The 22nd annual Pennsylvania Sprint Car Speedweek will kick off Saturday evening at Lincoln Speedway.
Speedweek consists of eight races in nine days with more than $210,000 on the line for local sprint-car racers.
The Saturday race at Lincoln will be the Kevin Gobrecht Memorial Race, and offers $7,000 to the winner. The Legends Series cars will also be on Lincoln's schedule that evening.
On Sunday, Speedweek moves to Big Diamond Raceway for the second night of action. On this night, the winner takes home $5,000.
After getting Monday night off, Speedweek moves into high gear on Tuesday with Thunder on the Hill action at Grandview. The Grandview race also offers $5,000 to the winner. The Grandview modifieds will also compete.
Speedweek makes its annual stop "south of the boarder" on Wednesday at Hagerstown. Again, $5,000 awaits the winner, and the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing will have an on-track display of vintage race cars.
Thursday, Speedweek moves to Williams Grove for the first of two nights of action there. Thursday it's $5,000 to win, and SpeedSTRs will also compete. Friday at Williams Grove, it's the "Crown Jewel" of Speedweek, the Mitch Smith Memorial Race. This one offers the winner $10,000. Fireworks round out the Friday, July 6, show at the Grove.
Saturday, July 7, Speedweek moves to Port Royal for another $5,000-to-win show. The late models join the sprints at the Port.
It all wraps up Sunday, July 8, at Selinsgrove for the running of the Jan Opperman Memorial Race. This one also offers $5,000 to win. The super sportsmen are part of the program.
Fred Rahmer is known as the "King of Speedweek." He has won 12 of the 21 series titles and owns 30 race victories in the 140 races that have been contested during past Speedweeks.
Over the years Speedweek has visited 12 different tracks, including the seven from this year, plus Bedford, Susquehanna, Path Valley and the now-shuttered tracks at Penn National and Silver Spring.
Greg Hodnett and Lance Dewease each have three series titles, and stand second and third on the series win list with 21 and 18 victories, respectively. There have been 27 different Speedweek winners over the years.
This year's series appears to be drawing in quite a few outside stars. Last weekend, California's Tyler Walker returned to the area as the driver of Dawn and Charlie Sorokach No. 35. Shane Stewart and Jessica Zemken both visited with plans for this weekend, and Sheldon Haudenschild was back as well. Most recently it was announced that Danny Lasoski will be driving the Zemco sprinter, which has always been a strong supporter of Speedweek.
OTHER WEEKEND RACING: While it's not a part of Speedweek, the sprint cars actually kick off the weekend with racing at Williams Grove on Friday evening.
That show also features the 358 sprints. Saturday, the super sportsmen go in the Firecracker 30, with limited-late models and street stocks also on the program.
Selinsgrove has a two-race weekend planned as well. On Friday, the Mach 1 360 sprint series has a big event, while on Saturday, the 358 sprints go in the Middleswarth Potato Chips Firecracker 30. Late models, pro stocks and roadrunners also compete on Saturday.
Trailway has a two-race weekend. On Friday, the 358 sprints are joined by the Xtreme stocks and limited stocks. Saturday there are various classes of stock cars, plus a junk car demo.
With Speedweek at Lincoln, Port Royal takes this weekend off, while at Hagerstown the late models compete in the Johnny Roberts Memorial Race. Late-model sportsmen, pure stocks, hobby stocks and fireworks round out that program.
Susquehanna Speedway Park has the Summer Fun Championships for all of its divisions Saturday. In action will be the limited-late models, street stocks, Xtreme stocks and Road Warriors.
50 YEARS AGO: The holiday week was a big one locally 50 years ago in 1962.
The normal weekend racing had a few twists, and then there was racing Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, as well.
Friday at Williams Grove, Bobby Hersh drove the Trone No. 39 to his first Grove win of the season. Hersh's seventh overall win of the season came over arch-rival Johnny Mackison, with Neil Haight, Pee Wee Pobletts and Roger Sowers in the top five. Saturday at the Grove, Jiggs Peters won a USAC sprint-car race.
Saturday at Lincoln, it was Pobletts who scored his third overall win of the season. Pobletts drove his own No. 46 to his first Lincoln win of the year, with Bobby Abel second. Gene Goodling, Pete Kantorsky and Red Ninninger completed the top five. On the same program, NASCAR's short-track Grand National Series competed in a 100-lap race, with Jim Paschel driving to victory in his Petty Enterprises machine. Bob Devine finished second, followed by Elmo Langley, Wes Morgan and Bill Morgan.
At Port Royal on Saturday they had two features -- a make-up from the previous week's rained-out feature and the regular event. Frankie Thompson drove to victory in the make-up event. Thompson's Al McClure No. 15 topped Lauden Potts in the make-up for his third win in a row.
In the regular feature Dick Tobias drove the Regester No. 6 to his eighth overall victory of the season, besting Thompson in the process. Johnny Dubendorff, Clate Husted and Sowers completed the top five.
On Sunday at Susquehanna, Abel finally got his first win of the season, driving a brand new version of his familiar orange and blue No. 2 to the win over Hersh, with Goodling, Sowers and Bud Folkenroth in the top five.
On Tuesday evening, Lincoln and Port Royal were both in action. At Lincoln, Mackison drove the Yorkshire Garage/Emrich Chevrolet No. 1 to his 10th overall victory of the season. Haight, Goodling, Pobletts and Folkenroth completed the top five.
At the Port, Tobias made it two in a row, and nine on the season, in the Regester No. 6. Toby topped Don Kimberling, Potts, Dubendorff and Joe Lingle for that win.
The holiday action wrapped up on Wednesday, July 4, at Susquehanna, where Mackison put the No. 1 in victory lane for the 11th time that season. This time Haight, Ray Tilley, Folkenroth and Chuck Talbert followed Mackison.
-- Reach Bryan House holder at sports@yorkdis patch.com.