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Plenty of dirt track action in area

Area auto racing fans have waited a long time, but live local racing is finally here. Sharon Speedway, the “Grand Old Lady” of auto racing, will swing open the gates today for its 91st season of racing.

The world’s fastest dirt short-track race cars will headline the program. The Super Series Sprints will race for $3,000 for first place. The RUSH Series non-wing sprints, along with RUSH Sportsman Modifieds and the EconoMods will complete the program.

Sharon will also debut the new infield fan zone, giving fans a chance to view racing from the infield in their lawn chairs if they wish. An infield concession stand has also been added. The new additions, along with the front and back stretch grandstands, will allow social distancing.

Fans are encouraged to download the COVID waiver form and bring it with them on their first visit. Forms can be found on the Sharon Speedway web site. Gates open at 4 p.m., racing starts at 7.

Many other area race tracks are gearing up for opening, or have opened.

Michaels Mercer Raceway in nearby Mercer, Pa., also will be opening today with the American Heritage COVID Clash. The speedway is asking fans and the competitors in the pits to bring and display the American flag to salute the great country we live in.

Big Block Modifieds will headline the night’s action. The Penn-Ohio Pro Stocks will be on hand along with Fastrak limited mods, 305 Sprints, Junior Sprints, Mini Stocks and Mod Lites. Hot laps are at 5 p.m. with racing at 6. The speedway is a short drive of I-80 Mercer exit.

Tri-City Raceway Park in Franklin, Pa., under the new ownership of Merle Black, has reopened for racing on the big half-mile dirt oval. Black, a longtime business owner and veteran race team owner and engine builder, brings weekly racing to Venango County.

Sunday Thunder will have the 410 Sprints, small block 358 Modifieds, front wheel mini stocks and Junior Sprints. Few race tracks in the tri-state area race Sprint cars on Sundays and that can lead to a quality field of cars and drivers. The opening show a couple of weeks ago saw a huge enthusiastic crowd.

Lernerville Speedway near Butler, Pa., a fast 4/10-mile dirt oval, opened last Friday. They may be the only track in the country to race weekly the top three divisions in dirt racing, Sprints, Late Models and Big Block Mods.

This weekend they will host the Firecracker 100 for the World of Outlaws Late Models. It concludes three nights of racing tonight with a whopping $30,000-to-win 50-lapper that will be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network.

Lernerville is located on Route 356 just south of Butler. Gates open at 5 with racing at 7:30. The television broadcast starts at 9.

Get out and see live racing, the sights, the sounds and feeling that only live racing can give you. Support your local race track, they have lost half of a season. Dirt track racing is a true American sport.

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