By: Ron Szczerba

Fonda, NY – A-Verdi Storage Containers will present the racing action at the “Track of Champions” Fonda Speedway this Saturday, June 26 featuring the first appearance of the season for the Patriot Sprint Tour 360 Sprint Cars in a $3,000 to win and $300 to start main event.

Also on the racing card will be the Sunoco Modifieds, the Swagger Factory Apparel Crate 602 Sportsman, the Algonkin Motel Pro Stocks in event number four of the American Racer/Lias Tire Super Six Series Event paying $1,000 to win, the Montgomery County Office for Aging Inc. Limited Sportsman, and the Fonda Fair Four Cylinders.

Gates open at 4:00 p.m. with hot laps at 6:00 p.m. and racing at 7:00 p.m. Adult Admission is $15 with Seniors (ages 65 and over) $13 and Kids 11 and under FREE!

The infield drive-in will be open ($70 for up to four passes) and you can register for a spot by going to https://fonda-speedway.ticketleap.com/drive-in-request…/

Pit Admission is $35 (Non-Members) or $30 (Fonda Members).

The Fonda Speedway Kid’s Club will also be holding their annual bicycle giveaway so if any race teams or anyone else is interested in providing a bicycle for the giveaway you can contact Ashley Abeling on Facebook or just bring a bicycle with you to the track on Saturday. The Kid’s Club is located underneath the grandstands at gate two (down towards turn four) at the east end of the covered grandstands.

Please also visit the Fonda Speedway Hall of Fame & Museum which opens at 3:00 p.m. every Saturday evening!

With permission from Mike Emhof of the Patriot Sprint tour, here is Earl Halaquist as Remembered by Michael Monnat.

By the first time I saw Earl Halaquist race a sprint car for the United Racing Club (URC) in 1960 at the Five Mile Point Speedway in Kirkwood, New York, he was already half-way through his career. Yet, at that point, he hadn’t even begun to receive national notoriety. That all changed with the dawn of the Sixties and his prodigious and overwhelmingly spectacular use of George Nesler’s sprint car racing equipment.

Halaquist had been around the sprint car game since arriving home after serving in the U.S. Navy in World War II, making his debut in 1946 in Little Valley, N.Y. From that point forward through the Fifties, he raced with sanctions like the Eastern States Racing Association (ESRA), the Big Car Racing Association (BCRA), and URC.

Back to that July night at Five Mile Point, Halaquist didn’t win the feature, but he was impressive getting a second place finish behind Hal Rettberg. That was only the beginning as the decade that changed the country belonged to the Earl Halaquist/George Nesler duo.

Six URC titles (1962, ’64, ’66, ’67, ’68, ’69) impressed the hell out of me and, during that time; I caught every local show and went to a few regional shows, as well. Halaquist won on dirt and asphalt. He won on the big tracks and the bullrings. In short, he won on everything and everywhere; he won 14 features in 1967 alone. Along the way, he garnered 52 URC main events; most coming at a time when ‘having a roof over your head’ meant living at home.

The quiet, unassuming family man from Sidney, N.Y., had a full-time job with Bendix, in addition to running up and down the East Coast chasing feature wins and point titles. He retired after spending 1970 driving midget cars with the American Race Drivers Club (ARDC). I didn’t meet Earl Halaquist in person until 1992 when he was inducted in the We-Go Racing Fan Club Hall of Fame. In 1996, he was inducted into the Eastern Motorsport Press Association (EMPA) Hall of Fame and, in 2000; he was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame (NSCHoF).

In 2010, he was posthumously inducted into the URC Hall of Fame. His many skills spoke for themselves and everything about him read ‘class act.’ Earl Satch Halaquist, who was born on September 7, 1925, in Rock Rift, N.Y., died on January 12, 2001, at the age of seventy-five. Great driver, great man. Nothing else needs to be said!

Thomas Schmeh is once again putting together a lap sponsorship program for this coming Saturday’s Earl Halaquist Memorial at the Fonda Speedway! If you are interested in sponsoring a lap, please contact him or a PST official. Laps are $20 each.


8/14/2004       Dundee, NY     Blake Breen                             ESS/PSG

8/15/2005       Dundee, NY     George Suprick                        ESS/PSG

8/12/2006       Dundee, NY     Chuck Hebing                          ASCS/PSG

7/22/2007       Fonda, NY        Justin Barger                           ESS

8/5/2008         Fonda, NY        Justin Barger                           ESS

5/23/2009       Fonda, NY        Doug Emery                            ESS

5/29/2010       Fonda, NY        Justin Barger                           ESS

5/28/2011       Fonda, NY        Justin Barger                           ESS

5/26/2012       Fonda, NY        Jessica Zemken-Friesen          ESS

9/21/2013       Fonda, NY        Jeff Cook                                 ESS

8/26/2014       Afton, NY         Chuck Hebing                          ESS

8/25/2015       Afton, NY         Matt Tanner                            ESS

8/23/2016       Afton, NY         Steve Piorier                            ESS

8/12/2017       Fonda, NY        Danny Varin                            ESS

5/26/2018       Fonda, NY        Danny Varin                            ESS

9/27/2019       Fonda, NY        Jordan Poirier                         PATRIOT


5/28/2016       Stewart Friesen

9/24/2016       Davie Franek

5/27/2017       Jared Zimbardi

9/27/2019       Jordan Poirier

9/26/2019       Josh Pieniazek

Since 1953, the “Track of Champions” Fonda Speedway has hosted the best in stock car racing. Under the management of BD Motorsports Media LLC, the speedway will operate weekly on Saturday nights from April through August plus several special events. Fonda Speedway is located on the Montgomery County Fairgrounds off New York State Thruway Exit No. 28 at 21 S. Bridge Street Fonda, NY 12068.

Fonda Speedway is on the web at www.thefondaspeedway.com. To learn more, call the office at 518.915.4395, like Fonda Speedway on Facebook www.facebook.com/thefondaspeedwy or follow the speedway on Twitter: @thefondaspdwy.