The biggest sprint car race of them all is this weekend.
The Knoxville Nationals in Knoxville, Iowa, draws sprint cars from all over the world for the week-long extravaganza that offers well in excess of $100,000 to Saturday's winner. Like always, a group of local racers will venture west to take part in the program.
I always miss someone when I list those planning to make the trip, but for sure Spring Grove's Greg Hodnett, Stevie Smith, Danny Dietrich, Lucas Wolfe and Brent Marks plan to compete. Also recent Port Royal winner Logan Wagner will be there. Wagner decided he wanted to go to Knoxville, so he went on a sponsorship drive and put together the funds to head out.
While the big race is in Knoxville this weekend, there's still plenty of local racing, as well.
As normal, Williams Grove has a two-race weekend planned. Friday, the URC 360 sprints join the sprint car program for Kids' Night. The Saturday series at the Grove features the super sportsmen, limited late models and street stocks.
Trailway is in action Friday as well, with the 358 sprints, Legends, limited stocks and sidewinder micro sprints.
Path Valley features the wingless super sportsmen on Friday.
Saturday at Lincoln, the sprint cars take center stage, along with an exhibition by the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing that includes track time. The last two years the EMMR has produced more than 70 vintage race cars for these exhibitions.
Port Royal races Saturday with sprint cars, late models, econo late models and the All American Outlaws.
At Selinsgrove on Saturday it's the 360 sprints, late models, pro stocks and roadrunners, while at Susquehanna Speedway Park, the 305 sprints join the program of limited late models, street stocks, Xtreme stocks, road warriors and minivans.
Hagerstown features the late models, late model sportsmen, pure stocks, hobby stocks and mini stocks on Saturday.
Hodnett rebounds: Last week I mentioned that Dietrich had gained a lot of ground on Hodnett in the quest for the Speedway Motors/Champion Racing Oil Central Pennsylvania Sprint Car Championship. This past week, Hodnett had a major gain of his own. Hodnett gained back 69 points over the weekend to push his lead to 114 points.
Since both drivers plan to attend Knoxville this weekend, third-place Brian Montieth stand to gain some ground. However, Montieth is currently 395 points behind Hodnett and 281 behind Dietrich. The most he could gain this weekend is 100 points.
Midgets: I mentioned last week that the USAC Midgets are coming east for an Eastern Storm of their own. I talked about Lincoln's show, but it's actually a three-race series.
The ARDC Midgets will join USAC for shows at Path Valley on Tuesday Aug. 18; at Lincoln on Wednesday, Aug. 19; and at Susquehanna Speedway Park on Thursday, Aug. 20.
The 2015 Chili Bowl winner, Rico Abreau, and the 2015 NASCAR Truck Series Mud Summer Classic winner, Christopher Bell, are planning to be in the field. Abreau was USAC's 2014 champion and Bell was the 2013 title holder.
1970: This weekend in 1970 started with a special 50-lapper at Selinsgrove on Wednesday evening.
Wrightsville's Bobbie Adamson won that one in Al Hamilton's No. 77. It was Adamson's ninth win of the season . He would come back to score his 10th win of the season on Saturday, again at Selinsgrove.
Friday racing was rained out at Williams Grove, but Bedford did manage to complete a fair race on Friday night, with Gus Linder scoring the win in Mickey Banas' No. 69. The win was Linder's second of the season. Bedford then brought in URC for a Saturday fair race. Western Pennsylvania ace Ralph Quarterson Sr. scored the win in that one.
At Lincoln on Saturday, Hal Browning parked the Palmer No. 6 in victory lane for his second win of the season. At Port Royal, Dover's Smokey Snellbaker drove to his second win of the season in Kenny Beck's No. 14.
Sunday at Hagerstown it was Steve Smith claiming his second win of the season in the O.J. Myers No. 19.
Sprint car standings
Speedway Motors/Champion Racing Oil Central Pennsylvania Sprint Cars
Presented by Hoseheads.com
1. Greg Hodnett (11) 1,368
2. Danny Dietrich (12) 1,254
3. Brian Montieth (8) 973
4 Lucas Wolfe (3) 952
5. Brent Marks 697
6. Stevie Smith (8) 619
7. Aaron Ott (1) 585
8. Alan Krimes (2) 564
9. Lance Dewease (1) 545
10. Steve Buckwalter (3) 467
11. Cory Haas 374
12. Austin Hogue 283
13. Jim Siegel (1) 218
14. Tim Glatfelter 212
15. Doug Esh (1) 204
16. Mike Wagner 195
17. Freddie Rahmer 194
18. Robbie Kendall 184
19. Logan Wagner (1) 181
20. Kyle Moody 177
21. Brock Zearfoss 171
22. Donnie Kreitz Jr. (1) 163
22. Ryan Smith 163
23. Pat Cannon (1) 158
24. Donny Schatz (1) 155
25. Kevin Nouse (1) 152
2015 Capital Renegade 358 Sprint Series
1. Doug Hammaker (4) 815
2. Brad McClelland (4) 697
3. Matt Campbell (2) 675
4. Issac Sneeringer (5) 559
5. Cody Fletcher (1) 555
6. Jeff Halligan (3) 427
7. Chandler Leiby (1) 418
8. Adrian Shaffer (2) 417
9. Jeff Rohrbaugh (2) 390
9. Kevin Nouse 390