A number of area tracks have dropped some hints about changes next season on the local ovals.
Some of them are pretty big news.
First off, it seems apparent that the 358 sprint cars will race with the bigger wings that are currently used on the 410 and 305 sprints cars. Williams Grove, Lincoln and Trailway speedways have all moved in that direction.
A couple of tracks have already announced their season-opening events for next year. Lincoln is going with the "twos." The Icebreaker 30 for the 410 sprints is set for Saturday, Feb. 22 (2/22/2020) at 2 p.m.
Williams Grove has announced an opening day of Sunday afternoon, March 15.
Word also leaked a week or so ago that Selinsgrove Speedway will adopt a “specials-only” format for next season. That was clarified a little bit in a release this week. Pending approval of the lease agreement for the current management team with the Selinsgrove Fair Board, a plan is in the making for next season.
The current management team of Alan Kreitzer, Michael Heffner and Steve Inch are up for renewal of their lease. If all goes well, the plans call for a 15- to 18-race season next year, mostly during the middle of the racing season.
The 360 sprints will return, but only in events sanctioned by existing 360 groups. None were named, but that would seem to include United Racing Club, Empire Sprint Series, Patriot Tour and perhaps the American Spring Car Series.
The 410 sprints will make several appearances, as will the late models, 305 sprints, limited-late models and roadrunners.
If things go as they have in the past, the late models will probably have several sanctioned shows as well.
There's also big news for the winged super sportsman racers in the area. The super sportsman tour will return next season. At one time, the super sportsman racers had a number of “tour” races at facilities other than their home at Silver Spring Speedway. After the Spring closed, the tour eventually faded away.
Now Scott Gobrecht and Kolten Gouse, the owner and promoter at BAPS Motor Speedway, which is now the home of the winged super sportsmen, are working with Marysville Motors to begin reviving the “tour.”
Plans call for an eight-race tour for the super sportsman cars next season. The cars will still race weekly at BAPS, but three of those races will be set aside as BAPS' part of the tour. Lincoln will host three tour races, while Big Diamond and Trailway will each host one tour race for the 2020 season.
This week: Racing action continues this weekend, although there is nothing real close to home.
The big event on the weekend is the World Finals in Charlotte at the Dirt Track on the grounds of the Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The World of Outlaws sprint cars and late models and the Dirt modifieds all wrap up their seasons this week in Charlotte. Time-trial qualifying for both weekend nights is held on Thursday, with full programs for all three divisions on Friday and Saturday evenings.
A number of local teams make this trip each season, and this year will be no different.
A little closer to home is action at Bridgeport, New Jersey. The URC 360 sprints compete in full programs on both Friday and Saturday at Bridgeport. Various forms of modifieds will compete, with the main event for the 358 modifieds Saturday and the big-block modifieds on Sunday.
Those events at Bridgeport are set to be the final events on the big 5/8th-mile oval. A new management team plans to convert the facility’s 5/8th- and 3/8th-mile configurations into one 4/10th-mile oval by next season.
1991: The 1991 racing season wasn’t quite over by this weekend in 1991, but there were no races locally on this weekend.
One race remained, that being at Lincoln on Nov. 16.
While I’ve been covering the 1991 races locally all season, there were some local drivers who won outside the area during the year as well. With a dark weekend locally in 1991, I’ll take a look at those wins outside the area this week.
Todd Shaffer won nine local races during the year, but he spent his Sundays traveling to Sharon, Ohio with his Turnbaugh No. 11. He had a very good year there, picking up 13 wins and the track championship.
As he always did during his long and productive career, Bobby Allen did quite a bit of traveling in the 1991 season. With his own No. 1a, Allen won three races in Ohio, one in Indiana and he also scored a win that winter in Australia.
Kenny Adams drove several cars during the season, picking up three wins at Port Royal, and then got a late-season score at Delaware International. He added a Bridgeport score late in the season, perhaps on this very weekend.
Dave Kelly bounced around during the season, scoring wins at Hagerstown, Port Royal and Selinsgrove. He also got a win at Sharon during the season.
Jeff Swindell drove Bob Weikert’s No. 29 in the early part of the season, scoring a win at Port Royal. He was also a winner at Lernerville in the Weikert car.
Bryan Householder writes about dirt-track racing for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.