“Steel Valley Thunder” returns Saturday for PCTC Night; Ohio Speedweek for All Star Sprints coming Tuesday

By Mike Leone

June 17, 2014

(Hartford, OH)…After another stellar turnout of fans packing the facility for Fan Appreciation and Autograph Night last Saturday, Sharon Speedway is hoping the great summer weather continues for the fifth straight week this Saturday night (June 21). The “Steel Valley Thunder” week eight program as part of the 85th anniversary season will include the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, Barris Supply RUSH Late Models, Summit Racing Equipment Modifieds, Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods, and Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks. Race time is 7 p.m.

Saturday is the annual Pittsburgh Circle Track Club (PCTC) Night with FREE general admission for club members.

Don’t forget coming up on Tuesday, June 24 is Ohio Speedweek for the All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars in a $ 5,000 to-win event along with the TUSA Mod Lites racing for $ 500. 2014 Miss Area Auto Racing News and Ms. Motorsports Runner-up Lainey Reinard will make an appearance. Advance tickets are on sale, which admits the holder grandstand access one-hour early at 3 p.m. Tickets will go on sale at 4 p.m.

Another week and another win by a King or Weller in the DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds; this time it was Rex King, Jr. picking up the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply feature last Saturday night. The scorecard now shows King, Jr. at three wins with King, Sr. Jim Weller, Jr. at two wins each. The tight championship race has featured all three drivers taking their turns at the top spot. Currently it’s King, Sr. with a two-point advantage on his son, while Weller has slipped to third at six points back. Jim Rasey and Ricky Richner, who would appear to be the two that have the best shot at unseating the lead trio, complete the top five.

Three drivers have also shown supremacy in the RUSH Late Models and that’s been Will Thomas III, Dennis Lunger, Jr. and Alan Dellinger. Lunger stopped Thomas’ three race win streak last Saturday and joined him with his third win of 2014. Dellinger meanwhile won opening night, and while he’s been consistent hasn’t been able to get back to the top spot. Thomas, the 2012 champion, has a 33-point lead on the consistent Russ Byler in the Barris Supply standings. Lunger is third despite missing one event, while Jamie Wrightsman and Clay Ruffo complete the top five.

After taking last Saturday off, Joel Watson was still able to maintain his Summit Racing Equipment Modified point lead, but just barely. The four-time winner leads the points by just two over last Saturday’s winner Steve Dixon. Dixon has made the long trip down from Smethport, Pa. to compete weekly for the first time ever. Defending champion, Mike Kinney, who also has a win is third. Currently tied for fourth is one-time winner Carl McKinney and Russ Dunn, who is driving for Jim White this season.

Mike Clark and Paul Davis began the year alternating Stock Car wins, but since Shaun Hooks and Bryan Wagner have been able to sneak wins in. Clark, who is the defending champion and three-time winner this season, has just a six-point lead on Davis in the Gibson Insurance Agency title run. Brian Carothers, who lost last Saturday’s feature on the final lap, is third with Wagner and Jamie Duncan completing the top five.

Of all six divisions, the largest championship battle is the Econo Mods. With five different winners in six races and seemingly each driver having a bad night and/or missing an event has kept the top eight drivers within just 33 points! Ironically, Ty Rhoades still sits on top of the HTMA/Precise Racing Products standings despite still looking for his first career win, which you’d have to figure is due. Brandon Blackshear is five out in second and just one ahead of defending champion Jeremy Double. Jason Longwell and Steve Burns, Jr., the division’s only repeat winner, are fourth and fifth.
Travis Creech was back in victory lane last Saturday night in the Mini Stocks and with Bill Fuchs suffering a DNF increased his Deforest Used Parts point lead to 16. The defending champion now leads all racers at the Speedway with five wins this season. Jamie Maxwell, Jim Haefke, Jr., and Joe Campbell are third through fifth in points and are all searching for their first wins.

Hovis Auto & Truck Supply will again award six complimentary pit passes for the following week; a pair going to the hard luck driver in DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, a pair to a lucky driver in the division that competes first, and a pair to a lucky fan. Summit Racing Equipment will award $ 25 gift cards to the hard charger in the Modified, Stock Car, and Econo Mod divisions. Sweeney Chevrolet/Pace Performance will award $ 50, $ 25, and $ 25 certificates to the top three GM 602 crates in the Econo Mods that have been purchased through them or have secondary seals.

Pits open at 4 p.m. with grandstands at 5, drivers meeting at 6:30 and heat races slated for 7. Admission for those 14 and over is $ 13. Pit passes are $ 30. As always, children under 13, parking, and camping is always FREE!

Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481. Become a fan of Sharon Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sharonspeedway and follow us on Twitter at @SharonSpdwy.

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Sharon Speedway

FREE general admission & autograph night on tap Saturday with a full “Steel Valley Thunder” program

By Mike Leone

June 10, 2014

(Hartford, OH)…Great summer weather has blessed Sharon Speedway each of the past three race nights and it appears that trend will continue for this Saturday night’s (June 14) rescheduled FREE Fan Appreciation & Autograph Night! The “Steel Valley Thunder” week seven program as part of the 85th anniversary season will include the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, Barris Supply RUSH Late Models, Summit Racing Equipment Modifieds, Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods, and Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks. Race time is 7 p.m.

Back by popular demand is FREE general admission night! Last year’s promotion in August drew a huge crowd and officials are hoping the same for this Saturday night. Fan Appreciation Night was originally scheduled for May 17, but rain forced the event to be rescheduled to this Saturday night’s “Father’s Day Celebration. The event will also include an on-track autograph session during intermission featuring the cars and stars from all six of the competing divisions. This is a great once-per-year opportunity for fans to get an up close look at the mighty machines and meet their heroes with photo and autograph opportunities.

Can someone stop the Kings or Jim Weller in the DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds!? If not, one of the three racers will be the first to win three Hovis Auto & Truck Supply features and most likely take over or maintain the points lead. The crazy, close competition has featured Rex King, his son Rex, Jr. and Jim Weller, Jr. alternate victories this season with each winning two. The elder King leads his son by just two points, while Weller is only three points out of the top spot! Jim Rasey suffered his first DNF of the season and lost ground in the championship chase as he sits fourth 34 points back. New York’s Ricky Richner, who is a regular for the second straight year, is fifth.

The same sort of question is being asked in the RUSH Late Models, but it’s been one driver that’s dominated action each of the past three events. Will Thomas III is the first driver in the history of the division to win three straight features! An unprecedented fourth straight win is going to be tough as he’s going to be relegated to last place due to his three straight wins. The 2012 champion leads Russ Byler by 34 points. Byler is due for his first career Late Model win as he’s recorded a pair of second place finishes and has yet to finish worse than seventh this season. Dennis Lunger, Jr. and Jamie Wrightsman are tied for third over Clay Ruffo in the Barris Supply standings. Three new visitors on Saturday night brought the total to 31 different racers this year.

Joel Watson is one of two racers at the Speedway that have already picked up four feature wins! The Conneaut, Ohio driver has soared up the all-time Modified win list in recent years as he’s now tied for second with Jeff Johnson at 18 wins! Watson has a commanding 47-point lead over Steve Dixon, who is still searching for his first win of the season. One-time winner and defending champion, Mike Kinney, is third. Russ Dunn and Johnson round out the top five of the Summit Racing Equipment point race.

Defending champion Mike Clark is starting to show his muscle and take a stronghold on the Stock Cars once again. The Bristolville, Ohio driver is coming off his season’s third feature win and has increased his point lead to 14 over one-time winner Paul Davis. Last year, Clark doubled his career win total with four feature wins and is already just one win always from matching that. Third through fifth in points are Jamie Duncan, Brian Carothers, and Bryan Wagner.

A lot of scrambling has taken place in the Econo Mod division thus far this year. Casey Bowers was less than one lap away from becoming the fifth different winner in as many events last Saturday night, but instead Steve Burns, Jr. stole the win away to become the first repeat winner. Ty Rhoades was presented a plaque from Walt Wimer at intermission as the 2013 Western PA Rookie of the Year as a co-winner with Travis Creech. Though Rhoades’ sophomore season of racing hasn’t been as good as last year, he finds himself atop the HTMA/Precise Racing Products standings. Rhoades would love to garner his first career win and extend his point lead this Saturday night. Brandon Blackshear trails Rhoades by seven points with Jeremy Double, Burns, and George Vestal IV completing the top five. Amazingly just 26 points separates the top eight drivers in points!

Bill Fuchs had to be thinking ‘finally’! The Mini Stock all-time division winner picked up his first win last Saturday night since the “Apple Festival Nationals” last September. Fuchs has knocked on the door all season long. In fact, the Greenville, Pa. racer has yet to finish worse than fourth in any of the six features to date this season! That consistency has kept him only one-point behind defending champion and four-time winner, Travis Creech, in the Deforest Used Parts standings. Jamie Maxwell, Scott Gilliland, and Jim Haefke, Jr. are third through fifth.

Hovis Auto & Truck Supply will again award six complimentary pit passes for the following week; a pair going to the hard luck driver in DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, a pair to a lucky driver in the division that competes first, and a pair to a lucky fan. Summit Racing Equipment will award $ 25 gift cards to the hard charger in the Modified, Stock Car, and Econo Mod divisions. Sweeney Chevrolet/Pace Performance will award $ 50, $ 25, and $ 25 certificates to the top three GM 602 crates in the Econo Mods that have been purchased through them or have secondary seals.

Pits open at 4 p.m. with grandstands at 5, drivers meeting at 6:30 and heat races slated for 7. Grandstand admission is of course FREE. Pit passes are $ 30.

Don’t forget coming up on Tuesday, June 24 is the Ohio Speedweek for the All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars in a $ 5,000 to-win event along with the TUSA Mod Lites. Advance tickets are on sale, which admits the holder grandstand access one-hour early at 3 p.m. Tickets go on sale at 4 p.m.

Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481. Become a fan of Sharon Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sharonspeedway and follow us on Twitter at @SharonSpdwy.

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Sharon Speedway

Tight point races in place as month of June begins Saturday at Sharon for “Steel Valley Thunder”

By Mike Leone

June 4, 2014

(Hartford, OH)…After two straight sunny and warm Saturdays, it appears Sharon Speedway is in store for another one this Saturday night (June 7). The “Steel Valley Thunder” week six program as part of the 85th anniversary season will include the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, Barris Supply RUSH Late Models, Summit Racing Equipment Modifieds, Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods, and Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks. Race time is 7 p.m. Kids bike races will be held at intermission. Kids 3-12 will be eligible to compete on the frontstretch. Helmets are required.

Don’t forget coming up on Saturday, June 14 is the rescheduled FREE Fan Appreciation and Autograph Night. Fans will be admitted free of charge in the grandstands for general admission for a full six-division program. During intermission, all drivers will bring their cars onto the speedway for a meet and greet session.

Also not far away is Ohio Speedweek for the All Star Circuit of Champion Sprint Cars on Tuesday, June 24. The TUSA Mod Lites will also be on the program. Advance tickets are on sale, which admits the holder in one hour earlier than when the gates officially open at 4 p.m. for preferred seating.

Heading into Saturday night, the closest of the six divisions’ championship point races is the DIRTcar Big-Block Modified division where amazingly just one-point separates the top three drivers! Following his season’s second win, Jim Weller, Jr. is deadlocked in a tie with Rex King, while two-time winner Rex King, Jr. is just one-point out in third despite two feature wins. To say Jim Rasey is overdue for a win at Sharon is an understatement. It’s been over three years since Rasey’s last win on May 21, 2011, which was the 18th of his career. Rasey sits fourth in points just 14 out of first place, and has been fast with four top four finishes in five races with his worst finish being a ninth. Ricky Richner is fifth in the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply chase.

Will Thomas III has turned up the wick the last two weeks in the RUSH Late Models. The 2012 champion has charged to the front winning the last two features and has increased his point lead to 15 in the Barris Supply title chase over defending champion and two-time winner, Dennis Lunger, Jr. Russ Byler has been knocking on the door for his first career Late Model win with all top seven finishes in five starts including a trio of top fives. Jamie Wrightsman and Clay Ruffo are fourth and fifth.

Last Saturday night, Carl McKinney became the first driver outside of Joel Watson and Mike Kinney to win a Modified feature this season. Watson, the 2012 co-champion, though is atop the Summit Racing Equipment standings by 31 over defending champion Kinney and Steve Dixon, who has been a weekly competitor for the first time. McKinney is fourth in points ahead of 13-year-old Jacob Eucker in his first season in the class after moving up from the Econo Mods.

The Stock Cars are back Saturday night after a week off. Last time out, Shaun Hooks stopped Paul Davis and Mike Clark for his first win of the season. Clark, the defending champion, leads Davis by seven in championship race. Brian Carothers, Jamie Duncan, and Bryan Wagner complete the top five in the Gibson Insurance Agency points.

Jeremy Double has been consistent out front in the HTMA/Precise Racing Econo Mods that has yet to have a repeat winner. The defending champion has a comfortable 30-point lead despite only one victory to date. Amazingly just nine points separates positions two through six with Ty Rhoades over Brandon Blackshear, George Vestal IV, Brian Foley, Jr., and Steve Burns, Jr.

Even though defending champion Travis Creech has won four of the five features this season, his one DNF on a high car count night has kept consistent Bill Fuchs just five points back in the Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks. Fuchs, the division all-time winner, is still searching for his first win of 2014. Third through fifth in the points are Jamie Maxwell, Scott Gilliland, and Jim Haefke, Jr.

Hovis Auto & Truck Supply will again award six complimentary pit passes for the following week; a pair going to the hard luck driver in DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, a pair to a lucky driver in the division that competes first, and a pair to a lucky fan. Summit Racing Equipment will award $ 25 gift cards to the hard charger in the Modified, Stock Car, and Econo Mod divisions. Sweeney Chevrolet/Pace Performance will award $ 50, $ 25, and $ 25 certificates to the top three GM 602 crates in the Econo Mods that have been purchased through them or have secondary seals.

Pits open at 4 p.m. with grandstands at 5, drivers meeting at 6:30 and heat races slated for 7. Grandstand admission is $ 13 for those 14 and older. Kids 13 and under are free. Pit passes are $ 30. Parking is always free.

Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481. Become a fan of Sharon Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sharonspeedway and follow us on Twitter at @SharonSpdwy.

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Sharon Speedway

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