This coming Saturday night, May 24 at Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway, the Gene Bowers, Sr., Memorial 100 for Street Stocks will be the highlight feature of the evening. Gates open at 4:00 p.m. with racing starting at 6:00 p.m.
The winner of this classic event will be awarded $1200. Lap money is close to $1000 and more will be collected on race day.
The race was originally billed as $1000 to win but promoter Floyd Santee has upped the winner’s take, knowing that his Street Stock class is one of the best support divisions going and the importance of the race itself.
22 cars will start the feature plus two provisional spots may be used if needed for any driver currently in the top-15 in points and has not utilized a provisional. The starting grid will be set by handicapping from heat and consolation race finishes.
The Mahoning Valley Street Stocks are undeniably one of the healthiest and most competitive support classes anywhere in short track racing. Weekly car counts average near 25-30 and through the first four races of 2014 there has yet to be a repeat winner. Last season there was a record 20 different feature winners.
This will be the fourth running of the Bowers Memorial. A husband, father and former racer, when Eugene ‘Gene’ Bowers, Sr., had an untimely passing on September 24, 2010, he left a huge void at Mahoning Valley as he was very popular among the family of racers. His son, Gene Bowers, Jr., drives the No. 28 Street Stock and was a feature winner on April 26 of this year.
In Bowers honor the track proudly began hosting the 100 lapper during the Memorial Day holiday and it has fast become one of the signature events on Mahoning’s yearly calendar.
In 2011 Kevin Smith won the inaugural 100. Steven Steigerwalt scored the victory the next year. Last season Zach Graver led the final 33 laps to etch his name among the prestigious winners list.
It’s a wide open field heading into Saturday’s race too as no clear cut entrant can be pegged to take the checkered flag with such a deep rooted group of talented racers.
Modifieds, Late Models, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks will also be in action.
Pit gates open at noon. There will be early paid practice from 1:00 to 3:00. Regular warm-ups will be held from 4:00 – 5:00. Adult general admission is $15. $2.00 off for students, seniors 65 + and active military, must have ID. Children 10 and under are free.
Coming up on Saturday, May 31 will be Twin-30s for the Modifieds paying $1500 to win each.
Mahoning Valley Speedway is located on PA route 443, two miles west of Lehighton. Additional info can be found on the track’s website at www.mahoningvalley-speedway.com Also on Facebook at Mahoning Valley Speedway.