Williams Grove Speedway’s Summer Nationals Celebrates 21st Running This Weekend

Story By: SHAWN BROUSE / WILLIAMS GROVE SPEEDWAY – MECHANICSBURG, PA – The Champion Racing Oil Summer Nationals at Williams Grove Speedway, coming up this Friday and Saturday, July 22 and 23, will celebrate its 21st running this week.

The first edition of the current Summer Nationals was a three-day event back in 2002 with a pair of preliminary mains taken by Danny Lasoski and Joey Saldana while local driver Greg Hodentt upended the World of Outlaws for the big score on Saturday driving for the Apple Motorsports stables.

At the time, the three-day World of Outlaws show at Williams Grove was billed as the first of its kind since only one other previous three-day stand at the track in history, also billed as a Summer Nationals, in August 1984 when Sammy Swindell, Brad Doty and Steve Kinser took wins.

Current World of Outlaws kingpin Donny Schatz took two of three at the track in 2003 with Don Kreitz Jr. taking a preliminary night.

The 2004 version saw Lance Dewease and Lasoski split a pair of mains.

Another three-day format in 2005 saw Jason Johnson score a popular victory for local owners Jim and Sandy Kline while Paul McMahan scored another prelim with track powerhouse Fred Rahmer taking a raucous victory in the Saturday finale.

In 2006 outlaws invaders Terry McCarl, Craig Dollansky and Dary Pittman swept the three-day affair.

Donny Schatz bookended the three-day event with wins in 2007 while local Brian Leppo of Spring Grove was sandwiched in the middle with a win aboard the Swope No. 71 machine.

Becoming a two-day event in 2008, outlaws Donny Schatz and Daryn Pittman swept the shows but the following year belonged to local drivers Greg Hodnett in the Kline No. 22 and Cody Darrah with Darrah taking the win in a make-up feature held during National Open weekend in October.

The 2010 version was all Pennsylvania Posse as Lance Dewease took night one aboard the Don Owens No. 30C and Hodnett returning for another win for the Kline team.

Hodnett struck again in 2011, this time in the Trone Special No. 39, along with outlaw driver Jason Meyers.

Just one show was completed in 2012 with Darrah back for another win, this time aboard an outlaws mount owned by Kasey Kahne.

Again, one show was completed in 2013 with Schatz again a victor but the pendulum swung the other way again in 2014 when locals Hodnett and Dewease swept the two-day weekend show with Hodnett now driving for Michael Heffner and Dewease aboard the Conduit Connections No. 14.

The locals made it back-to-back sweeps of the event in 2015 when Danny Dietrich and Stevie Smith trounced the outlaws.

Pittman was back for a win in 2016 with Dewease, now aboard the Kreitz No. 69K, taking the Saturday finale.

Local driver Brock Zearfoss piloted the Long No. 58 to the win on night one in 2017 while Greg Hodnett ended up scoring the second feature aboard the Heffner mount albeit as a make up main in late September.

Only the first night was completed in 2018 with Dewease returning for a victory, still in the 69K.

The 2019 Summer Nationals saw Tim Shaffer pilot the Rudzik No. 49 to the opening night win while Schatz got back to Summer Nationals victory for the first time since 2013.

Shane Stewart fended off Anthony Macri to win opening night in 2020 while David Gravel dominated on Saturday to lead flag to flag.

Last year, Sheldon Haudenschild and Brent Marks split Summer Nationals winning laurels with Marks scoring the big 20K Saturday finale.

Haudenschild’s Friday win was the first of his career at Williams Grove.

Adult general admission for July 23 is set at $30 with Saturday’s race priced at $35. Youth ages 13 – 20 are priced at $15 each night. Kids ages 12 and under are always admitted for FREE at Williams Grove Speedway.

 

Summer Nationals Set; Races To Pay $1,000 & $1,100-To-Start

The Champion Racing Oil World of Outlaws Sprint Cars Series Summer Nationals iis this week at Williams Grove Speedway, slated for Friday and Saturday, July 22 and 23 at 7:30 pm.

The outlaws sprint cars will invade Williams Grove Speedway for the two-day summer stand to battle the Pennsylvania Posse sprint car stars for what will be the second match-up of the 2022 season.

The modern-day, consecutive-year history of the Summer Nationals dates back to 2002 when the show was a three-day event with Danny Lasoski, Joey Saldana and Greg Hodnett taking wins.

However events dubbed “Summer Nationals” were first contested at the oval back in 1972 with Jan Opperman and Bobbie Adamson recorded as the victors.

Both nights of this year’s Summer Nationals shows will include full programs of time trials, heats and feature events.

The July 22 outlaws-posse match will feature a 25-lap main paying $10,000 to win and $1,000 to start while the July 23 Saturday finale Champion Racing Oil Summer Nationals feature will offer $20,000 to the winner while paying $1,100 to start.

Last year, Sheldon Haudenschild and Brent Marks split Summer Nationals winning laurels with Marks scoring the big 20K in the Saturday finale.

California’s Brad Sweet is the current outlaws point leader over Ohio’s Haudenschild.

Sweet has just one win on the season to date while Haudenschild has posted eight.

Californian Carson Macedo, now third in outlaws points, seems to have set himself up as the driver most consistently in the hunt for a win on any given night this year however.

At Williams Grove, both Marks and Anthony Macri seem to be the fastest drivers this year.

Myerstown’s Marks has scored a hat trick of only big wins for himself at the track this season, taking the Tommy Classic in April, the Mitch Smiith Memorial in early July and outlaws win in May.

And, having just scored the $100,000 Historical Big One and the $175,000 Kings Royal at Eldora Speedway, Marks is by far the highest dollar earner in sprint car racing anywhere this season.

Macri of Dillsburg is the winningest driver of the season anywhere across the nation.

With 16 overall wins on the year, he’s taken three at Williams Grove with impressive style.

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