Lease papers have been signed and a team of new promoters is in place for the upcoming stock car racing season at Senoia Raceway. The track will be operated by Bill Massey, Jr., his son Mayes Massey and Doug Stevens during the 2015 racing season. The trio brings a renewed enthusiasm along with big plans for the 3/8ths mile clay speedway.
“We are going to bring this place back to the way it once was,” said Bill Massey, Jr. “I have great memories from this track.”
Douglasville’s Massey, Jr. brings along his racing heritage that began with his father racing at area tracks and continuing with his life-long love affair with motorsports. His experience in racing, as a crew member and track official will bring new life to the track that has been operated by Tim and Tony Moses for the past five seasons.
Massey, Jr. and his team saw an opportunity after hearing the Moses’ would not return after their lease of the facility would run out. He, son Mayes and Stevens began working on the deal soon after the completion of the 2014 racing season in September.
“I am looking forward to doing something I enjoy so much,” said Mayes Massey. “I love every bit of the sport and I am looking forward to this new chapter.”
Griffin’s Doug Stevens has a stellar resume in racing. Stevens has several national, regional and local titles behind the wheel of a legends car. He has competed with national touring series, stock cars, trucks and most recently has found success in dirt late model racing. He has also helped many drivers with his motorsports company. Stevens will oversee most of the race track operation including track prep and technical inspection.
“This will be a new challenge for me,” said Stevens. “I plan to be involved in all aspects of the track after I first complete the track reconfiguration.”
Stevens went to work minutes after the new lease agreement was signed as he began tearing down the interior concrete wall in the speedway turns. He plans to widen the corners to nearly 90 feet allowing more of a racing groove and to create an opportunity for drivers to race side by side.
“We want to create a racier track with better entrance points and exit points in the corners,” said Stevens. “We will put a dirt berm on the bottom of the track that will have additional grass space before new interior barriers protecting some of the race teams on the infield.”
Plans also include two hundred dump truck loads of new clay to be brought in prior to the season kick-off in March. Stevens will create a compound banking in the corners which should also equate into better racing for the local stock car drivers.
“I want the drivers racing down the straightaway trying to figure out where they are going to run through the corner,” added Stevens. “Where can I pass the man in front of me or where is my car going to run the fastest because all the options will be possible.”
Many veteran racers have said recently that one of the issues with Senoia Raceway’s return to dirt track racing was the interior walls in the corners were limiting the drivers choices for racing. The narrow corners made it difficult to race side by side or pass. The walls were put in place during the 80’s transition to asphalt. Those walls remained in place when the Moses re-opened the track in 2010 in the return to dirt racing.
“These changes should give us better racing action and drivers running in multiple grooves,” said Stevens. “Speaking with Shane Clanton, Ray Cook and Gary Winger a few weeks ago, they agreed that the wider turns should get this place back to a great place to race.”
The new promoter team has also received good response to their plans to add the Super Late Models to the weekly program. The high-powered, top level race cars have been absent from the program since reopening five seasons ago. The group will also run Crate Late Models weekly and have the Limited Late Models return giving fans the opportunity to see three divisions of late models every Saturday night this season.
“The Super Late Models have not competed at this track in almost thirty years,” said Bill Massey, Jr. “The excitement surrounding this has been unbelievable.”
Saturday night racing action will also include all of the divisions that competed last season with the B-Cadets, Hobby Stock, Mini Stock and Bombers returning to the weekly schedule. The Legends Cars will also compete three weekends every month in 2015.
“We will keep the rules pretty much the same with the divisions that competed here last year,” said Mayes Massey. “We are looking at some ways to incorporate some variances allowing drivers from other tracks to visit Senoia Raceway. But nobody needs to worry about having to change their cars around a bunch or building all new race cars.”
If all the track changes continue as planned, the trio will open for practice sessions in February. Currently, the weekly schedule will open on Saturday, March 7th and continue into the fall months.
“We have talked to a few series and will look at some special events,” said Mayes Massey. “Right now we just want to get the race track ready to go and get the facility ready for the fans.”
Fans, drivers and crew members are encouraged to visit the Senoia Raceway website at www.senoiaraceway.com for updates, schedules and additional news. The track also offers an e-mail newsletter (sign-up on the website) and Facebook pages for social media access to news and information.