Wheatland, Missouri (June 18, 2020) - Fresh off one of the biggest opening weekends in Lucas Oil MLRA history, which saw an average car count of thirty-six and crowned three different winners, the series today announced details regarding the addition of three more events to their 2020 racing schedule. The additions now bring the series slate to 19 championship events.
For the first time since 2014 the MLRA will make their way to the Tri-City Speedway in Pontoon Beach, Illinois for two big nights on October 16th - 17th. The trifecta weekend will then make its way back to the highbanks of the Randolph County Raceway (RCR) in Moberly, Missouri on Sunday, October 18th, for the series championship event.
Friday nights kick-off event is scheduled to pay $5,000 to win, while Saturday will find drivers battling in a $7,000 to win A-Main paying $600 to start. Both events at Tri-City will be complete shows with time trial qualifying, and utilize the MLRA's new tire rules. A practice session is also planned for Thursday night with more details to be released in the weeks leading up to the event.
In their sixteenth season behind the helm of the 3/8 mile Tri-City Speedway, Kevin and Tammy Gundaker are excited to be a part of the MLRA's championship weekend. After attending the MLRA opener this past weekend at Randolph County Kevin Gundaker said, "We got to brainstorming on the way home and talked a little bit about it and I text Ernie (Leftwich) and told him we would be interested in doing an October date for two days. Then we threw in with Jason (Goble-RCR) on Sunday to go back to Moberly and figured it would be a good fit for everyone."
With the delayed start to the current season and limited action at Midwest tracks thus far, the Gundakers are excited at the possibilities the three-day swing will present fans and drivers. "What's nice about our deal is that our season normally runs until the middle of October. We have always extended the season so people are used to running in October, so we thought this would be a really good fit. With the purse and the set-up we have put together for the weekend I wouldn't be surprised if were at 50 cars," noted Tammy-a feeling echoed by Kevin.
Tri-City Speedway is also excited to be partnering with DirtonDirt.com to provide an additional live viewing option of the event. Flag-to-flag coverage of this marquee MLRA sanctioned event is planned for both nights.
Just 2 ½ hours up the road, and for the first time in the MLRA's thirty-two-year history, the Randolph County Raceway will play host to the series championship event. Excitement is high after a strong season opener at the 3/8-mile-high banked facility this past weekend, which found Shannon Babb picking up his fourth career series victory after retaking the lead from Tony Jackson Jr. with just over ten laps remaining.
RCR promotor Jason Goble commented, "It's pretty exciting to have the championship night at the Randolph County Raceway. It was nice to be able to host the first MLRA event of the year and will be nice to host the finale too."
"In working with them (Gundakers), I have gotten to know them and they approached me about having the finale and I was like heck ya, I'm on board. Its' nice to be able to work with other promoters in trying to make this a big event that should bring lots of late models to Randolph County," concluded Goble.
Both the MLRA season Champion and series Sunoco Race Fuels Rookie of the Year will be crowned at the conclusion of Sunday's $5,000 to win finale. This new addition to the schedule will mark the third visit of the year at Randolph County, adding to the previously schedule "Scottie 46" on Memorial Day Weekend.
The new Championship Weekend additions will complete a busy month of October for the MLRA, coming just one week after the series 7th Annual MLRA Fall Nationals set for the Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland, MO.
Tri-City Speedway: (Pontoon Beach, IL) October 15th - 17th
3/8 mile dirt oval featuring 15 degrees of banking in the corners and a 70' wide racing surface.
Randolph County Raceway: (Moberly, MO) October 18th
3/8 mile high banked clay oval.