HARTFORD, OH – After cold and wet weather forced last Friday’s Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series event to be postponed to July 2, Sharon Speedway is hoping to kickoff the 89th anniversary season this Saturday (April 28) with the first of 12 Menards “Super Series” events. The Modified Tour for the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply big blocks leads the way and will be joined by the Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds, Summit Racing Equipment Econo Mods, and Junior Sprints for kids. Race time is 7 p.m.
The Modified Tour for the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply big blocks makes their first of six appearances during the 2018 season on Saturday night with all events featuring a $2,000 to-win payday. The Tour opened their season on April 14 at West Virginia’s Tyler County Speedway where Erick Rudolph ran his win streak to an amazing nine straight! The New York versatile driver has two career wins at Sharon both coming in 2016 including the last time the Mod Tour visited Sharon on September 17, 2016.
Rex King, Jr. leads the way for the Sharon regulars. The Bristolville, Ohio driver has won three of the last four titles and has upped his career win total to 23. His father Rex Sr. is a five-time track champion and leads the active drivers with 53 career wins. Jim Weller, Jr. has posted 36 career wins and three track titles. Other active top racers with career wins in parentheses including Kevin Bolland (22), Jim Rasey (19), Brian Swartzlander (14), Dave Murdick (9). Jeremiah Shingledecker is fresh off a runner-up finish at Tyler County and owns three wins at Sharon including last year’s prestigious “Lou Blaney Memorial” victory. For more information on The Mod Tour, check out their website at www.themodifiedtourinc.com.
After Mike Clark won three consecutive Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Car titles (2013-2015), veteran Paul Davis not only put a stop to the streak in 2016 but repeated the feat in 2017. Davis is now up to 22 career Stock Car wins at the track, while Davis has 17; however, it’s still Steve D’Apolito leading the active win list. D’Apolito owns 32 career wins and four track championships at the Hartford, Ohio oval, and in recent years has been competing with a GM 604 crate engine. The Stock Cars should have strong fields of cars weekly getting tuned up for the $10,000 to-win Penn-Ohio “Steel Valley Pro Stock Nationals” on June 16.
The HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds championship points race will begin both for Sharon along with the $3,000 to-win RUSH Weekly Series Championship. The RUSH Mods will begin their fifth season of competition at Sharon and fourth as a weekly division. Car counts have grown each year with an average count of 24 last year. Only on one night in each of the last two seasons has there been less than 20 cars. Greg Martin, Brandon Ritchey, and Kole Holden are past track champions. Top racers Alan Dellinger, Garrett Krummert, and Rob Kristyak will be new weekly competitors in 2018 along with several other newcomers like Tony Tatgenhorst, who raced at Sharon in Mod Lites, RUSH Late Models, and E-Mods.
The Econo Mod division has belonged to Steve Haefke over the past two seasons. The Austintown, Ohio veteran has finished in the top two for an amazing 26 times in the last 29 races. While winning the last two Summit Racing Equipment titles, Haefke has vaulted into the number two spot on the all-time win list with 15 and trails Brandon Blackshear now by just six. The Econo Mod division debuted in 2010 part of the former bi-weekly Friday night program before moving to the weekly Saturday night lineup full-time two years later.
For all regular events, Sharon will continue to offer a higher purse structure if 24 or more cars are on hand for any of the weekly divisions and a non-qualifier if there are 32 or more cars.
Pits open at 4 p.m. with the main grandstands at 5. Pill cutoff is 6:20 p.m. with warm-ups around 6:30 and racing at 7. Grandstand admission for those 14 and over is $13. Seniors 62 and over are $10. 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, parking, and camping is always FREE! Pit passes are $30. Pit passes for children 12 and under are $20. Sharon has a no carry-in cooler policy.
Coming up on Saturday, May 5 is the first of three appearances by Tony Stewart’s Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars paying $5,000 to-win. The Econo Mods are also on the card. Reserved tickets, patio seats, and fan suite seating is available on our website by clicking “Buy Tickets” at the top.
Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481. Become a fan of Sharon Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sharonspeedway and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/sharonspdwy.