DUNDEE, N.Y. – Story and photo by Race Chaser Online New York Correspondent Steven Ovens –
Black Rock Speedway in Dundee, NY will see a new promoter in 2016 for the third season in a row with Mike Jackson’s announcement on Tuesday that he will not be returning as promoter of the four-tenths-mile clay oval. Jackson spoke exclusively with Race Chaser Online to share his disappointment.
“We did as much as we could in 2015 to open the gates of a quality racing facility each and every week to our racers and fans,” said Jackson when reached by phone.
“Did we always get everything right? No, not always. But nobody can deny that we put 100% effort into making Black Rock Speedway a Friday night destination for dirt track racing. Unfortunately, we won’t be back again next year to do it again and build on what we started this season.”
The rumor mill had been running rampant as the new year approached and Jackson’s team did not have a new lease for the 2016 season. A similar situation that Dan Harpell endured prior to the 2015 season when Jackson took over. Returning to promote the speedway, located in Yates County, was something Jackson hoped to do and elevate the speedway to the next level.
“We certainly hoped that we would get the track back in 2016, as we had plans to make a few adjustments to help us elevate our game and put on an even better show for the fans. It just didn’t pan out and we couldn’t come to terms on a new lease with ownership. I want to personally wish Dean Hoag well in his future endeavors with the speedway and thank him for giving me the chance to operate the facility this season. I told many people I lived out a personal dream this season in getting to run a racetrack.”
There has been no official word on the future of Black Rock Speedway, but Hoag confirmed recently with former speedway official Steve Kellogg that the dirt track in Dundee will race in 2016 even if he has to promote the track himself. There has been no announcement yet on divisions that will race in 2016, or if there is a new promoter in line to take the speedway over for the upcoming season.
In the meantime, Jackson turned his attention to the 2015 season-ending awards banquet coming up on Saturday January 30th at the Benton Fire Department in Penn Yan, NY.
“We WILL have an awards banquet and that fact has never changed regardless of how the lease negotiations went. Our team is ramping up for one hell of a party to celebrate our successes this past season and the success our drivers and teams had on the track.”
Banquet tickets are $30 and must be pre-ordered by January 15th by calling (315) 575-4807 with credit cards being accepted for payment of tickets. No ticket orders will be able to be placed after the 15th and drivers are reminded that their attendance is mandatory in order to pick up point fund awards. K&B Catering will be taking the lead on the buffet dinner while Creekside Entertainment will be providing the banquet entertainment.
When asked if there were any lasting impressions Jackson would take away from his lone season promoting Black Rock Speedway, he quickly pointed to the fans and the racers.
“Black Rock Speedway is a special place because of the fans and racers that support that racetrack. We can’t thank our fans and racers enough for being loyal to us all season long, even when we ran through a few bumps in the road. Without their support, promoters and track owners cannot open the gates each week.”
Race Chaser Online will continue to follow this developing story in Upstate New York.