OAKS, PA – The PPB Motorsports Show awaits attendees Friday, Jan. 22, beginning at 2:00 PM with hundreds of race cars, many being debuted for the first time in their new liveries.
“This is by far the best turnout of cars from the grassroots northeastern market,” said Len Sammons, of Len Sammons Motorsports Productions, which has produced the Motorsports Show annually since 1986.
New cars are the highlight of this year’s show, starting with the new 358 Modified and TQ Midget red No. 126 cars, both being driven by Jeff Strunk in 2016. Meme DeSantis’ new No. 26 Searock Grandview Small Block is also on display.
One car that is sure to attract attention is Billy Pauch’s new PPB-sponsored Small Block No. 1 Modified. Located at the main entrance to the show, the Pauch car is resplendent in bright yellow. “It’s the first yellow car I’ve ever raced,” Pauch admitted .
The list of cars new goes on. Jimmy Blewett’s Troyer No. 19 Wall Modified, owned by Rob Ormsbee is part of the Troyer Race Cars display. Greg Hodnett’s new Mike Heffner 410 Sprint is prominent in the show as is PJ Oliver’s Small Block Mod which is featured in the Stage area.
“The Syracuse Moody Mile Tribute” display is a spectacular part of Motorsports 2016. Some of the most historically significant cars to compete at Syracuse are showcased along with a dozen past winners of Super DIRT Week, who will gather Saturday for an autograph signing session.
Nationally, the Target No. 42 Team Ganassi Chevrolet is on display as is the new 2016 Dallara IndyCar which is part of the Pocono Raceway exhibit.
“We have never had so many really cool cars at the show,” Lenny Sammons, show organizer said. “The show is better than ever, and part of that is the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center itself which has introduced state of the art LED lighting to its venue for our show.” Sammons estimates that well over 200 race cars are on the show floor.
Scores of hard core race parts manufacturers and distributors are ready to meet the public beginning on Friday at 2:00 PM for the three day show that concludes Sunday afternoon.
Key events for the PPB Motorsports Show include the Ms. Motorsports Pageant Saturday night, Kids Big Wheel Races Sunday afternoon, and dozens of seminars spread out over the three day run of the Show.
“Our show has been nicknamed ‘The Mid-Winter Motorsports Happening’ for a reason,” said Len Sammons. “It’s held in the middle of winter. Sometimes it’s cold. Sometimes, there’s some snow. But every year, the Motorsports Show is the place to be.
“The Show is ready to open Friday afternoon, as it has every year since 1986. Don’t miss it,” Sammons concluded.
Rocky Warner, the Mohawk Valley, New York Sportsman Stock Car racing standout who won the 2015 Syracuse Super DIRT Week Sportsman race, is in surgery in Albany Medical Center Tuesday afternoon after being diagnosed early Tuesday morning with an aortic aneurysm.
Warner was going to be honored at the 2016 Motorsports Show for his Syracuse win.
His car owner Jake Spraker was uncertain Tuesday afternoon as to whether or not he woud be able to bring the No. 1J Syracuse winner to the Motorsports Show.
Friday, January 22: (Show Hours 2 to 9 p.m.)
5:00 – 6:00 PM: (Room 1) “The Basics of Racing” – Set-up, tire and general maintenance on Street/Pure/Factory Stock and Front Wheel-Drive (asphalt and dirt) “U-car” divisions. Presented by Roy Anderson of Anderson Race Cars.
6:30 -7:15 PM: (Room 2) “Legal Issues in Racing, and with the Racing Business” – Presented by attorney Meri Van Blarcom-Gupko of Wiley, Malehorn, Sirota and Raynes legal firm. A practicing lawyer with an auto racing background, she will answer racing-related legal questions that you may have, such as sponsor liability, insurance and what
responsibilities you need to be aware of as a racer and/or track operator. Open to racers and promoters/track managers.
(Note: Legal questions will be answered at no charge during the presentation).
Saturday, January 23: (Show Hours 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.)
12:00 – 1:00 PM: (Room 1) “Race Saver/TSRS 305 Sprint Cars” – Region Director Joe Grandinetti outlines the basics of the TSRS series, and 305 Sprint Cars and general information on the group’s 2015 schedule
1:00 – 2:00 PM: (Room 2): “Fast To The Finish In An Asphalt Modified” – Presented by renowned NASCAR Modified Tour champoinship crew chief BRAD LAFONTAINE. From maintance at the shop to fine tuning at the speedway, Lafontaine of NorthEast Race Cars is willing to share the knowledge and answer your questions.
1:15 – 2:15 PM: (Room 1): “Sprint Car Help And Q and A” – Greg Hodnett’s winning crew chief Ryan “Roach” Hand will share his knowledge of preparing a Sprint Car for dirt track competition from the work in the shop to pre-race jobs at the speedway. Hand will be open to answer questions from attendees as well.
2:15 – 3:15 PM: (Room 2) “Dirt Late Model Set-ups and Chassis Tuning” — presented by Jim Bernheisel of Bernheisel Race Components/Lazer Chassis. Let one of the sports experts in dirt Late Model chassis building and driving point you in the winning direction from Super to Crate Late Model competition.
2:30 – 3:30 PM: (Room 1) “WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT RACING SHOCKS” – Presented by Mike Walton and Bruce Harwood of Fox Shocks. Hear from the experts how you can tune your race car with shocks, what affect gas PSI has, linear vs. digressive valving, shock maintance and how to read a dyno sheet. This informative seminar will end with a questions and answer peroid.
3:30 – 4:30 PM:(Room 2): Winning Dirt Modified/Sportsman Prep – Randy Williamson, of Bicknell Race Cars will outline how one of their winning racecars can be properly prepared for competition. Williamson, who also fields a car for his son and works closely with many other top drivers, will offer an inslight on the work needed on the car to first finish before it can finish first. He’ll also be available for questions and answers on all subjects regarding dirt Modified and Sportsman racing and set-up help.
3:45 – 4:45 PM: (Room 1): “The Basics of Race Team Sponsorship” – Presented by race team Media Relations
consultant and motorsports journalist John Snyder. The basics you need from writing proposals and who do send them to is covered from an expert who has had winning success.
5:00 – 5:45 PM: (Room 1) “Taking Photos at the Track” – For the “amateur” or the person looking to enter the business, this seminar provides “the basics” of racing photography. One attendee will get a chance to take photos at the Ms. Motorsports competition, with the professionals! Hosted by award winning racing photographer Bob Yurko of Area Auto Racing News
5:00 – 6:00 PM: (Room 2) Race Track/Tour & Series Media Workshop — Open discussion between racing writers/photographers and track/series Promoters/Managers and Press Directors as to professionalism, credential usage and pre and post-event coverage. A featured topic will be “Today’s Racing Social Media”, with emphasis on how tracks/organizations are using Facebook, Twitter and related “social media” in publicizing their events; and “credential approval by tracks in the new era of social media.” Hosted by Lincoln, Pa., Speedway media staff members Wayne Harper (press director) and Bill Meyer (webmaster).
SUNDAY, January 24th: (Show Hours 11 to 4 p.m.)
Noon – 1:30 PM: (Room 1) Quarter-Midgets of America (QMA) Region II Meeting
1:45 – 2:45 PM: (Room 1) “How To Get Started In Quarter-Midget Racing” presented by Stephen Boyd of Quarter Midgets USA – What you need to know, purchase and do to get your child into racing from the technical, rules and safety aspects.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 22nd – SHOW HOURS 2 TO 9 PM
1:00 PM – Box Office Opens at A-Hall Entrance only.
1:00 PM – PRE-SHOW EXHIBITS & INFORMATION: (A-Hall Entrance Only) – The public is invited to enter the D-Hall Stage Area starting one-hour before the rest of the show opens. You must have a ticket for the show which opens at 2 PM. This will allow you easy entrance to the show when it is officially opened.
2:00 PM – show opens to the public
2:15 – 9 PM – GO-KART RACEWAY OPENS: (C Hall Raceway) – Race your racing buddies on an oval track for bragging rights in fast electric go karts. It’s just $10 a race. Tickets are available at the speedway location. You must be at least 12 years old and over 54 inches in height to take the green flag.
3 – 5:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS/ MEET AND GREET: JOHN AND JARRETT ANDRETTI (Coastal 181 No. 816), John Andretti, son of Mario Andretti’s twin brother Aldo, was a winner NASCAR Sprint Cup, IndyCar and Road Racing during his stellar career. John is the only driver in history to race in those three divisions and then also competed in a Top Fuel Dragster in an NHRA National Event. John’s son, Jarett, is become a top runner on the USAC Silver Crown and Sprint Car series. John will also be happy to autographing copies of The Stinger, a coffee table size book that is a centennial tribute to the Indianapolis 500, as well as Coastal 181’s new book “Foyt Andretti Petty.”
6:00 – ENGINE BUILDING DEMOSTRATION – (C-Hall): The NHRA Top Fuel dragsters team of Lagana Racing will perform an in between engine rebuild and car preparation as they would at a National event. Driver Dom Lagana will be on hand to help explain the work and time allowed and sign autographs.
5:00 – 7:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS: Ms. Motorsports 2015 Shelby Harper will be available to sign autographs and pose for photos!
6 – 7:30 – SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS: HISTORY OF THE NEW YORK STATE MILE (E Hall Stage) Dr. Gary George will review the 100 year history of racing on the New York State Fairgrounds one-mile dirt speedway in Syracuse, NY with facts, photos and film.
6:00 – 7:00 PM – MEET AND GREET/ BOOK SIGNING – DAVE DARLAND and author BONES BOURCIER (Coastal 181 Booth No. 816): One of the most successful and popular racers in the history of the United States Auto Club, Dave Darland, will be signing the book on his career, “The People’s Champ – A Racing Life” along with author Bones Bourcier. Back in August Darland won his 100th USAC career victory taking a Sprint car win in Wisconsin. Darland is one of just five drivers that have been able to win championships in USAC sanctioned Sprint, Midget and Silver Crown divisions.
6:30 – 7 PM – PIONEER POLE BUILDINGS CELEBRITY GO-KART RACE: (C Hall Raceway) – Check out top drivers from several different divisions racing head to head in electric go-karts in a celebrity race for bragging rights.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 23rd – SHOW HOURS 11 AM – 9 PM
10:00 AM – BOX OFFICE OPENS, PRE-SHOW EXHIBITS & INFORMATION – (A-Hall Entrance Only): The public is invited to enter the D-Hall Stage Area starting one-hour before the rest of the show opens. You must have a ticket for the show which opens at 11 AM. This will allow you easy entrance to the show when it is officially opened.
11:00 AM – show opens to the public
11:15 – 9 PM – GO-KART RACEWAY OPENS: (C Hall Raceway) – Race your racing buddies on an oval track for bragging rights in fast electric go karts. It’s just $10 a race. Tickets are available at the speedway location. You must be at least 12 years old and over 54 inches in height to take the green flag.
11:00 – 1:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – (Sunoco/ Insinger display – Booth No. 111): TBA
10-30 – 11:00 PM – Q and A: JOHN AND JARRETT ANDRETTI (E Hall Stage) John Andretti, son of Mario Andretti’s twin brother Aldo, was a winner NASCAR Sprint Cup, IndyCar and Road Racing during his stellar career. John is the only driver in history to race in those three divisions and then also competed in a Top Fuel Dragster in an NHRA National Event. John’s son, Jarett, is become a top runner on the USAC Silver Crown and Sprint Car series. Here his tale, ask him questions.
11:30 – 12:00 – BOOK REVIEW - GREG MOORE and PERRY ALLEN WOOD (E Hall Stage) Bud Moore had a successful career as a winning NASCAR car owner and crew chief earning a spot in the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The 90-year-old decorated veteran of World War II had planned to attend the show, but because of recent health issues has been forced to decline. His son, however, Greg Moore has made the trip north instead. Greg worked beside his dad as both team manager and crew chief and has plenty of stories to tell. Greg with be joined by author Perry Allen Wood who wrote his father’s biography, BUD MOORE: Memoir of a Country Mechanic from D-Day to NASCAR Glory as well as Greg’s own autobiography, “Bud Moore’s Right Hand Man: A NASCAR Team Manager’s Career at Full Throttle.”
11:30- 1;00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS/ BOOK SIGNING: JOHN AND JARRETT ANDRETTI (Coastal 181 Booth No. 816), John Andretti, son of Mario Andretti’s twin brother Aldo, was a winner NASCAR Sprint Cup, IndyCar and Road Racing during his stellar career. John is the only driver in history to race in those three divisions and then also competed in a Top Fuel Dragster in an NHRA National Event. John’s son, Jarett, is become a top runner on the USAC Silver Crown and Sprint Car series. John will also be happy to autographing copies of The Stinger, a coffee table size book that is a centennial tribute to the Indianapolis 500, as well as Coastal 181’s new book “Foyt Andretti Petty.”
12:00 – 12:45 PM – Q and A: ROBERT YATES with announcer Shane Andrews. (E Hall Stage) Legendary NASCAR Sprint Cup owner and engine builder Robert Yates will be on stage for a memorable trip down memory lane. Yates had the late Davey Allison as a driver and won the Daytona 500 with him in 1992. In addition Yates had Ernie Irvan, Dale Jarrett (with whom he won a NASCAR Cup title) and Elliott Sadler along with Ricky Rudd and other well-known drivers steering and winning with his cars. The Robert Yates entries won 58 Cup races. After retiring as a car owner in 2007 Yates turned the team over to his son Doug who kept it in operation until 2009 when it was merged with Richard Petty Motorsports. Robert has managed to create quite a respected reputation as an engine builder with his NASCAR spec engines being used in many NASCAR Camping World Series races, K&N Series and NASCAR Whelen Modified events.
1:00 – 1:15 PM – Q and A -KYLE LARSON: (E Hall Stage) One of racing’s rising young super stars, Larson will talk with show announcer Shane Andrews to give fans an update of his upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup season driving the Target No. 42. Larson has already started his 2016 racing season by winning a 410 Sprint Car series event in Arizonia and racing in the 24 Hours of Daytona. He is a past Rookie of the Year in both the NASCAR Xfinity and Sprint Cup Series. The 22-year-old Japanese American, who drives the Ganassi owned Target sponsored Chevrolet entry, is a graduate of dirt track racing. He is also the owner of a World of Outlaws Sprint Car team driven by Shane Stewart.
1:00 – 2:00 – BOOK SIGNING: GREG MOORE and PERRY ALLEN WOOD (Coastal 181 Booth No. 816) Bud Moore had a successful career as a winning NASCAR car owner and crew chief earning a spot in the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The 90-year-old decorated veteran of World War II had planned to attend the show, but because of recent health issues has been forced to decline. His son, however, Greg Moore has made the trip north instead. Greg worked beside his dad as both team manager and crew chief and has plenty of stories to tell. Greg with be joined by author Perry Allen Wood who wrote his father’s biography, BUD MOORE: Memoir of a Country Mechanic from D-Day to NASCAR Glory as well as Greg’s own autobiography, “Bud Moore’s Right Hand Man: A NASCAR Team Manager’s Career at Full Throttle.”
1:00 – 2:00 – AUTOGRAPHS/ PHOTOS: Ms. Motorsports 2015 SHELBY HARPER and 2016 contestants will be available to sign autographs, pose for photos and mingle with fans. (Area Auto Racing News booth No. 224)
1:00 to 3:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – ROBERT YATES (Pioneer Pole Buildings Display – 104): Legendary NASCAR Sprint Cup owner and engine builder Robert Yates will be on stage for a memorable trip down memory lane. Yates had the late Davey Allison as a driver and won the Daytona 500 with him in 1992. In addition Yates had Ernie Irvan, Dale Jarrett (with whom he won a NASCAR Cup title) and Elliott Sadler along with Ricky Rudd and other well-known drivers steering and winning with his cars. The Robert Yates entries won 58 Cup races. After retiring as a car owner in 2007 Yates turned the team over to his son Doug who kept it in operation until 2009 when it was merged with Richard Petty Motorsports. Robert has managed to create quite a respected reputation as an engine builder with his NASCAR spec engines being used in many NASCAR Camping World Series races, K&N Series and NASCAR Whelen Modified events.
1:15 – 3:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – KYLE LARSON (E Hall Stage): One of racing’s rising young super stars, Larson will talk with show announcer Shane Andrews to give fans an update of his upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup season driving the Target No. 42. Larson has already started his 2016 racing season by winning a 410 Sprint Car series event in Arizonia and racing in the 24 Hours of Daytona. He is a past Rookie of the Year in both the NASCAR Xfinity and Sprint Cup Series. The 22-year-old Japanese American, who drives the Ganassi owned Target sponsored Chevrolet entry, is a graduate of dirt track racing. He is also the owner of a World of Outlaws Sprint Car team driven by Shane Stewart.
1:30 to 3:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – READING REUNION (Racing For Jesus display): Drivers who competed back in the day at Pa.’s Reading Fairgrounds Speedway will be available for a meet and greet at a special rememberance display. Drivers who will be available for photos and autographs include BRUCE YOUNG, GARY GOLLUB, WHITEY KERSHNER, BOBBY BRAXTON, GALEN KOLLER, RONNIE LEINBACH, TIM HIGGINS, RON KEHL, BLAINE SADLER and E.J. KOWALSKI. Young will have the No. 37 Coach he drove at Reading on display all weekend and Kowalski will have his 1940s Roadster.
1:30 – 2:30 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – (Racing For Jesus display): TBA
1:30 – 2:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – (BD Motorsports Media Display (216-218): TBA
2:00 – 3:30 PM – NEW YORK STATE FAIRGROUNDS MOODY MILE REUNION – (E-Hall Reunion Area – Booth No. 1804): Special Autograph session to include the first winner BUZZIE REUTIMANN, the last winner STEWART FRIESEN, MATT SHEPPARD, GARY BALOUGH, KENNY BRIGHTBILL, JIMMY HORTON, FRANK COZZE, RICAHRD TOBIAS, BILLY DUNN, (BILLY DECKER). Plus 2015 SDW winners ROCKY WARNER (Sportsman) and ROB YETMAN (3 straight in Pro Stock) will be on hand. SDW week founder and event promoter for 30 years GLENN DONNELLY will also be part of the autograph session.
3:00 – 4:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS/ BOOK SIGNING – DAVE DARLAND and author BONES BOURCIER (Coastal 181 Booth No. 816): One of the most successful and popular racers in the history of the United States Auto Club, Dave Darland, will be signing the book on his career, “The People’s Champ – A Racing Life” along with author Bones Bourcier. Back in August Darland won his 100th USAC career victory taking a Sprint car win in Wisconsin. Darland is one of just five drivers that have been able to win championships in USAC sanctioned Sprint, Midget and Silver Crown divisions.
3:00 to 4:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – (Pioneer Pole Buildings Display – 104): TBA
3:00 to 4:00 PM – AUTOGRAPHS – (New Egypt Speedway display Booth No. 404-504): TBA
4:00 – ENGINE BUILDING DEMOSTRATION – (C-Hall): The NHRA Top Fuel dragsters team of Lagana Racing will perform an in between engine rebuild and car preperation as they would at a National event. Driver Dom Lagana will be on hand to help explain the work and time allowed and sign autographs.
3:45 – 5:15 PM – SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS: SUPER DIRT WEEK HISTORY (E Hall Stage) Dr. Gary George will review the 44 year history of SDW at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse, NY with facts, photos and film. Event founder Glenn Donnelly will be a special guests.
5:00 – 6:00 PM – TOP NORTHEAST WINNERS AUTOGRAPH SESSION – (Area Auto Racing News booth No. 224): STEWART FRIESEN, who won 34 feature races including victories in Dirt Modifieds and Sprint Car competition, was the top winner in the northeast in 2015. One of the Sprint Car victories coming against the famed World of Outlaw sprinters. Friesen also won the Syracuse, NY DIRT Modified Classic that was the finale for auto racing at the Syracuse Fairgrounds. Joining Friesen at the special autograph session will be MATT SHEPPARD who tied him for most wins in dirt Modified competition last year. GREG HODNETT, who drove Michael Heffner’s No. 27 to the most 410 Sprint Car feature wins and RYAN PREECE, who topped the Asphalt Modified division will also be on hand. Doug Drown picked up the most wins in the Dirt Late Model division and will be on hand as well. Three drivers who tied for the most asphalt Late Model wins: Keith Rocco, Mike Sweeney and Tom Fearn are expected as well as Pennsylvania’s Tyler Walton who won the most 600cc Micro Sprint Features.
A FREE full color poster suitable for framing will be signed by each only at this autograph session.
5:15 – 5:45 PM – Q and A: DAVE DARLAND and author BONES BOURCIER (E Hall Stage): One of the most successful and popular racers in the history of the United States Auto Club, Dave Darland, will go on stage and talk racing, bringing alive some of the pages of the book on his career, “The People’s Champ – A Racing Life” along with author Bones Bourcier.
6:00 – 6:30 PM – AUTOGRAPHS/ BOOK SIGNING – (Coastal 181 Booth No. 816): DAVE DARLAND, will be signing the book on his career, “The People’s Champ – A Racing Life” along with author Bones Bourcier.
7:00 PM – SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS – (E Hall Stage): Several important announcements will be made and awards presented. Among those in the spotlight on stage at this time will be the 2014 Northeast Top Feature Winners, as determined by Area Auto Racing News.
7:30 PM – MS. MOTORSPORTS COMPETITION sponsored by Oliver Construction – (D Hall Stage): Finals of the Ms. Motorsports competition!
SUNDAY, JANUARY 24th – SHOW HOURS 11 AM – 4 PM
FAMILY DAY AT THE SHOW presented by Metal Fab
CHILDREN UNDER 12 FREE
10:00 AM – BOX OFFICE OPENS, PRE-SHOW EXHIBITS AND INFORMATION – (A-Hall Entrance Only): The public is invited to enter the D-Hall Stage Area starting one-hour before the rest of the show opens. You must have a ticket for the show which opens at 11 AM. This will allow you easy entrance to the show when it is officially opened.
10:30 – 12:30 – FACE PAINTING/ BALLOON ARTIST – (D Hall Entrance) A special treat for the youngsters courtsey of Metal Fab. Stop by as you enter the show!
10:15 AM – VICTORY LANE CHAPEL – The Racer’s Church, presented by Racing with Jesus Ministries (D-Hall Stage)
11:00 AM – Show Opens to the public
11:15 – 9 PM – GO-KART RACEWAY OPENS: (C Hall Raceway) – Race your racing buddies on an oval track for bragging rights in fast electric go karts. It’s just $10 a race. Tickets are available at the speedway location. You must be at least 12 years old and over 54 inches in height to take the green flag.
12:00 PM – STAGE PRESENTATION – (E- Hall Stage Area): KIRSTEN SOWERS will enterain with song and Bridgeport Speedway mascot The Bandit and New Egypt’s Ralphie will be on hand greeting the youngsters.
12:30 to 2:00 PM – LITTLE MISS MOTORSPORTS – (E- Hall Stage Area) – Girls in two age groups (“Tiny” 4-7 and “Little Miss” 8 -11) will compete for two crowns! There is no entry fee.
2:00 PM – KIDS BIG WHEEL RACES sponsored by RAACE Foundation (E- Hall Stage Area) – Children in three age groups (3-4, 5-6, 7-9) race for prizes and large trophies! Big Wheels are supplied (no one can use their own); and there is no entry fee, or need to pre-enter. Just sign up at the show before 12 Noon on Sunday.
OAKS, PA January 6, 2016 . . . One of the many highlights of the Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports 2016 Presented by Sunoco Distributed by Insinger Performance Race Car and Trade Show will be the presentation of awards to a number of outstanding auto racing competitors from the 2015 season.
During the course of the three day show, January 22nd to January 24th, at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, PA fans will have the opportunity to meet and collect autographs from racers that earned top awards in various categories from Area Auto Racing News. In addition fans participating in the autograph sessions will be able to take home a beautiful color poster depicting the various racers. The poster is FREE and suitable for framing and is bound to become a collector’s item.
The award winners will be at the show on Saturday, January 23rd. Included will be the top winner Stewart Friesen who was also recently selected for the Eastern Motorsport Press Association Driver of the Year honors. Friesen, who just became a first time father, won 34 feature races during the 2015 season including victories in Dirt Modifieds and Sprint Car competition. One of the Sprint Car victories coming against the famed World of Outlaw sprinters. Friesen also won the Syracuse, NY DIRT Modified Classic that was the finale for auto racing at the Syracuse Fairgrounds.
Joining Friesen at the show will be Matt Sheppard of Waterloo, NY. Sheppard often raced head-to-head with Friesen and the two tied for most wins in dirt Modified competition.
Standout Sprint Car racer Greg Hodnett, who drove Michael Heffner’s No. 27 to the most 410 Sprint Car feature wins last year will also be attendance.
Ryan Preece, who topped the Asphalt Modified division in wins will have his pen ready to sign autographs. Preece finished out 2015 by racing in the final three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
Area Auto Racing News, a nationally circulated motorsports trade publication, had a three way tie in the asphalt Late Model division. Waterford Speedway star Keith Rocco, Mahoning Valley’s big winner Mike Sweeney and Stafford Motor Speedway’s Tom Fearn all had the same amount of wins. In the dirt Late Model division, Ohio’s Doug Drown won the most features.
Pennsylvania’s Tyler Walton will also be honored for winning the most 600cc Micro Sprint Features during the season.
All those mentioned will be on hand on Saturday, January 23rd, to meet fans and sign the special collectible color poster that includes their pictures being given away free.
Interest in the three day Motorsports 2016 show continues to grow. Fans coming out to the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center will be able to meet such popular racers as NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Kyle Larson, NASCAR Hall of Famer Bud Moore, former NASCAR and IndyCar driver John Andretti and his son Jarett, along with a host of other well-known national, regional and local racing talents.
Complete details on the 31st edition of the hugely popular show can be had at www.aarn.com or telephone 609.888.3618.
OAKS, PA January 9, 2016 . . . Legendary NASCAR race car owner Robert Yates, winner of many Sprint Cup series races with a variety of well-known drivers, will be a big part of the Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports 2016 Presented by Sunoco Fueled by Insinger Performance Race Car & Trade Show set to take place January 22nd through Sunday, January 24th at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, PA.
Yates will be joining an impressive lineup of racers and personalities that will be part of the 31st edition of the hugely popular show that offers just about everything imaginable in motorsports covering 250,000 square feet of the huge hall.
Show announcer Shane Andrews will be interviewing Yates at the stage area at noon on Saturday of the show. At 12:45 p.m. the former car owner and well-known Ford engine builder will be signing autographs for fans at the Pioneer Pole Buildings display located directly inside the front entrance. Robert Yates Racing, known for their winning racing engines, will have a booth at the show as well.
Over the years Robert Yates had the late Davey Allison as a driver and won the Daytona 500 with him in 1992, the combination had a long list of Cup victories. In addition Yates had Ernie Irvan, Dale Jarrett (with whom he won a NASCAR Cup title) and Elliott Sadler along with Ricky Rudd and other well-known drivers steering and winning with his cars. The Robert Yates entries won 58 Cup races.
An impressive array of sponsors displayed their logos on the cars including Texaco/Havoline, Ford Motor Credit, United Parcel Services, M&Ms and Menards.
After retiring as a car owner in 2007 Yates turned the team over to his son Doug who kept it in operation until 2009 when it was merged with Richard Petty Motorsports. Robert has managed to create quite a respected reputation as an engine builder with his NASCAR spec engines being used in many NASCAR Camping World Series races, K&N Series and NASCAR Whelen Modified events.
In addition to Yates, fans will have the opportunity to meet NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Kyle Larson, a recent Sprint Car winner in Arizona, John and Jarett Andretti, USAC ace Dave Darland, along with a host of other national, regional and local racing standouts.
NASCAR Hall of Famer Bud Moore has had to withdraw from the show due to illness. He is being replaced by his son Greg Moore who served as a crew chief for his dad’s race team. Greg and author Perry Allen Wood will be at the show doing an interview and signing autographs. His book titled “Bud Moore’s Right Hand Man; A NASCAR Team Managers Career At Full Throttle” is currently available. In addition Wood was the author of “Bud Moore’s Memoir Of A Country Mechanic From D-Day to NASCAR Glory”. Both books will be available the show.
Included in the show, in addition to the memories of the “Moody Mile” in Syracuse, NY, will be more than 600 exhibitor booths offering products and services for the racers along with FREE seminars.
Many speedways and sanctioning organizations will be offering information on their events planned for the 2016 season with several using the show to release their schedules.
Fans will have the opportunity to meet many well-known racers and personalities at the show and collect autographs FREE.
On Saturday the annual Oliver Communications sponsored Ms. Motorsports competition hits the stage at 7:30. Entries are still available for this competition which pays the winner $1,500.
Sunday is Metal Fab Kid’s Day at the show. All children under 12 are admitted free on Sunday. Big Wheel races for children 3 to 9 offer trophies to the top three in each division. There is also a Little Miss Motorsports competition held on Sunday as well. There will be a balloon artist and face painting for the children along with appearances by New Egypt Speedway’s Ralphie the Racer and Bridgeport Speedway’s Bandit.
More than 200 motorsports vehicles representing drag racing, NASCAR Sprint Cup and everything in between including dirt track racers, motorcycles and more will be on display throughout the show. Exhibit space is almost sold-out. Call Tim Hogue for last minute space information at telephone 609.888.3618.
For information on the show and entering the different competitions check in at www.aarn.com for information. A full schedule will be released days before the event.
OAKS, PA – The 31st edition of the Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports 2016 Fueled by Sunoco Race Fuels and Distributed by Insinger Performance Race Car and Trade Show takes place here at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center from January 22-24. And a featured car in the exhibit that will pay tribute to the 123-year history (1903-2015) of auto racing at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse will be the red, white and blue No. 00 1937 Chevrolet coupe that Buzzie Reutimann twice drove to victory (1972-1973) in what became Super DIRT Week’s main event.
One of the most-recognized cars to ever compete in Northeast Dirt-Track Modified Stock Car Racing, the iconic machine – which is displayed at the Dirt Museum & Hall of Fame in Weedsport, New York – will be a focal point for Motorsports visitors as they view one of the best examples of the cars that raced during the late 1960s and early 1970s.
And the ever-popular 74-year-old Reutimann will be part of the autograph session on Saturday January 23 with some of the other drivers who made history on the old 1-mile dirt track.
When you talk about auto racing history at Syracuse it’s hard to forget Reutimann’s two wins in DIRT Motorsports founder Glenn Donnelly’s most-significant event and how they helped to make the New York State Fairgrounds the place to be each autumn for 44 years (1972-2015).
A professional racer from Zephyrhills, Florida, Reutimann came to the Northeast in the mid-1960s and quickly became a winner. And when the racing-season resident of Asbury, New Jersey, arrived at the Fairgrounds with his patriotically-painted Chevy coupe for the Oct. 1, 1972, running of the inaugural Schaefer International 100, he was well-prepared for the challenge of the unforgiving, hard-and-slick Syracuse track and that of the other competitors out to win the $5,000 ($28,566 in today’s money) first prize from Donnelly’s $30,000 ($171,395) purse.
Built on a Reutimann-modified 1954 Chevrolet frame, the Dover Brake- and Kendall GT-1 Racing Oil-sponsored entry had a nicely-trimmed 1937 Chevrolet coupe body that continued to be Reutimann’s trademark even after more-modern Ford Pinto and AMC Gremlin sheet metal began to be used. And it was powered by a 513-cubic-inch Chevy V-8 engine with one 4-barrel carburetor that Bud Friend prepared and Reutimann assembled.
The exquisitely-built race car with “GO FIRST CLASS” lettered in white on its blue roof over the rear window also had: coil-over shocks on its solid front axle and parallel leaf springs on the rear; finned-aluminum Buick drum brakes; and, hand-grooved M&H Racemaster Tires, including the same 17-inch-wide rear ones that Reutimann used on the 5/8-mile “hard-clay” Orange County Fair Speedway in Middletown, New York. And even though some Modifieds had gone to a center-seating position, the car’s builder-driver opted for the left-side location.
In effect, Reutimann’s ride was just like the other 131 cars that had signed-in at the Fairgrounds; weekly-used short-track machines that were “tweaked” a little for competition on the legendary Syracuse Mile. But the savvy bespectacled-racer was able to do one additional thing to give him an extra edge that most everyone else could not do.
As the result of having two virtually-identical cars at his disposal, a month before the big race Reutimann took one of his machines out of service and spent considerable time thoroughly going over it and preparing it for what he knew was going to be a rugged test.
Plus, his race-long plan was to “drive his car” through the sweeping Syracuse turns while the other drivers “slid their cars” through them as they did at their local tracks. And Reutimann’s method of getting around the “Moody Mile” helped to save his tires and paid great dividends.
There was a slight problem, though, in 1972 that had to be dealt with as after 93 teams made Friday practice runs all-day Saturday rains – imagine that at Syracuse! – forced the time trials and heats to be run on race-day Sunday. So, after early-morning practice, 102 cars ran against the clock with Kenny Brightbill posting the quickest lap of 38.359 seconds at 93.850 mph.
Then, once the heat races helped to fill the 45-car main-event field, track crews did their best to smooth out the rough inside and outside lanes during pre-race awards ceremonies. And when all was ready Reutimann and his “Double-O” race car took the starter’s green flag from the 10th position on a track whose infield was so wet that no one was allowed to park there.
In order to be in place for a run to victory, Reutimann made his mandatory pit stop for gas at about half-way and that allowed him to build a lead while others made later stops. And after a long day and race was finally over – one that saw nine yellow flags and only 25 cars running at the finish – a tired but jubilant Reutimann led Jerry Cook (in one of his NASCAR Asphalt Modifieds) and Stan Ploski – the only two drivers he did not lap – across the finish line in 1 hour and 39:23 minutes at an average speed of 60.372 mph followed by Mike Grbac and Will Cagle.
The second Schaefer 100 was held on Sept. 30, 1972; the purse was upped to $50,000 ($276,249) with a winner’s prize of $6,000 ($33,150) and some 18,000 fans turned out to enjoy the race and the overall improvements – including a new 16,000-seat covered grandstand – which Donnelly had made to the New York State Fairgrounds.
When qualifying was finished, Tommy Corellis won the pole with a lap of 37.079 seconds at 97.093 mph that was 1.28-seconds quicker and over 3 miles-per-hour faster than Brightbill’s 1972 mark. Yet, while he led the most laps, the 35th-starting Reutimann – who again made an early gas stop but also had to deal with overheating problems in his No. 00 – repeated as the winner in his trusty coupe as he bested Corellis, Cagle, Bill Wilson and Gerald Chamberlain.
“I got more ink out of winning the two Syracuse races than I have for winning any other race,” Reutimann said this past October at Super DIRT Week XLIV before he and his historic No. 00 led the ceremonial pace lap at the “Finale at the Fairgrounds.”
“There’s nothing more rewarding than building something with your own hands and winning with it. Winning a race like that boosted my confidence because I figured I could go anyplace and win if I could win at Syracuse. The best of the best are always at Syracuse. It’s our Daytona.”
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Buzzie Reutimann – who was the first to install a power-steering unit in a Dirt-Track Modified and the last to field a winning car with an “old-style coupe body” – won the Modified titles at: the old half-mile East Windsor (N.J.) Speedway in 1966; the old half-mile Nazareth (Pa.) Raceway in 1972 & 1973; and, at Orange County in 1972 & 1974.
And, in addition to his two Syracuse victories, the Eastern Motorsport Press Association and DIRT Hall of Fame member’s major extra-distance dirt-track wins include: the 1970 Daniel Boone 200 at the old half-mile Reading (Pa.) Fairgrounds; a 150-lapper at the old 1-1/8-mile Nazareth (Pa.) National Speedway in 1971; the 1972 Eastern States 200 at OCFS; and, the 1975 National Dirt Track Championship 200 at the old 5/8-mile Flemington (N.J.) Fair Speedway.
But how many knew or remember that Reutimann – who is still racing and winning with a more-modern “Double-O” Open Wheel Modified at East Bay Raceway Park in Gibsonton, Florida – took his Dirt-Track Modified No. 00 1937 Chevy coupe and won a 100-lap All Star Racing League contest with it at the old one-fifth-mile-asphalt Islip (N.Y.) Speedway?
A driver with previous asphalt-racing experience, Reutimann was one of the stars of the old All Star Racing League (1967-1973) which had teams of dirt and asphalt racers from eight tracks in the Northeast and two in Canada that competed in special mid-week events. So when the ASRL scheduled an event for Islip on Wednesday night July 18, 1973, he setup his No. 00 – the same car that he had used at Syracuse – for the rigors of the tight Long Island speedway.
When the race started, Reutimann was in the rear of the lineup with 30 slow-slung Asphalt Modifieds as his competition. But he and asphalt specialist Charlie Jarzombek moved up through the pack and by lap 39 they were in fourth and fifth place and just kept coming.
On lap 90, pole-sitter Jim Landry continued to set the pace but a spinning car forced him to go wide while Jarzombek and Reutimann slipped by. Then the two back-starters ran the last 10 circuits in a spirited battle that ended as Jarzombek’s engine blew in the first turn of the final lap.
With just three turns remaining, Reutimann had to avoid a stalled car before taking the checkered flag ahead of Landry and Bill Greco, while “Charlie J” was credited with finishing sixth.
As Reutimann said then and still says today, this was one of his most-satisfying victories, especially since he and two-time (1968 & 1971) ASRL Champion Lou Lazzaro were the only drivers to win on dirt and asphalt in the ASRL’s 37-race history on 18 paved and 17 dirt tracks.
Reutimann’s unexpected victory was the first time that an All Star asphalt event had been won by a dirt-track car. The $1,125 victory ($6,215) also gave him the point lead and that helped the eventual “AARN Driver of the Year” win the 1973 ASRL title after four runner-up finishes.
OAKS, PA – The No. 112 Kenny Weld-built Dirt-Track Modified which Gary Balough drove to victory in 1980’s Schaefer 125 at Super DIRT Week IX is one of the most-significant racing cars that ever competed on the old 1-mile track at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse.
So, with that pedigree in place, the so-called “Batmobile” will be a major attraction at the 31st edition of the Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports 2016 Fueled by Sunoco Race Fuels and Distributed by Insinger Performance Race Car and Trade Show here at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center from January 22-24 when tribute is paid to the 123-year history (1903-2015) of auto racing on the “Moody Mile.”
Undoubtedly the most-unusual Dirt-Track Modified Stock Car that was ever created, in one fell-swoop this unique car – which is a permanent fixture at the Dirt Museum & Hall of Fame, in Weedsport, New York – changed the sport forever. And it is the reason why for the past 35 years we have had the Dirt-Track Modifieds that we know of today.
Looking back, however, it must be remembered that this car’s story was written at a time when untethered ingenuity was not only encouraged but expected to be accomplished by a handful of people who were always searching for that extra competitive edge.
Built when the DIRT Motorsports Rule Book only listed minimum requirements, this “famed or infamous” Modified was created after Weld consulted a variety of “out-of-the-box sources” in an effort to assemble something that was much-more effective on the race track than anything else that had ever been seen. And when it was first seen at the Fairgrounds it certainly raised more than one eye brow and generated a variety of complaints; a situation that got even greater after Balough took the car out onto the race track.
But what Weld brought to Syracuse was not unexpected by DIRT Motorsports officials as the man behind the project went the extra mile to see that what he and his co-creators – open-wheel race-car builder and metal fabricator Don Brown, former Northeast Modified driver and 1970 Daytona 500 winner Pete Hamilton and master engine-builder Mario Rossi – were doing was not going to be a waste of their time and efforts.
For in this regard, Weld – who was a talented Sprint Car and Dirt-Track Modified Stock Car driver – provided an all-expense-paid trip to his shop in Kansas City, Missouri, for DIRT Inspector Don Buschbascher to examine the car a week before the activities at the Fairgrounds were to begin. And because of the way that the DIRT Rules were then written Buschbascher could do nothing after his examination but tell Weld his car would be approved for competition.
Identified on its entry blank as a Lincoln Town Car Mark X/1 that was entered by Prime Time Racing of Opa Locka, Florida, the shiny-black Modified with red accents and gold numerals had as one of its more striking features a large, high roof that doubled as an aerodynamic wing.
The stunning aluminum-bodied racer was powered by a Ron Hutter-built Big-Block Chevy engine with one 4-barrel carburetor and it also featured: wide louvered side pods flanking its center-oriented driver’s compartment that helped to cool its relocated radiator; a deck lid with a Continental-style tire cover that resembled the rear wing on a rear-engined USAC Championship Car; and, ground-effects side skits that gave the car a very low profile.
In no uncertain terms, this was a very unique piece and Balough – who was a three-time winner (1976-1978) of Super DIRT Week’s headline event – showed just how much above the rest of the entries his ride was when, while running at less than full throttle during Thursday time trials, he won the pole with a 31.957-second lap at a speed of 112.853 mph.
To put things into their proper prospective, Balough’s solo run bettered Kenny Brightbill’s two-year-old track record by more than two seconds. And to add more fuel to an already-burning fire it was 1.246-seconds faster than the lap-time posted by outside-pole sitter Sammy Beavers (33.302 mph at 108.433 mph) who was driving the same Tony Ferraiuolo-owned purple and white No. 73 Chevy-powered AMC Gremlin that Balough drove the year before.
As expected, time trials opened-up an unprecedented storm of protest. Not only was Balough’s car in question but he had not raced at all that summer in the-then CRC-sponsored Super DIRT Series; the qualifying events that led up to the October events at the Fairgrounds. So on the Saturday morning before his big race DIRT founder Glenn Donnelly addressed all of that.
“We don’t want to see ground-effects cars in short-track racing,” Donnelly said. “All of our rules are geared for minimums. No track that I know of has maximum limits.
“I’m sure you’ll see a big change in our rules next season pertaining to maximums and ground effects. Our basic rules are half-mile-track rules and that’s how we’d like to stay.”
Then Donnelly added, “We don’t like to see anyone from the outside come in . . . and then have this happen.”
Of course, by this time there was nothing anyone could do about things, although some teams tried to take what Weld and Co. had created and adapt those changes to their own cars.
In a kind-of “trial-by-error” brand of engineering, crewmembers added a variety of fabricated aluminum panels to the roofs of their “traditional Dirt-Track Modifieds” in an effort to get the same kind of results that Weld got with the high-and-wide roof on his one-off entry. While the Gremlin bodies of eventual second-through-fourth-place finishers Buzzie Reutimann (in Vince Valero’s No. 60), Frank Cozze (in his Grant King-built No. 44) and Geoff Bodine (in his Bill Taylor-prepared No. 99B) – plus the Pinto of ninth-place finisher Brightbill (No. 19) – were aerodynamically widened in an interesting fashion.
Despite the fact that no one knew how much Balough was “playing with his competition” while he led laps 1-72 and 100-125, Cozze and his “modified Modified” were able to lead laps 74-81 and two-time (1972 & 1973) Super DIRT Week Champion Reutimann took charge in his “reworked red racer” from laps 82-99. And to complete the lap-count picture, Ed Lynch Sr. led lap 73 under caution with his “regular” No. 88 Gremlin when Balough made his pit stop for gas.
But while these overnight body changes may have made some difference to the cars in question, the bespectacled Weld later identified what he felt was his car’s real secret to success and that was a sealed forced-air or ram-air induction system behind its Lincoln grille that was estimated to be 70 percent as effective as a turbocharger when the car got to the end of one of the track’s long straightaways.
One of the cries against the “Batmobile” was that “it cost too much” and unknowing persons named any figure that they wished in this regard. However, when Balough was eventually asked about such things he did admit that the car cost $25,000-$30,000 ($76,000-$92,000 in today’s money) to build.
But really, the only people who knew if that expense – and the month-and-a-half of 12-14 hour-days that it took to build the car after all of Weld’s study and research – was worth it was Weld and the car’s sponsors (Booth’s Towing Service and Kansas City’s Lakeside Speedway) as Balough’s first-place drive earned the team $26,557 ($81,302.50).
In an interesting side note to Super DIRT Week IX, the fifth-place finisher in the 200-kilometer race was Ken Brenn Jr. in the “unaltered” yellow No. 24 Chevy-powered Grant King-built Gremlin that was also subject to some controversy when introduced in 1977 after Ken Brenn Sr. had the famed Indianapolis race-car builder put together something that was new and different.
Brenn Sr. and King’s ideas, though, were more attuned to improving on the current style of Dirt-Track Modifieds, so any hullabaloo created by the car that was “First In Class” at Syracuse in 1980 and the car that won the whole thing was very small by comparison.
When asked about the car that he drove to his historic victory and the aerodynamic principles that Weld used when he designed it, Balough just responded, “Air is free.”
Yet, while the “Batmobile” was quickly ruled to be illegal for competition anywhere after its dominating Super DIRT Week triumph, racers today continue working within the rules that were so established because of this extraordinary car to develop and further improve on the resultant breed of Dirt-Track Modified Stock Cars.
And, in large part because of that situation, the legendary No. 112 “Batmobile” remains as one of the most noteworthy and influential Dirt-Track Modified Stock Cars in motorsports history.
The late 1960s was a time when Drag Racing’s popular “doorslammers” were at a cross roads.
In one camp, the development of Pro Stock was just getting started by those who favored racing production-based cars with high-tech, carbureted, gasoline-burning V-8 engines. While another group modified their OEM cars with stripped-down interiors, full roll cages, chassis adjustments and big racing slicks and they powered their so-called Funny Cars with nitromethane-enhanced alcohol-burning V-8 engines that had fuel-injection, superchargers and individual headers.
And one of the best known of this later assemblage was the “Frantic Ford” 1969½ Mustang Mach I that quickly became a contender for top honors all up and down the East Coast.
The yellow and black Nostalgia Funny Car that is seen at Motorsports 2016, however, is a contemporary recreation of the original racer and it is owned and driven by Rocky Pirrone from Philadelphia. Additional financial assistance and marketing for the project was provided by Al Liebmann while Bill Ellershaw and Bobby Toth are part of the crew.
The history of this car, though, actually dates back to the 1960s AA/Fuel Dragster team of drivers Norm Weekly and Ron Rivero, owner Jim Fox and crewmember Dennis Holding.
Known as the “Frantic Four,” this popular Southern California-based operation won the 1966 & 1967 NASCAR Drag Racing Division Top Fuel Championship and the famous 1968 March Meet in Bakersfield, California, with Rivero handling its wheel-standing, supercharged-and-fuel-injected Chrysler Hemi-powered “red rail.”
Then Fox moved to Broomall, Pennsylvania, and began fielding a Mustang Funny Car with sponsorship from K & G Speed Associates and he tagged his entry the “Frantic Ford.” But what makes Pirrone’s version of the car so notable is that as a nine-year-old he helped with the between-round maintenance on the mid-1970s car and his father Joe built its transmission.
First seen in 2013, the modern “Frantic Ford” has all of the latest safety equipment so it is legal to run at any National Hot Rod Association or International Hot Rod Association track. And its 120-inch-wheelbased, wide-style chassis and period-correct, elongated fiberglass body (the mold was taken from Gas Ronda’s original 1969 Ford Mustang) were each built by Steve Grunewald and Dale Smith at Coyote Composites in Jupiter, Florida.
Under the hood, the car is powered by a nitro-fed 426-cubic-inch Chrysler Hemi V-8 engine with Enderle Bug Catcher fuel injection and a GMC 6-71 supercharger. Additional equipment includes: a 2-speed Lenco transmission by Boss Hydro; M&H Racemaster Tires; real 1970s-era magnesium rear wheels; dual drag chutes by DJ Safety; and, a 9-inch Ford rear end.
Simply stated, the “Frantic Ford” is the best of old and new technology and on the drag strip Pirrone’s driving efforts show quarter-mile runs in 6.50 seconds at 220 mph.