By Shawn Wood
For The Daily Item
SELINSGROVE -- Selinsgrove Speedway will honor the memory of one of Pennsylvania's greatest open-wheel drivers on Sunday with the 30-lap Ray Tilley Classic for the 410 sprint cars at 7.
It is part of a open-wheel tripleheader on Sunday as the Super Sportsman and 305 sprint cars round out the three-division show.
Tilley, of Pine Grove, who was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2005, passed away on Aug. 9, 2011, from complications of a stroke. He was 77.
Tilley won four sprint car titles (1965, 1966, 1968, 1969) at Selinsgrove and remains on top of the track's all-time sprint car win list with 69 career wins.
The event last year was rained out.
Tilley's grandson, Andrew Tilley, who recently graduated from ministry school, will deliver the invocation and family friend Linda Herrold of Selinsgrove will sing the National Anthem. The Tilley family will also present a custom-made trophy cup to the winner.
Last year on July 7, Jim Shuster of Newville won the Super Sportsman race. This is the first-ever 305 sprint car race at the track. Each division will compete in heat races and 20-lap features.
The night before the Tilley Classic, a regular four-division show will take place featuring the 358 sprint cars, late models, pro stocks, and roadrunners at 7.
NEW TRACK RECORD: The first Empire Super Sprint-sanctioned race at Selinsgrove Speedway in 17 years last Saturday produced a non-stop, 30-lap feature time of 8 minutes, 18.546 seconds to establish a track record for a 360 sprint car feature. The race was won by Liverpool's T.J. Stutts. who finished runner-up in the regular 358 sprint car feature. He is the current 358 points leader at the track.
n HONORING THE FALLEN: Port Royal Speedway will honor its five fallen heroes in history with Saturday's Memorial Weekend Fallen Heroes Championships for the 410 sprints, late models and 305 sprints. All three divisions will race for increased purses in the show which honors Frank Bailey, Harold Swarmer, Hal Hoose, Denny Snyder and Randy Thompson. Saturday's 25-lap feature for the 410s pays $5,000 to win.
n BOUNCING BABY BOY: Bloomsburg racer Eric Heydenreich and his wife, Jessalynn, welcomed a son, Dane Richard, on May 17. Dane weighed in at eight pounds, seven ounces and was 20 inches long. It is the couple's second child. Their first son, Cole, just turned a year old.
n OPEN-WHEEL ACTION: The first of two races for the 305 sprint cars takes place tonight at the Big Diamond Speedway. They will be joined by the 358 modifieds, sportsman modifieds, roadrunners and 600 modifieds for a four-division show. The 410 sprint cars will be at the track on June 30 for race three of the 2013 Central Pennsylvania Sprint Car Speedweek.