Saxton: Bouchard’s iconic ride to add to Motorsports 2017 expo in Oaks

When Ron Bouchard won the Talladega 500 NASCAR Cup race in a photo finish with Darrell Waltrip and Terry Labonte in 1981, it was considered one of the biggest upsets in NASCAR history. The win helped Bouchard clinch the Rookie of the Year honors even though he raced in just 22 of the 31 scheduled races that year.

When the Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports 2017 Fueled by Sunoco Race Fuels and Distributed by Insinger Performance Race Car & Trade Show takes place at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, Pa., January 20-22, 2017, the Race Hill Farms No. 47 Cup car that Bouchard drove to that very impressive win will be on display.

In fact, a second car driven by Bouchard, the Len Boehler No. 3 Modified, will also be part of the three-day show. This car was driven to numerous race wins by Bouchard at a variety of Northeastern speedways including Stafford Motor Speedway, Thompson, Seekonk, Waterford Speedbowl and Westboro Speedway.

Bones Bourcier wrote in his book, ‘Ron Bouchard, Remembering the Kid from Fitchburg’: “Rivals, teammates, friends and family members recall one of the Northeast’s most popular drivers, whose spectacular Modified career — he won from New England to Florida — was followed by a NASCAR Cup Series victory at Talladega and Rookie of the Year honors at stock car racing’s highest level.”

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After his Cup career came to an end the popular racer returned home to Fitchburg, Mass., to open Ron Bouchard’s Auto Stores representing Honda, Kia, Nissan and FCA. He passed away in December 2015 after battling cancer.

The book will be on sale at the Coastal 181 display area during the show.

His wife, Paula, will be on hand at the show to talk about Ron’s great career, the book and sign autographs.

Also appearing in the Coastal 181 area will be 50-year racing veteran Kevin Olson. His new book titled ‘Cages Are For Monkeys’ is a fun read that he and author Lew Boyd have been able to give readers details on his Midget racing career that carried all over the United States and Down Under. He has won numerous championships and is a member of a few Hall of Fames.

Olson, considered racing’s zaniest Hall of Famer, will be sharing stories of his career and talking about his book. Of course copies will be available and Kevin will be more than happy to sign copies.

A featured guest at Motorsports 2017 will be seven time NASCAR Cup Series champion Richard Petty considered the King of NASCAR. Petty is scheduled to appear on Saturday, January 21st with the exact time still to be determined.

Many other well-known racers and personalities will be appearing at the show with details to be announced.

The 3-day show will again fill 250,000 square feet of the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center with just about everything imaginable in motorsports available for attendees to see.

Over 250 race cars, representing many different segments of the sport, will be on hand. In addition hardcore vendors will be part of the show along with many racing facilities offering information on their 2017 season.

Again, as in the past, free industry seminars will be offered.

For complete show details, ticket prices and more check in at www.aarn.com and go to the Motorsports link.

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The once popular Reading Fairgrounds Mall Memories show will be no more. Management of the mall could no longer see the benefit of the multi-day show that brought old time racers, old racing equipment and mixed it with current racers and their equipment. For many years the show attracted huge crowds. Unfortunately interest in the event has not been what it once was and the show will not be presented this year.

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Selinsgrove Speedway officials are finalizing the 2017 schedule of events and expect to release next season’s full slate shortly after January 1. The 360 sprint cars, super late models, pro stocks, and roadrunners will return for most of the weekly Saturday night racing programs.

Tony Stewart’s Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions will sanction the Jim Nace Memorial 35th Annual National Open for 410 sprint cars Saturday, Sept. 16. The All Star sanction of the track’s National Open will be a first since 1991 when Johnny Mackison Jr. scored the victory over Kenny Jacobs in one of the closest finishes in sprint car racing history at the speedway.

In the 15 All Star-sanctioned sprint car races that have been held at Selinsgrove Speedway, there has never been a repeat winner. Previous All Star winners at the track include Bobbie Adamson (1970), Mike Lloyd (1973), Randy Wolfe (1982), Len Krautheim (1986), Doug Wolfgang (1987), Kenny Jacobs (1990), Frankie Kerr (1991), Cris Eash (1991), Johnny Mackison Jr. (1991), Dale Blaney (1996), Keith Kauffman (1997), Greg Hodnett (1998), Fred Rahmer (1999), Todd Shaffer (2000), and Danny Dietrich (2016).

Other 410 sprint car dates confirmed for 2017 include the Ray Tilley Classic Friday, June 16, and the Opperman/Bogar Memorial PA Speedweek Finale Sunday, July 9.

The super late models will take center stage in several events next season. Selinsgrove and Port Royal Speedway officials are lining up dates for Round 2 of the Moon Shine Camo Route 35 Super Late Model Challenge Series.

The Craftsman World of Outlaws Late Model Series will return Sunday, Sept. 3, for the 19th Annual Late Model National Open. Billy Moyer Jr. scored his first career victory at the Snyder County oval in the 2016 edition of the race. Next season will mark the fifth consecutive year for the World Outlaws sanction of the track’s most prestigious late model event.

Selinsgrove Speedway will host the Appalachian Mountain Late Model Speedweek Series Saturday, June 10. The Saturday night date for the popular late model series will be a first for Selinsgrove Speedway.