrived once again under the leadership of now track owner Ben Bosowski. At the same time, the quarter-mile has welcomed back different touring series starting with the Granite State Pro Stock Series in 2018. Last month, the Pro All Stars Series Super Late Models made their debut at Hudson, while the American-Canadian Tour Late Models made their long-awaited return.
“It’s definitely the least amount of mileage you can go, growing up here my whole life. For so long, there wasn’t any major series that came to the track, so to see what Hudson has done in terms of improvements and stuff like that, getting these tours to come is a big win for me. It’s great to be able to finally race there as much we have. It helps that I like the place too, it’s a good situation,” Pole told Speed51.
Pole made a rare same-day double-duty appearance in both races on June 20, and while he had trouble in the ACT feature, he scored the victory in the PASS race. It is his second Hudson trophy to go with the one he earned in the 2019 GSPSS race at Hudson.
That was huge. Anyone that races where they grew up wants to do well in front of that crowd. We have a lot of customers that come into our shop and ask where we are racing next, and it’s good to be able to tell them we’re right down the street. So, we had a lot of people down there that we know and it’s awesome to be able to win in front of them, and show them what we do when we’re not at work.
Pole and fellow Hudson driver Derek Griffith, even have billboards for their businesses on the track’s backstretch.
“We try to support them, we have our business in town, and so does Derek. It’s just really cool that the whole short track world of Hudson gets together and tries to help each other out.”
This Sunday, the Granite State Pro Stock Series returns for their yearly running of the Gate City Classic 100. Short of preparing his No. 97 for the GSPSS rulebook, Pole has barely touched his car since the PASS win.
“I didn’t want to, but we have to run different shocks for Granite State rules. We have this week from work off so we’ve been in there to work on all of our racecars. But, we changed the shocks and are trying to keep everything the same, although we’ll be running the American Racer’s on race day. But, we’re not planning on touching it that much.”
Apart from the different shock rules, the biggest differences from PASS to GSPSS is running the American Racer brand on Sunday while PASS runs Hoosier tires, and a shorter race distance from 150 to 100 laps.
“There’s a bit of a difference, but I don’t think it changes the setup of the car too much. You might have to save the Hoosier more than the American Racer, plus the PASS race was 150, this is 100 laps. You can’t wait too long because the laps click off pretty quick there. There’s not going to be a lot of riding, you just got to get to the front as quick as you can.”
Overall, Joey Pole is plenty confident in completing the Pro Stock sweep of races on the season at Hudson.
“We won two years ago and finished third last year, hopefully we’ll be right back there contending again.”
Watch the Granite State Pro Stock Series Gate City Classic feature race live on Speed51.TV this Sunday, July 11 with your Speed51 yearly or monthly subscription.
-Story by: Connor Sullivan, Speed51 Northeast Correspondent – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo credit: Speed51