Gas City I-69 Speedway’s Gappens Accepts General Manager Position at Eldora; Boos to Take Over as Gas City Promoteradmin
GAS CITY, Ind., April 18 — Although Gas City I-69 Speedway was silent over the weekend, a great deal was happening behind the scenes. Jerry Gappens, promoter of the quarter-mile Grant County dirt track for the last four years, has accepted the position of general manager of the famous Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, and will start work at Eldora immediately. Larry Boos, the promoter of both Winchester Speedway and Montpelier Motor Speedway, will take over Gappens’ position and become the new promoter at Gas City I-69 Speedway too.
Boos, who was the director of operations at Eldora Speedway for more than 30 years, will hit the ground running, as Gas City’s “Test and Tune” is Wednesday, April 27, and the season opener is Friday, May 6. No changes to the schedule or the class rules are anticipated.
“It’s not unusual for good people to be offered new opportunities, and although the timing was not ideal for us, we cannot thank Jerry enough for the tremendous job he has done at Gas City over the last four years,” said Jack Himelick, owner of Gas City I-69 Speedway. “We wish him only the best. We also feel extremely lucky to have someone with Larry’s experience agree to take over.”
“It is very bittersweet for me, as I’ve put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into running and improving Gas City I-69 Speedway,” Gappens said. “It has been my honor to work with the staff, teams, drivers, sponsors and fans at Gas City. I’m proud of what we built. Gas City will always hold a special place in my heart.”
“I look forward to joining the competent Gas City I-69 Speedway team that is in place, and to continue the great plans that Jerry has worked so hard to put into place,” said Boos. “The excitement and competition levels have made Gas City a Friday night staple in the Hoosier state, and I am excited to come on board with the team.”
Boos said he intends to retain all of Gas City’s current staff members.
In addition to promoting Winchester Speedway and Montpelier Motor Speedway, Boos is the owner and promoter of the popular Rumble in Fort Wayne each winter. He has also been the manager of the Ohio Indoor Kart Series for 44 years.
Over the off-season Gappens developed an exciting schedule of over 20 events for Gas City I-69 Speedway in 2022, primarily on Friday nights.
Located approximately 70 miles north of Indianapolis, Gas City I-69 Speedway opened in 1986. Bull Bradley was one of the original co-owners.
After operating for a few years, the track went dormant for several years until Himelick purchased the facility in 1996. Himelick has made significant upgrades during his ownership. He brought in Jiggs Thomason in 1997 to promote the track and the two enjoyed a successful 17-year run until Thomason’s retirement. Various promoters rented the facility for special events only prior to Gappens’ arrival.
Gappens, a Kokomo, Ind. native, leased the facility in 2018 and has developed it into one of the premier weekly short tracks in the nation. It is the site of two USAC NOS Energy Drink national midget events and also hosts two USAC AMSOIL national sprint car events.
Notable drivers who have competed at the speedway include four-time NASCAR Cup Champion Jeff Gordon, who raced winged sprint cars there in the late 1980s, and Kyle Larson, the reigning NASCAR Cup champion. Popular drivers like Dave Darland, J.J. Yeley, Cory Kruseman, Levi Jones, Brady Bacon and the late Tony Elliott also enjoyed great success competing at Gas City. The defending track champions are Scotty Weir of Marion, Ind. (non-wing sprint cars); Bub Roberts of Warren, Ind. (modifieds); Andy Bishop of Gas City (street stocks) and James Headley Jr. of Wabash, Ind. (hornets).
Gas City I-69 Speedway is located on State Road 22, approximately a half-mile west of exit 259 of Interstate 69, about halfway between Indianapolis and Fort Wayne, Ind.
Teams, drivers and fans are asked to monitor the track’s website at gascityI69Speedway.com and its social media outlets for up-to-date information as usual. The track is on Twitter (@GasCitySpeedway), Instagram (@GasCitySpeedway) and Facebook (GasCitySpeedwayOnTheGas).