Story By: MIKE LEONE / SHARON SPEEDWAY – HARTFORD, OH – After another rainout last Saturday, Sharon Speedway is set for two upcoming big nights of racing. It all gets underway this Saturday night (June 30) with another Menards “Super Series” race featuring the “410” Sprint Cars then on Monday night (July 2) the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will compete in the “Steel Valley 50” presented by Barris Truck Service and Performance Bodies. Race time is 7 p.m. both nights.
On Saturday, the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply “410” Sprint Cars will race for $3,000 to-win, $250 to-start and will be joined by the Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds, and the Summit Racing Equipment Econo Mods. It’s Armed Forces Night as all veterans and active serviceman will be admitted free into the grandstands for general admission.
The “410” Sprint Cars have competed in three highly-successful events to date this season. On May 5, Aaron Reutzel topped a 43-car field for his first career All Star Circuit of Champions-sanctioned victory. All Star regular, Chad Kemenah, invaded on June 2 to capture the $3,000 Menards “Super Series” event over a 31-car field on June 2. And lastly, Christopher Bell picked up his second All Star win in as many years at Sharon winning the June 19 Ohio Speedweek event over the 43-car field.
Saturday will again utilize Attica Raceway Park’s hot lap/group qualifying format that was used on June 2. Two to three cars will qualify at a time only amongst their heat race group. The fastest four in each heat will be inverted with the top three redrawing plus the fastest transferring non-top three finisher if there are three heats or the top two plus the two fastest transferring non-top two finishers if there are four heats. Heat and B main finish(es) will complete the 24-car starting lineup. A strong field of local and regional talent is expected. Mufflers are not required and there’s no registration or entry fee.
The Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars have only been able to complete one event this season- that being the June 16 “Steel Valley Pro Stock Nationals”. Brent Johnson came away with the $10,000 win edging out Chris Schneider by 0.118 of a second. The only other night the Stock Cars hit the track was on May 26 when their four heat races were completed before rains came and washed out the program. On that night there were 31 cars. With no regular programs completed yet this season, Stock Cars drivers have only received show-up points on May 26 and June 16.
The RUSH Sportsman Modifieds have completed two events to date this season. Blaze Myers won the opener over a record 31-car field for his first career win, while Chas Wolbert dominated the June 19 event as an undercard to the All Stars. 2017 RUSH Weekly Series Champion, Rocky Kugel, has the HTMA/Precise Racing Products points lead by five over Garrett Krummert, who has wins this year at Tri-City and Pittsburgh. Josh Deems, Myers, and Wolbert round out the top five in points.
Completing Saturday’s program are the Econo Mods. The Summit Racing Equipment-sponsored division opened their season with the All Stars on May 5 as 2010 track champion, Brad Blackshear, took the $500 top honors and have only got one other event completed. The second event took place on June 2 when Jacob Eucker captured his eighth career victory in the division. Currently Brian Toto and Ty Rhoades are tied for the points lead.
Two days later on Monday, the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will return to Sharon for the second straight year. This event was originally scheduled for April 20, but was postponed due to wet grounds. At last year’s inaugural LOLMDS event, Josh Richards captured the $10,000 prize over Brandon Sheppard, Gregg Satterlee, Devin Moran and Jimmy Owens.
This year, the ante has been upped to a $12,000 to-win, $1,000 to-start payoff. It’s going to be a mini four-day Ohio Speedweek for LOLMS with events at Portsmouth Saturday, Mansfield Sunday, Sharon Monday, and Muskingum Tuesday. Jonathan Davenport leads the Series’ points heading into the weekend. Davenport was not at Sharon for the 2017 event. Series regular, Hudson O’Neal, recently captured his first career LOLMS win, and is seventh in points ahead of his father, Don.
The RUSH Sportsman Modifieds will also be on the card on Monday in a $600 to-win event that will offer both Sharon and RUSH Weekly Series points.
Pits are open throughout the afternoon on Saturday with pit passes going on sale at 4 p.m., while the main grandstands open at 5. Pill cutoff is 6:20 p.m. and heat races are at 7. Grandstand admission for those 14 and over is $13. Patio seating upgrades are just $5 and fan suite seating upgrades are just $20 over the cost of general admission. In order to reserve either of these ahead of time, call the office Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 330-772-5481. As always, children under 14 and parking are always FREE! Pit passes are $30. Pit passes for children 12 and under are $20.
Pits are open throughout the afternoon on Monday with pit passes going on sale at 4 p.m., while the main grandstands open at 5. Warm-ups begin at 6:15 followed by group qualifying for the LOLMDS and then heat race action. Reserved tickets are on sale through Sunday night at midnight for $27 by going to www.sharonspeedway.com and clicking on ‘buy tickets’ at the top left of the page. Patio and fan suite tickets are available for $32 and $45 respectively. Day of event general admission adult tickets are $27, while pit passes are $40. As always, children under 13 and parking is always FREE! Pit passes for children 12 and under are $30. Sharon has a no carry-in cooler policy.
Note that FREE camping is available from Sunday right through the “Lou Blaney Memorial” on Saturday, July 7. That event will feature the third and final appearance of the season by the All Star Circuit of Champions along with The Mod Tour big blocks in a $2,000 to-win event. Ollie’s Bargain Outlet will again be the presenting sponsor on a night benefitting the Alzheimer’s Association. Reserved tickets for the 10th annual “Lou Blaney Memorial” are also on sale through the website.