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DANNY JOHNSON AND RICK LAUBACH ARE LATEST TOP DIRT MODIFIED TALENTS TO ENTER SATURDAY'S 47TH ANNUAL FREEDOM 76 WITH $30,000 FIRST PLACE MONEY UP FOR GRABS AT GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAY

VON DOHREN, STRUNK AND GULAR ARE GUARANTEED STARTERS; SPRINTS AND SPORTSMAN IN FRIDAY NIGHT DOUBLEHEADER

BECHTELSVILLE, PA September 14, 2017 . . . New Yorker Danny Johnson, a past winner of the prestigious Forrest Rogers Memorial at Grandview, and Rick Laubach, one of the top area talents in dirt track Modified racing, have entered Saturday's 47th Annual Freedom 76 Classic In Honor of Bruce Rogers at Grandview Speedway.

The Doctor, as Johnson is called, and Laubach join a long list of outstanding dirt track Modified talents scheduled to be trying for a starting spot in the $30,000 to win race. Other top names include Stewart Friesen, Jimmy Horton, Ryan Watt, Duane Howard, Doug Manmiller, Tim Buckwalter, Jared Umbenhauer, Ray Swinehart, Frank Cozze, and so many others.

Ten time Grandview Speedway 358 Modified champions Craig VonDohren and Jeff Strunk are guaranteed starters as is Mike Gular.

Two nights of racing excitement includes the Mid-Atlantic Sprint Series 305 Sprints featured in doubleheader action on Friday night along with the Freedom 38'er Sportsman race paying $1500 to win.

The hard-charging MASS Sprinters known for their action racing on the one-third-mile, banked clay track and the exciting Sportsman stock cars will get fans warmed up for the great racing action they will see on Saturday night with the Modified stock cars. Rick Stief leads Tommy Carberry by just 2 points in the MASS point standings with just one race remaining on their schedule after Grandview. And Modified racers planning to be part of the Saturday action are welcome to run some practice laps.

Adult admission for the Friday night show is just $12 with youngsters 6 thru 11 paying $5 and kids under six being admitted free. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. with racing starting at 7 p.m.

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SOMEONE WILL BE $30,000 RICHER WHEN THE 47TH ANNUAL FREEDOM 76 MODIFIED CLASSIC IS FINISHED ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 16TH AT GRANDVIEW; HORTON AND FRIESEN ENTERED

And don't forget the Sprints and Sportsman racing action on Friday night

BECHTELSVILLE, PA September 13, 2017 . . . Most are talking about the $30,000 to win 47th Annual Freedom 76 Classic In Honor of Bruce Rogers featuring many of the top names in dirt track Modified stock car racing at Grandview Speedway on Saturday, September 16th at 7 p.m.

The latest top talents to enter the Classic are Jimmy Horton, recently declared Modified champion at Orange County Speedway, and Stewart Friesen who has been racing in the NASCAR Truck Series along with winning in dirt track Modifieds. Friesen is a past winner of the Freedom 76. 2017 Grandview NASCAR Sportsman champion Brian Hirthler will be moving up to the Modifieds to challenge for the big win.

However there is actually two nights of racing excitement going on as the Mid-Atlantic Sprint Series 305 Sprints are featured in doubleheader action on Friday night along with the Freedom 38'er Sportsman race paying $1500 to win.

The hard-charging Sprinters known for their action racing on the one-third-mile, banked clay track and the exciting Sportsman stock cars will get fans warmed up for the great racing action they will see on Saturday night with the Modified stock cars. Rick Stief leads Tommy Carberry by just 2 points in the MASS point standings. And Modified racers planning to be part of the Saturday action are welcome to run some practice laps.

Adult admission for the Friday night show is just $12 with youngsters 6 thru 11 paying $5 and kids under six being admitted free. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. with racing starting at 7 p.m.

Fans are reminded that advance tickets for the Saturday Freedom 76 will be on sale Friday for $35 while on race day the tickets will be $40 for adults, $10 for youngsters 6 thru 11 and under 6 are admitted free. Pit passes on Saturday will run $45 and no license is required.

The 47th Annual Freedom 76 will include a full series of qualifying heat races. Pioneer Metal Roofing is sponsoring the $1000 to win Cash Dash. The Schafer Racing Minuteman 20, offering the last opportunities to make the starting field for the Freedom 76, is the final event before the $30,000 to win Classic.

Ticket windows open at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday with advance ticket holders allowed to enter at 3 p.m.

Full details on parking, camping, tickets, etc. can be found at www.grandviewspeedway.com click on Freedom 76.

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Van Pelt Wins Sherwood Memorial Driving For Patrick Hoopes

Media Contact: Steven Ovens
For Immediate Release – September 11th, 2017

(WOODHULL, NY) – Billy Van Pelt's team sold their No. 2 machine on September 1 at Freedom Motorsports Park, leaving the 19-time champion to race the team's No. 13 mount on championship night.

When the motor in that car had an issue and the car was sold after championship night, that left the driver from Westfield, PA essentially without a ride for the Fall specials at Woodhull.

Enter Patrick Hoopes, stage left.

Hoopes purchased the Instant Heat Wood Pellets No. 2 from Kevin and Karen Chilson's race team and took delivery after the September 1 show at Freedom.  But with Van Pelt without a ride and Hoopes having a few chances to win races as a car owner before becoming an owner/driver, Hoopes opened the door for Van Pelt to drive.

'The Deuce' started in position number seven after the top 12 redraw and quickly passed cars on the outside to move into the third spot on lap five.  Frank Dunning and Dillon Groover led the race off the drop of the green, but Groover struggled with a tight racecar in the opening laps.

Dunning was fast in his Swarthout Recycling No. 31 and battled Groover for the top spot up to the half way point in the event.  Alan Rudalavage and Brady Fultz in his Big Block ride, also were quick early and carried on a spirited battle within the top five.

But after half way, Dunning and Groover caught lapped traffic that would no doubt change the outcome of the race.  Dunning attempted to pass low exiting turn two, but the lapped car also chose the low lane and give up the outside for the leaders to pass.

Both Groover and Dunning had to check up hard in the exchange, which opened the door for Van Pelt to take advantage of their moment of misfortune.  Once Van Pelt got out front, nobody was going to catch the driver who would go on to add another Sherwood Memorial to his impressive career resume on the 'High Banks.'

There were a lot of connections that made this win special for Van Pelt.

"Patrick Hoopes bought the Sherwood shop and this car will go back to the shop Lyle worked out of all those years racing here at Woodhull," explained Van Pelt. "So for us to win in this car, tonight for Lyle's race and knowing this car is going back to that shop makes this really special for me.  I can't thank Patrick for letting me wheel this hot rod before he jumps in for practice later tonight."

Dunning, Groover, Rudalavage and Kenny Peoples Jr. filled out the top five after Peoples started outside the top ten.

Stevie Hartman had the Crate Sportsman feature won on Saturday night at Woodhull. Hartman pulled out to a full straightaway advantage coming to the white flag, but unfortunately for Hartman, he didn't make it to the start/finish line to see the white flag.

In an unpredictable and caution-filled event, Hartman found himself in position to win.  But coming through turns three and four, the back end of the Katie's Concrete, Woodhull Auto Supply, RLB Trucking No. 15 came around and Hartman spun at the apex of the corner.

That handed the lead over to Jake Dgien with two laps to go.  Dgien had quietly picked his way through traffic after pulling the eleventh spot in the redraw, to get to second in a classic battle with 2017 track champion Dale Welty.  Oh, if they only knew how important that second position was going to be late in the race!

Dgien would outduel Welty over the course of the final two laps to pick up his third overall win of 2017.  A season that started out in the worst ways it could have with engine issues, and sprinkled in two victories in Dgien's HigFab chassis.

Dgien beat out Welty, Ajay Potrzebowski Sr., Mike Bills and Eric Williams rounded out the top five.

LYLE SHERWOOD MEMORIAL MODIFIEDS, 18 cars (40 laps): BILLY VAN PELT, Frank Dunning, Dillon Groover, Alan Rudalavage, Kenny Peoples Jr., Brady Fultz, Donnie Lawson, Mike Bowman, Russell Morseman, Bryce Martin, Dayton Brewer, Bobby Davis, Brian Doolittle, Lee Bills, Jeff Daugherty, Buddy Morseman  DNS: Cory Costa, Stacy Jackson

CRATE SPORTSMAN(25 laps): JAKE DGIEN, Dale Welty, Ajay Potrzebowski Sr., Mike Bills, Eric Williams, Tim Schram, Tim Guild, Jordan Bacon, Brian Terwilliger, Adam Taft, Dave Richmond, Brandon Butler, Chris Hall, Clay Wheat, John Agnew, John Austin, Stevie Hartman, AJ Costley, Kirk Reynolds, Josh Keesey, Cole Youse, David DuBois, Blake Lawson, Chris Fisher

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Utica-Rome Speedway Changing Weekly Headline Division for 2018 and Beyond

VERNON, NY – After much discussion and deliberation the Utica-Rome Speedway is going back to the past to help improve the future. Bill and Kim Shea at the Utica-Rome have decided it's time to make a change to the weekly headline division at the speedway for 2018 at beyond.

In conjunction with the move by John Wight at the Fulton Speedway, Utica-Rome Speedway's headline division next season will be the DIRTcar 358-Modfieds. The two facilities have a long history of sanctioning weekly racing for the small-block Modifieds and in 2018 they will return as the headline division at both facilities.

Utica-Rome Speedway was a DIRTcar 358-Modified sanctioned facility in 1986, then again from 1999 until 2004 before opening the division up for big-blocks to compete. Todd Burley holds the most wins in the DIRTcar 358-Modified division with 18 career. Stewart Friesen was the final track champion in 2004.

This decision was made over the past several months as track promoters John Wight (Fulton) and the Sheas looked at the rising cost for teams to field a competitive big-block Modified as well as the ever expanding Sportsman division. The Modified division has grown stagnant as the cost to operate a competitive team has grown too much for the average racer. After their talks, it was determined that it was time for a change in Central New York.

"I've owned cars and the difference between owning a competitive big-block and small-block is staggering," said Shea. "The big-blocks are just getting too expensive. We think the switch to small-blocks will help save teams some money and also bring in some new blood to the division. We've seen car counts throughout Central New York drop because guys just can't afford it anymore. We hope this will help bring them back."

Since the inception of the crate engine in the Sportsman ranks, the car counts have grown leaps and bounds. Unfortunately the cost between running a competitive Sportsman car and a big-block Modified is staggering. As a result teams are forced to race what they can afford. This move opens the door for more teams to make the move up as the financial commitment isn't nearly as much.

"We've had nearly 100 different Sportsman teams compete with us at Utica-Rome this year," mentioned Shea. "There are several teams that want to make the jump up to the Modifieds but they simple can't do it because of the economics. By switching to the small-blocks we are giving them an opportunity to move up and be competitive."

The 358-Modified competed twice at Utica-Rome so far this season with solid car counts for both outings. Erick Rudolph picked up a victory in July while Matt Sheppard outdueled Rudolph in traffic to win the second appearance in August.

The DIRTcar 358-Modified series returns to the track for the first time in 13 years on Tuesday, October 3, as the kick off to Super DIRT Week XLVI. Race time for that event is scheduled for 7pm. The Cole Cup for the 360 Sprints cars as well as the DIRTcar Sportsman are also on the card.

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