Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Weekend Preview: 5 Races, 4 Tracks, and 2 States

2017 track champion Brock Zearfoss looks for hot start in Port Royal Speedway opener (Adam Rubright photo)

Two states nearly 3,000 miles away will again feature all five '410' sprint car events in the United States this coming weekend. Hopefully this is the last week of the season where that is the case as a pair of Ohio tracks will attempt to start their seasons the following weekend.

The World of Outlaws continue their jaunt through California with a pair of $10,000-to-win shows at the Stockton Dirt Track in Stockton, CA. The Outlaws have ran at Stockton every year since 2013, the dirt track's first year of operation, with all but the first two years featuring back-to-back nights.

Kyle Larson won the first race at the Stockton Dirt Track in 2013 after passing Tim Kaeding in the waning laps of the race. Seven of their scheduled eight World of Outlaws races have been completed, with Donny Schatz topping the list by winning three of those main events.

The seven completed WoO shows at Stockton have boasted an average car count of 37.2 sprints. The previous high was set in the inaugural 2013 event when 44 drivers made the call. Last season, 39 drivers entered the event.

World of Outlaws winners at Stockton:
2013 - Kyle Larson
2014 - Kerry Madsen
2015 - Donny Schatz; Rico Abreu
2016 - Donny Schatz [2]
2017 - Brad Sweet

The crazy folks in Central Pennsylvania look to brace the cold again as they prepare for their third weekend of racing in 2018.

Williams Grove Speedway, fresh off their season opener on Sunday afternoon, looks to get back to nighttime racing this Friday. Projected temperatures for their area currently feature a high in the upper 30's for the day... Despite being teased a time or two in the past month, winter is in fact still here. If they run, we'll see if Lucas Wolfe can go 2-for-2 on the season or whether another driver will visit the prestigious victory lane for the first time this year. Super late models will also be in the pit area as they make their first of four appearances on the season

Lincoln Speedway and Port Royal Speedway will feature the rare chance for fans (and drivers) to hit two races in one day (aka "The Double").

Lincoln is set to go with another 2pm start time, their final afternoon show of the year before they get back to nighttime racing. Chad Trout and Danny Dietrich have claimed wins in the Pigeon Hills so far this season, but there are a number of hungry drivers looking to reach victory lane there for the first time this season. Look for six-time and defending champion Brian Montieth to pick up his first checkered flag of the season.

Port Royal will again try to get their 2018 season underway following a cancellation last weekend with a $4,000-to-win event this Saturday night. The big half-mile plays host to some of the best racing in the country, and a plethora of facility improvements over the past couple years have made it a destination for many fans.

Defending track champion Brock Zearfoss will look to get off to a hot start, but he'll have plenty of competition in the pit area. A few of the other drivers expected to be at the Tuscarora County oval this weekend include Greg Hodnett, Lucas Wolfe, Aaron Ott, Dylan Cisney, T.J. Stutts and Logan Wagner. Super late models will also be on the card.

Weekend Schedule:
Friday, March 16th
Stockton Dirt Track [WoO] - $10,000
Williams Grove Speedway

Saturday, March 17th
Lincoln Speedway
Port Royal Speedway - $4,000
Stockton Dirt Track [WoO] - $10,000

2018 Win List (410's):
5 - Donny Schatz
3 - Sheldon Haudenschild
1 - Aaron Reutzel
1 - Chad Kemenah
1 - Chad Trout
1 - Danny Dietrich
1 - Lucas Wolfe
1 - Tim Shaffer

Monday, March 12, 2018

Weekend Review: Another First-Time World of Outlaws Winner

Aaron Reutzel earned his 1st career World of Outlaws win (David Biro photo)

For the second weekend in a row, three '410' Sprint Car races were ran in the United States. Just a mere 3,700 miles and 40+ hour drive separated two of them from the third...Despite the sparse racing, it was also our first three-race weekend since Florida Speedweeks with one event being completed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The World of Outlaws were first to hit the track on Friday night as they visited the thrilling Thunderbowl Speedway in Tulare, CA. The unique venue usually levels the playing field, creating tight battles between the Cali regulars and the World of Outlaws tour drivers. Lo and behold, it was Clute, TX native Aaron Reutzel that picked up the hard-fought win (his 1st career with the series) after trading sliders in the closing laps with Cory Eliason. Donny Schatz, Dominic Scelzi and Carson Macedo completed the Top 5. Do yourself a favor and watch the race highlights, you won't be disappointed:

Why is the win not surprising? It's hard to imagine saying that for any driver that picks up their first career win with The Greatest Show on Dirt. Of course hindsight is 20/20, but here's a number of reasons why Reutzel should have been one of the favorites.

Aaron Reutzel is a former ASCS National champion. He has won out west before - picking up a Winter Heat win in 2015 in one of his first career '410' starts. Later that year, he scored a Top Five finish in his first career World of Outlaws start. That same season, Reutzel went on to win the prestigious Peter Murphy Classic at the Thunderbowl Speedway. He's also made some noise the last few years at the Knoxville Nationals - last August he earned Hard Charger honors at the Marion County oval.

Reutzel is in his first year teaming up with Josh Baughman to form Baughman-Reutzel Motorsports. The newly formed team will begin their assault on the All Star Circuit of Champions in less than a month when their season kicks off at Atomic Speedway on April 6th.

The World of Outlaws were scheduled for a doubleheader in Tulare, but rain claimed the second leg of the back-to-back shows.

Lincoln Speedway in Central PA ran their second consecutive afternoon show on Saturday. Danny Dietrich recovered from his misfortune just one week prior to pick up the win. "Double-D" moved forward from his 4th place starting spot to take the lead on Lap 14. He would lead the final 11 laps as he went on to claim his 39th win at Lincoln Speedway. Rounding out the top five were Lucas Wolfe, Greg Hodnett, Brian Montieth and Kyle Moody.

Less than 24 hours later, the historic paperclip known as Williams Grove Speedway kicked off their season opener with a special Sunday afternoon race featuring a 2pm start time. After finishing runner-up one day earlier, Lucas Wolfe displayed dominance from the pole position as he led every lap en route to the win. Just how dominant was the Mechanicsburg, PA native? A late-race caution erased Wolfe's lead of nearly 10 seconds! The win was Wolfe's 17th career win at Williams Grove. Finishing in positions 2-5 were Greg Hodnett, Caleb Helms, Freddie Rahmer and Brock Zearfoss.

Port Royal Speedway postponed their opener (scheduled for Saturday night) earlier in the week due to snow accumulation and forecasted cold temps. They'll try to get their season kicked off again this weekend.

Weekend Winners:
Mar. 9th - Aaron Reutzel [WoO] - Thunderbowl Speedway ($10,000)
Mar. 10th - Danny Dietrich - Lincoln Speedway ($4,000)
Mar. 11th - Lucas Wolfe - Williams Grove Speedway ($3,600)

2018 Wins List (410's):
5 - Donny Schatz
3 - Sheldon Haudenschild
1 - Aaron Reutzel
1 - Chad Kemenah
1 - Chad Trout
1 - Danny Dietrich
1 - Lucas Wolfe
1 - Tim Shaffer

Thursday, March 8, 2018

On Tap; USAC Sprints, Beatrice Sprint Nationals and Shamrock Classic Highlight Weekend Action on Speedshift

7 Time USAC/CRA Champion "The Demon" Damion Gardner Will Be Hard to Beat This Weekend at Canyon
Aaron Clay Photo

It's a tough proposition weather wise if you're a dirt racing fan this week. With saturated grounds and cold temps in the air at many locations, it might be a good weekend to stay in. And with the Triple Header on tap at Speedshift this weekend, there is something for everyone to check out while you're staying in! So peruse these fine choices, make a selection (we secretly wish for a three race package on Saturday while we toggle between races) and grab a six pack of your favorite beer, order in a pizza and partake in these great races. You literally can't go wrong with any of them.

To order any of the three races CLICK HERE to be redirected to the order page.

USAC Midget Shamrock Classic
Southern Illinois Event Center

When: Saturday, March 10-  5 PM Central; 6 PM Eastern

The USAC National Midget season kicks off on Saturday night, indoors in the annual Shamrock Classic! 2017 Champion Spencer Bayston will be starting his title defense against a formidable pack including, tanner Thorson, Brady Bacon, Chad Boat, 2017 winner Justin Grant, and Thomas Meseraull.

Price- $24.95

USAC/CRA Sprint Cars
Canyon Speedway (AZ)

When: Friday and Saturday March 9-10. Racing starts at 7:00 PM Mountain; 9:00 PM Eastern

When the USAC/CRA 410 Traditional Sprint Cars invaded Canyon Speedway it was RJ Johnson who took home the victory back in October of 2016. Will he be able to fend off seven time series champion "The Demon" Damion Gardner, Chad Boespflug, Brody Roa, Jake Gardner and more this weekend?  The action will be intense as the series kicks off it's 2018 campaign at the 1/3 mile oval. Also on the card both nights will be IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Northern Sport Mods, Mod Lites and IMCA Sport Compacts.

Friday or Saturday ONLY Price- $21.95
Two Day Package- $39.95

Beatrice Spring Nationals
Beatrice Speedway (NE)

When: Friday and Saturday March 9-10

In 2017, over 250 cars were in the pits, this year.....there could be even more! The Beatrice Spring Nationals offers IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Mods, IMCA Stocks, IMCA Hobby Stocks and IMCA Sport Compacts. The weekend offers two separate nights of racing with identical shows. The IMCA Mods will be racing for $,500 to win both nights while the Sport Mods will do battle for $1,000 to win.  The Stocks will vie for $1,000 to win while the Hobby Stocks race for $500 to win as $200 will go to the Sport Compact winner.

Last year local driver Jordan Grabouski took home the title modified title finishing ahead of Hunter Mariott and Jesse Sobbing on the final night while completing a clean sweep of both Friday and Saturday night features. Expect several top names to be on hand this weekend in the Modified ranks and over 70 cars competing in that division alone!  It's a great night of racing action and the weather as of now looks good!

Friday or Saturday ONLY Price- $21.95
Two Day Package- $39.95

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Inaugural Season Gearing Up For Ultimate NE Late Models; Several Drivers Committed Thus Far

Make your plans now...

For several years, there had been a void in the regional Super Late Model regional series landscape when it came to the upper Mid-Atlantic area of the country. And, this coming season, a new series, spawned from the success of an established organization is ready to make it's mark in the geography. 

Matt Cosner Will Be Part of Inaugural Season

2018 will mark the Inaugural season of operation of the Ultimate Northeast Super Late Model Series. And there is a lot to look forward to. With a firm schedule planned as well as several committed drivers ready to hit the track when action debuts on March 31 at Hagerstown Speedway, there will be a buzz in the air to go along with the roar on the track. 

Seven Drivers Prepare To Be Part of Inaugural Season

Right off the bat, the series will be anchored by some big names that have done big things over the years as the legendary Gary Stuhler leads a mix of experience and youth into battle. He'll be joined by area heavyweights Matt Cosner and Ross Robinson throughout the series. Also planning on following the tour this season are up and coming drivers Reese Masiello and Kyle Lee. Masiello claimed the 8th spots in final points at Hagerstown Speedway in 2017 while Lee was the Hagerstown Super Late Model Champion last season.  Joining them will be Kirk Baker and RUSH Late Model standout Ryan Montgomery who will undertake his first full season in Super Late Models. 

The Tour

The action will hit the track as some legendary facilities in it's first year in a schedule that features dates at Hagerstown Speedway, Port Royal Speedway, Tyler County Speedway, Selinsgrove Speedway, Eriez Speedway, and a return to Super Late Model racing at the newly re-opened Cumberland Raceway (MD). More than that, the tour will also combine with the Ultimate national series on three occasions including two stops for $20,000 to win each at the legendary Virginia Motor Speedway as another date at the high banked Volunteer Speedway (TN) in a $10,000 to win, Thursday night special event.  

Port Royal Speedway Will Host a Two Day Memorial Day Show Weekend in 2018- Pat Miller Photo

The kickoff event at Hagerstown promises to be a hotly contested opener with the locals at Hagerstown ready to take on the rest of the traveling Ultimate NE drivers. “Everyone will be wanting to get their new cars out to the track and compete for the $3000 to win prize," Series directory Rose Compton said.  “We expect a large field of cars for the opener. With the quality of racers expected and the rich history of the track fans will be treated to a very good show."

Heading the operation this year are Rose and Jeff Compton. And they are interested in running a series that is geared for racers and fans that like regional type series. Jeff himself is an accomplished late model racer and is winding down that side of his career but wanted to stay involved and his and Roses passion for the sport they love and both support.  “We want to give young racers and anyone not accustomed to series type racing the opportunity to race on a tour that is within 3 or 4 hours tow for everyone."

Ryan Montgomery will be one to watch in 2018 in Ultimate NE Action
With the season set to begin in a little over a month on March 31 2018 at the legendary Hagerstown Speedway, officials have been busy shoring up the 2018 schedule. 

Tour officials are still fielding calls from potential tracks wishing to schedule a date for the 2018 season and feel that there is something for every type of racer that wants to be involved with the Ultimate Series.

Current Schedule For 2018 Season

Saturday, March 31- Hagerstown Speedway (MD), $3,000 to win
Saturday, April 7- Tyler County Speedway (WV) $5,000 to win 
Saturday, April 20- Virginia Motor Speedway (VA) $20,000 to win (National Points Show)
Saturday, May 26- Port Royal Speedway (PA) $3,000 to win
Sunday, May 27- Port Royal Speedway (PA) $5,000 to win
Saturday, June 9- Selinsgrove Speeway (PA) $3,000 to win
Saturday, June 16- Virginia Motor Speedway (PA) $20,000 to win (National Points Show)
Saturday, June 23- Hagerstown Speedway (MD) $3,000 to win
Saturday, August 4- Greater Cumberland Raceway (MD) $3,000 to win
Thursday, August 16- Volunteer Speedway (TN) $10,000 to win (National Points Show)
Saturday, September 1- To Be Announced
Sunday, September 2-  Eriez Speedway (PA) $3,000 to win

Ultimate NE Support Staff Page 

Current Marketing Partners:

VP Race Fuels
Hoosier Racing Tires
AR Bodies
Beyea Headers

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Weekend Review: Trout Season Starts Early; Haud/Schatz Continue Tear

Chad Trout picked up his 1st career 410 Sprint win at Lincoln Speedway (Rick Rarer photo)

Races 9, 10 and 11 on the North American 410 sprint car circuit were completed this past week as Central PA got their season kicked off in the cold, and the World of Outlaws visited Las Vegas to kick start their annual early-year western swing.

Saturday marked a historic day for Dover, PA native Chad Trout and the Randy and Stephanie Oberlander owned team. Trout, known for years as a stalwart in the in the super sportsman and 358 Sprint divisions in Central PA, earned his 1st career 410 Sprint Car win at the Lincoln Speedway in Abbottstown.

The win was an emotional one, to say the least. Former team owner Jim Walker passed away last season; the current owners of Randy and Stephanie Oberlander stepped up to the plate and vowed to keep the team running. In victory lane, Trout dedicated the win to the recently deceased Walker and the whole team he has that continues to believe in him.

The win came through a rash of misfortune for other drivers. Lucas Wolfe assumed command of the field at the start of the race from his pole starting spot. Just one lap later, mechanical failures took their toll as he slowed in turn two. Race favorites Brian Montieth and Danny Dietrich were unable to avoid the slowing Wolfe, and all three were relegated to the pits for the day.

Trout, the eventual winner, inherited the lead and again benefited from another driver's misfortune on Lap 5 when second place running Cole Duncan got collected in the mess of two spinning lapped cars. From thereon, Trout went largely unchallenged en route to claiming his first career 410 Sprint win worth $4,000.

Three days prior, the World of Outlaws got back into action for a pair of shows at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas - this was the first time they competed since they wrapped up their portion of the DIRTcar Nationals at Volusia Speedway Park on Feb. 11th.

On Wednesday, Night #1, a field of 44 WoO sprints signed in for the night as the headliner of a three division show. In the feature, Sheldon Haudenschild assumed command of the field following a yellow for race-leader Brian Brown who slowed with a flat right rear. Haudenschild blasted the cushion for the remaining 20 laps and held off multiple attempts from Donny Schatz and Tim Shaffer to pick up the $10,000 victory.

The win for Sheldon Haudenschild and his Stenhouse Jr./Marshall racing team was their third overall on the season, and second on the World of Outlaws circuit.

On Thursday, Night #2, the feature seemed destined to mirror the night prior as Haudenschild had his #17 machine up front from the get-go. And again, it was Donny Schatz in tow as he searched for a way to get by Haudenschild. Sheldon was able to maintain the lead for the first 25 laps of the race, but Schatz pulled the trigger with five laps to go and assumed the point position where he would stay until the checkers flew.

The World of Outlaws were also scheduled to run in southern California on Saturday night at Perris Auto Speedway, but the plug was pulled on Friday afternoon in anticipation of wet weather and unusually cold temperatures. The race will not be rescheduled.

Through five World of Outlaws events in 2018, only two drivers have reached victory lane (Schatz 3, Haudenschild 2). Don't expect that to be the case for long. Brad Sweet and David Gravel have each claimed a trio of "Top 5" finishes. There's no doubt that they will both be smiling with the winner's check in victory lane soon.

Weekend Winners:
Feb. 28th - Sheldon Haudenschild [WoO] - The Dirt Track at Las Vegas ($10,000)
Mar. 1st   - Donny Schatz [WoO] - The Dirt Track at Las Vegas ($10,000)
Mar. 1st   - Chad Trout - Lincoln Speedway ($4,000)

2018 Wins List (410's):
5 - Donny Schatz
3 - Sheldon Haudenschild
1 - Chad Kemenah
1 - Chad Trout
1 - Tim Shaffer

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Weekend Preview: Outlaws Head West; Pennsylvania Tries Again

Donny Schatz is looking to sweep Sin City for the 2nd consecutive year

Last weekend we suffered our first (and hopefully last) weekend washout of 2018. All three scheduled events succumbed to the rainfall as the World of Outlaws came up empty in Texas, and Lincoln Speedway's grounds were too soggy to get the Central PA season underway. Tomorrow night, we'll get our first taste of 410 Sprint Car action here in the States in nearly two and a half weeks.

The Greatest Show on Dirt has made their annual early-season trek west to The Dirt Track at Las Vegas for their typical back-to-back format. They'll kick off the events of NASCAR weekend on Wednesday night (Feb 28), and then turn around and do it all over again on Thursday. They'll utilize Friday as a travel day as they make the roughly five hour trip southwest to Perris Auto Speedway in southern California where they plan to compete on Saturday.

Flashing back to last year's World of Outlaws "FVP Outlaw Showdown", nine-time series champion Donny Schatz was the first to cross under the checkers on both nights for what became at the time his 4th & 5th wins of the season.

Night #1 saw a classic duel take place between Donny Schatz and Brian Brown. The duo exchanged the lead three time in the closing laps, with Schatz narrowly picking up the win by a 0.046-second margin. On Night #2, Schatz again surrendered the lead in the closing laps, this time to Rico Abreu, only to once again regain command and continue on for the victory.

One interesting note to keep an eye on will be the car count in one of the United States' 410 Sprint Car "dead zones". With practically no cars in the immediate area, it's impressive that the show can still produce a strong show - both in quantity and quality.

The "FVP Outlaw Showdown" has averaged just under 38 cars over the past three years, with the car count increasing each season and ultimately reaching its high in 2017 with a turnout of 42 sprints. Since they're heading to Sin City, care to place any bets on the car count tomorrow night?

David Gravel was dominant in last year's visit to Perris Auto Speedway, launching forward from his outside pole starting spot to lead every lap en route to the victory and his third series win of the season.

Back east in Pennsylvania, Lincoln Speedway will try for the second week in a row to get their racing season underway with the Annual "Icebreaker 30" paying $4,000 to win. The weather this weekend is looking much more favorable. Though temps may only reach the mid-40's on race day, a forecasted strong and steady wind can hopefully aid in drying out the track enough to race.

Below you'll find a preview for the Lincoln Speedway opener. If it all sounds familiar, then thank you for clicking the link last week and giving our weekend preview a read. They haven't raced - I have nothing new to talk about out that way. Let's cross our fingers and hope I have reason to cover some new material next week.

Here are the last 10 winners of Lincoln Speedway's "Icebreaker 30":
2017 - Danny Dietrich
2016 - Greg Hodnett
2015 - Greg Hodnett
2014 - Adam Wilt
2013 - Brian Montieth
2012 - Adam Wilt
2011 - Brian Montieth
2010 - Fred Rahmer
2009 - Brian Montieth
2008 - Niki Young

You can expect a stout field of 410's, as per the norm in Central PA. Brian Montieth claimed his sixth Lincoln Speedway track championship in 2017, all of which have come in the last 10 years. You can expect most, if not all, of the remaining drivers in the top 10 in points to be in attendance: Alan Krimes, Chad Trout, Jim Siegel, Freddie Rahmer, Cory Haas, Tim Glatfelter, Gerard McIntyre Jr., Glenndon Forsythe & Brandon Rahmer.

The most dominant driver last season, however, was Danny Dietrich. He still picked up 7 wins at the Abbottstown, PA oval despite missing multiple events while traveling to other races. Forget the Florida struggles, he's the favorite two claim his second straight "Icebreaker 30" crown.

2018 Wins List (410's):
4 - Donny Schatz
2 - Sheldon Haudenschild
1 - Chad Kemenah
1 - Tim Shaffer