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Outlaws visit Port Royal oval tonight

Port Royal Speedway hosts the World of Outlaws sprint cars this evening.

The 5 p.m. program features the best drivers from all over the country battling it out in a 30-lap feature event. The winner earns $10,000.

Californian Brad Sweet is the defending race champion. The PA Posse will be led by Lance Dewease, Greg Hodnett, Lucas Wolfe, Stevie Smith, Freddie Rahmer, Danny Dietrich and Doug Esh. There are other Pennsylvania cars also capable of getting the job done.

The Outlaws are led by eight-time champion Donny Schatz, who is currently the best sprint car driver in the world. Schatz entered this weekend’s action with 24 wins. Daryn Pittman, Sweet, Shane Stewart and David Gravel can also be factors to claim the checkered flag.

There’s also the Knoxville factor, Brian Brown. Brown is a Knoxville, Iowa, regular and one of the best drivers in the midwest. Brown came east for Friday’s Williams Grove National Open as well as the Port Royal program. Don’t rule out Brown – he’s a crowd favorite who carries a heavy right foot. It should be a great night of racing. Gates open at 2.

Last weeks PASS 305 sprint car program at Port Royal was rained out. Titled the Blue Collar Classic, that program will be made up next Saturday during Port Royal’s Open Wheel Madness program. The 410 sprints cars will be joined by URC sprint cars and 305 sprints. That program gets underway at 3 p.m.

Martinsville Speedway management is adding state of the art LED lighting to the facility. According to news releases, this is the first sports facility in the country to use complete LED lighting. The $5 million project will start the day after the upcoming Cup race at the track in two weeks. Work is expected to be finished in January. Both Cup races are still scheduled as day events next year. Look for support classes to race at night.

Ryan Newman has been retained at Richard Childress Racing. Newman recently signed a new three-year contract. The team will retain Chevrolet power.

Look for some of the associate sponsors on Tony Stewart’s Sprint Cup racer to be moved next season to Danica Patrick’s racer. Patrick is a superior marketing machine. Her primary sponsor, Nature’s Bakery will be the lead sponsor for 25 races next season. The company reports their business has expanded by more than 50 percent since joining forces with Stewart Haas Racing and Patrick.

Did you happen to see the flood pictures from Hurricane Mathew last week at Daytona International Speedway? The water appeared to be halfway up the outside back stretch retaining wall. The facility sustained moderate damage.

The first Super Dirt Week held at Oswego Speedway has been completed. World Racing Group announced the event will remain at Oswego again next season. There were some track surface separation problems between the asphalt and dirt. Crews will attempt and correct the situation for next year’s program.

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Craig Rutherford writes about motorsports for The Sentinel.