The World of Outlaws' sprint cars visit the area this week.
The Outlaws will race at Lincoln Speedway on Wednesday evening and then at Williams Grove on Friday and Saturday.
Last year, the Outlaws returned to Lincoln for the first time since 1998, but the results were the same. Lincoln's eventual track champion stole the show. Danny Dietrich won last year's Outlaw race at Lincoln. Back in 1998, it was Fred Rahmer who won the Outlaw race at Lincoln.
While Lincoln regulars have won the last two Outlaw races at Lincoln, it's the Outlaws who hold the advantage in the win column overall. The Outlaws have 28 Lincoln wins in 40 appearances.
Lincoln's show carries a Thursday evening rain date.
At Williams Grove, the Outlaws have raced 182 times, with locals scoring 58 victories. In recent times the locals have fared very well, although last year is little murky. Local teams have won 13 of the last 20 Outlaw races at the Grove.
As I mentioned, last year is murky. Officially, only Fred Rahmer's win in May would count as a local win. Red Lion's Cody Darrah did win an Outlaw race at the Grove last year, but he is a full-time World of Outlaws racer. Also, Paul McMahan won an Outlaw race late in the season at Grove driving the same car Rahmer won with earlier. This year McMahan is a full-time Outlaw racer with that Chad and Jenn Clemens team.
OTHER WEEKEND RACES: Port Royal and Lincoln will both take Saturday off for the Outlaw race at Williams Grove.
Trailway will be in action on Friday with the 358 sprints, 600cc micro sprints, thundercars and mini-stocks. On Saturday, Trailway will host the AMA motorcycles.
Susquehanna Speedway Park will host the Steel Block Bandits Late Model Series on Saturday evening, along with the street stocks, Xtreme stocks and the sidewinder micro sprints.
Selinsgrove has two open-wheel classes on Saturday. The 358 sprints will be there as always, but the ESS 360 Sprint Car Series will run a full program as well. Late models and pro stocks join the action.
Hagerstown has a championship event for the late-model sportsmen on Saturday evening, along with the pure stocks, hobby stocks and mini-stocks.
RAHMER: The upcoming Outlaw swing may be the toughest challenge yet this season for the remarkable string of finishes that Fred Rahmer has put together.
The 55-year-old Hall of Famer has yet to finish out of the top 10 this season in local competition.
It has been possible to race in 19 sprint-car races around the area this season, and Rahmer has 19 top-10 finishes. In fact, 16 of those finishes are in the top five. Rahmer has won three races and finished second five times.
DIETZ: When York's Chase Dietz won Saturday's 358 sprint-car feature at Lincoln, he set the bar pretty high for young racers.
Dietz's win at Lincoln came six days before his 16th birthday.
Dietz is a sophomore at Spring Grove High School, and will turn 16 this Friday. His win came after a thrilling three-wide pass for the lead. York's Jeff Rohrbaugh was battling early leader Mike Duncan Jr., when Dietz drove around the outside of both racers.
Of course, Dietz has some pretty impressive racing genes. His father is former sprint-car racer Tim Dietz, a winner in sprints, midgets and micro sprints. Dietz's mother is the sister of current sprint-car standout Cory Haas, who has won numerous championships in the 358 sprint class, and now has a very good handful of sprint-car wins to his credit as well.
1968: This weekend was another that was hampered by rain in the area in 1968.
Things started out well on Friday evening when the legendary Mitch Smith drove the Regester No. 6 to his third overall win of the season.
On Saturday, Lincoln and Winchester were both able to beat the raindrops, while Selinsgrove and Port Royal were rained out.
With his regular home at Selinsgrove rained out, Ray Tilley ventured to Lincoln to score his first-ever win there. Tilley drove the Bud Grimm No. 88 to his eighth overall win of the season. At Winchester, Jackie Denniston scored his first win of the season at the wheel of his No. 2 racer.
Sunday racing was then rained out at Susquehanna and Hagerstown, but earlier in the day the URC sprints visited Williams Grove for an afternoon show, with Gus Linder, a regular that season on the local circuit, driving the Mickey Banas No. 69 to the win.
-- Bryan Householder writes about dirt-track racing for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.