Sunset Speedway Excited to Cement ‘Big Z Memorial 46’ as Annual Crown Jewel

Sunset Speedway > Sunset News > Sunset Speedway Excited to Cement ‘Big Z Memorial 46’ as Annual Crown Jewel

INNISFIL, ON – With drivers and fans all over Ontario still feeling the sting of Bill Zardo Sr’s passing, Sunset Speedway promoter Brian Todish – along with a myriad of supporters and donators – has made sure that the Big Z’s name and legacy will live on.
On Saturday May 13th, Sunset will play host to the inaugural Big Z Memorial 46 for the LUDUH NASCAR Hot Rod Division. The race will boast the largest purse in division history and will be the ideal way to help honour Zardo’s contributions to Ontario’s short track scene as a whole.
“This is something we knew we had to do for Bill and his entire family,” says Todish. “We wanted an event that we could put on year after year to remember the Big Z and to let the family know that he’ll never not be synonymous with racing in Ontario”
“With that said – I never imagined that it would take off like it did with the lap sponsors and the donors and that have stepped up. My phone has been going off nonstop and our email inbox has been full since February with people wanting to be a part of this race and to help make it the biggest thing that’s ever happened for the Hot Rod Division”
The event has utilized a crowd-funding technique that has worked masterfully for Sunset in the past, with fellow racers, local business owners, industry personnel and fans all purchasing lap sponsorships to boost the purse and make May 13th a night that will not soon be forgotten.
“The lap sponsors kept rolling in and every single dollar of those donations went directly to the purse,” says Todish. “I put up $4600 for the winner and the lap sponsors have boosted the payout the rest of the way through the field. It’s been incredible to see. This will be the single biggest race the Hot Rod Division has ever had”
As a special ‘Thank You’ to every supporter that has purchased one of the 46 lap sponsorships, a raffle will be held on the day of the event to award a one of a kind poster board featuring each of the laps and their corresponding sponsor, signed by all 24 of the race’s starters.
For Todish, this event will be far from a one-off, with the speedway elated to play host to the tribute race for years to come.
“Bill Zardo was one of the biggest supporters of racing that I’ve ever met in my life. Wether it was his own racing, his son and daughter, his grandsons or any number of other drivers and events across Ontario. Bill supported it and invested in it. And that will never be forgotten. Ontario racing would probably look a lot different today had it not been for Bill and the contributions he made”
“There will always – always – be a place on our schedule for the Big Z Memorial. We’ll honour his name for as long as there is a Sunset Speedway. He was a huge supporter of Sunset for a long, long time and we’re going to make sure that no one ever forgets the role that he played here and the contributions that he made. This event is just going to keep growing. It’s one of our newest Crown Jewels and I can’t wait to see how far we can take it and how big it can be.”
The event’s Fast Qualifier will receive a $250.00 pole award courtesy of Checkered Flag Bar and Grill, with the 2nd-place qualifier receiving a $100 bonus courtesy of Jesse Brown. In addition to the monetary payout, there will be a random draw post-race to award one of the event’s starters with a FREE rebuilt 3-speed transmission courtesy of Marvin Ella and Saugeen Shores Transmission. Plus a Best Appearing Car award from Kris Country and other contingencies.
The $14,000 purse will be paid out as follows for the 24-car field.
1. $4600
2. $1000
3. $700
4. $600
5. $500
6. $330
7. $330
8. $330
9. $330
10. $330
11. $275
12. $275
13. $275
14. $275
15. $275
16. $270
17. $270
18. $270
19. $270
20. $270
21. $260
22. $260
23. $260
24. $260
All non transfers from the event’s Last Chance Qualifier will receive $100 in Tow Money.
For racers this event will utilize 2 new and 2 used tires. The used tires must have a tread depth of 5 or less when checked and have a visible serial number. All tires must be registered with tech before practice begins.
All additional information for the Big Z Memorial 46, including gate times and ticket prices, can be found at