posted April 30, 2001 02:26 PM
Half Mountain Speedway Opening Soon
Half Mountain Speedway will be opening gates to race fans and racers very
soon. Owner Jim Branham and track workers are working very hard to get
things underway as soon as possible at HMS. "We are hoping to have the track
open by Memorial Day Weekend with one practice before then, but this is very
tentative" said Track Manager Steve Howard. Jim and the rest of the HMS
officials are as anxious as anyone to get the track going.
With delays in building construction and some other unforeseen setbacks,
Opening Day has not come as soon as Jim and some would like. Nevertheless,
construction is approaching completion, with two 40' by 20' restrooms ready
to put under roof and one more to be built, pressbox almost completed.
Grandstand area for 3000 people completed "More seating to be built after
season has begun, with concrete slated to be poured for lawn chair seating".
Lights have been wired with underground wiring so no wires to be visible.
Speaking of lights, HMS will be seen from miles around at night, with twelve
70' high poles equipped with 8 1500 watt lights, "four poles with 9 lights"
totaling 100 lights at 150,000 watts of power shining on track and pits.
HMS is possibly one of the widest tracks in the country, it will also have
many of the latest advancements in the sport, for example: HMS will have the
most modern timing device available using a Tag Heuer PTB 605 Timing Device
that will be run by a computer printing out the heat lineups as soon as
qualifying is completed. HMS officials realize that in this sport a tenth of
a second or even a hundredth can mean the difference in winning or losing.
With this in mind HMS Officials don't feel like a stop watch or any system
that requires a manual control can be accurate as this system and wouldn't
be fair to the drivers that work so hard for that tenth of a second. It will
also take away any possibility of human error in the qualifying round by
missing a time or putting a car in the wrong position in the lineup.
Once HMS is up and going it will be hard to find another track in the
country with the competition that will be found at HMS. The 4/10th mile
speed plant is 100ft wide all the way around. Think of it like this, a
basketball court is 94ft long, HMS is 100ft wide, 6ft wider than a
Basketball court is long. Cars will be able to run four wide with little
problem and the extra room will allow drivers to get away from any trouble
that might happen in front of them.
Another feature the fans will like at HMS is the way Track Officials will
line up the cars during special events. For special events, a staging area
has been prepared in front of the grandstands to allow the fans to get a
close view of the cars and drivers, get an autograph, and a picture or to
wish one of their favorite drivers good luck before the feature race.
One thing that could help draw cars to HMS is the incredible purse that will
be paid out weekly to the drivers that compete at the track. The Late Model
Division will run for $2,000 to win for a weekly regular show with the top
three finishers all getting over $1,000, and any driver who finishes 15th on
back will receive $100 just for starting the feature race of the night. To
see the Late Models running on the 100ft wide track will be action like East
Kentucky has never seen before.
The Modified Division will run for $1,000 to win for a weekly regular show,
that is more than any track in the area and one of the highest payouts in
the country. Not only is the winners share of the purse incredible but also
the top 9 finishers will all receive over $100 for the nights event. The
drivers who have a little bad luck and finish last or near the rear will
still receive $50 just for starting the feature.
Super Bomber Division will be another featured division at HMS paying the
winner a very nice $600 to win the feature. Another treat for the fans and
the drivers alike will be the extra incentive for the Late Models, Modified,
and the Super Bomber. Each of the three classes will take turns in some
extra money that will be offered to their respective divisions, the
incentives includes fast time money. The driver who sets fast time in the
selected division will receive $100 for their efforts. Another incentive
will be the quick six dash. The top six drivers from time trials that have
transferred from their heats to the feature event will qualify for the quick
six race where he and the other five drivers compete for $200 to the winner.
Three other divisions will be featured weekly, Bombers, Road Hogs and
4Cylinders. Bomber Division will be will have their sights on the $400 to
win. Road Hogs and 4cylinders will compete for a $200 to win weekly regular
Half Mountain Speedway will have something to offer every racing fan, from
the Die Hard Earth Shaking Late Model fan to the low budget 4Cylinder fan.
Half Mountain Speedway will provide a nice family environment for the whole
family to set back and watch some of the best racing you can see anywhere.