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Dewease Wins Night before the 50 at Port Royal Speedway

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Bert Wojo

PORT ROYAL, PA (September 11, 2020): Lance Dewease got to do something that very few Sprint Car drivers have been able to do this season: he chased down and passed Kyle Larson for the win on the Night before the 50 at Port Royal Speedway. After struggling on a tacky and fast track Thursday night, Dewease and the Dream Team decided to race on Friday night to get a better idea of what the conditions may be like for the big event. They were planning to take the night off to get ready for the big show on Saturday but a tenth place run the night before may have changed their minds. They collected $6,000 and the second guaranteed starting spot for the big race.

Dewease is a member of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame, and so are his car owner, Don Kreitz, Jr., and his crew chief, Davey Brown. They have made a habit of winning major events since teaming up several seasons ago. Last night, he remarked that his team has been flying under the radar for most of the season, and he thought that may have been a good thing. But, there is no hiding now. Dewease branded himself as a favorite to gain his seventh triumph in this marquee event.

Dewease showed the patience and confidence of a veteran racer. While his younger adversaries, Larson and Anthony Macri were pounding the cushion, Dewease stayed in the middle of the track. But, he found a good line low in turns three and four, which he used to drive by Larson and Macri, much to the delight of the large crowd on hand.

“That’s the only way we can beat those guys,” Dewease said modestly. “Anthony is getting really good here and Kyle is the best in the business now.” Dewease added that he defeated Larson on the links Friday and it was fun to beat his friend on the track. “He (Larson) waived at me when he passed me a couple of weeks ago, but I didn’t waive at him when I passed him. He’s too good right now to do that. I didn’t hear him after I got by him.”

Kerry Madsen and Larson had the front row starting spots from their respective dash wins. Macri and Dewease lined up in row tow. Brent Marks and Cory Eliason, last night’s winner, were in row three. Aaron Reutzel and Tyler Courtney were in row four and Cale Thomas and Dylan Cisney were in row five. Ian Madsen and Rico Abreu were in row six.

While Madsen led the charge into turn one, he was unable to keep Larson at bay. Larson rode the inside line in the first two turns to emerge with the early lead. Macri soon followed suit to gain second. Dewease drove by Madsen on lap three.

Larson and Macri started to separate themselves from the rest of the field, but the first and only caution, on lap four for Paul McMahan, closed up the field.

Larson zoomed out front when the green light flashed on and Macri was goving chase. Meanwhile, Dewease stayed within range. As the leaders got into traffic, things tightend up. Macri began pressing Larson, and Dewease was closing the gap. Macri slid under Larson at one point, but Larson maintained his momentum and drove back around the six-time winner to regain the lead. Soon, however, it was a three-car battle royale for the lead.

Dewease challenged Macri for second, but fell back a few car lengths when they ran up on some slower traffic. He fought back and set up an inside move to pass both Macri and Larson as the trio swept through turns three and four with about five to go. He negotiated the last five circuits without difficulty.

“I was pretty comfortable with the car,” Dewease said. “I could keep pace with them. I felt like we’d be OK as long as they didn’t get back into clean air.” Luck was on his side as there wer no other cautions in the contest, so Dewease did not have to worry about chasing down Larson or Macri on a clear track.”

Three Rivers Karting

Macri thought that he may have used his tires too much in chasing down Larson. “I was maintaining, but I kinda used my tire when I got up to him.”

Larson’s comments were similar to those of Dewease. “I felt good early when I had a clean track.” He started to have problems, though, when he was approaching the slower cars ahead of him. “When I was within a straight, things got pretty dirty and I couldn’t get grip. I was searching and I couldn’t get off the corners like they could.”

Dewease was the winner, with Macri second. Larson crossed in third. Dylan Cisney put in a great performance getting fourth. Kerry Madsen was fifth. Marks, Abreu, Danny Dietrich, Eliason, and Ian Madsen rounded out the top ten.

Heat victories went to Cisney, Abreu, Dewease, Larson, and Reutzel. The C Main winner was Alan Krimes. Freddie Rahmer, Jr. won the B Main. Macri was the evening’s fastest qualifier.

In the 25 lap Super Late Model finale, Jeff Rine took advantage of a restart with fifteen laps in the books to pass Trent Brenneman, who lead from the drop of the green. The restart was set up by an incident in turn one that eliminated three cars in the top ten at the time: Kyle Lee, Marvin Winters and Trevor Feathers.

Rine was followed across the line by Brenneman, ageless Gary Stuhler, Ross Robinson, and Dylan Yoder. Colton Flinner, who raced as high as third, fell back to sixth at the finish. He was trailed by Dan Stone, Andy Haus, Brett Schadel, and Jim Yoder. Haus’s seventh was good enough to clinch the track championship in this division.

Heat wins were scored by Brenneman, Robinson, and Feathers. There was no B Main.

Saturday night, Port Royal Speedway will host the fifty-third annual Tuscarora 50. Gates will open at 2 p.m. and the racing will begin at 6 p.m. It will be a Sprint Car only show. $53,000 will be paid to the winner.

A-Main (30 Laps)
1. 69K-Lance Dewease [4]; 2. 39M-Anthony Macri [3]; 3. 57-Kyle Larson [2]; 4. 5C-Dylan Cisney [10]; 5. 24-Rico Abreu [12]; 6. 2M-Kerry Madsen [1]; 7. 26-Cory Eliason [6]; 8. 5-Brent Marks [5]; 9. 48-Danny Dietrich [13]; 10. 17-Ian Madsen [11]; 11. 70-Cale Thomas [9]; 12. 3Z-Brock Zearfoss [27]; 13. 51-Freddie Rahmer [21]; 14. 7BC-Tyler Courtney [8]; 15. 87-Aaron Reutzel [7]; 16. 1-Logan Wagner [18]; 17. 98-Jared Esh [24]; 18. 99-Skylar Gee [16]; 19. 11T-TJ Stutts [14]; 20. 11-Zeb Wise [17]; 21. 55-Mike Wagner [22]; 22. 39T-Justin Peck [19]; 23. 21-Brian Brown [23]; 24. 42-Sye Lynch [20]; 25. 13-Paul McMahan [25]; 26. 18-Gio Scelzi [15]; 27. 25-Tyler Bear [26] Lap Leaders: Kyle Larson (1-24), Lance Dewease (25-30).

2020 All Star Circuit of Champions Driver Standings: (As of September 11, 2020)
1. Aaron Reutzel – 5236
2. Cory Eliason – 5154
3. Zeb Wise – 4814
4. Paul McMahan – 4664
5. Skylar Gee – 4556
6. Greg Wilson – 4396
7. Josh Baughman – 3858
8. Danny Dietrich – 2992
9. Brock Zearfoss – 2896
10. Kyle Larson – 2888

Dirt Racing

Borden Thrills at Port Royal; Robinson, Covert, and Hart also Score

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PORT ROYAL, PA (April 13, 2024): Defending track champion, Devon Borden, battled Danny Dietrich in the final laps of the 410 Sprint Car race at Port Royal Speedway, bringing fans to their feet. Borden’s first win of the season came by 1.219 seconds over Dietrich, who won the season opener. Borden earned $5,800 for the effort.

“I just knew that I was going to have to go where they weren’t and drive the $h!+ out of it,” Borden said as he struggled to catch his breath. Starting twelfth, Borden knew that he had to make a big push early to get to the front with several heavy hitters starting ahead of him. “I had to make the top work before it went away.” He was able to charge to third in just nine laps and it only took him three more to reach second. Getting that final position was quite a bit harder to accomplish. “The last three laps were pretty hectic, and things had to play out in our favor.”

Borden gave props to his crew chief, Chris Shuttlesworth. “We didn’t start out very good, but now we have it going.”

A modified version of the PA Speedweek format was used for this program. The only deviation was the use of group time trials to set heat race line-ups. In the Speedweek format, each driver times against the whole field; whereas, the group approach only pits the racers against the same cars that will run in the same heat race. The heat race winners and the fastest car to qualify draw for starting positions at the front of the field. The remainder are seeded by their heat race finishes. B Main transfers make up the final rows.

The luck racers were Lucas Wolfe and Steve Buckwalter. Behind them were Dietrich and Logan Wagner. Dylan Cisney, the Mayor of Port Royal was paired up with Jeff Halligan in row three. The fourth row belonged to Gerard McIntyre, Jr. and Jake Karklin. Mike Wagner and Blane Heimbach claimed row five. T.J. Stutts was inside Borden in row six.

Buckwalter sailed into turn one on the outside and began to pull away from his pursuers. Dietrich settled into second, with Logan Wagner a close third. Wolfe fell back to fourth, followed by Karklin, Halligan, Cisney, Heimbach, Borden, and McIntyre. Buckwalter held control for the first six rounds. However, Dietrich closed in on him when Buckwalter encountered lapped traffic.

Dietrich became more aggressive on lap seven, sliding ahead of Buckwalter in turn three. Buckwalter turned back under him in turn four to regain the lead as they thundered down the long front stretch. Dietrich fought back through turns one and two, coming off the bottom of turn two with the lead. This time around, it was Buckwalter’s turn to slide for the lead in turn three. Dietrich crossed over in four to assume command as they completed lap eight. Meanwhile, Borden was making steady progress to the third position, but he was a good distance behind the lead duo.

When Kassidy Kreitz slowed to a stop on the back stretch on lap later, that eliminated the deficit for Borden. He got to start right behind Dietrich and Buckwalter. Borden took advantage of the opportunity, picking up the second spot just three laps after the race resumed.

It took Borden a few more laps to close the gap on the leader. Dietrich began picking his way through the slower cars, and Borden closed in. However, he could not make a move for the lead, as he seemed to have poor timing when approaching the lapped cars.

With just a few laps remaining, though, the front two cars broke free of the slower cars. With no traffic separating himself from the leader, Borden was able to press for the lead.

Over the final three laps, Dietrich and Borden swapped the lead several times, much to the delight of the fans. Borden took the lead for good entering turn three on the final lap. Dietrich dove low while Borden kept his momentum up on the cushion. Dietrich scrubbed off some speed coming through turn four, and Borden scooted ahead for the win.

Buckwalter turned in a creditable performance for third. Chase Dietz came on in the final laps to get fourth. Logan Wagner slipped to fifth in the final tally. Wolfe, Halligan, Karklin, Cisney, and Heimbach completed the top ten.

Three Rivers Karting

Dietrich, Buckwalter, Wolfe, and Cisney chalked up the heat wins. Justin Whittal prevailed in the B Main. Dietrich was fastest in Group one and overall, with a time of 17.113 seconds.

In the Super Late Models, Dillan Stake and Chad Myers brought the field to the green. Jeff Rine and Ross Robinson were right behind them. Shaun Jones and Colton Flinner were in row three, ahead of Brian Bernheisel and Dylan Yoder. Row five matched Tyler Emory and Chris Casner. Tim Wilson and Matt Cosner completed the top twelve.

Myers grabbed the early lead, with Robinson hot on his heels. Stake, Rine, Flinner, and Yoder followed in close formation. Myers rode along in the middle groove, and Robinson searched high and low for a place to try to make a pass. Robinson finally settled in on the inside, and he began to chip away at Myers’ lead.

Robinson came off the bottom of turn two and powered ahead of Myers just before the halfway point in the contest. Robinson started to draw away from Myers, but a caution on lap fourteen wiped out his advantage. Myers could not get a run on the Delaware racer when the action resumed. Instead, Myers was under attack from Flinner, Eckert, Stake, and Rine.

Flinner worked his way into second, bringing Eckert along into third. Myers continued on fourth with Stake on his tail.

At the checkers, it was Robinson ahead of Flinner by 3.806 seconds. Eckert, Myers, and Stake completed the top five. Next to cross were Rine, Yoder, Cosner, Jones, and Jason Covert.

The four heat winners were Robinson, Rine, Myers, and Stake. Gregg Satterlee won the B Main.

Robinson was relived to capture the win, his first at the Speed Palace. “We got lucky with the pill draws,” he said. Robinson said that he changed his set-up after hot laps, reverting to the combination that brought him a win recently at his hometown track, the Georgetown Speedway.

The top ten racers from the A Main were inverted for an Australian pursuit immediately following the A Main. Covert, who raced hard just to make it to the tenth spot in the A Main, earned the pole for the pursuit, which paid $1,000 to the winner. He was able to stay out front for the entire ten laps. “It just goes to show how even we all are,” he said. “We were inverted and the clean air on my nose made all the difference. I could come off the corners wherever I wanted.” Jones, Cosner, Yoder, and Rine were the balance of the top five. Eckert and Robinson were the other finishers. Flinner, Myers, and Stake were the drivers eliminated in the race.

Devin Hart went wire to wire in the twenty lap Limited Late Model nightcap. Tommy Slanker ran second in the early going before fading to fifth at the finish. Jared Fulkroad, Trent Brenneman and Shawn Shoemaker were the racers who moved ahead of him. Kenny Yoder, Ryan Zook, Casey Steinhoff, Lane Snook, and Jaxton Garman rounded out the top ten.

The pair of heats went to Brenneman and Zook. There was no B Main.

A three division program will be held next weekend, with the 305 Sprints joining the 410 Sprints and Super Late Models. The Keith Kauffman Classic for the 410 Sprints will be on April 27, with support coming from the USAC East Coast Sprints and the Wingless Sportsmen. Then, on Sunday, April 28, the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirst Series will invade the speedway. Limited Late Models will also be on the card.

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Dirt Racing

Pittsburgh’s PA Motor Speedway Cancels Saturday Program; Pivots To Flood Relief Drive

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IMPERIAL, PA (April 13, 2024) Pittsburgh’s Pennsylvania Motor Speedway is pivoting to flood relief instead of racing Saturday night after torrential rains the past few days caused flooding all over Western Pennsylvania.  PPMS is working with the UEMS Racing Series to find a suitable date for both parties to make up the event.

Three Rivers Karting

The Speedway instead is holding a relief drive from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. to help those affected by the flood.

UPDATE: PPMS was able to split the total collection up between both Sturgeon Vol. Fire Dept. and Oakdale Hose Company. From there, the fire companies will administer the collected items to other organizations or directly to those in need. We were fortunate enough to collect a large volume of just about every necessity. Any items that are not claimed during this process will be stored and administered as needed in the future.

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Dirt Racing

Dietz Dominates Day Race at Lincoln

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Lincoln Speedway

ABBOTTSTOWN, PA (April 7, 2024): Chase Dietz returned to his roots to capture his tenth career win at the Fabulous Lincoln Speedway. With the weather changing up the weekend’s racing plans, Dietz was able to race at Lincoln because the show was postponed a day. Dietz, who has long been a regular at the track, will now be concentrating his efforts on Saturdays at the Port Royal Speedway, where he debuted yesterday as the new driver of the famous Zemco number one. He was back in his own machine for this one, and it was like he never left.

“I plan to be back whenever I can,” Dietz said happily. “This is the track where I got my start and I really enjoy racing here.” But, the offer to drive for John and Pee Wee Zemaitis was one that he could not refuse.

Sunny skies and a slight breeze produced a tricky racing surface. “It definitely was unique,” Dietz observed. “It was kinda patchy. Fred (Putney, the masterful track preparer), sprinkled it and that pushed things up.”

Dietz, who started on the pole and went wire-to wire, noted “it was kinda tough, running out front. I was searching around looking for rubber.” He found enough to maintain his advantage over a fast-closing Matt Campbell.

Campbell, who raced his way into second while fighting through some heavy traffic, surprised all by saying that he liked racing on the daytime surface. “It gave me the chance to move around.” He added that he thought that he learned some things that he can carry over to the normal night time racing.

The race was run according to PA Speedweek procedures. So a re-draw shuffled the top eight racers. Dietz and Aaron Bollinger were the fortunate ones to pick front row starting positions. Beyond them were Tyler Ross and Campbell. Emerson Axsom and Kody Hartlaub made up row three. Cameron Smith and Freddie Rahmer, Jr. were in row four. The fifth belonged to Justin Whittal and Dallas Schott. Chad Trout and Danny Dietrich completed the first half of the field.

Three Rivers Karting

The original start was called back because Aussie Greg Newton took a spectacular spill between turns three and four on what would have been the opening lap. He was unhurt, but could not continue in the event.

On the second try, Dietz again blasted to the front and he planted the right rear tire in the moisture that Putney laid down on the outside line during the intermission. Bollinger did likewise, while Cambell, Ross, Hartlaub, Rahmer, Jr., and Axsom fanned out behind them.

The front three remained unchanged through the first seven laps. Campbell picked off Bollinger in traffic on lap weight, and he would hold onto that position for the remainder of the non-stop thirty lapper.

Bollinger and Ross were putting on a good show for the third spot. Ross assumed control of the position by lap ten, but a new player was in the mix. Danny Dietrich reached the top five by the halfway mark and he was looking to advance. He quickly dispatched Bollinger, but it took him several laps to catch and overtake Ross. He was able to do it with less than five laps in the contest.

Dietz completed his tour in eight minutes and nineteen and a quarter seconds. His margin of victory was 0.845 seconds over Cambell, Danny Dietrich was third. Bollinger got Ross in the waning laps. Positions six through ten went to Devon Borden, Whittal, Rahmer, Jr., Axsom, and Smith.

The four heat winners were Bollinger, Campbell, Axsom, and Ross. The B Main victory went to Reese Nowotarski. Dietz set the fastest time of the day, 13.878 seconds. He edged Rahmer, Jr. by a mere one-thousandth of a second.

Lincoln Speedway will return to its usual Saturday night slot on April 13. Joining the 410 Sprints on Golf Cart Services Night will be the USAC East Coast Sprints. April 20 will be the annual Weldon Sterner Memorial paying a whopping twenty thousand dollars to the winner. The 358 Sprints will provide the support for that one. Another 410 and 358 Sprint doubleheader will close out the month of April. Starting time will be 6 p.m. for each of those events.

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