Allan Holland
Allan Holland

HOLLAND: Bloomsburg

The closest dirt track that runs sprint cars to my Drums, Pa., address used to be Big Diamond Speedway in Minersville. However, since they built a dirt track inside the horse track at Bloomsburg Fairgrounds, I have a much closer dirt track to my residence.

Bloomsburg Fairgrounds Raceway opened last year and is only about 30 minutes away from me to the west on I-80. I never had a chance to get there in 2021, but I made a trip over at the beginning of May this year. Going to a brand-new dirt track is something that rarely happens anymore, as there are more tracks closing than being built.

The track was running World of Outlaws Late Models and PASS 305 sprints. Former contributor, track announcer and friend, Dino Oberto, put me on the press list and I made the short drive to the track.

After attending the Bloomsburg Fair since the early 1960s when I was just a child, it seemed strange parking in the fairgrounds where some of my favorite food stands are set up during the fair.

The pit area is where the amusement rides are always located during the fair and you drive down the paved road on the backstretch where the games of chance are always at play.

The new dirt track is smaller than the horse track around the outside of it and gives everyone in the large, covered grandstands an excellent view of all the action.

Officials removed the large stage down that was located in front of the grandstands, so I’m guessing they will build a temporary stage to accommodate the fair in September.

Both divisions put on good shows as the track is banked and a competitive three-eighths-mile in size. I had first thought they were just going to build it over the larger horse track, which would have been a big half-mile.

For the purse of a World of Outlaws Late Model Series show, I believe they could have used some more fans but, hopefully, the fans start to catch on to some of the big shows they are hosting there.

One interesting thing I got to do during the evening was chat with PASS driver Dave Wickham.

Wickham used to live in New York and would travel down to race in Central PA back in the 1970s. I have been watching Wickham race sprint cars since the early days of the World of Outlaws.

Chatting with him about the big-block days in Central PA, when the engine looked like it was growing out from under the cowl of the sprint car was enjoyable. Wickham switched to 360s and ran with the Patriot Sprint Tour for years in New York.

Once he moved to Hanover, Pa., he started running a 305 sprint cars with the PASS tour. This is actually Wickham’s sixth decade of racing sprint cars and he is still having fun doing it.

My next trip back to Bloomsburg was to be for the USAC East Coast sprint cars, but it was rained out. I hope to get back to the track and the fair later this year.End Bug

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