Pete Smith




The Beginning of Spring is Opening Night at Attica


Here in Ohio to me the beginning of spring has always been demarcated by the opening of Attica Raceway Park. The opening of the gates always to me marked the beginning of the true racing season. Yes there are indoor events and speedweeks in Florida and the hangover race on new years day at Sandusky Speedway, which I attend every year and still have not found the right mixture of alcohol to stave off the cold. Those events have always been to me bonuses, and not part of the regular season, to me the season only officially starts until I take that first step onto the grounds of Attica, hear the engines at life and see the dirt in the air.

In our family the opening of Attica besides being a landmark of the beginning of the racing season has also been a subject of constant deliberation and speculation. Will they get the show in?, What will the track be like?, What's the car count going to be like this year? , Will we see some big names, who have the week off travel there?  If they get them it how many layers of clothes will be necessary to prevent hypothermia? Are some question youíll hear muttered in the Smith house leading up to the opener. To many, starting the season in late March in our northern Ohio climate seems to fringe on insanity but in reality Attica has had a pretty consistent record of success with these shows even more impressively I canít remember a rough track at any of these early events. Personally I applaud Attica, if for nothing else giving me something to talk about during the off season and furthermore giving me one more excuse to complain about the weather in the beginning days of spring. Its always nice to see the cars unloaded for the first time. Everyone carries an air of excitement for the upcoming season, you get to see the new faces and catch up with the old ones. Plus one of the advantages of these early shows is you never know who is going to show up , and often a large field a sprint cars is on hand with travelers from all over whose home tracks or sanctions will not start racing for another month. It gives drivers a chance to test their equipment and the spring nationals always seems to bring out a great field of talent.

I write this on the day I had been planning on attending the opener at Attica and as you would have guessed weather has not cooperated this week and the opening has been pushed back another week. Hopefully Friday March 29th will be the day my true race season begins with the first day of the spring nationals. Here in Toledo we are expected to get 2 Ė 4 inches of snow Sunday into Monday but Iím hopeful Attica can be in race shape by next week end.















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Revised: March 22, 2013