The final open 410 Sprint car ride has been filled for the 2012 season.
Sam Hafertepe Jr. was named the new driver of the John and PeeWee Zemaitis, Zemco Speed Sprint car, replacing Stevie Smith, who will be joining Jason Meyers as a teammate on the World of Outlaws tour next season.
Hafertepe, from Texas, has been the driver of his family owned car and the Pancho Lawler central PAbased team for the past several seasons. The Zemco team will run about 55 time trial and draw shows next season, allowing Hafertepe to fill in the remaining voids with his family owned Sprint car. They will kick off the season with the All-Stars in Georgia.
The World of Outlaws Late Models and Sprint car series released its 2012 schedules last week and they are similar from past years.
On the Late Model side, so far 47 race dates are set on the schedule, which includes several TBA tracks throughout the season. The Outlaws open in Georgia on February 10. Hagerstown Speedway is on the schedule on June 16, and Winchester Speedway hosts the Outlaws on August 25.
On the Sprint car side, more than 70 race dates have been finalized for 2012, kicking off at Florida’s Volusia
Speedway Park on February 17. Williams Grove Speedway has its normal six race dates again next season, including the May events, the Summer Nationals and the Williams Grove National Open. No other local speedway will host the traveling series.
Rick Eckert (Late Models) and Jason Meyers (410 Sprints) are 2011 WoO champions, and most likely both will be back on tour to defend.
Joe Padula Jr. has taken over the management of Bedford Speedway beginning in 2012. Padula, the current owner/ promoter at Thunder Valley replaces the former 10-year team led by JR Kieffer. It will be interesting to see what direction Bedford takes next season.
That’s it for this week. Email reaches me at Bvores@comcast.net.