Story By: JEFFREY AHLUM / GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAY – BECHTELSVILLE, PA – The chase for the 2022 Grandview Speedway championship begins this week.
Following a big night of racing last Saturday which saw the Speedway debut a brand-new LED lighting system for the 60th anniversary Season Opener, along with a great field of competitors in both divisions, the drivers are primed and ready to begin chasing points.
Craig Von Dohren captured the win in the VP Racing Fuels Bruce Rogers Memorial on Opening Night, picking up a $10,060 payday in the process, giving notice he is ready to defend his 2021 track title.
Jordan Henn, a Modified division regular who finished seventh in the Memorial race, was one of several drivers who did double-duty running both classes last Saturday (which is allowed in non-point events) and was able to score the Sportsman division win. Mark Kemmerer was the first regular across the line, so he will be one to watch in the point opener this Saturday.
The T.P. Trailer NASCAR Modifieds and T.P. Truck Equipment NASCAR Sportsman will officially begin the chase for the 2022-point titles on Saturday, April 9 starting at 6 pm. The weekly race programs at Grandview will be run under the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series banner. Pit gates will open at 2 pm. with grandstand gates opening at 4 pm. Adult grandstand admission is $18, while children under age 12 are admitted free of charge.
Both divisions will be running qualifying events leading up to the 30-lap T.P. Trailer Modified and 25-lap T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman main events.
Bonus money will be paid each week to the race winners, once again by divisional sponsors T.P. Trailers for the Modifieds ($300) and T.P. Truck Equipment for the Sportsman ($200), provided the racers have the proper decals displayed on their cars.
Craig Von Dohren is out to defend his Modified championship from a season ago, however Brett Kressley who won five features the same as Von Dohren and finished second in points, will be out to steal the top spot. Other drivers placing high in points also in contention will be Jared Umbenhauer, Duane Howard, Doug Manmiller, Jeff Strunk, Kevin Hirthler, Ryan Grim, Craig Whitmoyer and Justin Grim.
In all, eleven different drivers reached victory lane in Modified action last season including Von Dohren (5), Kressley (5), Howard (3), Danny Bouc (2), Umbenhauer, Manmiller, Strunk, Ryan Lilick, Kevin Graver Jr., Brad Brightbill and Ryan Godown all with one win.
In Sportsman division action, the title will be up for grabs, as last year’s Champion Kenny Gilmore will not be running a regular schedule, leaving the championship door open. Brian Hirthler, leading all drivers with five wins last season, is a two-time champion, and can be considered a top candidate to win the title. Other top drivers in points giving a run to the title include Jimmy Leiby, Kyle Lilick, Mark Kemmerer, Dakota Kohler, Kenny Bock and Nathan Mohr.
Sportsman division action was just as good, as eleven different drivers also reached the win circle last season. Hirthler with five wins led the way followed by Hoch (4), two wins each for Gilmore, Lilick, Kyle Smith, and single wins for Logan Bauman, Decker Swinehart, Lex Shive, Jesse Landis, Cole Stangle and Jordan Henn.
The following Saturday, April 16, the first of the 602 Sportsman mini-series races will begin. The 602 Sportsman will join the T.P. Trailer Modifieds and T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman for the first triple-header racing program of the year.
The Outlaw Racing Series Enduro and Outlaw Racing Series Vintage classes will be having a double-header on Sunday, April 10 starting at 1 pm.