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Time Speeds On Towards May 1 VMS Advance Series Opener


Weedsport, NYApril 28, 2008 – By Tom Skibinski, Advance Auto Parts Super DIRTcar Series PR Director

The 2008 Advance Auto Parts Super DIRTcar Series is finally set to open with the 2nd Annual Paul Sawyer Memorial at Virginia Motor Speedway on Thursday, May 1 just three days away.

Commemorating the 10th straight season of Series partnership with Advance Auto Parts based in Roanoke, Virginia, those top-10 hosts on the list of Advance Auto Parts Series all-time Big-Block Modified track sites will be highlighted for each of the 10 days leading up to the VMS event.

While Virginia became the 44th track to stage an Advance Series race last spring, this elite group of dirt ovals from around the Northeast headlines a legendary list that encompasses 10 states and two Canadian provinces. And all but one of these are scheduled to run at least one major event in the ’08 Advance Series that marks the 29th straight season of tour competition.

Celebrating its ‘Golden Anniversary’ of automobile racing in 2003, Lebanon Valley Speedway has hosted 46 Advance Series extra-distance events to stand third on the all-time list. Lebanon has enjoyed DIRTcar membership since the organization expanded from its Central New York base in 1980, hosting multiple Advance Series shows nearly every year since.

The half-mile track was originally laid out in 1953 by a Massachusetts trio and the scheduled 50-lap grand-opening was reduced to 26 circuits with Hully Bunn from Cropseyville. N.Y. winning the inaugural 13 mile main event on June 28. Lou Spanier gained ownership in 1954 and at the end of the ’55 season Lebanon Valley gained its signature high banking that has become a track trademark ever since. The Valley staged its first 200-lapper in the mid-1960s —won by Frankie Schneider on Oct. 3, 1965— and with the exception of 1976-79 the double century grind has been a season-ending highlight every September. The reigns of promoter were eventually passed from ‘Uncle Lou’ Spanier to Howard Commander in 1970 and he remains at the helm today. Kenny Tremont is recognized as the all-time LVS Modified feature winner with more than 100 big-Block victories posted over the past quarter-century.

New Jersey invader Brett Hearn has also taken a liking to the high banks in West Lebanon, topping the list of 14 Advance Series winners with 14 checkered flags of his own — scoring his first-ever tour triumphs at Lebanon in 1981 and again doubling up last season following his sixth career Valley 200 victory.

Advance Auto Parts Super DIRTcar Series
Top-10 Big-Block Modified Track sites (1980-2007)

76 Rolling Wheels Raceway-Elbridge,NY 8/13/80 9/22/07
47 New York State Fairgrounds-Syracuse,NY 9/6/82 10/7/07
46 Lebanon Valley Speedway-W. Lebanon,NY 7/8/80 9/15/07
43 Fonda Speedway-Fonda,NY 4/19/80 7/17/03
43 Orange Co. Fair Speedway-Middletown,NY 9/10/83 10/21/07
41 Cayuga Co. Fair Speedway-Weedsport,NY 7/16/80 9/2/07
38 Canandaigua Speedway-Canandaigua,NY 7/23/80 8/9/07
28 Ransomville Speedway-Ransomville,NY 6/27/80 7/6/07
19 Autodrome Granby-Granby,QUE 7/10/89 9/17/00
19 Autodrome Drummond-Drummondville,QUE 7/11/89 7/23/07

The 10th Advance Auto Parts Super DIRTcar Series season continues on May 4, 2008 with the 28th DIRT Challenge Cup at Rolling Wheels Raceway Park. Further track information is available at and the DIRTcar NorthEast Office (315/834-6606) is open during weekdays. Log into the Advance Series homepage at or to find out more about the entire circuit.

Headquartered in Roanoke, Va., Advance Auto Parts is the second-largest retailer of automotive aftermarket parts, accessories, batteries, and maintenance items in the United States, based on store count and sales. As of October 6, 2007, the company operated 3,228 stores in 40 states, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. The company serves both the do-it-yourself and professional installer markets.

The Advance Auto Parts Super DIRTcar Series for Big-Block Modifieds is brought to fans across the Northeast by several sponsors and partners, including series sponsors Advance Auto Parts and Hoosier Racing Tire. Rite Aid Corporation is a promotional partner and the contingency sponsors are Bars Leaks, Bert Transmission, Bicknell Racing Products, Bilstein Shocks, Brodix Cylinder Heads, Crane Cams, Dig Safely New York, Holley HP Carburetors, Integra Shocks, Intercomp, KSE Racing Products, Motorsports Safety Systems, Penske Shocks, Rislone Oil Stabilizer and Wrisco Industries.