Archive | Headlines

Barrie Speedway Sold; Track To Close

Barrie Speedway Sold; Track To Close

By Clayton Johns

Barrie Speedway has been sold to Republic Live, the group that produces the Boots and Hearts country music festival.

“After negotiations with our new neighbors we believe that there is no way for the two entities to work together side by side,” said Angela Clarke, a representative of Apex Motorsports, which owned the speedway, via email Thursday.

“They have therefore bought the speedway,” she added.

Clarke deferred any further questions to a joint press release between the two groups, which is expected in the coming days. Terms of the sale were not disclosed.

The Barrie Advance reported the speedway had been sold in October when Republic Live purchased neighbouring Burl’s Creek Campground. Apex Motorsports vigorously denied the sale and the paper later posted a correction.

“It’s sad,” said Mike Getliffe, a Barrie Speedway racer of eight seasons. “We all hoped for the best, but knowing the situation and concert dates being constantly added, it was just a matter of time.”

The tight, 1/3-mile paved oval on the outskirts of Oro Station opened in 1965 to host local stock car racing. It underwent a multi-million dollar renovation in 2004 when it was reconfigured to its current tri-oval design.

The sale of the racetrack likely means the speedway has heard engines roar for the final time. Its closure would leave Ontario with just eight asphalt stock car racing ovals in operation.

Touring Series Caught Off-Guard

The sale of the speedway does come with some surprise. Apex management held rules meetings for weekly racing divisions at the track and began accepting driver registration for the 2015 season last November. It had also confirmed several dates with major touring series.

There was no dialogue regarding a potential sale of the track between Apex and various touring series, said Dave Gainforth, the president of the Ontario-based OSCAAR Racing series.

“I had several conversations with (track promoter) Diane Cunningham when putting the schedule together, and no indication was given that the track might be sold,” said Gainforth.

“From what I understand, everything has transpired in the last couple of days. I have not spoken to Diane since hearing the news.”

All three divisions of Ontario-based OSCAAR Racing were scheduled to race at Barrie on June 20.

Barrie is listed as a host track for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series (NCTS) on September 12, according to NASCAR’s schedule release in December. It’s unclear how or if NCTS will adjust its schedule. NASCAR officials did not immediately respond to interview requests.

“It is never good to see a track close,” said Gainforth. “In the past three years, three tracks have closed and it has definitely changed the outlook of racing in Southern Ontario.”

Kawartha Speedway closed its doors to weekly racing following the 2012 season. Canadian Tire Motorsports Park demolished its half-mile oval in the summer of 2013. 

OSCAAR has no plans to replace the Barrie date, Gainforth said. 

Local racers disappointed 

Several local drivers were disappointed to hear the racetrack was sold and likely would close.

Current OSCAAR driver Tyler Hawn cut his teeth racing at Barrie. He made the jump to the provincial touring series in 2011. Hawn lives just two kilometres from the speedway in Oro Station.

“It sucks, there’s a lot of history there. We won a big late model 75-lapper there in the early 2000s,” said Hawn, whose father Don Hawn won three track championships at the speedway.

Andre Pepin competed in Barrie’s Limited Late Model division last summer. He finished sixth in weekly points at the track in 2014.

The track’s friendly enivronment and family atmosphere will be missed, said Pepin.

“It wasn’t terribly hustle and bustle. People just seemed to get along a little better than at other tracks,” said Pepin.

“The people at Barrie are one of a kind and felt like a family,” echoed Getliffe.

Pepin, a Midland native, said his first late model win will be his greatest memory of the track.

“Growing up watching races there and being able to win at that track was huge,” said Pepin. “It’s going to be different not having that track around.”

The speedway’s closure will leave several drives without a home track. The nearest track is Innisfil’s Sunset Speedway.

“Sunset is a logical choice,” said Pepin, but he would not confirm plans to race there in 2015.

Peterborough Speedway and Full Throttle Motor Speedway, located near Durham, Ont., are each also approximately 130 km from Barrie Speedway.

Posted in Barrie Speedway, Headlines0 Comments

Canada’s Top Short Track Racers To Be Honoured At Motorama

Canada’s Top Short Track Racers To Be Honoured At Motorama


TORONTO, ON // JANUARY 20, 2015 • One of the surprise hits of last year’s Canadian Motorsports Expo was the huge turnout of racers, crews, family members, sponsors and fans for the inaugural Short Track Night of Champions (STNOC).

Upwards of 50 dirt and asphalt year-end champions – representing tracks, divisions and series from across Ontario – were on-stage to receive awards and be honoured by the short track community.

In the wake of that successful event, the 2nd Annual Short Track Night of Champions will be a prominent feature of the Motorama Custom Car & Motorsports Expo. The STNOC will take place on the Johnsonville Stage on the evening of Saturday, March 14 at the International Centre, across from Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. New for this year, championship-winning racers from across Canada will be eligible to participate, if they pre-register and attend Motorama.

Co-hosted by popular race announcers Greg Calnan and Spencer Lewis, the Short Track Night of Champions will honour dirt and asphalt oval racers who earned year-end track or series championships in 2014.

Additionally, Calnan’s will recognize notable dirt track performers from last season, while Lewis will spotlight the top, year-end racers from his London Recreational Ontario Asphalt Power Rankings, which appears in Inside Track Motorsport News.”

“We were overwhelmed by the response last year,” admitted Calnan. “We had champions from as far away as Cornwall and Sault Ste. Marie who made the trip to Toronto. NASCAR legend Mike Skinner helped with the presentations, which made them even more special. Based on the reaction last year, I’m sure even more will come out this year.”

STNOC co-host Spencer Lewis said, “With so many asphalt and dirt champs all in one place, this type of thing really doesn’t happen anywhere else. Year-end banquets are great, but it’s something very special for the ‘best of the best’ to be on one stage, with their fellow champions, at Canada’s biggest motorsports and automotive show.”

The Motorama Custom Car & Motorsports Expo takes place March 13, 14 & 15, 2015 in the re-configured Halls 1 and 2 of Toronto’s International Centre, located adjacent to Pearson International Airport.

In addition to the on-stage recognition and awards presentations, the track and series winners will also be eligible for random prize draws during the Motorama Short Track Night of Champions. The prizes will be geared towards the short track racers as they prepare for the 2015 season.

Year-end track or series champions can register to be part of the Short Track Night of Champions presentations by clicking on the STNOC event logo at Information about the event schedule, sponsorship opportunities, this year’s celebrity presenter and additional STNOC details will be posted on the website as details are confirmed.

ABOUT ON DIRT RACING NEWS: ON DIRT Racing News ( is a web-based news outlet focused on dirt short track racing in the province of Ontario. To contact Greg Calnan, e-mail or call (226) 401-2543.

ABOUT THE MOTORAMA CUSTOM CAR & MOTORSPORTS EXPO: The inaugural Motorama show takes place March 13, 14 & 15, 2015 at Toronto’s International Centre, adjacent to Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. With a footprint of almost a quarter-million square feet, the show will be Canada’s biggest late-winter celebration of automobiles and motorsports. For information about the show, including sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities, schedules and more, call (416) 962-7223, or email The show’s website is located at

Posted in Features, Headlines0 Comments

Peterborough Speedway Officials Fine Tune The 2015 Schedule

Peterborough Speedway Officials Fine Tune The 2015 Schedule

With the region locked in the grip of the annual January cold snap, most people are thinking of ways to stay warm, instead of focusing on a season of action at Canada’s Toughest 3rd of a Mile Paved Oval. The new campaign takes the green flag in about 4 month’s time and the promotional team at Peterborough Speedway is putting the finishing touches on an exciting agenda.

With a handful of regular divisions tackling the tight, tricky bullring on Mount Pleasant Road west of the Liftlock City, fans can also look forward to performances by the OSCAAR Super Late Models, Modifieds and Midgets. The Ontario Legends, Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup, Ontario Modifieds Racing Series and Can Am TQ Midgets will also join the home track Late Model, Thunder Car, Renegade Truck, Mini Stock and 4Fun classes.

For 2015, an appearance by the United Late Models of Ontario as part of their inaugural schedule will compliment Peterborough Speedway’s weekly wars. Track owner and promoter J.P. Josiasse says putting together an active calendar of events is all about giving the fans what they want.

“Looking back at what we were able to accomplish in 2014 leaves some pretty big shoes to fill this year,” said Josiasse. “The car counts were strong and fans saw some excellent racing in every division throughout the season. We had a number of first time feature winners, a 14 year-old driver won a track championship, a pair of hometown favorites – Griffin Powell, who finished 10th in the 4Fun standings and Late Model track champion Ryan Kimball – claimed Autumn Colours Classic checkered flags and there were only 2 shows lost due to weather. That sets the bar very high, but as a team I think we’re up for the challenge.”

Josiasse says he’s heard from some drivers who’ll be changing divisions or landing new rides when the year’s first green flag waves. There will be also a former track champion making a return to battle after a brief layoff. Further updates will come over the next couple of months.

Fans will get their first official look at the 2015 event line-up when the Peterborough Speedway display will be featured at the first ever Canadian International Motorama Custom Car and Motorsports Expo – Friday, Saturday and Sunday, March 13th to 15th – at the International Centre in Toronto.

Fans can always find the latest pre-season news and details of upcoming mall displays at or by liking the track on Facebook or following it on Twitter. You can also download the free Peterborough Speedway app on your Smartphone.

Photo attachment: Peterborough Speedway archive

Three times each season, Peterborough Speedway hosts Toonie Grandstand Admission/Fan Appreciation Nights – presented by Pepsi – where spectators have the chance to meet the drivers.

Prepared by: Jim Clarke, Clarke Motorsports Communications/First Draft Media


Posted in Headlines, Peterborough Speedway0 Comments

Lucas Oil CAN-AM Midgets Announce Schedule For 50TH Year

Lucas Oil CAN-AM Midgets Announce Schedule For 50TH Year

The Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets have planned an exciting 2015 season for their 50th year of competition. In announcing their schedule President Ken Lorenz said “Our 50th Anniversary year will include three ‘Twin 25’s’ races at three different tracks throughout the season. Grand Bend, Sunset and Flamboro Speedways will present this special show to thank our fans, old and new, for all their support over the past 50 years. I am also proud to announce the return of Lucas Oil as series sponsor for the 11th consecutive year. It is an honor to again be included in the Lucas Oil ‘Family’. The added recognition we receive running under the Lucas Oil banner puts us in an elite group of ‘open-wheel’ racers supported by not only a premier company but one that truly understands the racers needs with quality products and a helping hand.”

The 50th Anniversary years begins at Sunset Speedway on Saturday, May 16th at the ‘Spring Velocity’ show and ends there at the ‘Fall Velocity’ event on Saturday, September 26th. Mark Dilley, general manager, said “Sunset Speedway is very pleased to have the Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets back for multiple times in 2015. They always put on some of the best racing of the season with their 3 wide battles. Sunset loves the Can-Am Midgets and can’t wait for 2015!” The ‘Twin 25’s’ race is scheduled at Sunset Speedway for Saturday, July 11th and the Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets return on Saturday, August 15th making four visits to this speedway. Flamboro Speedway will host the Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets on May 23rd, June 20, July 25, and August 8th, the date for the ‘Twin 25’s’ special race. The final race at Flamboro Speedway for 2015 will be on September 19th.

The Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets again travel north to Sauble Speedway for the long Canadian Holiday weekend on August 1st and 2nd. They return to Sauble Speedway for one more event on Saturday, September 5th. “The Bullring” at Grand Bend Speedway will host the Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets for a special ‘Twin 25’s’ race on July 4th and Peterborough Speedway, Barrie Speedway and Full Throttle Speedway in Varney will each have one visit from the Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets.

The 2015 Lucas Oil Can-Am Midget Schedule

May 16….Sunset Speedway, Stroud, ON, ‘Spring Velocity’
May 23….Flamboro Speedway, Flamborough, ON
June 13…Peterborough Speedway, Peterborough, ON
June 20…Flamboro Speedway
July 4……Grand Bend Speedway, Grand Bend, ON “Twin 25’s” RAIN DATE, July 5th
July 11….Sunset Speedway, “Twin 25’s”
July 18….Barrie Speedway, Barrie, ON
July 25….Flamboro Speedway
Aug 1……Sauble Speedway, Sauble Beach, ON
Aug 2……Sauble Speedway
Aug 8……Flamboro Speedway, “Twin 25’s”
Aug 15….Sunset Speedway
Sept 5…..Sauble Speedway
Sept 12…Full Throttle Speedway, Varney, ON
Sept 19…Flamboro Speedway
Sept 26…Sunset Speedway ‘Fall Velocity’

For more information on the Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets, such as their ’50 Year History’ and a list of the ’49 Years of Champions’, go to

For more information, contact Cindy Lorenz at

Posted in Headlines, Lucas Oil Can-Am Midgets0 Comments

Brandt Graham Is Ready To Blaze New Racing Trails For 2015

Brandt Graham Is Ready To Blaze New Racing Trails For 2015

Young people have the world figured out. They influence the latest trends, understand technology that completely confuses most adults and throw around terms like snap-chat, selfie, hash-tag and tumbler with ease in part of their everyday conversation.

When it comes to his racing career, Brandt Graham has proven that he’s not only a quick racer but also a fast learner. After 3 seasons at the controls of a Mini Stock at Peterborough and Kawartha Speedways, the talented teenager from Orono, Ontario will take his first green flag of the 2015 season behind the wheel of a Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup Series ride. The second generation speedster – who attends grade 11 at Clarke High School – says when the chance to move into a new division came along, he jumped at the opportunity.

“I wanted to move into a different class, but also continue to learn and develop as a racer,” said the youngster during a break at the team’s shop. “The Sportsman Cup Series has a schedule that will let me see some diverse tracks and compete in a bigger, heavier and faster car against some more experienced drivers. That can only serve to sharpen my skills and further my racing education.”

For his maiden voyage in the travelling series, Brandt Graham will strap-in behind the controls of a car that was campaigned in 2014 by Jake Ott. The ride is currently being prepped by the Graham Racing crew, in anticipation of the opening show of the 7 event calendar – Saturday, May 9th – at Full Throttle Motor Speedway at Durham, Ontario. One of the biggest adjustments on the horizon for Graham will be the races themselves. LOSC shows consist of on-track practice, timed qualifying and a 100 lap main event. That’s 4 times longer than any feature tilt he’s ever logged before. The 16 year old runner says he’s counting down the days until his debut with a high level of nervous anticipation.

“Right now, there’s a lot the team doesn’t know but I’m confident that things will quickly fall into place,” said Graham. “The car is a proven piece and we’ve stripped-off the body panels and checked over the chassis since it arrived here about a month before Christmas. Our new marketing package will be ready shortly and we’ll announce some new sponsorship partners, paint scheme and the number we’ll be running in a month or so. Then, it’ll only be a matter of time ‘til the first green flag of the season.”

With a bright future ahead of him and a lifetime of choices to consider, Brandt Graham is still contemplating his long-term career path. He’s taking each event as it comes along through the new campaign and looks forward to building the Graham Racing brand throughout the year.

Fans, family and friends can follow the team throughout the 2015 season by visiting For a copy of Brandt Graham’s 2015 marketing prospectus, contact .

Photo attachment: Graham family collection
Brandt Graham gets a feel for his 2015 ride. The talented teenager from Orono, Ontario will compete for Rookie of the Year honours with the Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup Series.

Prepared by: Jim Clarke, Clarke Motorsports Communications/First Draft Media

Posted in Headlines, Team Releases0 Comments

150 Lap “Run What Ya’ Brung” ENDURO 1st Place Turn-Key 360 Winged Sprint Car

150 Lap “Run What Ya’ Brung” ENDURO 1st Place Turn-Key 360 Winged Sprint Car

Hi Folks: Full Throttle is kicking off 2015 with a bang please see the release that was posted on Facebook last night. Any questions just let me know.

“2015 Racing Season at Full Throttle Motor Speedway will be coming a lot quicker than you think!!! A 150 Lap “Run What Ya’ Brung” ENDURO race will be held in March or April on the 1/4 mile high banks with the winner receiving a Turn-Key 360 Winged Sprint Car ($35,000+ value) as the winning trophy!!
$25 car # /driver entry fee and all vehicles raced must be surrendered to the speedway after the race. Spectator gate entry will be a food donation to our Local Food Bank. For further information watch the next video episode (#8) of “Full Throttle Online” which should be released on YouTube Monday or Tuesday (Jan 5th or 6th).
Also check out the NEW Full Throttle Motor Speedway Facebook page for further updates as they come out as we move away from the Full Throttle Facebook page.”

Rules for the “Sprint Into Spring 200” are listed below plus contact information.
This is turning out to be one of the biggest races in a long time and will see racers from all different classes and all types asphalt and dirt coming together on one track at one time!
You have to mark March 21st on your calendar you have to be a part of history! Where else this season are you going to see someone walk away the winner of a turnkey 360 Winged Sprint Car!!
March 21st, 2015 starting at 1pm (any and all weather except extreme sight impairing conditions)

Vehicle and General Safety rules
1- Open to any make model of vehicle (maximum 3500kg GVW)
2- No convertibles or open top vehicles without adequate driver protection
3- No sharp, extruding or modified from stock external components on vehicle allowed
4- No trailers, plows or dangerous unsecured objects allowed
5- All doors must be securely chained, tied or welded shut
6- All external breakable parts, pieces and lights must be duct taped over before racing
7- Side windows must be removed or rolled down at all times during race
8- All vehicles must have 24’ minimum #s clearly legible on doors and roof and driver’s last name 4” high presented over the front windshield
9- No profanity or offensive language on vehicles
10- All vehicles ownership must be surrendered to Full Throttle Motor Speedway prior to competition
11- All vehicles must have an ownership or bill of sale presented to FTMS before racing
12- Only 1 registered occupant in the vehicle during race events
13- All competitors must wear a DOT legal helmet and seat belt restraints at all times
14- Fire retardant material and extra safety components are strongly suggested
15- All vehicles must have a working fire extinguisher on-board during race
16- No 2- way driver communication allowed
17- 2 scorers will be the responsibility of the registered driver and report to FTMS staff
18- FTMS reserves the right to refuse vehicles it deems unsafe or non- conforming to the above rules

Race rules and regulations
1- All registered drivers, crew and spectators in pit area must sign a legal release of injury form before competition at FTMS
2- No aggressive or dangerous driving to attempt harm to other drivers
3- No fighting or aggressive behavior allowed and will result in a suspension from FTMS
4- No alcohol, drugs or weapons allowed resulting in suspension
5- Race will be either GREEN flag condition or RED flag condition during races
6- RED flags will be displayed for any safety concerns, all vehicles must stop at once or be removed and finished scoring from the event competition.
7- Vehicles will be removed from racing surface at the discretion of FTMS officials
8- All vehicle repairs must be done in the designated pit area
9- All drivers must remain in cars until notified by FTMS officials to be unoccupied
10- BOLT-IN Safety equipment can be remove from vehicle at the completion of all events
(Only the items listed below)

(a) Racing Seat belts or Harnesses
(b) Window net
(c) Racing Seat
(d) Fuel Cell only (no lines)
(e) Fire Extinguisher and Bracket
(f) Battery box container (battery stays with vehicle)

Race layout

Segment 1- 90 laps- draw for start position (before 12pm latest, starting time 1pm)
Segment 2- 90 laps- inversion of first start
Segment 3- 20 laps- the top 20 qualifiers from combination driver finish of both 90 lap races
proceed to the final shootout 20 lap segment (top qualifier to front)

1- Final Segment Winner receives Turn-key 360 Sprint Car trophy
2- Second place – $500
3- Third place – $300
4- Fourth place – $200
5- Fifth place – $100

Additional prizes may become available as the race comes closer. If you are interested in advertising or sponsoring this or any other events please contact or for more information

A $25 car # and driver registration must be completed before the March 21st event.
Registration can be made by email bank deposit, cash, cheque or PayPal and is non returnable.

Gord Bennett 519-721-2605


Doug Townsend
Director, Media and Sales
Full Throttle Motor Speedway
Personnel Cell: 519-369-8590

Posted in Full Throttle Motor Speedway, Headlines0 Comments

NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Schedule Announced Nationwide Slate Of Events For 2015

NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Schedule Announced Nationwide Slate Of Events For 2015

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 17, 2014) – NASCAR announced today the 2015 schedule for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1.

The nationwide slate features 11 dates across five provinces and includes seven oval and four road course events.

“The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series is the national series of Canada, and this schedule once again gives fans from across the country a chance to catch the exciting competition,” said George Silbermann, NASCAR vice president for regional and touring series. “From Alberta to Nova Scotia, the series will once again visit many of the premiere racing facilities Canada has to offer.”

The season will open at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park’s road course for the third year in a row on May 17, and the series will return there on Aug. 30 to join the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

Kawartha Speedway has played host to the last race on the schedule each year of the Canadian Tire Series’ existence, and that tradition will continue in 2015 with the Sept. 19 season finale.

The remainder of the 2015 schedule includes:
• Premiere road course dates in Quebec at Circuit ICAR (July 5) and Circuit de Trois-Rivieres (Aug. 2).
• Traditional visits to NASCAR-sanctioned weekly tracks Autodrome St-Eustache (July 25) in Quebec and Barrie Speedway (Sept. 12) in Ontario.
• Annual western swing once again features Alberta’s Edmonton International Raceway (July 11) – also a NASCAR-sanctioned oval – and Saskatoon’s Auto Clearing Motor Speedway (July 15).
• A return to Quebec’s Autodrome Chaudiere (June 13) following 2014’s exciting inaugural event.
• The ninth annual visit to the Maritimes and Riverside International Speedway in Nova Scotia (Aug. 15).

L.P. Dumoulin will be the defending Canadian Tire Series champion in 2015. The Quebec native was formally recognized for his first series title last week as part of the NASCAR Touring Awards at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C.

Tom Bryant
NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications

Date Track Location
5/17 Canadian Tire Motorsport Park Bowmanville, Ont.
6/13 Autodrome Chaudiere Valle-Jonction, Que.
7/5 Circuit ICAR Mirabel, Que.
7/11 Edmonton International Raceway Wetaskiwin, Alta.
7/15 Auto Clearing Motor Speedway Saskatoon, Sask.
7/25 Autodrome St-Eustache St-Eustache, Que.
8/2 Circuit de Trois-Rivieres Trois-Rivieres, Que.
8/15 Riverside International Speedway Antigonish, N.S.
8/30 Canadian Tire Motorsport Park Bowmanville, Ont.
9/12 Barrie Speedway Barrie, Ont.
9/19 Kawartha Speedway Fraserville, Ont.

Posted in Headlines, NASCAR Canadian Tire Series0 Comments