By Katie Libecco
HARTFORD, Ohio (July 5, 2010) – While NASCAR fans will flock to Sharon Speedway’s Lou Blaney Memorial Classic on Wed., July 7 to watch Sprint Cup stars Tony Stewart, Kasey Kahne and Dave Blaney compete against the best 410 Sprint car drivers in the region, a very special group of individuals will be assembling in the speedway’s FAN-tastic Zone.
Friends of Lou Blaney will again attend the race to help celebrate the life and accomplishments of the Hall of Fame driver, who won more than 600 feature victories during a five-decade career.
Dave and Dale Blaney, Stewart and Kahne will be competing in 410 Sprints. In 2009, Stewart made history at Sharon Speedway by recording his first win in a 410 Sprint at Sharon Speedway during the first Lou Blaney Memorial. Last year in the Lou Blaney Memorial, Dale Blaney finished fifth, one spot ahead of Dave Blaney.
Blaney’s family, former crew members, car owners and builders will be in attendance, as well as former competitors, including: Johnny Axe, Jim Bickle, Buddy Cochran, Dale Johnson, Don Klug, Bobby Krause, Rex King Sr., Tommy Kristyak, Jack Lewis, Dave Lundy, Jerry Matus, Bob Stanford, Dick Swartzlander, Ralph Quarterson, Ed Lynch Sr. and Bob Wearing.
Also on hand will be long-time car owners Frank Crash and Bill Thomas, who put the wheels under Blaney for more than 40 years. Following a reunion dinner provided by the speedway, the retired drivers will speak with fans as well as watch a great night of 410 Sprints BRP Big Block Modified races. It was very important to the Blaney Family that these friends continue to be a part of this special evening.
Stewart, Kasey and the Blaneys will be available from 5:30 to 6 p.m. for autographs to raise awareness for Alzheimer’s disease. The autographs will be on postcards and fans are asked to refrain from bringing souvenirs to the track. Autographs will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
The 410 Sprints will race 30 laps in the $3,500-to-win feature.
The BRP Modifieds will also race 30 laps in the $2,000-to-win A-Main event. The BRP/Hoosier Tire Modified Tour portion of the program will be broadcast by Shawn Wood of The Dirt Track Channel. It’ll be available on thedirttrackchannel.com July 8 at 8 p.m.
Also on tap will be a VARC vintage race car display and exhibition, along with fireworks and the release of hundreds of red and white balloons in Lou Blaney’s honor. Please stop by the Alzheimer’s Association table to put your message on a balloon before we release them into the night.
Gates will open at 4 p.m. with racing to begin at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 for general admission and $25 for a pit pass. Fans who purchase a ticket in advance will be able to enter the stands one hour early.
Tickets are available on sharonspeedway.com, at the speedway ticket windows, or by by calling (330) 772-5481 during office hours on Monday, Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
UPCOMING EVENTS: 6 PAK Saturday July 10, 17 and 24. Friday Night Thunder July 9 and 16. Lou Blaney Memorial July 7, Northwest Pa. Truck & Tractor Pullers July 25. World of Outlaws Late Models and Fastrak Late Models on July 28. Fastrak Late Models, again, July 31.
Sharon Speedway is a 3/8-mile dirt oval located in Hartford, Ohio. Sharon Speedway is one of the oldest, continuously running weekly racetracks in the United States. Visit sharonspeedway.com for a complete schedule, directions to the track and the latest news. “Buckle Up and Hang On” as Sharon Speedway brings you dirt track racing at its finest!