Waterbury, VT – The 2015 American-Canadian Tour (ACT) schedule is shaping up to be one of the biggest in recent memory. The U.S. Tour will hold 13 point-counting events and three special events at 12 different tracks throughout the northeastern United States and Canada, featuring a variety of long-standing events, new tracks, and new alliances.
Four new races will grace the 2015 season, beginning with a 150-lap event at Oxford Plains Speedway in Oxford, ME on Saturday, April 18 as part of a doubleheader with the Pro All Star Series (PASS). The race will be the first for ACT at Oxford since 2012, followed by a second 150-lap ACT event at the track on Saturday, June 27. ACT will also make its inaugural visit to the Thompson Speedway in Thompson, CT on Saturday, October 16, and Sunday, October 17 for a 100-lap race as part of the annual World Series of Speedway Racing. The Tour will return to Autodrome Chaudiere in Valleé-Jct., QC on Saturday, September 12 for a 200-lap event, which will be both a PASS doubleheader and a combination race with Série ACT. The Chaudiere event is one of three U.S./Canada combos on the calendar, joining the Spring Green 115 on Saturday, May 16 and the Fall Foliage 200 on Saturday, October 3, both at Airborne Park Speedway in Plattsburgh, NY. This also marks the return of the Spring Green to Airborne after being held at Devil’s Bowl Speedway in West Haven, VT in recent years.
The non-point special events will be ones to watch as well. The ACT International at Airborne on Saturday, July 18 and Sunday, July 19 will now see both the ACT Late Models and the PASS Super Late Models run 200 laps each. PASS will also visit Thunder Road Speedbowl in Barre, VT on Sunday, May 24 as part of the Memorial Day Classic. ACT will return to New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, NH on Saturday, September 26th for the 7th annual NHMS Bond Auto Invitational, and to Thunder Road on Saturday, October 10 and Sunday, October 11 for the 53rd Milk Bowl.
In addition, the events and tracks returning from the 2014 schedule include the season-opening New Hampshire Governor’s Cup at Lee USA Speedway in Lee, N.H. on Sunday, April 12, the Merchant’s Bank 150 at Thunder Road on Sunday, May 3, and the annual visit to White Mountain Motorsports Park in North Woodstock, N.H. on Saturday, June 27. We recently talked to drivers, owners, and crew chiefs about what events they’re most looking forward to in 2015, along with what their goals are for the upcoming season.
Richard Green, owner of the #16ME Richard Green Trucking/LaQuinta Inn & Suites Chevrolet Impala, driven by Travis Stearns
“I’m looking to the first combination race at Thunder Road with PASS and ACT cars, because I have one of each car. Travis will be in the PASS car, and Scott (Dragon) in the Thunder Road portion – which is kind of cool. We’ll be at (Airborne) for the international, they’ll both be over there, too. Right now we’re not sure about Oxford – Travis is concentrating on the ACT points battle, and hopefully we’ll have some good finishes by then. We don’t want to run too many combos to take away from the ACT effort…I’m tickled to death we’re going to Thompson. I’ve never been there with a late model, and I’m looking forward to it. Hopefully we’re in the middle of the points battle when that comes around. We’re looking forward to going up to Chaudiere as well, that’s a track I like…we had a good car in Florida (at New Smyrna). We didn’t have very good luck in Florida, but we had had a good car. The ACT title is one of our main goals this year.”
Mike Ziter, driver of the #54VT Ziter Masonry Inc./Randall Contracting Chevrolet SS Impala
“I’m looking forward to, of course, the openers at Lee and Thunder Road; the opening day for both tracks will be a good kickoff…I’m from Connecticut (Enfield), so I have a lot of family down there, so I think that (Thompson) will be the first time most of them will be at a race. Oxford’s going to be fun. There’s going to be a lot of people there with the PASS event, and it’s going to be a big weekend…we’re searching for our first win, that would be a huge accomplishment. We got our feet wet last year, and built a new (Distance) car this year, so we’re trying to get up there and run with the big dogs. We built a new team over the winter…we took on a few new members, which will help us be more consistent. We’ve always been short-handed at the track, and it’s hard to be successful when you’re short-handed. We’ve also picked up Jeffords Steel as a sponsor this year.”
Jeff White, driver of the #50ME Len’s Auto Sales & Service/Phoenix Welding Chevrolet Monte Carlo
“I’m looking forward to all of them! I think it’s great. I like going to all the different tracks; it’s a blast, and I think my crew and everyone agrees…I don’t get all emotional going back (to Oxford), but it’s fun to race, I consider it my own home track. Being up in Maine there’ll be a lot of people there who can’t go to my other events, including my mother. She’s like 80, so it’s hard for her to get to other races…we’re going to try not to have any DNF’s and hopefully finish better than 10th (in the point standings). We haven’t made any changes to the team this year. We had the ‘new car blues’ last year, things that had never gone wrong for us happened… our new car owner is Lenny Thompson. Last year it was Steve’s Auto on the car, but it (changed hands), and now it’s Len’s Auto.
“Hopefully you guys can get a jet dryer down to Lee and thaw the track—just don’t invite Juan Pablo (Montoya).”
Keith Clark, crew chief for the #58VT Hebert Excavations/Lowery’s Auto Sales Chevrolet Impala SS, driven by Jimmy Hebert
“We’d definitely like to go back down to Lee (USA Speedway) and have a good showing there. We always look forward to the Loudon race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Being that Thunder Road’s our home track, I’d like to put on a good show there…the Oxford race(s) I’m definitely looking forward to. I think we can do good there. We‘ve done good there before, and we got in the (Oxford) 250 the one year that we tried it. It’s a good track, and it fits Jimmy’s driving style. Thompson I’m a little worried about just because it’s new, and we haven’t been there yet, but I’m a nervous guy…Last year I know we finished 2nd in points, but for us as a team last year was a disappointment. We didn’t run as well as we thought we could, had fluke stuff happen, and some of the tracks we just didn’t run well at. We want to get back to victory lane and get back to winning like we know we can…we made some minor changes and updates for the new car, and we’re excited to see how that works,. Staff-wise it’s all the same guys we’ve had for the last four years.
Brad Babb, driver of the #15VT Speedway 51 Ford Fusion for Laquerre Motorsports
“I love going to Beech Ridge because it’s my home track. I’m looking forward getting back to Airborne and Chaudiere. I liked those tracks when I ran the Tour before, and I haven’t been back since. I’m looking forward to going to Thompson because it’s neutral ground for everyone – though I brought a pro stock there a few times… for a few years Joey Laquerre had been telling me that he was going to let me drive his ACT car sometime and it never worked out right. Then last year the night before the Oxford 250 there was a Late Model race. I was up there practicing my super late model and he asked me to drive his car that night and we finished 2nd. I ran a few more races for him and he was happy, and then he bought Glen Luce’s old car for me to drive this year…I really just want to have fun with it, that’s the main goal. If we’re having fun, we’re probably doing well with it. I think it’ll go pretty smooth. Joey, for the most part, has let us do our own thing the way we always do; my dad has been crew chief as long as I can remember…it would be really special if we could win the race (at Speedway 51) for Lil Joey, but I’m going to go into that the same way I go into every other race. I’ll try to go for the win, and if it doesn’t work out, then I’ll take what I can get.”
Joey Polewarczyk Jr., driver of the #97NH Pole’s Automotive/NH Precision Ford Fusion
“We’re definitely looking forward to Lee, number one because it’s the first race of the year. I shouldn’t say we’ve had a ton of time off because we just got back from (New Smyrna Speedway), but Lee is our home track so we always like trying to go back and compete there. It’s hard to pick just one event – there’s so much happening. I’ve really only been (to Thompson once), but it’s a big fast track that’s new to everybody. It’ll be a deal where everyone’s in the same boat. It’s great to have mixed races (with Série ACT) as well; it’s great to go back to Chaudiere and race…there’s just so many things going on. We’ve always felt like ACT has had one of the better schedules. We always go to lot of different tracks. Mixing these events in wi th the ACT event at (New Hampshire Motor Speedway) and the Milk Bowl – I think it’s one of the better (schedules) this year. The PASS combination events are great because we have both cars. It will be busy, but fun…we’re going to come back with the same team we had last year. We had so much fun going to the races with them, and I think that’s part of why we were so successful. We had a great time and everyone got along so well.”
Here’s what some of the fans on social media say that they’re looking forward to in 2015:
Tyler Morse: Always look forward to the governor’s cup @ Lee, great way to kick off the year
Sherry Deyette: The race at Speedway 51
Ray Christian III: the ACT show at Thompson
Jamie Longley: The ACT and PASS combo at Airborne
Thomas Beloin: The first one. Cause then the rest are coming up
John Randolph: OPS
Scott Wheeler: Oxford Plains, PASS at Thunder Road and the participation of everyone at the 250.
Scott Pixley: The doubleheader at Oxford and Thunder Road
Nick Woodbury: Governors Cup 150 at Lee USA Speedway!
Kevin Doherty: Opening Day at Thunder Road and ACT and PASS at Airborne
Craige Sanderson Grenier: ACT PASS TRoad and ACT PASS Airborne
Travis Jurcik: Thompson World Series!
Scott Roy: The Governors Cup, let’s get back to racing!
Andy Lambert: ACT PASS double header at Airborne and Thunder Road opening day at
Jeff Elliott: in June ACT @ WMMP
David Farrington: BRMS
Don Deverell: NHMS. It’s their Talladega.
Rick Underwood: Lee, Oxford (PASS/ACT Doubleheader), Airborne (PASS/ACT
Doubleheader), Thompson, and NHMS.
Dave Crawford Jr.: We enjoy watching the ACT race On the Hill at NHMS!
Nick Cochran: The opening day at T Road
Tom Corbett: the May 30th race at Speedway 51
Bruce Jennette: I already saw the one at New Symrna Beach it was AWESOME…… Now can’t wait for the Spring Green at Airborne!!!!!
The ACT Tour will kick off the season with the New Hampshire Governor’s Cup at Lee USA Speedway in Lee, NH on Sunday, April 12. Post time is 1:00pm. Teams will have practice on Saturday, April 11 from 12:00pm to 5:00pm.
-ACT Press Release. Photo credit: Speed51.com