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Part of I-79 racing year wiped out

by Rob Peirce

SPORTS WRITER

A .286 average in baseball is considered decent. In auto racing, it leads to canceling part of the season.

Out of seven races on the Interstate 79 Speedway's slate this year, only two of them actually have been run. The five cancellations were because of the weather, and the fact that they've been piling up finally has caught up.

The first leg of the West Virginia State Championship Series, which was canceled four straight weeks, won't be made up, track promoter Steve Baker said. Instead of moving everything back, it's time to look forward.

"We're going to go back to the schedule as originally planned," he said.

Today's race of the semi-lates should go off without a hitch unless Mother Nature interrupts, Baker said. The problem is, it's raining at the most inopportune time.

"We're pretty fortunate in that it hasn't continually rained," he said. "We've got to keep the track in pretty good conditions during the week. In most cases, we can survive a lot of rain. We just can't race while it's raining."

The amount of rain it takes to cancel a race varies on previous weather and the forecast, Baker said. Today's track should be fast.

Meanwhile, in Tyler County, only one of 10 races has been canceled because of the weather, Tyler Speedway's Scott Farley said.

"We have great drainage," he said. "If it would pour today, we'd have to water it tomorrow."

After this week's race at I-79, the midseason championships are scheduled for June 15, with double points in all divisions. The second leg of the state championship series for late models is scheduled for June 29.

Sports writer Rob Peirce can be reached at 626-1444 or by e-mail at sports@exponent-telegram.com.

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