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The popular Racing Xtravaganza show will return to the Utz Arena at the York Expo Center this weekend.

The arena will be jammed full of race cars. There will also be many other racing-related activities.

There has been a change in the show hours for 2019. For the past several years, the show has run on Saturday and Sunday, but this year it will be held on Friday and Saturday. The doors will swing open at 3 p.m. Friday and run until 9 p.m. that evening.  Saturday hours are 10 a.m. until 9 p.m.

Word is that close to 140 race cars have filed entries for this year's show. Of course, most of the local race tracks will also be on hand distributing schedules for the 2019 season and passing along other information about their seasons as well.

Numerous racing-related businesses will also be on hand offering racing parts and memorabilia.

The show started life as the Dirt Trackin’ show more than 35 years ago, and while it underwent a few lean seasons, it has been coming back strong the past several years. Scott Gobrecht took over the operation of the show several years ago, changing the name and the venue. Since that time, things have been on an upswing, and this year looks on track to be a great year.

Gobrecht now wears many hats in local racing. He is the owner of the Central Pennsylvania Legends Series, owns the BAPS Motor Speedway and recently became a co-owner of Lincoln Speedway. Gobrecht also fields a local sprint car for Trey Starks.

The York County Racing Club has always been a strong supporter of the show and will be on hand again. One of the popular things the YCRC does during the show is host a bake sale.

There will again be contests to name Ms. Racing Xtravaganza and Junior Miss Racing Xtravaganza. In addition, for the second year in a row, there will be a cornhole contest sponsored by BAPS.

The People's Choice Best Appearing Car Award is voted on by those attending the show and the winning team goes home with $1,000.

The show also offers fans a chance to meet many of their favorite local drivers and get their autographs. Autograph sessions are set for most hours the show is open during the weekend.

The will also be a number of seminars presented during the show. Among those scheduled to present seminars are the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing, the York County Racing Club, BAPS Motor Speedway, Lincoln Speedway, the PASS 305 Sprint Series and the Reading Fairgrounds historical group.

There really is something for everyone who loves racing during the show.

PIT STOPS

Atlantic City recap: The Gambler’s Classic in Atlantic City brings together drivers from many different forms of racing to compete in the three-quarter midgets on the concrete floor racing surface.

The track basically races around the outside of Boardwalk Hall’s ice hockey rink.

I thought it might be interesting to break down the various classes of racing that were represented in the 26-car feature starting lineup.

Of the top-10 finishers in Saturday’s race, there were three drivers who concentrate on the asphalt modifieds and three who race in some form of dirt track sprint car. Two of the top-10 finishers race dirt modifieds and one races the three-quarter midgets.

The 10th driver only drives race cars during the winter indoor racing series. For the rest of the season, his “day job” is as a tire changer on the NASCAR Cup Series circuit.

 Among the others who qualified for the feature, there were seven who concentrate on the three-quarter midgets, four who race asphalt modifieds and one each from dirt track sprint cars, midgets and micro sprints. There was also an asphalt super modified driver and one who has raced just about everything there is to race in short-track dirt and asphalt racing.

Lincoln champion Brian Montieth made his first-ever attempt at the indoor series but fell a few spots short of qualifying for the feature after showing improvement every time he was on the track. Montieth had never before raced on concrete or driven a three-quarter midget.

1991: For local racers, the 1991 racing season kicked off on this weekend in Florida. 

The winter racing series started at the JAX Raceway in Jacksonville on Friday. When the checkered flag fell that night, the car sitting in victory lane was the Leiby Mobile Home Sales No. 19 racer with legendary local driver Steve Smith holding the flag.

The Saturday show at JAX found an equally legendary driver in another legendary car in victory lane. Ohio ace Jack Hewitt scored the win in Bob Hampshire’s No. 63. Hewitt would start his Northeast season with a few appearances at Lincoln in the early months of the season and would garner his only local win there on March 30.

From JAX, the Florida sprint series moved on to Putnamville for Sunday and Monday shows. The Sunday event would fall to Kevin Huntley in the No. 1H, while on Monday it was the always-popular Bobby Davis Jr. who drove to victory in his own red No. 4 car.

Davis had spent the 1983 season racing the local circuit as a teenager in the Bob Weikert machine, and was well known to local fans. Just last summer, Davis made a popular return to the area a guest at the Weikert Memorial Race at Port Royal.

Bryan Householder writes about dirt track racing for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at sports@yorkdispatch.com.

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