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Devil's Bowl Speedway News

Crate Modifieds To Replace CVRA 358s In 2010

- Justin St. Louis on 02 Dec 2010

The new Crate Modifieds will take center stage at Devil's Bowl Speedway in West Haven and CVRA sister track Albany-Saratoga Speedway in 2011. (Justin St. Louis/VMM photo)PHOTO: The new Crate Modifieds will take center stage at Devil's Bowl Speedway in West Haven and CVRA sister track Albany-Saratoga Speedway in 2011. (Justin St. Louis/VMM photo)

(From official press release)

MALTA, N.Y. --
The Champlain Valley Racing Association will be taking a page of out its history book as it heads into the 2011 racing season.

Facing an uncertain economy and with the desire to cultivate a new group of young drivers, the CVRA will be making a full conversion of its open-wheel modified division to General Motors "602 crate" motors for 2011.

“We've been hemming and hawing about this for a while, and it's time to stop hemming and hawing,” said Albany-Saratoga Speedway race director Bruce Richards. “With the economy the way it is now, this change is needed for the health and well-being of racing.”

The change to 602s follows the cost-cutting trend that CVRA founder C.J. Richards began in 1985, when he phased out big block engines and replaced them with 358-cid small blocks at both Albany-Saratoga and Devil's Bowl Speedways. “C.J. was the pioneer when he switched from big blocks to 358s, and here we are again,” said Bruce Richards.

“Our Modified division is no longer sustainable from a monetary point of view,” said Jerry Richards, Devil’s Bowl Speedway race director. “For years now, we’ve had almost no new drivers joining the Modified ranks. All attempts we’ve made to move experienced Sportsman drivers to the Modified division have failed. Mostly because they just can’t afford to field a Modified car, so they end up staying in the Sportsman ranks even though they have enough driving experience to move up. The days of the Sportsman being a stepping stone to the Modifieds have been over for a long time now. We feel strongly that it’s our responsibility to bring the cost of racing under control at our tracks.”

Hoosier Tire has developed a new, long-wearing tire for this division, and the 602s run on pump gas instead of racing fuel, which is another savings.

The new open-wheel division will be known as Crate Modifieds and will pay $750 to win, and the entire purse structure will be posted on the CVRA website located at

The Crate Modified engine program will be overseen by RPM Racing Engines of Georgia, Vermont. RPM is a complete machine shop that specializes in high performance engines; owner Rick Paya provides crate engines and services to a total of 12 race tracks in the northeast. RPM will be the only authorized engine dealer for Crate Modified cars racing on the CVRA. Contact Rick for more information at 802-524-7406.

In addition, the CVRA will reinstate a point fund for the open-wheel division for the 2011 season. “We'll take the best 10 Crate Modified races at both tracks,” said Bruce Richards. “The point fund will pay $3,000 to the winner, $1,500 for second, $1,000 for third, and $500 for fourth and fifth place. In addition, we will draw two Wild Card winners from among the 6th-10th place finishers, paying $500 each.”

The CVRA Pro Stock division will begin making the conversion to a true asphalt Late Model-style car. CVRA officials have been working closely with American-Canadian Tour director Tom Curley on a rules and tech package, and intend to eventually adopt ACT Late Model rules. “We're starting the transition phase this year to make the cars that we have now competitive with asphalt late models,” said Bruce Richards.

Both CVRA tracks will still be running Renegades and Bomber Warriors in addition to the Crate Modifieds and Pro Stocks.

New this season, individual track memberships will be sold for $50 each, while a combination license for both Albany-Saratoga and Devil's Bowl will be priced at $75, if the memberships are purchased prior to March 1. See the web site at for information and updates.

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