|« "A TYPICAL WEEKEND" - An Exciting Finish At IRP - Race # 29||"A TYPICAL WEEKEND" - Another Good Night Of Racing At Williams Grove - Race # 27 »|
Saturday, May 19 - We decided to venture somewhere different so we decided to head to the Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway, a 1/8 mile high banked clay oval, near Newmanstown, Pennsylvania. Tonight was fan appreciation night with the $8 admission price waved as free admission was granted tonight. A good size crowd of 1700 fans took advantage of the bargain and packed the place. Many other short tracks would kill for a crowd of this size! Along for the activities this evening was Pat’s dad, Junior, who use to be a regular attendee here. We arrived at 5 PM for the 6 PM start and secured seats about two thirds of the way up in the grandstand toward turn one. The facility is very nice with nice bathrooms and concession stands with the pits located outside of turns three and four. The Lanco Micro Sprint Racing Club founded 54 years ago has grown to 200 cars now registered to race here. The race track was named Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway to honor the track’s first flagman. The racing program consists of five divisions of open wheel micro sprints with the classes being 270 two strokes (33), 600’s (30), sportsman (19), 125’s (21) and 250 four strokes (14).
Racing got underway at 6:10 with three 270 four stroke heats followed by three 600 heats, two sportsman heats, three 125 heats and two 250 four stroke heats. It takes a while for the next heat to come onto the speedway after the previous one ends which causes down time which is unnecessary. It took two hours to run all the heat racing without any major accidents or cleanups. The 270’s and 600’s were the only classes that needed consies and all qualifying was in the books by 8:36. Clyde Martin is only an 1/8 mile oval but the track is wide and banked so much side by side racing is possible. The heats were entertaining and everyone seemed to enjoy the action. Next was intermission and at Clyde Martin management opens up the pit area for the fans to visit and see the cars and drivers. Autographs and race cards are available and I’m sure it is a big hit with the youngsters. It was almost an hour until the first of five features all 25 laps in distance was brought to the post which was the 270 two stroke feature. Mike Rutherford came out of the 11th hole to grab the lead on a lap 11 restart and pull away from Jesse Maurer to score the victory. Female racer, Christi Sweigart, ran a strong race to claim third with Mike Skias fourth and Billy Logeman rounding out the top five. When they were racing in this one the action was good and close but with nine cautions slowing the proceedings this one could not be considered a gem by any standards.
The 25 lap 600 feature got off to a rough start when high school football player, Jeff Halligan, rolled his race car three times on the backstretch. After that things settled down and Jermain Godshall, a young black man built like an football lineman, looked like the guy to beat as he paced the field for the first seventeen laps. On a restart Mike Rutherford dove low exiting turn four to take the lead and never looked back to score his second win of the evening over Godshall with Mike Dicely advancing from 12th to 3rd with Tyler Esh fourth and Jeff Stelter finishing fifth. It was now 10:30 and with three features to go we decided we have seen enough witnessing the top two classes so it was exit stage right. It is an entertaining program but to us it seems too long. On the way back home we all discussed the evening of racing and agreed that you couldn’t beat the price!! Seriously it was a change of pace and a nice facility and the Lanco Micro Sprint Racing Club and its members should be proud of their setup.
This post has 42 feedbacks awaiting moderation...