344 East River Drive
Owego, New York 13827
August 2, 1997 Champion Speedway
From: Kim Gregory
Tonight's program included handicap racing which had been very popular
in the old days at the track. It certainly entertained the crowd tonight.
Attendance was down a little from the opening night, due to many other
events in town that night.
Jason (promoter) arrived about 4:30, delayed because he stopped to help Andy Harris
on the highway with a blown tire. REALLY BLOWN ! It took off a good amount of sheet
metal when it went. Andy had to buy another tire, and use his bike tie down straps
to hold the running board on.
The track was better than the opening night, but still rough, causing some
exciting upsets, sudden changes in the riders line, and lots of passing. Gary Hesmer destroyed his front wheel in a
early heat tangle and received some bad bruising.
A Division Two rider was taken to hospital with a suspected
broken collar bone.
A small tap by Diem knocked Chris Slabon (leading) down in a scratch
semi. Chris was well off the riding line, and the race was not red flagged
until Robert Slabon (Chris's dad) ran out onto the track, blocking the race. A long argument
ensued between the promoter, referee, the riders, and the fans about what
should be done. Throw Chris out because his pit crew blocked the race? Diem
for causing the crash? The referee quit, and Diem refused to ride again.
Leny McBride easily won the Scratch Main, showing how comfortable he is on a rough track.
How did I do? A lot of top riders still, I am in Division Two again.
I finish first in all my heats and semi final, and D2 main.
( from the outside, worked my up from the back, and won by a bike
length on the last corner.) I was put in a "Dash for Cash" with Diem
and Lazor (they were handicapped 50 yards) 3 laps, first place $200!
Dropped it while leading the second lap!!!!!!!!!!!! My leathers are more
holes and duct tape than leather now.
Gary had a bad crash, tangling his front wheel into another bike.
He was bruised bad in the groin, and did not want to sleep in the
truck as we originally planned to do. We drove home starting about
1:30 am and got in his drive at 5:30, so he could sleep in his own bed.
Many of the local riders have now seen this web site and are very impressed
and co-operating with lots of rider profiles, and am getting the actual scorekeepers
sheets for the results! Wow, they even phone the race results in to the newspapers!
I wish the Canadian tracks did this much.
I am off tonight on my vacation, back in a week and a half.