BECHTELSVILLE, PA. – Grandview Speedway kick started the 2023 race season with an open test and tune session Thursday evening and is now all set for Opening Night on Saturday, April 1.
The pit area was busy, as 78 cars participated in Thursday night’s open practice, which was held on a week night after the original practice date this past Saturday was washed away by rain.
Drivers were shaking down their racing equipment to prepare for the upcoming season of racing. A hearty group of fans were on hand on a breezy and very cool early spring night to witness the strong field of competitors practice, giving indication that the upcoming season should be getting off to a good start.
Drivers from various divisions that will be competing at Grandview during the 2023 race season were represented including NASCAR Modifieds, NASCAR Sportsman, Outlaw Racing Series Enduro cars, Vintage cars, winged and non-wing Sprint cars, Xcel 600 Modifieds and a Midget, took practice laps during the nearly four hour nighttime test session.
In the T.P. Trailer 358 Modifieds, it was veteran Frank Cozze turning in the fastest lap during several rounds of practice at 14.312 seconds, tops in a field of 23 T.P. Trailer 358 Modifieds in attendance. Completing the top five drivers in practice times behind Cozze were Ray Swinehart (14.543), Nate Brinker (14.569), Jimmy Leiby (14.585), and Kevin Hirthler (14.592).
Cody Manmiller was able to turn the fastest lap of 31 T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman competitors on hand with a lap of 14.827 seconds, followed by Mark Kemmerer with a lap of 15.054 seconds, Decker Swinehart (15.073), Nathan Mohr (15.114), and Kevin Olenick (15.157).
The Grandview track crew had the track in top racing form for the first on track action of the year, as in both the T.P. Trailer Modifieds and T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman classes, the drivers turning the fastest lap times of the night were less than a half-second from the existing track records.
With practice now complete, attention turns to the 2023 season opener on Saturday. All these drivers who were practicing, along with the rest of the track regulars and some expected invaders will be arriving Saturday to participate in the Season Opener.
When the green flag drops on Saturday night April 1 at Grandview Speedway, it will begin the 61st consecutive season of stock car racing at the one-third-mile high banked clay raceway, all under the direction of the founding Rogers family.
The special Opening Night event will be the 6th annual VP Racing Fuels Bruce Rogers Memorial Money Maker, featuring Big Block/Small Block Modifieds racing 50-laps for $7500 to win and $1000 to take the green flag. The winning driver will also get a guaranteed starting spot in the September 16 Freedom 76.
The T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman will also begin their point season on the Opening Night program in a full show which includes qualifying events and a 25-lap feature race.
Craig Von Dohren is the defending T.P. Trailer Modified Bruce Rogers Memorial winner and Jordan Henn was victorious in T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman action on Opening Night last season.
VP Racing Fuels is the sponsor of the Season Opener and will have a VP fuel truck on hand at the track for this event, fully stocked. The VP Fuel truck will be on hand selling fuel as well as VP lubricants and apparel.
VP Fuels is advising all race teams that for this program they can do pre-orders with distributor Road Runner Fuels by contacting them at 717.587.1693. There will be free shipping charges for this day.
The Opening Night program will be NASCAR sanctioned and will be the first point race of the new campaign for both the Modified and Sportsman divisions toward both the track and NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series Championships.
As was announced earlier, only the driver is required to hold a NASCAR license for competition during the season, with owners and crew members having the option to enter the pits as members or pay a non-member fee. Management does encourage purchasing the NASCAR license for the additional insurance coverage.
For the Bruce Rogers Memorial event, all drivers are welcome to compete as in years past, and if any driver is not a track regular, the Speedway will cover the cost of the $25 temporary NASCAR driver license for this one night of competition.
The feature event will qualify 24 cars to start. There will be no provisional or guaranteed starters added of any kind. Heat races will be lined up by a straight draw, consolation qualifiers will follow to set the field for the 50-lap championship feature.
There is no entry fee for this special event, however drivers are encouraged to pre-enter by calling or texting 484.256.4375, providing the driver’s name, contact information and phone number. Drivers are also reminded to visit the speedway website at http://www.grandviewspeedway.com to print and fill out a W-9 form and bring it with them to the track on Opening Night. The W-9 form must be provided to the pit office to be eligible for drivers to draw for heat race starting spots.
Information and car rules are listed for the VP Racing Fuels Bruce Rogers Memorial Money Maker on the speedway website at http://www.grandviewspeedway.com under the Bruce Rogers Memorial tab.
Rev. Don Kerns will present Da Rev’s tailgate worship and communion service from 4-4:45 at the meet and greet area outside the main gate on April 1. Bring your own tailgate and chair and join in the worship service. Pastor Don will be on hand starting at 3:45 pm. There will not be a meet and greet with the drivers for the opener.
Race time on Opening Night is 6 pm, which will be the starting time for all Saturday night programs for the month of April. Pit gates open at 1 pm, grandstand gates open at 4 pm, followed by the drivers meeting and position draw at 4 pm, then warm-ups at 5 pm.
Grandstand admission for adults is $30, students 12-16 with ID are $20, while children 11 and under are admitted free. Pit admission is $40 for NASCAR members, and $45 for non-members, and again no license is required.
Saturday, April 8 is set aside as a rain date if needed for the opener. However, if not needed, then it will be a two-division program under the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series banner for the T.P. Trailer 358 Modifieds and T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman. The program will consist of qualifying races leading up to the 30-lap Modified and 25-lap Sportsman main events.
Since the 1960’s, Grandview Speedway has been presenting exciting wheel to wheel NASCAR stock car racing every Saturday Night starting in April and running through September, plus special events. Grandview Speedway is located at 43 Passmore Road, Bechtelsville, Pa. 19505, just off Route 100, ten miles north of Pottstown, Pa.
Information is always available at http://www.grandviewspeedway.com or on Facebook, or by telephone at 610.754.7688.
Saturday, April 1 – 61st Anniversary Season Opener – 6th Annual VP Racing Fuels Bruce Rogers Memorial Money Maker T.P. Trailer NASCAR Modifieds 50 laps, T.P. Truck Equipment NASCAR Sportsman – 6 pm.
Saturday, April 8 – T.P. Trailer NASCAR Modifieds, T.P. Truck Equipment NASCAR Sportsman – 6 pm.
Saturday, April 15 – T.P. Trailer NASCAR Modifieds, T.P. Truck Equipment NASCAR Sportsman – 6 pm.
Sunday, April 16 – Outlaw Racing Series Enduro and Outlaw Racing Series Vintage – 1 pm.