Granview spotlight on Kenny Gilmore

Kenny Gilmore comes off good season looks for great season. BECHTELSVILLE, PA March 2, 2003 . . . Perhaps it is something in the water. What else could explain the fact that so many outstanding stock car drivers have come from the small town of...

Kenny Gilmore comes off good season looks for great season.

BECHTELSVILLE, PA March 2, 2003 . . . Perhaps it is something in the water. What else could explain the fact that so many outstanding stock car drivers have come from the small town of Kutztown, PA.? And for Kenny Gilmore it may also be something in the genes. In addition to having been born in Kutztown, Gilmore's dad is the legendary Charlie Gilmore who has won more feature auto races in his career than many racers get to race.

The popular veteran racer, now making his home in Fleetwood, is coming off a very good season. He was able to qualify and finish every NASCAR Weekly Racing Series presented by Dodge Modified stock car race at the very tough Grandview Speedway in Bechtelsville, PA. Though the Ron and Ann Wilson Airport Hotel & Restaurant sponsored entry did not make it to victory lane, Gilmore was able to bring the team a top five point finish with consistent running at the finish performances.

"In my 16 years of driving racing cars I had never had a season where I qualified and finished every feature race. Back in 1995 and 1996 I did qualify for every feature at Grandview but did not finish them all.

Finishing is the tough part. The team worked well together. Sure I would have liked to have won a feature race but to finish in the top five at Grandview Speedway is quite an accomplishment," said the 38 year old self-employed roofer.

For 2003 Gilmore, winner of 8 feature races at the Berks County NASCAR sanctioned banked clay one-third-mile oval, has moved to the Freddy Hamm owned NASCAR Modified stock car. "This was a new car at the end of last season. Freddy, who raced with my dad for many years at Dorney Park Speedway, has been after me for a few years to drive for him. When Ron and Ann Wilson decided to go in a different direction I agreed to drive for Freddy. I think it is going to be a great combination," said Gilmore.

"I told them that I could make the Teo chassis work and run up front as long as they give me the horsepower. In fact I had told them that if the horsepower is there I can win the 40-lap Patriot Bank feature on opening night. I run well in the long distance events."

Sponsorship support, so important in motorsports, will come from Kochel Equipment, Bailey's Fabrication, Rohrbach's Lawn Care, Don Christman's Auto Repair, Outlaw Graphics, Berk's Quality Service and CMS Racing Engines.

And for those who may not believe that success in auto racing could have something to do with "genes," Gilmore's son, 8-year-old Brett, won all but two of the "pee wee" events he entered in go-kart competition at Oreville, PA Kart Raceway. Dad is pretty proud as his son is moving up in competition this year.

Gilmore also had high praise for Grandview Speedway management regarding their decision to make transponders mandatory this season. He, as do many other racers, feels that it will make for a quicker show and less scoring discussions.

Of course Gilmore, who considers himself one of the top five drivers at Grandview Speedway when it comes to consistency (one of the top ten when it comes to overall performance), will come up against some strong competition as the season gets started officially on Saturday, April 5, 6 p.m. A doubleheader show of NASCAR Modifieds and Late Models, sponsored by Patriot Bank, will be presented topped by a 40-lap feature for the Modifieds.

Included in the opening night action will be defending champion Jeff Strunk, multi time track champion Craig VonDohren, Ray Swinehart, 2002 multi-feature winner Meme DeSantis, Ryan Watt, and a host of others. More than 80 race cars are expected to be in the competition area for the opening night racing action.

However, before the season gets the green officially, fans are invited to attend the free-to-the-public practice session on Saturday, March 29th starting at 12 noon. The practice day action will be FREE to those who want to see what the excitement of local short track stock car racing is all about. And it is an opportunity for fans to see their favorite's test-and-tune their new equipment.

The practice session is open to all racers who will be running at Grandview Speedway during the 2003 season and that will include NASCAR Modifieds, Late Models, sprint cars, midgets, and legend cars. For fans practice day is a great day to get pictures of the race cars as they have that "fresh from the factory" look.

-gs-

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