The growth of the IMCA SportMod division at Merced Speedway has speedway general manager Doug Williams seeing a bright future for the historic quarter mile clay oval.
“There has been tremendous interest in the SportMod division,” Williams said. “We had 18 SportMods on Saturday night, and the next day I was contacted by three more drivers who are coming next week. Add in the two or three under construction and the cars coming back after wrecking, and we should have a field of 24 cars.”
Williams is hoping to see the class grow in numbers so A, B, and C main events happen every time the SportMods race. Decades ago, Merced’s car counts were so high that it was common to have drivers work up from the B or C main to qualify for the feature, or “A” main.
The SportMods are affordable. And, Merced Speedway’s newly configured surface is perfect for the cars.
“It is the economics of engine expense,” Williams explained. “You can be competitive with a $3400 engine where in the modified division you may have to spend $15,000.”
This Saturday, the speedway will have a spectacular event. In addition to the SportMods, the IMCA modifieds will be featured. Car counts should be high with sister track Antioch Speedway hosting Sprint car races.
The first visit of the year by the Super Street Stock division to Merced Speedway is also on tap Saturday night. The track’s Super Street division allows cars from Antioch and the West Coast Super Stocks (WCSS) to compete.
Rounding out the Saturday program will be hobby stocks, which are also growing in numbers.
“We had 13 cars last week, and there are more being dusted off and worked on,” Williams said.