Knoxville Nationals in Iowa will feature strong contingent of central Pa. sprint racers

BRYAN HOUSEHOLDER
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Anthony Macri, seen here in a file photo, is one of several central Pennsylvania drivers expected to compete in the Knoxville Nationals in Iowa this weekend.
  • The Knoxville Nationals will be held in Iowa this weekend.
  • A number of central Pennsylvania sprint racers are expected to compete in the event.
  • The winner of the Knoxville race could potentially win $200,000.

With the Knoxville Nationals going on, the local 410 sprint schedule will look a little different this weekend.

Saturday’s Knoxville Nationals in Iowa will offer $150,000 to win and $1,000 a lap in lap money. With a 50-lap distance, that means the winner, should he lead every lap, will go home with $200,000.

Not surprisingly, a number of local teams will head to Iowa this weekend for the big-money event. Danny Dietrich, Anthony Macri, Lucas Wolfe and Brent Marks already started their journey west last weekend. Logan Wagner, Mike Wagner, Dylan Cisney, Robbie Kendall and probably some others are on their way as well.

Williams Grove Speedway (Cumberland County), Port Royal Speedway (Juniata County) and BAPS Motor Speedway (northern York County) will all take the weekend off. That leaves things open for some other tracks to try 410 sprint racing this weekend.

As it always does, Lincoln Speedway in Adams County will be in action on Saturday with the 410 sprints headlining. The show at Lincoln will be a draw show, instead of a points handicapping show, but will offer full points. The legends cars and the Mid-Atlantic modifieds are also on the card.

Big Diamond Raceway in Minersville, Schuylkill County, will offer up the 410 sprints on Friday. It will be the first time in a number of years that the sprints have raced at Big Diamond.

Likewise, the Clinton County oval in Lock Haven is offering the 410 sprints in a special Saturday show. Like Big Diamond, it has been a number years since the sprints have raced at Clinton County.

Trailway Speedway in Adams County races Friday with the 358 sprints headlining. The 600cc micro sprints, limited stocks, classic cars and an enduro complete Trailway’s show.

Selinsgrove Speedway in Snyder County offers the super late models, 305 sprints, limited late models and roadrunners Saturday.

Hagerstown Speedway in northern Maryland has the Nathan Durboraw Tribute Race on Saturday for the super late models. Durboraw was one of the track’s leading winners in late-model and limited-late-model competition. He died last year. In honor of one of Durboraw’s car numbers, the race will go 41 laps for $4,100 to win. Pure stocks and hobby stocks also compete.

Cory Haas is shown after his Saturday night victory at Lincoln Speedway.

PIT STOPS

Haas a winner again: Cory Haas got back in victory lane last Saturday at Lincoln.

A multi-time 358 sprint champion, and now a 20-time 410 sprint winner, Haas sat out last season. Haas hadn’t won a 410 sprint feature since 2019, but had nine second-place finishes since then, including two at Lincoln this year.

When Haas parted ways with the Trone team at the end of 2019, he decided to sit out for a while, although I’m not sure he planned for it to be a whole season. The COVID-19 pandemic probably altered his schedule a bit.

York driver earns 410 victory at Lincoln for his first win in several years; other results

Then, last winter, it was announced that Haas would be teaming with the Buzz Wilson team. Wilson, himself a multi-generational racer from the Scranton area, had been fielding cars for others for a few seasons. Mark Smith and Steve Buckwalter both had spent time in the Wilson car in recent years.

From the time they hit the track this season, Haas and the Wilson team have been fast, Saturday it all came together, with a run from ninth to the win.

Teen impressive: Earlier this year, about the time the American Sprint Car Series ventured into the area with its 360 racers, a black No. 8 car showed up late one night at Williams Grove.

A relatively unknown teenager from Washington state named Devon Borden was the driver. Borden ran a 360 engine against the 410s that night and didn’t make the feature. He was staying with engine builder Don Ott, and by Sunday of that weekend, had a 410 under the hood and nearly pulled off a top-five finish at BAPS. Late-race mechanical problems dropped him from fourth place.

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Borden stuck around for a few weeks and turned more than a few local heads, then he had to go home to graduate from high school. Just before his graduation, Borden got a phone call that every driver wants. Michael Heffner, who had fielded cars for the late Greg Hodnett, asked Borden to come back and drive his car.

Since then, there have been some ups and some downs in the relationship. Through it all, however, Borden has been fast. Last weekend he proved just how fast.

Friday at Williams Grove, Borden led every lap to score his first-ever 410 sprint win. Then, to prove it was no fluke, he went to Port Royal Saturday and scored his second win in as many days.

It probably shouldn’t be too much of a surprise. Borden won his first ASCS race at age 15.

Fitting finish: Last Friday, Trailway Speedway honored its leading feature winner with a Brad McClelland Tribute night.

Brad McClelland was a second-generation driver who excelled in the micro sprints and then in the 358 sprints. He is the win leader in both classes at Trailway. Brad McClelland also did some 410 sprint racing, and scored a win at Lincoln in those cars as well.

In recent years, he has been seen in the pits helping other racers with their cars.

Racing is a McClelland family tradition. Brad’s father, Bill McClelland, was one of this area’s top late-model racers in the 1960s and 1970s and won track titles at several tracks. Brad’s son, Tim, is the third generation to climb behind the wheel, first in micros, like his father, and then in the 358 sprints.

Tim McClelland won the Brad McClelland Tribute race.

Seavey wins at Selinsgrove: Logan Seavey won Sunday night’s Bill Holland Classic United States Auto Club Silver Crown event at Selinsgrove Speedway.

Seavey's first career USAC Silver Crown win was worth $8,075 in celebration of the track’s 75th anniversary. The race went 75 laps. The track's first race was won by Holland, the 1949 Indianapolis 500 victor and National Sprint Car Hall of Famer from Pennsylvania.

C.J. Leary was second, followed by Jake Swanson, Shane Cockrum and Justin Grant. Kody Swanson was sixth, followed by Matt Westfall, Brady Bacon, Carmen Perigo and Kyle Robbins.

Macri, Shaffer win in West Virginia: Macri won Friday’s sprint feature at the West Virginia Motor Speedway, besting Tim Shaffer. Shaffer turned the tables on Macri Saturday, with the $20,000 win over Macri. York driver Bradley Howard had finishes of sixth and 11th.

Smith takes 360 race in New York: Local racer Ryan Smith won the 360 sprint feature at the Outlaw Speedway in New York state Friday.

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

CHAMPION RACING OIL

CENTRAL PENNSYLVANIA

SPRINT CAR SERIES

Presented by Hoseheads

(Wins in parenthesis)

1. Freddie Rahmer (6)            859

2. Lance Dewease (7)            828

3. Anthony Macri (4)               825

4. Danny Dietrich (2)              820

5. Brent Marks (7)                  750

6. Logan Wagner (2)              551

7. Alan Krimes (1)                   486

8.Chase Dietz (2)                   485 

9. Dylan Cisney (1)                 468

10. Justin Peck (3)                 390