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Figure 8 races join Essex County Fair Friday

— For the past two years, the Essex County Fair has kicked off their week with the Haulin’ Junk Rollover Contest.

This year, moving to Friday night, Aug. 2, the rollover competition will be joined by a new event, the 4-cylinder figure 8 races at the grandstand area.

“It was something that we had seen at the Rensselaer County fair a couple of years ago and we really liked the idea,” Kyle Wrisley of Haulin’ Junk said. “It is something that has been around as long as demolition derbies and we wanted to try it here.”

The night will start at 6 p.m. with the rollover contest, where drivers will take their cars over a one-sided ramp to see how many times they can get the car to rotate, or flip in the air, before coming to rest.

Following the rollovers, the figure 8 event will begin with heat races. Racers will have to follow a course that will be made up of three turning areas which will lead to a pair of intersections, minus the stop signs.

“It is really going to be a double figure 8 course, where the cars will have to maneuver around the obstacles and there will be two intersections where cars can meet,” Wrisley said. “At that point, the cars can either try to avoid each other or hit.”

The heat races will be followed by the feature event, which will include two winners from the heats, where a champion will be crowned.

Wrisley said that they added the figure 8 event into the Haulin’ Junk program because the setup for the cars was similar to the setup for cars that will run in the following day’s (Aug. 3) Egglefield Bros. Demolition Derby.

“With the rollover, there is more involved in building the cars and you can get a little beat up doing it,” he said. “We brought the figure 8 into play because the setup is the same as a derby car. You could actually run in the figure 8 races and then take your car and run it in the derby the next day.”

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