Area dirt-track racers expected to hit road this weekend, compete in Carolinas, New Jersey

BRYAN HOUSEHOLDER
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There’s not much going on close to home this weekend for local dirt-track fans.

That doesn’t mean, however, that area dirt-track followers will lack for races to keep an eye on.

That’s because many regional drivers will be in competition at several big events on the East Coast.

The World Finals take place this weekend at The Dirt Track in Charlotte, North Carolina. The World of Outlaws 410 sprint cars, the World of Outlaws late models, and the DIRT modifieds all race in Charlotte to close the seasons for those organizations.

Just before the events in Charlotte, the Cherokee Speedway in Gaffney, South Carolina, will host the 410 sprints, late models and modifieds in an event called the Prelude to the Finals. The race at Cherokee will be held Tuesday evening. The late models race for $7,500 to win, while the 410 sprints and modifieds race for $5,000 to win.

Then it’s on to Charlotte. 

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In a unique format that puts all three of the world racing groups’ top classes on the same stage, the World Finals closes out the season for all three groups. Series champions will also be crowned.

Qualifying time trials for all three divisions take place Thursday, for both Friday’s and Saturday’s programs. The Friday and Saturday shows are complete shows, less time trials, for all three divisions.

As noted, a number of local teams will be part of the action this week in the Carolinas.

A lot closer to home, but still a bit of a haul from here, the Bridgeport Speedway in New Jersey has a big weekend planned as well. Known as the High Banks Classic, the Jersey track will feature a three-day show starting on Friday evening.

Friday’s show consists of the United States Auto Club East Coast wingless 360 sprint cars, the 602 crate modifieds and the street stocks.

Saturday, the United Racing Club 360 sprints are joined by the 602 crate modifieds and the Speedstrs.

Sunday, the modifieds are joined by the 602 crate modifieds

You can expect most of the area’s 360 sprint racers to be in competition there, along with several 410 drivers who usually take part in the show.

BAPS Showdown looms, then the winter events: The local racing season isn’t quite complete yet.

The Showdown at BAPS Motor Speedway in northern York County remains on the local calendar. That one takes place on Saturday, Nov. 13, with the 410 sprints and the modifieds on the racing slate.

After that event, the winter slate of racing activities begins.

Things start right after the BAPS show, when the York County Racing Club hosts its annual Monte Carlo Night that very evening (Nov. 13). The YCRC Monte Carlo Night is one of many events that fell victim to the COVID-19 pandemic last year, but will return in full force this year.

The YCRC’s Christmas Party is set for Sunday, Dec. 5. That same weekend, the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing holds its Holiday Open House.

Things kick back into action the second weekend in January, when indoor racing returns to Allentown. The three-quarter-midget event will take place on Friday and Saturday evenings, Jan. 7-8.

The York County Racing Club’s annual Hall of Fame Banquet will return that weekend as well on Saturday, Jan. 8. Since the organization didn’t have the banquet last year, this year’s event will honor the inductees from 2020 as well as the new group for 2021.

The popular Motorsports show returns this winter as well. It is slated for Friday and Saturday, Jan. 21-22 at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks.

The following weekend, indoor auto racing returns to Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City for the Gambler’s Classic weekend.

A week after that, on the first weekend in February, the Racing Xtravaganza returns to the York Expo Center.

All of those events were canceled last winter because of the pandemic, so many folks are looking forward to the return of the winter schedule of events.

Next year’s local racing season is set to kick off with Lincoln’s Icebreaker 30 on Saturday, Feb. 26.

Bryan Householder writes about dirt-track racing for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at sports@yorkdispatch.com or @ydsports. Please consider subscribing to support local journalism.