LEHIGHTON, PA — The much anticipated “Mid-Summer Thunder: Where Dirt Stars Meet The Asphalt” event at Mahoning Valley Speedway is ready to roll out this Sunday, June 29.  Race time is 4:00 pm.

The feature attraction will be the Sunoco USAC Championship SpeedSTRs in a 45 lap main paying $3000 to win.  “The Roundy Round 25” for the NAPA All-Star National Slingshot Tour will precede the SpeedSTR show.

Prior to the two main events a number of preliminary races will take place which includes Sr. Champ Karts, Jr. Sportsman Champ Karts, Jr. Slingshots, Stage 1 Modifieds, 2 classes of Micro Stocks and the Vintage Division of the ATQMRA.

Over the years Mahoning Valley fans have enjoyed watching some of the best asphalt short track racers in the business.  With the Modifieds serving as the headline class, one great after another has wheeled around the demanding paved quarter mile oval in Lehighton.

Drivers have often said that if you can race at Mahoning Valley, you can race anywhere and that statement will be put to the ultimate test this Sunday when some key figures in regional short track dirt racing will be on hand to run in the SpeedSTR and Slingshot features.

The list is impressive.  Future Hall of Fame Modified great Kenny Brightbill, World of Outlaws Late Model champion Rick Eckert, multi-talented Billy Pauch Jr., dirt mod stars Frank Cozze, Jeff Strunk, Anthony Perrego and Kyle Weiss are just a few of the star-studded entries that will be competing in the SpeedSTRs.

And it will truly be a diverse field as a number of asphalt talents will be mixing it up with their dirt counterparts.  Mahoning Valley Speedway champions Eric Beers, Earl Paules and Kevin Graver Jr., are part of the “home field” advantage.

Also in the lineup will be three time Oswego Super Modified champion Otto Sitterly.

With the Slingshots race being part of the National Tour, it is expected that 25-30 if not more cars will be registered for the Roundy Round 25.

As part of the festivities Courtney Harrison, host of Inside Track on WNEP-TV 16, the ABC affiliate in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, has been named Grand Marshall of the event.  Popular vocalist Keith Gerhart will sing the National Anthem and distinguished race caller Barry Angstadt will join regular Mahoning announcers Dino and Mario Oberto in the booth.

Also, representatives from Pocono Raceway will be on hand as will mascot “Tricky Fox” with ticket giveaways for the upcoming Pocono INDYCAR 500 on July 6 and the Pocono Mountains NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race and the GoBowling.com 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on August 2-3.

Pit gates open at 11:30 am.  Pit entry is $30 per person.  Race registration will take place from 12:30 to 2:00 pm.  Grandstands open at 2:30 pm. Adult general admission is $15.

Practice for the preliminary classes only will run from 1:30 – 3:00.  Heats for Karts, Jr. Slingshots, Stage 1 Modifieds, 2 classes of Micro Stocks and Vintage TQ’s begin at 4:00 pm.

Hot laps for All-Star Slingshots and SpeedSTRs are from 4:50 – 5:50.  Preliminary features start at 5:55.

Then it will be on to group timing for All-Star Slingshots and SpeedSTRs at 6:50 followed by heats, intermission and the two A-mains. (All times subject to change).

Saturday night, June 28 at 6:00 pm will be a full card of stock car racing with all six regular tracks classes running heats and features.  Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks are set to compete.

For the first time a “cone race” will be held.  The Street Stock division will be the class that partakes in the unique race that allows drives to choose which lane they wish to restart in after each caution.

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 $12.

-Mahoning Valley Speedway Press Release. Photo Credit:

Mid-Summer Thunder Event to Rock Mahoning Valley