Saxton: Reading Race Reunion and Car Show returns after making moves

When Brad Reinert took over the promotion of the Reading Fairgrounds Race Reunion & Car Show, he vowed to keep the popular off-season event going.

Reinert, with assistance from Bob Greene, and the Reading Fairgrounds Historical Society are once again keeping the wintertime gathering of legendary and present-day drivers and race cars from the former Reading Fairgrounds half-mile oval going strong.

This weekend the 32nd annual Pioneer Pole Buildings Reading Race Reunion and Car Show will take place at a new venue, the Pioneer Pole Buildings 716 Route 183 in Schuylkill Haven. Show times are Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“The change of date and location came about due to a combination of factors,” said Reinert. “Early on this past spring we were informed of the Fairgrounds Mall once again being sold and worked all summer with the mall’s new management team, only to be told it will be no more at the site of the former Reading Fairgrounds.”

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Then about three weeks ago while Reinert and Bob Greene, owner of Pioneer Pole Buildings, Alpine Building Supplies, and Ark Rentals, were discussing other business, Greene let Reinert know that he was available to help out if needed to keep the show going.

He was committed to keeping the show at its current location because, “this is where all those wonderful memories were created ... this is where the fairgrounds became the Home of Champions, and this is where the show belongs,” explained Reinert. “But as with anything, change is inevitable, and this opportunity presented to the Historical Society by Greene could not have come at a better time when we were on the verge of taking a year to regroup.”

Interest among racers is high, noted Reinert, as many have contacted him to state their plans to display both vintage and modern day racing vehicles when move-in begins Friday the 17th. “We still have display space available, but it’s filling up,” said Reinert. “I need race teams and vendors to contact me as soon as possible if they’d like to display their cars. We will have cars from all divisions of local motorsports at this year’s show, and several of the area’s speedways, clubs, and sanctioning bodies will have displays set up at the mall. Vendors who do business with racers as well as tracks and clubs who want to be involved with the show should also get in touch with me as soon as possible.”

Cars and vendors will be able to move in Friday the 17th after 2 p.m.

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Although the speedway already held two of their three ‘Triple Crown Series’ shows, warmer weather is expected to help boost the third and final event of the series at Evergreen Raceway on Saturday, March 18. Less than a week after that event, Evergreen will be back in action with “Four Banger Sunday” on Sunday, March 26.

Fans that attend “March Enduro Madness” won’t only see each event winner, but also the final Triple Crown Series champions for the 4-Cylinder and 6/8-Cylinder Enduro divisions.

This event will take place, rain, snow, sleet or shine. The pit gates will swing open for all of the series events at 10 a.m. The drivers meeting will take place at noon and racing will kick off at 1 p.m.

Grandstand admission for each event is just $5. Pit admission is $25 and the transponder rental fee is $10.

“Four Banger Sunday” is slated for Sunday, March 26. The Legends, Bandoleros will be on the card, along with the speedway’s regular Evan’s Roadhouse Four Cylinders and Wheel’s Bar & Grill Junior Four Cylinder divisions.

Practice will kick off at 12:30 p.m. and racing will begin at 2 p.m.

Evergreen Raceway is located minutes from Hazleton, PA, in between routes 93 and 309.

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Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway is anxiously looking forward to its first competitive action of the 2017 season when on Saturday, April 1, there will be Big/Small Car and Jr. Enduros along with Big/Small Car Demo Derby’s plus Micro Stocks.

For the Enduro racers there can be as much as $2000 for winning their respective events. The purse will be pro-rated depending on car counts. If 80 or more cars are signed-in on race day in each of the classes then first place prize money stands at an impressive $2000.

The racing begins at 1:00 p.m.

There is a pre-entry cost of $40 if applicants have the proper paper work filed no later than Sunday, March 26. Starting line-ups will be determined by registration. There will be a limit of 100 cars.

All pre-entries should be sent to: Chip Santee, 5406 Mountain Road, Germansville, PA 18053. Please include the class, either Small Car Enduro or Jr. Enduro, name, age, car number and phone number.

Last season Mahoning Valley Speedway brought back the popular Demo Derby’s and it was well received, so much so that continued interest has prompted track management to not only bring back the Demos but award points at each showing this season that will go towards a Demo Derby champion.

If 20 or more cars are entered in each division the payout will be $800 to win, $400 for second and $200 for third. Heats will pay $100 to the winner.

Rules can be found on the Mahoning Valley Speedway website under the “Rules/Forms” link.

The Micro Stocks, which have been a long standing supporter of the speedway, will be featured a number of times throughout the season and for the first time since 1999 there will be a track champion.

The regular season will get underway with Opening Day 2017 on Saturday evening, April 8 at 6:00 p.m. For additional information log onto www.mahoningvalley-speedway.com or on Facebook at Mahoning Valley Speedway.

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Saturday, March 18th, at 1 p.m., Grandview Speedway in Bechtelsville, will present the first of several Enduro/Back from the Past Vintage Car racing doubleheaders. Just in case of bad weather there is a Sunday, March 19th rain date in place.