By Bob Miller
In the sixty-seventh consecutive season of URC, Davie Franek of Wantage, NJ is looking to enter his name as URC Champion Driver into the “rich in history” record books of the United Racing Company. URC will close out their 2014 Rislone URC Sprint Series on Saturday night, October 18 in the features only racing program at the Grandview Speedway. Franek has “clinched” the 2014 URC championship with just the celebrating still take place. Never-the-less, Franek would like nothing more then to close out the season with a feature win at Grandview.
For Franek, this is his first ever championship, an accomplishment he shares with his father and car owner. Franek was a one-time feature winner this season and owns two career victories with URC. Winning a URC feature and even more, a championship, is a huge achievement in an organization that has presented 1,538 racing events over the sixty-seven year journey. Franek is just one of two-hundred and sixty-five drivers that won URC feature events. Notable and accomplished drivers that are on the URC win list include URC’s top five winningest drivers to include Glenn Fitzcharles, Dave Kelly, Kramer Williamson, Buck Buckley and Earl Halaquist.
Other legendary drivers who have earned a place on the URC feature win roster include Jan Opperman, Van May, Larry Dickson, Jim Shampine, Toby Tobias, Kenny Weld, Wally Dallenbach, Red Riegel, Donnie Kreitz, Fred Rahmer, Curt Michael, Jackie McLaughlin and Bobby Marshman just to name a few. The URC career feature win list is a credit to the organization that remains the Nation’s oldest traveling sprint car series.
In 2014, eighteen racing events were presented with the Grandview race date next Saturday, October 18 still to take place. The season also offered some of the highest paying events in URC history with a $10,000 paycheck going to race winner Aaron Ott at the Selinsgrove Speedway, Brian Carber earned over $4,500 for his win at the Delaware International Speedway and Josh Weller in the Ken Eldreth sprinter collected $3,000, also for a win at Delaware International Speedway.
With an anticipated nineteen race dates on the schedule for 2014, that number is not uncommon in the history of URC. In year’s past, URC had seasons with as few as eight, eleven and twelve races. Even in more recent times, URC had sixteen race dates in (1992 and 2012) and in total, there were twelve years when URC had less then twenty races in a season.
Looking to 2015 and URC’s sixty-eight season, race dates are being discussed with Williams Grove, Selinsgrove, Bedford, Delaware International, Winchester, Port Royal, Bridgeport, Lincoln and perhaps one Carolina weekend. URC recently announced that they will complete on Hoosier Racing Tires and every race on the 2015 URC schedule will be a full point race. Earned point fund money for 2014 will be distributed within a few weeks after the season finale at Grandview and a Champions Celebration/party will be planned for the end of 2014 or early in 2015.
Looking to the Grandview Speedway on Saturday, October 18, the twenty car field will determine their starting positions through timed warm-ups and $2,000 will go to the winner of the twenty-five lap feature event. Gates will open at 4 PM with the first feature event taking the green flag at 6 PM.