Allan Holland

Selinsgrove: 77 Years And Going Strong

DRUMS, Pa. – Selinsgrove Speedway is celebrating its 77th anniversary this year and the historic central Pennsylvania speed plant is under new management once again.

The last group to operate the facility was there for seven years. One big change the old group made was moving the pit area from the infield to outside of turn four. That worked out fine as the turns are no longer blocked by the haulers.

ESR Promotional Group, which took a 10-year lease on the track, is the new promoter.

Stephanie Baker and her two sons, Ethan and Reece Stutts, make up ESR Promotional Group, as the track continues in the hands of racing people. The last group that managed the facility was comprised of racing people and local businessmen.

2022 04 24 Selinsgrove Lucas Wolfe Chase Dietz Danny Dietrich Paul Arch Photo Dsc 5636 (211)a
Winged 410 sprint car action at Selinsgrove Speedway during the 2022 campaign. (Paul Arch photo)

Selinsgrove Speedway has struggled since officials dropped the 410 sprint cars from weekly Saturday night competition more than a decade ago. Back then, Lincoln Speedway, Port Royal Speedway and Selinsgrove Speedway all ran 410 sprint cars on Saturday nights and all three had enough cars each night. That’s no longer possible.

Selinsgrove has seven 410 shows on the calendar this year. All are on Sunday nights except the Jim Nace Memorial, which is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 16.

ESR Promotional Group has also scheduled numerous PASS 305 and 360 sprint car shows on Saturday nights throughout the season. In addition, the All Star Circuit of Champions sprint cars are slated for an Aug. 20 visit.

Selinsgrove Speedway hosted its first 410 race of the season on April 23 with a decent crowd and a full field of sprint cars on a challenging weather day. I actually drove through rain on I-80 on my way to the track.

The place looked good with new paint all around and a fast, very smooth racing surface. With the wind and sun of daytime racing, the track became dusty in the heats, but after watering the top for the feature, the fast line around was right up on the fence. Winner Danny Dietrich even hit the turn-one fence in his pursuit of Dylan Cisney who was also running the top groove.

I noticed they weren’t allowing fans to cross the frontstretch to the infield, as they kept the gate locked throughout the evening. They have also moved the victory lane celebration back to the track’s frontstretch. It was up by the infield tower for years, but I like it much better on the track.

The fans get a better look at the winner and team. I still remember Bob Weikert and Doug Wolfgang standing out on that track with the famous No. 29 Weikert Livestock sprinter. Some tracks have the feature winner too far away from the fans. The closer to the fans victory lane is held, the better it is.

There is a plan to remove the infield scoring tower and move operations to the turn-one suites, but the tower was still there and operational for the April show.

There was no live streaming of the race, but I believe that will be coming in the future as many people have asked about it. Streaming is another story and I expect to see more changes in that area during in the next few years when contracts run out at tracks around the country.

One noticeable change at Selinsgrove is that longtime announcer Steve Inch has been replaced by John Krall. Inch had been the voice of the track for 35 years through many different promoters.

The Sunday show was run in an efficient manner without a lot of downtime. There was a second division with its feature run last.

The new promotional team is putting in an effort and just getting started. I hope the fans and teams show their support so the Sunday night 410 sprint car shows at Selinsgrove Speedway are successful.


This story appeared in the May 24, 2023 edition of the SPEED SPORT Insider.

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