Selinsgrove Speedway PS Speedweeks finale preview

6/30/02, Selinsgrove, PA -- The mighty roar of the 410 sprint cars will return to Selinsgrove Speedway on Sunday, July 7 when the Snyder County oval hosts the second leg of the four-date Middleswarth Potato Chips Susquehanna Valley 410 sprint ...

6/30/02, Selinsgrove, PA -- The mighty roar of the 410 sprint cars will return to Selinsgrove Speedway on Sunday, July 7 when the Snyder County oval hosts the second leg of the four-date Middleswarth Potato Chips Susquehanna Valley 410 sprint series.

Scheduled to get underway at 7 p.m., on tap will be the finale of the eight-date 12th Annual Pennsylvania Sprint Car Speedweek series sponsored by Carquest Auto Parts. The 30-lap main event will pay $4,000 to the winner and with its conclusion the 2002 Speedweek champion will be crowned.

Middleburg's Todd Hestor won the Middleswarth series kickoff in the inaugural Jan Opperman Memorial held at Selinsgrove on June 2. Hestor earned the pole for the 30-lapper, then went on to wire the field for the $3,700 payday after turning down the $10,000 Chip Challenge which would have paid off had he opted to start at the rear and move forward to win the event.

Four-time 2002 winner Hestor will face stiff competition when the Middleswarth/Speedweek series hits the big half-mile, most notably in the form of past speedweek dominators Fred Rahmer and Lance Dewease.

Overall, six-time speedweek champion Rahmer's record in series competition is unparalleled.

The Salfordville driver enters speedweek 2002 with an unmatched 18 victories to his credit along with 34 additional top-five efforts. Five of those wins alone have been garnered at Selinsgrove Speedway where the 50-time oval winner, who this season is driving the Joe Harz owned 88H, also holds a third and a fifth place finish in speedweek action. To date this season, Rahmer has driven to the winner's circle five times in mid-state competition.

Driving Al Hamilton's No. 77, Fayetteville's Dewease boasts an even dozen speedweek checkered flags along with 24 additional top-five's since the series inception in 1991. While his Selinsgrove resume has yet to reflect a victory in the series, it does include a trio of both second and third place runs. Dewease is a three-time speedweek title bearer and currently leads all drivers in the nation with 13 wins under his belt.

Millerstown's Todd Shaffer picked up last year's speedweek event at Selinsgrove. Overall, Shaffer has three series wins along with 20 additional top-five's while at Selinsgrove he has five top-five efforts to bolster his win from last season. Shaffer is a five-time winner so far this season as well.

Selinsgrove speedweek victories also belong to New Jersey's Billy Pauch, who has a pair of wins and to Middleburg's Len Krautheim III, who picked up the first series event at the speedway when it first took part in the promotion in 1992. Besides Rahmer and Dewease, Steve Smith and Keith Kauffman have also garnered Speedweek crowns.

Including the speedway's marquee weekly 358 sprints, gates for the July 7 open wheel doubleheader open at 5 p.m. 358 drivers will be lined up by luck of the draw for their heat events and the top 12 will redraw to start the 25-lap feature.

Courtesy of Middleswarth Potato Chips, owner of the Todd Hestor and Keith Kauffman sprint cars, the first 1,000 fans passing through the gates will receive a free bag of Middleswarth Potato Chips.

Mike Erdley, Todd Hestor and Todd Shaffer will sign autographs prior to the races from 5:30 until 6 p.m. It is expected that current point leader and defending track champion in the 358 division, Chad Layton will compete in his first-ever 410-sprint event during the speedweek show as well.

The speedweek finale carries a raindate of Monday, July 8.

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Series Sprint
Drivers Steve Smith , Billy Pauch