Here’s What’s Happening at Madison International Speedway
By John Wells
Listen to Jason Tyler at Minute 29.
Oregon, WI (Sunday, February 26, 2012)- It’s now less than three months away from the first green flag of the 2012 racing season at Madison International Speedway. Track officials are working diligently to assure race teams and fans that this will be the greatest season ever at the historic speedway located two miles east of Oregon, Wisconsin.
Of course fans can expect a great weekly racing program along with exciting special events such as the Joe Shear Classic featuring the ASA Midwest Tour on May 6th, the Fireworks Extravaganza on June 29th featuring ThunderCat, the ARCA Series in August, and the Fall Classic in September but a variety of new looks as well.
“We are very, very excited about the changes we have made and what lies ahead for the 2012 season,” said MIS General Manager Dave Grueneberg.
Leading the way as the main catalyst of change at MIS has been the new marketing and business manager Jason Tyler. “Jason has great ideas and as a former racer brings a unique perspective to his marketing position at MIS,” said Grueneberg.
“I am really happy with the progress we have made so far. We want the MIS experience to be a positive one for all involved…the teams, fans, sponsors, and employees. The response to what we are trying to do has been received very favorably so far,” said Tyler.
Here’s what’s new for 2012…
Weekly Racing Program: The weekly racing program will feature three divisions this season: Late Models, Sportsman, and Legends. The Late Models and Sportsman will race on the half-mile while the Legends battle it out on the quarter-mile “Ring of Fire.”
Weekly Racing Program Update from MIS
It won’t be long until the green flag waves on the weekly racing season at Madison International Speedway. Wisconsin’s Fastest Half-Mile and the Ring of Fire will come alive on Sunday, May 27th for the weekly racing opener before going under the lights on Friday, June 1st where weekly racing will continue until August 17th.
Three divisions will comprise the weekly racing program in 2012. The Rockweiler Insulation Late Model and Sportsman divisions will battle it out on the half-mile while the Pellitteri Waste Systems Legends take to the quarter-mile. The Super Late Models will return to the speedway in 2012 joining the weekly program on three nights during the season.
The racing format will also see some changes in 2012. All divisions will get two laps of qualifying similar to previous years. The qualifying times will determine placement in the odd / even qualifying races.
The top six qualifiers for the Late Models will participate in the six lap Morrison’s Auto Parts Fast Dash. Separate point standings will be maintained for the dash series with the overall winner at the end of the season earning $750 with $500 for second place and $250 for third. The starting order for the Dash will be determined by a dice roll.
All cars will compete in odd / even qualifying races. Late model qualifying races will be 15 laps, Sportsman will be 8 laps, and Legends will be 12 laps. A dice roll / invert will determine the starting order of the qualifying races.
Feature laps in 2012 will see Late Models at 40 laps, Sportsman with 20 laps, and 25 laps for the Legends. A dice roll / invert will determine the starting order for the features.
Qualifying and feature points will remain the same as they were last year. A new point system will be in place for the qualifying races. The winners will receive 25 points, 22 points for second, 19 points for third, 16 points for fourth, 13 points for fifth, 10 points for sixth, 7 points for seventh, with the remainder of the field earning 5 points.
Eleven points events will be on the schedule for 2012 with the season champions being crowned on Season Championship Night on August 17th.
Champions from 2011 were Jeremy Miller (Late Models), Robert Hansberry Jr. (Sportsman), and Andy Jones (Legends).
The Legends division will have a new technical / race director in Jerry Priesgen. “Jerry will bring a no nonsense approach to the Legends division,” said MIS General Manager Dave Grueneberg.
Triple Crown Challenge: Super late models will be returning to MIS in 2012 for a special series known as the Triple Crown Challenge. The division will be running three separate events during the season with a fourth event slated to determine the overall champion. “It’s going to be great having the super lates back at MIS this season. We are hoping the drivers come out and support this series,” said Grueneberg.
New Promotions: Fans can expect special events each night of the season. “We are going to have community / county discount nights, tributes to veterans and area volunteers, and many, many novelty nights,” said Tyler. “We want people to have fun when they come to the track.” Drivers will also have a great opportunity to get to know the weekly racing stars with several “Meet the Driver” and autograph nights planned.
There will also be many activities for the kids highlighted by the Quest Industrial Turn Four Kids Club. The young fans can expect contests and drawings each night and many surprises throughout the season. There will be Kids’ Nights, Kiddie Tractor Pulls, Bus Rides on Wisconsin’s Fastest Half-Mile, Balloon Tosses, etc. Membership forms will be available on our website shortly.
Tractor and truck pulling action will return to MIS with a new look on Saturday, June 2nd when the Badger State Tractor Pullers (Super Farm, Hot Farm, 4×4 Pro Street Diesel Trucks), Tri County Pullers (Mini Rods), and a spectator gas and diesel street legal truck pull take to the new pulling surface inside the “Ring of Fire.”
New Logo: MIS recently released a brand new logo.
New Website: Fans can follow all of the action at MIS at / or /. “We are very happy with the progress of our website,” said Tyler, who is also coordinating the new social media program at MIS. Fans can also “Like” the track on Facebook.
Other updates: MIS is happy to announce that TD Graphics will be the official apparel, embroidery, and screen printing provider for the speedway. Pepsi Cola returns as the official soft drink of MIS.
MIS will also be sponsoring NASCAR events broadcast on The Big 1070 in Madison. A series of advertisements promoting the upcoming season are already airing on the station.
Stay tuned for more updates from Madison International Speedway. MIS is located two miles east of Oregon just south of Highway 138 on Sunrise Road.