Column By: MATTHEW WIERNASZ / RPW – EPPING, NH – The Star Troopers will be getting to head into year number two for the 2018 at Star Speedway in Epping, NH.
It all started in February of 2017 and the first year of the program went very well. They ended the year with 11 kids driving a race car which was a great turnout for the short period of time. This year the program will exceed with 16-18 kids racing and that was as of registration.
They are looking to start practice in the next month so that the kids can be ready for their first race on Memorial Day Weekend which will be Saturday, May 26. There is actually two kids moving up from the Star Troopers program into the Six Shooter Division.
Amanda Avery’s two daughters race in the Star Troopers division. It’s been huge for her two daughters to race at the track. Kids are shy and in their own comfort zone and they don’t like to come out of that.
” What we’ve experienced with our own kids as well as other children is that when they are in something they love. They kind of come out of that shell a little bit and with the involvement that they have with the amount of fans that are cheering them on. It is a strict program so they kind of get that structure as well but they have the security of knowing that they are going out there. They have people to support them. All of the safety personnel and track workers right down to the track owner have been so vocal and how much they appreciate the kids in giving them recognition they need. That you can see how excited they are when they get out of their car at the end of the race .” Avery Said
At the end of each race, each kid stops at the flagstand. Each kid gets out and they will choose two or three kids randomly to be interviewed for that week and the fans are able to recognize all the kids.
” The kids are so excited to see the reaction of the fans as well as having the opportunity to be interviewed. The fans come down. Other kids come down tell them what a great job. The flagman comes down. Its huge. As far as confidence goes, they partake in different driver meet and greet sessions so the fans are coming down on the track and getting an autograph picture and the kids are building those relationships with so many more people than what they would’ve been.” Avery Said
Avery’s youngest daughter is a very shy person but if a fan would start talking to her about her race car. She will light right up and tell a fan anything and everything they want to know about her race car. Even her school has commented on how much the racing has helped her.
Avery feels the Star Troopers division is a hit. They expected it to be a hit but not to the extreme that it is which they are completely thankful for everybody that has stood behind them on taking on this.
” We’re definitely growing. There is a lot of interest out there still. I think people may want to see another year and maybe get a feel for it. Its a big commitment for a parent to put an eight year old or even a 14 year old in a full size car. I think our biggest thing is safety and instructure within the program.” Avery Said
The Star Troopers are getting more interest each week. There is not a lot of cars out there. There is a big expense up front. Its pretty maintainable once a team has the car and all of the safety.
The parents in the Star Troopers division have been amazing and very supportive. Avery thinks the biggest thing that makes the program succeed is there is very strict expectations because of the safety and for what it is involved. The parents are always willing to tip in.
The expectation set from day one is that there isn’t a winner because they are not racing for points. There is no trophies every week. Everybody in the division is a winner which is why everyone is recognize every week.
Here is the 2018 Star Troopers Schedule where these young kids will race at Star Speedway:
- 9/2: Hudson
- 9/15: Wiscasset