Lake Odessa, MI (Friday, December 11, 2020) - Jeff Dice and his I-96 Speedway have been teasing parts of their 2021 schedule through releases of series schedules the past several weeks. With another announcement made on Thursday, fans are starting to see a trend for next season - an investment in sprint car racing.
The first clue to the 2021 schedule for I-96 Speedway included the release of the Ollie’s Bargain Outlet All-Star Circuit of Champions’ schedule. I-96 features two dates on the tour, starting with an $8,500 to win show on Friday, May 14th; part of a double-header weekend for the All-Stars which concludes in Joliet, IL at the Dirt Oval at Route 66. The second show on Friday, August 20th falls into another double-header paying $5,000 to win at I-96 before the Circuit heads south to Plymouth Speedway in Plymouth, IN for a $6,000 affair. The All-Stars will also hit other Great Lakes region tracks like Gas City I-69 Speedway, Attica Raceway Park, Fremont Speedway, and Kokomo Speedway.
On Thursday, I-96 officials announced via Facebook additional sprint car matchups for 2021, suggesting more dates were in the works. The post reads, “First date of many to come,” and includes tags of the Great Lakes Super Sprints (GLSS), Great Lakes Traditional Sprints(GLTS), Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series (BOSS Sprints), and the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series (Lucas Oil ASCS). The post also announces that the event, which appears to include at least four sprint car sanctions, will be a double-header on Friday and Saturday, May 7th and 8th.
In 2019, GLSS and Lucas Oil ASCS teamed up for a similar show that saw Sam Hafertepe, Jr hold of locals Ryan Ruhl and Phil Gressman on Friday night before doubling down with another win Saturday night over Gressman and Blake Hahn. The Lucas Oil ASCS website currently does not list any additional dates.
Speculation is well supported for several additional sprint car dates at I-96 Speedway after a number of sprint car events graced the limited 2020 schedule. Of the 12 nights listed on the I-96 Speedway results page, seven included either GLSS or GLTS, including the near sell-out crowd at the season opener on June 12th and the season finale which included both GLSS and GLTS during the Roll the Dice invitational on October 9th and 10th.
The 2021 season will mark the fourth year new promoter Jeff Dice will be behind the wheel of the Lake Odessa race track. His tenure has been known for high profile events, including multiple shows with the now-disbanded American Ethanol Late Model Tour, World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Cars, DIRTcar UMP Summer Nationals Hell Tour, and World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series.
For more information on I-96 Speedway, log onto www.i96speedway.com and follow the Speedway on Facebook at I-96 Speedway.
For more stories from around the region, be sure to log onto www.horsepowerhappenings.com. Listen to on-demand episodes of the Horsepower Happenings Podcast, with new episodes every Monday night at 9:00 pm.
Story - Zach Hiser, Horsepower Happenings
Photo - Jim DenHamer