WEEDSPORT, N.Y. – NAPA Auto Parts Super DIRT Week, Oct. 5-9, will move to the historic Oswego Speedway in 2016.
Oswego, a historic paved, half-mile track 35 miles north of Syracuse, will be covered with dirt for the first time since 1952 to accommodate the NAPA 300 and all of the week’s events and festivities.
The official announcement from the World Racing Group comes on the heels of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s press conference held earlier this afternoon at Oswego’s Lake Ontario Event and Conference Center, in which Governor Cuomo not only announced the city of Oswego as the winner of a $10 million Downtown Revitalization initiative, but also confirmed a plan to move Super DIRT Week from Central New York Raceway Park to Oswego.
“With support from Governor Cuomo, the State of New York, and incredible fans and sponsors, we are excited to write a new chapter in the history of Racing’s Biggest Party,” said DIRTcar Racing CEO Brian Carter. “We’ve developed a great relationship with John Torrese and his team over the past several months, and Super DIRT Week is going to be a lot of fun at Oswego this year.”
Opening in 1951, Oswego Speedway’s beginnings were actually as a three-eighths-mile dirt racing facility.
The Speedway operated as a dirt oval from Aug. 10, 1951 through June 15, 1952; before Speedway owner Harry Caruso opted to pave the facility for the remainder of the 1952 season — which continued on July 11 of that year.
Eventual International Classic champion Billy Blum won on the dirt at Oswego more than any other driver with three victories, two of which came in the final four events on the surface, including the last dirt event to be held at Oswego on June 15, 1952.
Charlie Barry, the winner of the first event ever to be held at Oswego in August of ’51, Chuck Kotwica, Bob Cameron, Nelly Ward, Al Weber, Bob Kegebin, John Torrese Sr., and Dick Jerrett Sr. would all win on the dirt at Oswego in A-Modified action.
After moving to pavement, the Speedway would stay at its three-eighths-mile configuration until being enlarged to the current five-eighths-mile configuration in 1961.
The ‘Steel Palace’ will play host to two other major open-wheel events ahead of NAPA Auto Parts Super DIRT Week, with the 60th running of Budweiser International Classic Weekend taking place Sept. 2-4 and the historic Race of Champions Sept. 15-17.
Speedway co-owner John Torrese is excited at the opportunity to host three of the biggest racing weekends in motorsports in a month period.
“The coming weeks at Oswego Speedway are certainly unprecedented,” said Torrese. “This is a testament to the history and lineage of Oswego Speedway to be fortunate enough to host Classic Weekend, the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, the Race of Champions, and Super DIRT Week in such close proximity. We thank World Racing Group’s Brian Carter as well as the State of New York for the opportunity to help keep such an important event, not only in New York State, but right here in central New York.”