Speedweek is here.
Lincoln Speedway kicks off action tonight. The race is the 10th annual Kevin Gobrecht Memorial race. Fred Rahmer is my choice to win.
Tomorrow, Bedford Speedway makes history by presenting its first dual show of sprint cars and late models in more than 20 years. Keith Kauffman is the all-time leading sprint winner at the track. Kauffman, Rahmer, Greg Hodnett and Mark Smith stand out as drivers that understand this unique 5/8-mile track. My pick, Kauffman. Monday is Bedford's rain date.
Grandview Speedway is up next, Tuesday night. Fred Rahmer dominated the track while racing modifieds and has done well there in sprint cars. My choice, Rahmer.
Hagerstown Speedway hosts action next Wednesday. Stevie Smith won the May Keystone Cup race. Rahmer, Kauffman, Mike Wagner, Smith, Lance DeWease and others run well here. DeWease is on the shelf due to injuries so he's out. My choice, Smith.
Thursday, and Friday action shifts to Williams Grove, where it's anybody's guess. My choices are Donnie Kreitz Jr. and Todd Shaffer.
Saturday it's Port Royal Speedway. It's a toss up here, too. Right now, Greg Hodnett is running well at the Juniata County oval. Todd Shaffer has been fast. Without having to start back due to handicapping, Shaffer could be the man. My guess is Shaffer or Hodnett. I'll flip a coin here. Hodnett.
Sunday, Selinsgrove closes out the action. Shaffer, Kauffman, Chad Layton, Rahmer and Kreitz come to mind as guys that run well here. Again it's antibody's guess. I'll take Layton.
Rahmer or Hodnett wins the championship. We'll see how well I do.
The Sorokach No. 35 sprinter formerly driven by Alan Cole was parked until Speedweek. The first report I received was the team was down on funds, which is understandable. Chad Kemenah will come in and run the car for Speedweek. Apparently Cole is with out a ride. I hate to see that because he is a good driver.
Jason Covert won last Friday night's Three States Flyer race at Hagerstown. Tommy Armel, D.J. Myers, Gary Stuhler and Andy Anderson completed the top five.
Last Friday night Bedford Speedway hosted a great night of racing. Despite being down on late models due to the Three States race at Hegerstown, the program was interesting. Jack Pencil came home the winner after Jeff Rine had mechanical problems with less than two laps to go. The limited late model feature was won by Rick Singleton. There also was plenty of action in the street stock, four-cylinder and hobby classes. Mike Lauffer was disqualified after a bumping incident with Ed Vogel Jr. during the four-cylinder feature. Plenty of fireworks followed.
As for Port Royal Speedway, racing was rained out last week.
Kid Rocket, Josh Richards, won Wednesday night's Grandwiew late model feature over Jeremy Miller. Kenny Schrader qualified eighth and won the B-main. He dropped out of the feature on lap 23. Jeff Rine set fast time.
I have to comment on something I've been following the last few weeks in the trade papers. I've been looking at race track ads to see how many tracks actually publish their admission prices in pre-race ads. It is running about 20 percent. I wonder why. It seems to me that race fans deserve to know what it is going to cost them to go to the races before they get there. Especially with kids. That's something to think about.
Tonight's Port Royal Speedway program includes late models, 305 and 358 sprint cars and enduro cars. Action starts at 7 p.m.
Kids Night is right around the corner on July 11. There was a fundraiser held at the Innfield Restaurant & Tavern Thursday night. Several drivers served as celebrity bartenders. A good time was had by all.
The Yankee Doodle 50 All Star Late Model race is July 3 at Central PA Speedway in Clearfield. July 4 is being saved for a rain date. The street stocks race for $1,000 dollars. Call (814) 768-FLAG for more details or check their Web site at www.thebigtrack.com.
Bedford Speedway has a five division show plus fireworks planned for July 3. I have to say this: Bedford's fireworks display is as good as any track I've seen. It's not a cheap show by any means.
In the world of NASCAR, General Motors announced it will cut back funding for Sprint Cup teams. GM completely cut all funding to Nationwide and Truck series teams as part of its bankruptcy. Most major Chevy teams are OK with the cuts.
How about Richard Petty? After not winning a race in 10 years, Kasey Kahne took the King to the winner's circle last week in Sonoma, Calif. It was the first time a Petty car won at a road course in 32 years. This comes on the heels of Petty laying off workers due to Chrysler Corp.'s cuts to race teams.
The Cup cars are at New Hampshire this week end. Race time Sunday is 2 p.m. on TNT. Kurt Busch is the defending race champion.
The IRL cars race at Richmond tonight. Race time is 8:45 p.m. on Versus. How many of us get that network?
That's going to do it for this week. Get out and support a track during all the special races that are coming up. There's something for everyone. I'll be back next week with more news and opinions. Remember, speed is for the speedway, not the highway!
Craig Rutherford writes about motorsports for The Sentinel. He is associated with Port Royal Speedway.