From Steve Inch
SELINSGROVE, Pa. – The seventh annual Joe Whitcomb Memorial for 358 sprint
cars will pay $1,771 to win and $225 to start this Saturday, June 19, at
Selinsgrove Speedway. The 25-lap tribute race will honor the memory of the
late open wheel racer from Millersburg who succumbed to injuries sustained
in a sprint car racing accident at the track on June 21, 2003.
The format for the Whitcomb Memorial will include time trials, heat races,
and a B-main to determine the starting lineup for the main event. Also on
the racing card will be the rescheduled Collier Paving & Construction
Roadrunner 20 plus late models and pro stocks. The roadrunners will also
utilize time trials for qualifying, scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. Track
gates will open at 5 p.m.
Previous winners of the Whitcomb Memorial include Nate Snyder of Halifax
(2004); Kevin Nagy of East Brunswick, NJ (2005); Blane Heimbach of
Selinsgrove (2006, 2007, 2008); and defending winner Pat Cannon of Etters.
Whitcomb, who was a dedicated racer most of his life, began his career in
go karts at the age of seven. He won hundreds of races in karting and was a
three-time national karting champion. A highlight during his karting career
was an appearance on ESPN.
Whitcomb became a regular competitor in 358 sprint car racing at
Selinsgrove Speedway in 2001 driving his trademark blue and yellow No. 71
racer. That year Whitcomb was named Selinsgrove Speedway’s Sportsman of the
He won his first sprint car race at Selinsgrove on June 8, 2002, ending the
five-race win streak of champion Chad Layton. Whitcomb followed up that
victory with another one on June 22, 2002 at Selinsgrove. He also won
sprint car races at Williams Grove and Bridgeport Speedways during his
The fourth annual Roadrunner 20 was rained out on April 17 and rescheduled
for this Saturday. Time trials and a B-main will be the format for
qualifying for the stock car division’s only extra-distance race of the
Ray Rothfuss of Muncy won the inaugural Roadrunner 20 in 2007, while Keith
Bissinger of Orangeville was victorious in the 2008 race. Ricky Bender of
Joliett is the defending winner.
The Middleburg IGA will be sponsoring the championship trophies to be
presented to the winners of this weekend’s special events.
Admission Fees for June 19:
Students (12-17): $10
Kids 11 & Under: Free
Pit Passes: $20