Moving into mid-October, and the arrival of cooler weather, the racing calendar still finds plenty of local racing action.
Lincoln, Port Royal, Baps, Mahoning Valley and Grandview Speedways are just a few with racing events on their 2018 schedule.
Williams Grove Speedway hosted their final event last Friday night, as Lucas Wolfe was named the 2018 410 sprint car champion and Kevin Nouse earned the 358 sprint car title. Mike Heffner collected the 410 sprint car owner crown, of the car driven by Greg Hodnett. Hodnett lost his life a few weeks back racing at nearby Baps Speedway in Newberrytown.
Tower City native, Ryan Hand was named the Mechanic of the Year Award recipient in the 410 sprint car division. Hand, cut his racing teeth working for the ZEMCO team of Tower City, before moving to the Heffner operation a few years ago. The 43-year old earned the prestigious award four of the past five seasons while working with Hodnett and the Heffner #27 team, and ironically announced his forthcoming retirement from the sport at season’s end, only a few weeks before Hodnett’s fatal wreck.
Port Royal Speedway hosts a special doubleheader Friday night show tonight, featuring the 410 sprint cars and modifieds. The sprints will be competing for a $4,000 paycheck in the 25-lap feature event, while the small block/big block modified 40-lap feature will pay $5,000 to the winner.
Moving along to tomorrow’s schedule, Lincoln Speedway kicks off action at 1:30 with a full program for the 410 sprint cars with the Hank Gentzler Memorial; a make-up feature for the 358 sprint cars and a full program for the class, as well…heading over to Baps Speedway with a 5 p.m. start time, the 358 and 410 sprint car divisions will compete in full racing programs and features, along with a make-up feature for the 358 sprinters…Grandview Speedway hosts their final 2018 NAPA Auto Parts Thunder on the Hill event, with a $5,000 to win, 40-lap feature for the modifieds. The sportsman and 305 sprint cars will also be in action, with a 6 p.m. start time…Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway hosts their annual “Octoberfast” at 4 p.m., with special extra distance events for each division. The modifieds will compete in a 150-lap main event, while the late models and street stocks will battle in their respective 75-lap features. The dirt modifieds and hobby stocks will battle in 50-lap main events and the flashback stock cars will complete the program.
Recapping last weekend’s 47th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Super DIRT Week at Oswego Speedway, C.D. Beauchamp scored the 50-lap Pro Stock Championship; Shane Pecore was the Chevrolet Performance 75 Sportsman Championship winner; Australian Peter Britten collected the $20,000 Camping World 150 for the 358 Modifieds and Larry Wight drove his Gypsum Express #99L to the Billy Whittaker Cars 200 Victory Lane, taking the $50,000 paycheck.
The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series returns to action at the zMAX Dragway outside of Charlotte, this weekend, following last week’s AAA Texas Nationals. The 11th Annual Carolina Nationals is the fourth of six events in the “Countdown to the Championship” for the stars of the NHRA. Fox Sports1 will provide one hour of live qualifying action tonight at 5:30, followed by three hours of live eliminations coverage Sunday, beginning at 2 p.m.
Each of last weekend’s winners in Texas are the point leaders in their respective classes; Steve Torrence has scored all three Top Fuel wins in the “Countdown”; Robert Hight (Funny Car) and Tanner Gray (Pro Stock) collected their second consecutive “Countdown” wins and LE Tonglet took the P/S Bike win.
Doug Kalitta (T/F), Hight (F/C), Gray (P/S) and Eddie Krawiec (P/S Bike) were the 2017 event winners.