Hudson Speedway Puts You Close to the Action

August 12, 2016


by Len Lathrop

Have you been in the north end of Hudson, maybe just past Alvirne High School, on Sunday afternoon, and there is about five minutes of rumble, maybe a little less, maybe a little more and then it is gone, but then it is back?

Then you realize that it is an engine sound that you heard, yes, that is the rumble.  Old timers will know that it is racing at the oldest auto race track in New Hampshire; it is the Hudson Speedway, located at 120 Old Derry Road.

Racing during the summer is on Sunday and the practice laps start at 3:45 p.m. with the qualifying heats beginning at 5 p.m.  Sunday the 7th was the Don Hayes Memorial Sunday with racing for four types of cars and drivers, there were Road Runners, the S.T.A.R.S. Tour, Thunder Light and Rookie Stocks.

The cars in each class are very different as are the drivers.  With the S.T.A.R.S. on the track you saw cars from as far away as New York, some from Rhode Island and Connecticut.  These are super modified cars that while they at one time were highway cars, you would have to be a race expert to know what type of car they used to be.  Now they have boost engines putting out 500 horsepower and chassis that are only inches from the ground, with the tops of these cars less than 5 feet tall, special tires, racing seats and more.

The fastest cars were the Road Runner, which were identifiable by most, while many had replacement pieces of sheet metal here and there and, of course, roll bars and all the safety features.  In the pits it was mentioned that speed in the straight-aways could reach 70 miles per hour.

The Thunder Lights were smaller cars, four cylinders in nature, but also with all the equipment to make it safe for the drivers.

If you’re into racing, Hudson is a track where you are very close to the action and can offer a Sunday evening quite a bit different from 60 minutes on the tube.