HOUSEHOLDER: Central Pennsylvania race fans will need to travel to see action this weekend
The local racing season is quickly drawing to a close.
There was no racing on local ovals last weekend, and to see any racing this week in person will require some travel by the central Pennsylvania race fans.
The World Finals at Charlotte have taken on a new look this year because of the pandemic, and actually won’t be called the World Finals. Still there will be racing in Charlotte this week.
Because of travel restrictions, the DIRT Modifieds won’t be a part of the event and only one class will be competing each evening. The World of Outlaws' late models are up first with full programs on Wednesday and Thursday evenings. Normally several local teams make the trek to Charlotte for those events.
When the late models clear out after Thursday’s event, the World of Outlaws' sprint cars will move in for their two days in the spotlight. The sprints race in full programs on Friday and Saturday. Again several local teams usually make the trek.
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Closer to home, the Bridgeport, New Jersey, oval has a big three-day weekend of racing planned, with various classes of modifieds on each day, Friday through Sunday.
The United Racing Club 360 sprint cars will also compete during the weekend. with full shows set for both Friday and Saturday.
BAPS event: While the track is idle this weekend, BAPS Motor Speedway will have the official final event of the local season on Saturday, Nov. 14.
The Sprint Showdown at the northern York County track will, of course, include the sprint cars. New for this year at the event are the modifieds, which will make up the second class of racing that weekend.
Indoor schedule in limbo: As of now, the indoor racing season will take a hit from the pandemic as well.
Events planned in Syracuse, New York, are pretty much on hold, unless things change. And New Jersey events are questionable as well, although the marquee event in Atlantic City is still on the schedule.
The event in Allentown on Jan. 8 and 9 is still a go, but with a limited amount of people allowed in the PPL Center in downtown Allentown.
It appears as if there will be just one class of racing, with the three-quarter midgets taking the spotlight. The limited capacity will include all people in attendance, and not just the fans, so seating will be at a premium. If you plan to attend, get your tickets early.
Banquets called off: It appears as if most banquets planned for the offseason will not take place this year either, because of the restrictions on the number of folks allowed in the banquet venues.
Already, most local race tracks have canceled this year’s banquets, and while official word hasn’t been released yet, area racing groups seem likely to fall into the same boat.
If you planned on attending a banquet, it would be best to check with the organization first.
On a similar note, the York County Racing Club has canceled its Monte Carlo Night, which was set for Nov. 14.
This weekend in history: While there is no racing locally this upcoming weekend, historically there has, at times, been some racing on this weekend.
Among active tracks, only Lincoln has hosted more than one race for what are now the sprint cars on this weekend. That happened in 1964, 1965 and again in 1993. On Nov. 8, 1964, track champion Bud Folkenroth, of Seven Valleys, drove the Gurtizen No. 50 to the Lincoln win, while a year later, on Nov. 7, 1965, his then-teammate, Bobby Myers, of York, scored the Lincoln win in the Gurtizen No. 51.
On Nov., 6, 1993, it was Fred Rahmer taking the Lincoln win in the Apple Motorsports car.
Two tracks that are now long gone have also raced twice on this weekend with sprint cars or their predecessors.
The famed Reading Fairgrounds hosted sprint cars on this weekend in 1976 and 1977. On Nov. 7, 1976, and again on Nov. 6, 1977, Steve Smith drove his own No. 19 to Reading wins.
The Bowling Green Speedway, which was located near Jefferson, raced on Nov. 7, 1954, and again on Nov. 6. 1955. In 1954, Bobby Wolfe was the winner, while in 1955 the win fell to Buzz Wilson.
The Nov. 6 date in 1955 also saw racing at what is now BAPS Motor Speedway, with Delta’s Johnny Mackison Sr. picking up the win.
Williams Grove has only raced once on this weekend, and that was the 1971 Williams Grove National Open on Nov. 7. Kenny Weld won the first of three in a row with his own No. 91 racer, fielded out of his shop in Loganville.
Hagerstown has raced frequently in November, but only one date fell on this weekend. That was in 1994, when twin 20s for the sprint cars fell to Dan Dietrich and Dale Blaney.
Bryan Householder writes about dirt-track racing for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.