MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. – On Saturday, Orange County Fair Speedway will be back on track with its season opener, a 43-lap race, run in honor of 64-year-old Jimmy Horton.
The northeast’s toughest competitors are expected to come looking for a special $4,300 prize, with the $4,300 prize and 43-lap distance in honor of the car number Horton has wheeled on dirt tracks for years.
The track has lost 10 early season races due to the COVID-19 shut down. The track will be opening in a limited capacity as the world continues to battle the COVID-19 virus.
Competitors will be welcomed back with two divisions per night. Opening night will feature the big-block modified division in a 43-lap race and a $4,300-to-win boosted purse with the sportsman division supporting.
Competitors will be expected to follow rigorous social distancing protocols and take all measures recommended by the CDC for reducing the spread of COVID-19. For a full breakdown on protocols and measures taken, Orange County Fair Speedway has added sections to their Competitor Info menu on their website (orangecountyfairspeedway.net).
Orange County Fair Speedway staff and management are also prepared with PPE and social distancing guidelines and will be enforcing measures on the grounds among themselves, competitors and teams.
Due to the restrictions that remain in place, Orange County Fair Speedway will not be able to welcome fans back into its grandstands. However, the track has a unique feature called the Drive-In Section. Fans will be allowed, in a limited capacity, to watch the race from the Drive-In Section.
Orange County Fair Speedway will pre-sell Drive-In parking spots by phone. Fans can call the speedway office at 845-342-2573, and reference a Drive-In seat map, found under the Fan Info menu option of the Orange County Fair Speedway website, to buy their drive-in spot.
Even in the Drive-In, social distancing rules must still be maintained. Usual Drive-in activities like cooking/grilling and children bicycling in between racing action will be prohibited until further notice. Fans will be permitted to bring already prepared food that must stay contained in their vehicle and/or designated parking area.
When the drive-in section inevitably fills up, many will be left without a seat. For those fans and others outside the area or at higher risk of illness, Orange County Fair Speedway will be presenting live streaming of the event. A broadcast quality, multi-camera production will be available for fans to stream on the Orange County Fair Speedway website for a fee of $24.99 starting at around 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 6.
Leading up to the event and on June 6, the D-Day Invasion Anniversary, Orange County Fair Speedway will also be collecting donations for Hudson Valley Honor Flight, a charity the speedway has worked with for the last two seasons to raise money to send aging U.S. military veterans in the region where they can visit the many memorials in their honor and receive recognition for their service.
The speedway will utilize Facebook to collect donations for the charity, where fans will also get to watch an exclusive free preview of the June 6 live stream by visiting www.facebook.com/OCFSRacing.