52nd ANNUAL GRANDVIEW FREEDOM 76 MODIFIED CHAMPIONSHIP PAYS $31,060 TO THE WINNER
LIST OF RACE WINNERS IS FILLED WITH THE TOP NAMES IN MODIFIED RACING HISTORY
FREEDOM 38 SPORTSMAN CHAMPIONSHIP PAYS $2500, FANS FOR FIVE FRIDAY ADMISSION
GREEN LANE WM. PENN INC. AUTO BODY & MECHANICAL ADDS SPORTSMAN CASH DASH
BECHTELSVILLE, PA. – The 60th anniversary season of auto racing action at Grandview Speedway moves into the final weekend of competition for Modified and Sportsman competitors with the running of the 52nd annual Freedom 76, and the races have just gotten more lucrative for the drivers who will be in competition.
Grandview Speedway is a member of the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Racing Series, and as a result, drivers who will be competing in this weekend’s T.P. Trailer Modified Freedom 76 and T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman Freedom 38 will be racing for bonus money courtesy of the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Racing Series.
On Saturday, September 17 the winner of the Freedom 76 for T.P. Trailer Modifieds will receive a $1000 bonus, increasing the winner’s take to a cool $31,060, and if the driver competed in all the Saturday NASCAR point races at the track this season, an additional bonus of $1000 will be awarded, making it possible for a driver to win $32,060 in this year’s Freedom 76!
On Friday September 16 the winner of the Freedom 38 for T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman will receive a $500 bonus, increasing the winner’s share to $2500, and if the driver competed in all the Saturday NASCAR point races at the track this season, an additional $500 bonus will be awarded, making for a possible $3000 to win the Freedom 38!
Additionally, Green Lane Wm. Penn Inc. Auto Body & Mechanical of Green Lane, Pa. has provided sponsorship to host a heat winners cash dash for T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman drivers on Friday night. The winner will receive $360, with all participants receiving cash as follows: 360, 100, 60, 40, 40, 40.
The Freedom 76 has become more than just an annual race on the schedule each year, it has been built into an EVENT! The race which was first run in 1971 has become one of the must see races each season for race fans from near and far, who gather at the racetrack days ahead of time to reserve camping spots, to hang out and party with family and friends alike, see a talented field of drivers all in one spot, and by far the LARGEST field of competitors in one night each season.
For the race drivers and teams, it has also become a must attend race, as the prize money for winning the prestigious race can make the year for the winning driver along with the bragging rights to say they won the Freedom 76. To put what winning the Freedom 76 means into perspective, it means so much to the driver who wins it each year, as it is like winning the Daytona 500, Indianapolis 500, World Series, Super Bowl or the Stanley Cup. It takes so much work, preparation, strategy, planning, and all the fortunes of a good race night to win the Freedom 76, especially since you only get ONE chance each season to grab the grand prize.
After Bruce Rogers partner Jerry Stinson left before the start of the 1971 season, Rogers then started three annual race events to give his loyal racers some extra cash as a reward for their support. One of these special events was the very first Freedom 76. Run as a 50-lap race the season before, Rogers wanted to give his fans and racers something more, and with the soon to be celebrated United States Bicentennial coming in 1976, the idea was created to have a race based on that theme, and so the birth of the Freedom 76.
This year’s 52nd annual race will be paying the race winner $31,060, with the number 60 signifying the anniversary year of the track’s operation. The first race in 1971 paid winner Ed Mumford a large at the time $1000 to win, with the first five figure winner’s share coming in 1987 with Davey Wenger taking home a pay envelope for $10,000. The largest winner’s purse came in 2012, when Bruce and Theresa Rogers celebrated Grandview Speedway’s 50th anniversary season by paying the Freedom 76 winner Jeff Strunk $50,000!
The list of drivers that have picked up a win in the Freedom 76 is long and varied, with the names on the list a who’s who in northeast Modified racing. All time there have been 27 different drivers in the 51 events to date that have reached the hallowed ground of Freedom 76 Victory Lane. Of the 27 different drivers, seven of those drivers have scored more than one victory in the classic event.
Jeff Strunk has become the man to beat in Freedom 76 competition, as he has won the prestigious event more than any other driver scoring the win eight times, including winning the race five times in the last ten years. Strunk’s wins have been in 2003, 2004, 2007, 2012, 2013, 2016, 2017, and most recently in 2020 in the race’s 50th anniversary.
The driver with the second most Freedom 76 wins, is a driver who was only a Grandview regular for a short time in his career, yet he has won the Championship event six times, Billy Pauch. Pauch picked up his wins in 1988, 1991, 1992, 1996, 1998, and his final victory was in 2000.
Third most in Freedom 76 wins in a tie between two drivers, Craig Von Dohren and Duane Howard each with five Freedom wins apiece. Von Dohren, the track’s all-time leading feature winner, scored his first Freedom win in 1985, but did not get the second win until sixteen years later in 2001. Other wins followed in 2006, 2008, and his most recent in 2015. For Duane Howard, a six-time track champion, his wins have also been spread out over a period of time, with the first Freedom win coming in 1993, followed with wins in 1997, 1999, 2011, and his most recent in 2018.
The very first race in 1971 saw track champion Ed Mumford score the win in what was at the time the longest race in track history. It was Mumford’s 13th win of the fourteen he would win that season on his way to the title. Mumford would come back in 1975 to claim his second and final Freedom win.
Other multi-time winners of the event include Meme DeSantis who is a three time winner, with wins coming in 2002, 2009, and 2010. The now Sprint Car Hall of Famer Fred Rahmer also scored two Freedom wins early in his career, with wins in 1981 and 1983.
Drivers that have recorded that one precious win in a Freedom 76 include Glenn Fitzcharles in 1972, Roger Knappenberger in 1973, Mike Erb in 1974, Pete Damiani in 1976, Doug Carlyle in 1977, Bobby Hauer in 1978, and John Blackley in 1979 completing the decade of the 1970’s.
Single winners in the 1980’s include Paul Lotier in 1980, Smokey Warren in 1982, Doug Hoffman in 1984, Tom Mayberry in 1986, Davey Wenger in 1987, and Billy Schinkel in 1989.
Moving to the single winners in the 1990’s, the drivers to win include Kenny Brightbill in 1990, Chip Slocum in 1994, and Donny Erb in 1995.
More recent winners of one Freedom 76 in the 2000’s include Ray Swinehart in 2005, Stewart Friesen in 2014, Mike Gular in 2019, and last year’s first-time winner Ryan Godown.
That brings us to the 2022 edition of the Freedom 76 and leaves us with two questions. Who’s got the HOT SHOE in this one to reach Victory Lane, and will this be it? Whatever the answers, make sure you do not MISS THIS ONE!
Last season over sixty drivers competed in the Freedom 76, and this year’s event should see the Grandview regulars battle it out with a whole host of invaders for the big championship prize. For the latest updates of who will be attending, check in with the Grandview Speedway Facebook page.
Six-time Freedom 76 winner Billy Pauch will be on hand on Saturday, September 17. The book about the life and times of Billy and his racing career – The Last Cowboy – will be on sale at the Speedway starting at 3:30 pm. in the turn one area. Pauch himself will be signing the books from 4 – 5:30 pm. The book includes many stories about Pauch’s racing career, including an entire chapter about racing on the Hill at Grandview Speedway, winning the Freedom 76, and winning in Al Hamilton’s Sprint Car at a Thunder on the Hill program.
As has been a tradition for many seasons, lap money will be paid to the drivers leading the laps in the Freedom 76, along with several extra special awards to include:
HARD CHARGER - $1060 From Bobby Gunther-Walsh and his sponsors – The following sponsors have contributed to the Hard Charger Award – Res Q Natural Supplements, Just Born Quality Confections (Mike and Ike and Hot Tamales), Yocco’s the Hot Dog King, and Ironton Telephone. The driver advancing the most positions in the Freedom 76 from their scheduled starting spot to their finishing position receives the Hard Charger Award.
FEATURE WINNER’S BONUS - $1000 From NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Racing Series
FEATURE WINNER’S BONUS -$1000 From NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Racing Series if winner has competed in all Saturday NASCAR point races at Grandview during 2022 racing season
LYNN HIMES GREAT EFFORT AWARD – $250 Sponsored by T.P. Trailers & Truck Equipment & the Perkins Family (presented to the highest finishing driver NOT in the top 10 in Grandview Points) in memory of Carole Lynn Himes, a long-time familiar face at Grandview Speedway
THE SCENIC ROUTE TO THE FRONT - $500 to the highest finishing driver that had to come through the Minuteman 20 to get into the race – Jim & Missy Bowman
GRANDVIEW PACE TRUCK DRIVER - $100 – Jan Stoudt, Grandview Pace Truck Driver sponsored 10 different laps at $10 each – Good Luck to all drivers!
DRIVER LEADING LAP WITH FIRST CAUTION - $30 – Whatever lap the first caution flag waves in the Freedom 76, the driver leading that lap receives $30 from the Top Two Rows, Go Davey Wenger!
The Freedom 76 weekend begins this Friday, September 16 with the 9th annual Freedom 38 Sportsman Championship race, along with qualifying events, cash dash plus practice time for Modified drivers wishing to participate in the Freedom 76.
Friday’s program will be known as Fans For Five Friday as management has rolled back the grandstand admission to just $5, while children ages 11 and under will be free of charge.
On Friday, pit gates open at 3 pm with grandstand gates opening at 5:30 pm. drivers meeting at 5:30 pm. with the pill draw following the drivers meeting. Warmups are at 6:15 pm. and racing at 7:30 pm. Pit admission on Friday is $35, and no license is required. There is no rain date for the Friday event.
On Friday night, representatives from the Boyertown Museum of Historical Vehicles will be on hand to meet with everyone, provide information about their museum, what they do and what the museum is all about. They will be in the grandstand area starting with the pre-race Meet and Greet.
Prior to the racing action on Friday will be the weekly Low Down and Dirty Meet and Greet. This week’s drivers include Sportsman drivers Mike Schneck Jr., Mark Mohr and Talan Carter. The Meet and Greet is held in the main gate area starting at 5 pm. and is a great time for the fans to meet the drivers up close, collect some autographs, take photos, and talk racing one on one.
On Saturday, September 17, the 52nd annual Freedom 76 will be run for the 358 Modifieds. The program will include qualifying heats, consolation races, cash dash, along with the Schaeffer Racing Minuteman 20 leading to the 76-lap championship feature. Pit gates open at 9 am for inspections, grandstand ticket windows open at 3 pm. pill draw for position is at 4:30 pm. with the drivers meeting at 5 pm. warm-ups are at 6 pm. with racing starting at 7 pm. Fans will be able to enter the Grandstand areas between 9 am. and 12 Noon to reserve seats with blankets.
Adult Grandstand tickets on Saturday will be $40, while children ages 6-11 are $10, with children ages 5 and under admitted for free. Pit admission will be $45, and no license is required. There will be no advanced tickets sold for this event, and the rain date is Saturday, September 24.
For the Freedom 38 & 76, the tire rules for the event are as follows, ANY American Racer tire and compound, but it must be the Grandview Speedway tread pattern. Further rules are available on the speedway website or again, any questions please call Cliff Quinn at 484-357-2587 or Ed Scott at 610-298-2408. Entry forms for the Modified competitors are available on the speedway website at www.grandviewspeedway.com under the Freedom 76 tab.
All race teams are reminded that, as has been the case all season, there is no fuel truck on site so plan accordingly. American Racer tires will be available at the racetrack this weekend.
Since the 1960’s, Grandview Speedway has been presenting exciting wheel to wheel NASCAR stock car racing every Saturday Night starting in April and running through September, plus special events. Grandview Speedway is located at 43 Passmore Road, Bechtelsville, Pa. 19505, just off Route 100, ten miles north of Pottstown, Pa.
Information is always available at www.grandviewspeedway.com or on Facebook, or by telephone at 610.754.7688.
UPCOMING EVENTS –
Friday, September 16 – 9th annual FREEDOM 38 CHAMPIONSHIP for T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman $2500 to win, plus Modified practice – 7:30 pm.
Saturday, September 17 – 52nd annual FREEDOM 76 MODIFIED CHAMPIONSHIP for T.P. Trailer Modifieds $31,060 to win – 7 pm.
Saturday, September 24 – Outlaw Racing Series Enduro and Outlaw Racing Series Vintage plus Xcel Modifieds and Roadrunners – 5 pm (Rain date for Freedom 76)
Saturday, October 15 – Outlaw Racing Series Enduro and Outlaw Racing Series Vintage – 5 pm