Selinsgrove Opperman Memorial preview

Selinsgrove, PA -- The running of the 3rd Annual Middleswarth Potato Chips Jan Opperman Memorial at Selinsgrove Speedway on May 2 includes many special promotions as part of the prestigious event. The speedway will remember one of the sports ...

Selinsgrove, PA -- The running of the 3rd Annual Middleswarth Potato Chips Jan Opperman Memorial at Selinsgrove Speedway on May 2 includes many special promotions as part of the prestigious event.

The speedway will remember one of the sports all-time greats when it presents an extensive pictorial and statistical biographical display during the Opperman Memorial. The presentation will focus on his entire career.

Former promoter Jack Gunn brought California's Opperman to Selinsgrove Speedway in April 1970. Gunn partnered with Etters's businessman Harold Hank to put Opperman behind the wheel and driving the Hank's Auto Parts No. 4, Opperman drove to six wins in the area in '70, two of which came at Selinsgrove. In his first appearance at the track, Opperman drove to a runnerup finish behind Mitch Smith.

Opperman's No. 4 has been restored by Eastern Museum of Motor Racing president Larry Stoner of Carlisle and Stoner will trek north with the car for the memorial. Also on display will be the Al Hamilton No. 77 as currently driven by Lance Dewease. Opperman piloted the Hamilton Special intermittently between 1974 and 1976 while recording four victories. In addition, the restored Gary Wasson owned No. 5 sprinter driven by Mitch Smith when he trounced USAC in 1971 will be on display.

Also on the agenda will be an offering of "Living Where The Thunder Hides, Jan Opperman's Life Story and Ministry." Limited quantities will be available at the speedway and can be purchased from representatives of the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing who will also be offering 8 x 10 photos of Opperman. All proceeds from EMMR sales will go entirely to the EMMR.

Former Opperman car owners Luke Bogar Jr. and Hamilton announced their renewed involvement. Owner of Opperman's championship No. 99, Bogar will distribute $99.00 to the winner of each heat event as well as the dash and to the night's fast qualifier. Bogar will also offer $99 to the leaders of laps nine and 18 and to the ninth and 18th place finishers in the main event. Hamilton will pay $77.00 to each of the second place finishers in the heats and the dash as well as to the seventh and 14th feature finishers and to the leaders of laps seven and 14.

Alexander Family Dealerships of Sunbury will sponsor a $500 Perfect Performance Bonus, which can only be claimed by the fast timer if he can continue on to win his heat, the dash and the main event. Lash Service Center of Beaver Springs will post a $300 Hard Charger Award and Hoosier Racing Tires will give away three free right rear tires to finishers 16, 20 and 24.

Middleswarth Potato Chips will distribute 1,000 bags of chips to fans as they file into the speedway for the memorial.

The 3rd Annual Opperman Memorial includes the pro stocks and carries a raindate of June 6. It will be part of a huge weekend at Selinsgrove as the speedway hosts its 4th Annual Pack The Track Night on May 1, featuring free general admission to fans.

Gates for the Opperman tribute will open at 4 p.m. with hot laps slated for 5:30 followed by time trials at 6 PM.

-sgs-

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Series Sprint