posted September 14, 2001 07:41 AM
TMS OFFICIALS CANCEL UDTRA EVENT AT THE 11TH HOUR, UDTRA CANCELS GLENMORA,
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
FORT WORTH, TX - In a time frame of less than one hour, a domino effect
through the sports entertainment world led Texas Motor Speedway officials
cancel Thursday night's United Dirt Track Racing Association Pro DirtCar
Series event, as the cars were at the track preparing to race.
This chain of events that has surfaced in the aftermath of the terrorist
actions in New York City, Washington D.C. and Pennsylvania has also led
UDTRA Officials to cancel their scheduled event for Saturday night at
Thunder Valley Speedway in Glenmora, LA. Both the Texas and Louisiana UDTRA
Pro DirtCar Series events have not been rescheduled.
Just minutes after Texas Motor Speedway General Manager Eddie Gossage was
on the noon news in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex speaking about going
forward with the week's racing activities, the NFL announced the
cancellation of their games this week. That led NASCAR to announce that
of their races for the weekend, including the truck race at TMS, were
Minutes after these decisions were made; Gossage discussed the situation
with the IRL officials, and that event was cancelled. That was followed
the cancellation of the World of Outlaws TMS events for the weekend.
The last domino was the UDTRA Pro DirtCar Series whose teams and officials
were preparing for Thursday night's race. With no other choice, Gossage
then talked with UDTRA President Mike Swims and the last domino fell.
"This is an unprecedented situation during a tragic unprecedented time,
it is unfortunate the way everything has unfolded this week," Swims said.
"There have been a lot of discussions this week about what decisions needed
to be made. We thought everything was set and we were ready to race, but
obviously that was not meant to be. As much as I feel bad for the
inconvenience that has been caused to the teams and fans that had already
arrived, I think it is important that we try to keep everything in the
The UDTRA Pro DirtCar Series drivers were disappointed, but seemed to
understand the circumstances. The top ten UDTRA drivers then met with UDTRA
officials, and in light of the week's tragic events and its aftermath, voted
to cancel the UDTRA event in Glenmora, LA on Saturday night. Thunder Valley
Speedway promoter Jackie Thacker was in agreement.
The next event for the UDTRA Pro DirtCar Series will be on September 21-22
at Cherokee Speedway in Gaffney, SC. The event will be a two-day show with
a 100-lap $20,000-to-win main event.
There was one team member in the pit area at Texas Motor Speedway that
tried to put the quickly developing situation into perspective.
"We drove over 15 hours overnight to get here, and it will take us over
hours to get home. I don't mind that because we can. That shouldn't be
big deal to us because we must remember the thousands of people who won't
able to go anywhere because they died at the hands of cowardly terrorists.
Even if we would have raced tonight, we weren't going to forget those people
and their families because we were going to donate our winnings to the
American Red Cross to help those that have been inconvenienced a lot more
than we have been inconvenienced by this cancellation."
Tony Izzo of Chicago, IL, former driver and current crew chief of UDTRA
Rookie of the Year point leader Joe Izzo made that statement.