×

Rain, rain stay away from weekend dirt track action

Rain, rain stay away. That’s my wish for this weekend.

Port Royal Speedway presents the fifth annual Blue Collar Classic tonight at 5 p.m. as 305 sprint cars from several sanctioning bodies take center stage in a $1,400 to win A-main. More than 50 cars are preregistered.

They will be joined by xtreme stock cars, limited late models and Mid Atlantic Modified cars. Jeff Miller of Huntingdon is the defending 305 race champion. Fans and racers will have a chance to win prizes during the program.

In other Port Royal Speedway news, don’t forget World of Outlaws race tickets for the Oct. 15 show are on sale at www.worldofoutlaws.com/tickets or 844-DIRT TIX (347-8849).

Port Royal banquet tickets also are on sale. Call the speedway office Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 527-2303. The deadline to purchase tickets is Nov 11; the banquet will be held Nov. 19 at the Port Royal Community Building.

Lincoln Speedway closes its 2016 season this evening with the Hank Gentzler Memorial Manufacturers Appreciation Night with 410 and 358 sprint cars and the All American Outlaws.

Selinsgrove Speedway’s banquet date is Nov. 5. It will be held in Williamsport.

It’s Super Dirt Week in New York this week. Since the new Central Raceway Park has not been completed, all activities were relocated to the paved Oswego Speedway, which has been covered with dirt. Dirt Week will be held next year at Oswego also.

Hoosier Tire Co. was acquired by Continental Tire. Hoosier employees will continue to operate the plant. Hoosier Tire supplies a large portion of dirt racing tires throughout the country.

Congratulations to Greg Hodnett, who will clinch the Williams Grove Speedway track championship by walking through the gate for next week’s National Open program. Hodnett has won 52 races through out the country since teaming with car owner Michael Heffner in 2014.

Lincoln Speedway Co-owner and promoter Bob Leiby passed away Monday. Leiby was a York County Racing Club Hall of Fame member. Leiby wore many hats over the years including race car owner, Co-promoter of Williams Grove and Selinsgrove speedways and was a successful mobile home dealer. Leiby’s funeral was held Friday in Mechanicsburg. The race car driven by Leiby’s grandson, Chandler, was on display inside the funeral chapel. Memorial contributions may be made to the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing, 100 Baltimore Road., York, PA 17372 or York County Racing Club-Injured Driver Fund, 568 Yale Street, York, PA 17403, or the American Heart Association.

Longtime motorsports journalist Brock Yates passed away Wednesday from complications related to Alzheimer’s disease.

The NASCAR Sprint Cup cars race at Charlotte this weekend. Rain from Hurricane Matthew is expected to be gone from the area before race time tonight.

Atlanta Motor Speedway opened its facility for anyone trying to escape hurricane weather at no charge.

Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s charity foundation had a fundraiser scheduled earlier this week at Charlotte. Part of the program was a ride in a two-seat Sprint Cup car driven by Dale Jr. Since Earnhardt is recovering from concussion syndrome symptoms, he was unable to drive the race car. Tony Stewart called and volunteered to drive. The night went off with out any problems and Earnhardt took to social media to thank Stewart for his help.

Finally, I went to my second NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season last week at Dover International Speedway. You may remember I mentioned how impressed I was earlier this year with improvements at Pocono International Raceway. I can’t say the same for Dover. Granted it rained. That’s no excuse for disorganization, uninformed and rude employees, security guards, parking lot attendants, etc. No one was on the same page nor seemed to know what was going on. Security guards didn’t show up at some gates until after the Xfinity race already started leaving ticket holders standing locked outside the gates. One female guard using a wand to scan patrons before entering actually had the nerve to ask ticket holders to stand in a large mud puddle while she checked them out. I could write a whole column on the negatives of the trip but I’ll leave it at this: NASCAR and Dover management have to be embarrassed by the poorly managed event. Shame on them!

Until next time, please drive safely!

Craig Rutherford writes about motorsports for The Sentinel.