In 2012 Eagle Raceway made a business decision that in 2013 it would go with the 305 cubic-inch Racesaver Sprint Cars.
On Saturday night, the new series will debut during the Annual Eagle IceBreaker in Eagle.
“Engine costs have kept newcomers from the 360 ranks recently,” Eagle Raceway announcer Stan Cisar said. “But with the 305 option, many newcomers can now afford to run Sprint Cars.”
Eagle promoter Roger Hadan said the track should have about 20 305s for the IceBreaker.
“We had 10 or 11 for practice a couple of weeks ago, and they seemed to all run in the 14.2- to 14.5-second bracket, so we are expecting some close racing,” Hadan said. “We think the 305s will definitely save competitors some money.”
For a couple of years, the International Motor Contest Association discussed which direction it should go concerning Sprint Cars, said the IMCA’s Jim Stannard.
“We looked at the 360s, Spec Motors, Crate Motors ... but decided that French Grimes had the right idea for us with the 305 Racesavers,” Stannard said. “We joined forces with Grimes (French Grimes Race Systems are the experts in the 305 engine) and took (those) rules and put the IMCA name on it.
“We basically took (their) knowledge and plugged it into IMCA with all our tracks. We see it as an affordable class.”
Stannard said he can’t remember a time when there was as much “new blood” in a class.
“As for Roger (Hadan), he has created electricity at Eagle that you just don’t find at other (IMCA-sanctioned) race tracks,” Stannard said.
Veteran driver Greg Bolte, who has run 305, 360 and 410 Sprint Cars, thinks the move to 305 Sprint will create closer competition.
“I raced 305s in Kansas about three years ago,” Bolte said. “Not only are the 305s cheaper, but they will provide for more competitive racing as the horsepower differential between the better cars and the rest of field will be far less than with the 360s.”
Friday night, Eagle kicks things off with IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds and IMCA Sport Compacts with hot laps at 7 p.m. and racing at 8.
On Saturday night, it’s the debut of the 305 Sprint Cars at Eagle paying $1,000 to win, with a big IMCA Modified feature paying $2,000 to win, along with IMCA Sport Modifieds and IMCA Hobby Stocks.
Hot laps are at 5:30 p.m. with racing at 6:30.
Other track openings
The Adams County Speedway in Corning, Iowa, will open its weekly NASCAR Whelen All-American Racing Series on Saturday.
“We are looking forward to another great season of racing,” said Ray Houck, Adams County Speedway promoter.
In other racing news, soon-to-be reopened Butler County Speedway north of Rising City will have a practice Sunday.
Promoter Brent Pick will open the track next weekend.
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