Speedweek loses just one race to rain; Port Royal, Selinsgrove are on tap

Despite threatening weather all week, Sprint Car Speedweek has managed to roll on with only one rainout as this column was prepared – Grandview Speedway lost its show Tuesday night.

This evening Port Royal Speedway takes center stage in a $5,000-to-win show.

The week has gone well. Greg Hodnett opened things up with a win last Friday night at Williams Grove. Alan Krimes was the winner at Lincoln on Saturday. Sam Hafertepe Jr. took Big Diamond Speedway Sunday. NASCAR’S Dave Blaney won Wednesday at Hagerstown. Thursday it was Stevie Smith.

Hafertepe held the point lead through much of the week.

After tonight things close out with the Jan Opperman Memorial race Sunday at Selinsgrove.

The week’s best race was probably Thursday night at Lincoln where three cars went at it for the win. It seems the smaller tracks are producing the best racing. I have a theory why that I will advance in a future column.

Despite the sprint cars’ big week there has been good late model action as well. Hesston Speedway hosted a $4,044-to-win program Thursday night. Big Brother Dan Stone was the winner. Local driver Nick Dickson finished sixth. Tim Wilson finished 14th. Derek Byler was 17th and Waylon Wagner 18th. Young Eric Boozel won another four-cylinder race, which is I think his seventh of the season.

The Sprint Cup racers are at Daytona this evening for the Coke Zero 400 which gets under way at 7:30 p.m. TNT has TV coverage. Tony Stewart is the defending race champion. Matt Kenseth won the rain delayed Kentucky Speedway race last week for his fourth victory of the season. Jimmie Johnson won the Daytona 500 in February and enters tonight’s race 38 points ahead of Carl Edwards in the season long point’s standings. Michael Waltrip will race one of his own cars in the event. Waltrip has won three times at the speedway.

Pocono International Raceway makes history bringing back the Indy cars tomorrow. Race time is 12:15 p.m. on ABC. Pocono has not hosted an Indy Car race since 1989. Helio Castrenoves leads the point’s standings, nine ahead of Ryan Hunter-Reay.

How about this little spat between Danica Patrick and Kyle Petty where Patrick thanked Petty for motivating her after Petty said Patrick is not a race car driver but a marketing machine? Patrick should take that with a grain of salt from Petty, who couldn’t win many races and ride his father’s coat tails to success. Richard Petty was a major marketing machine and at least she is one thing he will never be: A swimsuit cover model in Sports Illustrated.

Finish out the weekend at your favorite race track. I’ll be back next week.


Craig Rutherford writes about motorsports for The Sentinel.