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Speedway opens season tonight

Perhaps the biggest season of stock car racing in Madera Speedway’s history begins on tonight, with the 2017 season opener featuring the RPM Mortgage Pro Late Model Series 125 for $5,000 to win.

The Pro Late Models join the 51FIFTY Jr. Late Models 75 in a dual-headliner show, both televised for a later broadcast on MAVTV. Toyota Sedans, Modified Super Toyotas, and F4s round out the night.

Last year, Matt Erickson won five races and was a perfect eight-for-eight in top-two finishes en route to the 2016 RPM Mortgage Pro Late Model Series championship. He won the season opener last year as a springboard to winning the first three races of the season.

“We started out good last year winning the $5,000 to win, so this year hopefully we can come home with the championship again,” Erickson said. “Same old car and old motor so nothing has changed on our end. Car is feeling good and its the best its ever been. Worst case scenario we can go back to the old faithful setup.”

Erickson will look to bottle that magic again against a hard hitting field including rookie Austin Herzog, 14, who will run both the Pro Late Models and Jr. Late Models this season. The 2016 championship runner up Garland Tyler returns to action.

while still searching for his first Pro Series win, along with multi-time track champion Rick Thompson, Rookie of the Year Logan Zampa, and more than 20 other drivers from across the western United States. 2015 Pro Late Model champion Buddy Shepherd is also expected on Saturday night.

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