Following a successful two-race Carolina weekend for the Rislone URC Sprint Series, URC and the USCS sprint groups agreed to plan the two race dates again in 2014.
The two race weekend presented a co-sanctioned show at the Carolina Speedway in Gastonia, N.C., on Friday night and a visit to the Cherokee Speedway in Gafney, S.C., on Saturday night, both produced big crowds and strong car counts of thirty-one sprints on Friday night and twenty-seven sprint cars on Saturday night.
The “Carolina Kid,” eighteen year old Eric Riggins Jr. made a clean sweep, winning both events representing USCS as J.J. Grasso of URC clinched the 2013 URC series championship.
For 28-year-old Grasso, this marks his second URC Championship, also taking the title in 2009. Grasso’s home town is Pedricktown, N.J., where he earned the racing nickname of “The Jersey Jet” for his sometimes aggressive but always exciting, on the edge driving style.
Currently, Grasso lives in Middletown, Del. With URC, Grasso owns 25 career feature wins and earned four of those victories in the 2013 season. Grasso is also a two time winner of the 410 sprint car Jersey Rush event at the New Egypt Speedway, showing his versatility of competing against the best sprint car drivers of central Pennsylvania.
In 2013, Grasso drove the Eldreth Construction sprint car owned by Kenny Eldreth of Conowingo, Md. Eldreth was a long time 360 sprint car owner who raced weekly with URC. Prior to 2012, as car owner, Eldreth had six URC victories with his son Jon, at the wheel. The Eldreth team sat idle for a short time before teaming up with Grasso in 2012. The new team ran a limited schedule in 2012 with URC and did win one feature. In 2013, the team put out a full effort to win the Rislone URC Championship title and successfully achieved that goal Saturday night.
“I’m just tickled to death”, said Ken Eldreth. “The whole team just worked so hard to win this championship driving from New Jersey every night to work on the car,” Eldreth said. “As for JJ, we love him like a son. I watched him grow up and mature into the great sprint car driver he is. I always wanted to win a URC Championship and it finally happened, and now, the pressure is off”.
One point race still remains for URC, taking place Oct. 19 at Grandview Speedway. URC will be part of the Grandview Thunder 5-25’s features only program getting underway at 6 p.m. URC’s top 20 in points will be the guaranteed starters in the URC feature event.