by Lyndal Scranton
Lucas Oil Speedway continues its tradition of kicking off with the July 4th holiday weekend with a special “Thursday Night Thunder” edition of the Big Adventure RV Weekly Racing Series this week.
Casey’s General Stores and KY3 present the program, which will find the Warsaw Auto Marine & RV ULMA Late Models chasing a special 25-lap, $1,000-to-win courtesy of Rains Ice. Visit participating area Casey’s locations for $2 discount admission coupons.
The three other weekly divisions also will be in action – but there’s plenty more than on-the-track action going on.
The area’s wildest fireworks show, courtesy of AM Pyrotechnics and coordinated with music, will light up the sky after the races.
It’s also the always-popular Kids’ Night at the Races featuring the annual bicycle giveaway. Fans, sponsors or drivers wishing to donate can drop off bicycles – both boys’ and girls’ models – at the speedway during weekday business hours or bring them to pit office prior to Thursday’s races.
The Frog’s Signs Junior Fan Club giveaway is for youngsters, ages 5-12 and they can sign up on the midway, next to the gift shop trailer on the south end of the midway, prior to the races. Drawings for the bicycles will be held during intermission.
“This is always a highlight of our season, when we are able to provide bikes for some youngsters who might not otherwise be able to have one,” Lucas Oil Speedway General Manager Danny Lorton said. “We want to spread the word and try to get as many bicycles as we can. It would be wonderful to have one for every kid who’s at the races on Thursday.”
Fans also can make cash donations toward purchase of the bicycles this week. For questions or more details, contact Lisa Lorton at the Lucas Oil Speedway office (417) 282-5984 or via email at Lisa@lucasoilspeedway.com.
The Frogs Signs Junior Fan Club Kids Pit Tour also continues as eight lucky kids will get to tour the pits with flagman Mike Striegel to get an up-close look at the cars and drivers. The tour will be from 5:15-6 p.m. and then the kids will get to attend the drivers’ meeting before going back to the grandstands.
Youngsters ages 5-12 can sign up from 4-5 p.m. at the same location as the bicycle sign-up. Parents will have to sign a waiver form allowing the kids to go into the pits for the tour.
On the track, the second half of the Weekly Racing Series season begins with razor-thin point margins in two of the classes. Cole Henson of Russellville holds a five-point lead over Larry Ferris in the ULMA Late Model division and Lebanon’s Kris Jackson is 18 points in front of Eric Turner in the Ozark Golf Cars USRA B-Mods.
Derek Brown of Stoutland is 71 points clear of Toby Ott in the O’Reilly Auto Parts Street Stocks and Robbie Reed of Mexico leads Ryan Middaugh by 81 in the Pitts Homes USRA Modifieds.
Gates will open at 4 p.m. with hot laps at 6:30 and racing at 7:05.