NAPLES, ME – With a little less than two months before on track activities begin for the 41st Annual Oxford 250, short track racers from across North America are currently making preparations for one of the biggest events of the year. Over 70 Pro All Stars Series (PASS) Super Late Model teams are expected this year to attempt to make the biggest single day event in motorsports. And, with $25,000 going to the race winner, plus an additional $25,000 up for grabs in lap leader bonus money, racers will travel quite a distance to try and etch their names in the prestigious Oxford 250 record book.
When the Oxford 250 first began in 1974, it was commonplace to see legendary Southern racers like Butch Lindley, Jack Ingram, Tommy Houston, Harry Gant, Tiny Lund, and others make the trek to New England from the Carolinas. That tradition returned in 2013 when PASS South competitors such as Jay and Tate Fogleman, Daniel Hemric, Kevin Powell, and Spencer Davis traveled North to compete in their first Oxford 250. While Hemric made an impressive run from the back to finish in the top 10, it was Jay Fogleman who parlayed a third place finish in the Oxford 250 to his second straight PASS National Championship.
“I always look forward to going to the 250,” said Fogleman. “It reminds me in a lot of ways of the way things were in the South during the 80s. The fans of the 250, those that come down from Canada, they love racing and it’s an atmosphere that I really enjoy. The fans up there love short track racing, they appreciate good racing, and they always turn out for the 250.”
Another former PASS National Champion who will be making his first trip to the Oxford 250 in 2014 will be Preston Peltier. Peltier, who grew up in California and then moved to North Carolina when he began working for Hendrick Motorsports, has been one of the stalwarts of PASS South since the series first began back in 2006. With 10 career PASS South Super Late Model wins to his credit, the series all-time wins leader is looking forward to his first experience at Oxford Plains.
“It’s a place we’ve never been before and we’re really looking forward to it,” said Peltier. “We’ve been able to race at a few other tracks in New England similar to Oxford, so hopefully that will help. We’re just hoping for some good luck.”
For his first trip to the Oxford 250, Peltier will be paired with legendary car builder Robert Hamke. The duo is going for broke bringing a brand new motor, chassis, and body combination in the hopes of taking home a win. Peltier believes driving the new Hamke Dodge Challenger #74 will provide him the best opportunity to go to victory lane.
“Most of these tracks that lack grip, you don’t need the horsepower, so that came into play for us going with the new motor and the Challenger body,” said Peltier. “The body looks really cool so we thought we would give it a shot and see what we could do with it.”
Peltier and Fogleman will not be alone in making the trip up from the South to the Oxford 250. Tate Fogleman will again join his dad as he looks to build on his 25th place finish from a year ago. Three-time PASS South winner in 2014, Daniel Hemric, will once again join the Woodman Racing team that he drove for last year to a top 10 finish. Derek Kneeland hails from New England, but lives in North Carolina and serves as a spotter for Kyle Larson with Chip Ganassi Racing. Kneeland had a strong 15th place finish in 2013 and will team with Gary Crooks Racing as he looks to build on that performance. PASS National Championship points leader Tyler Dippel will be making his Oxford 250 debut this year. The dirt modified racer from New York has adapted well to asphalt and currently sits fourth in the PASS South Super Late Model standings.
The PASS Super Late Models will not be alone in making the 41st Annual Oxford 250 a celebration of short track racing. A great slate of divisions is set to race starting on Friday, July 18 with the PASS Sportsman, PASS Modifieds, Outlaw Sportsman, Street Stocks, Rebels, Sport Trucks, Cruisers and Ladies, plus practice for the PASS Super Late Models. On Saturday, July 19 with the PASS Super Late Models will get three rounds of practice followed by racing in the evening for the PASS Northeast Late Models, NEMA Midgets, NEMA Lites, Outlaw Sportsman, Street Stocks, Wicked Good Racers, and Classic Lights. On Sunday, July 20, pit gates will open bright and early at 7 AM with a full day of on track activities including practice and heat race action for the PASS Super Late Models, followed by features for the PASS Modifieds, Outlaw Series, Street Stocks, Legends, and the 41st Annual Oxford 250.
Entries are continuing to come into the Pro All Stars Series offices and will be updated periodically leading up to the race. Oxford 250 entry forms, the complete weekend schedule, and more information can be found at ProAllStarsSeries.com or oxfordplains.com.
The Pro All Stars Series is recognized as North America’s premier sanctioning body for asphalt Super Late Models and boasts such marquee events as PASS South’s Easter Bunny 150 at the historic Hickory Motor Speedway, the Autobus La Qubecoise Triple Crown at Autodrome Chaudiere, and the legendary Oxford 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway. For media or marketing questions, please contact Alan Dietz at 704-231-2039 or [email protected]. Please visit ProAllStarsSeries.com for more information and don’t forget to “Like” the Pro All Stars Series on Facebook or follow on Twitter @PASSSLM14 to keep up with breaking news as it happens.
– PASS press release. Photo credit: Laura Ward, LWPictures.com