Big Money Tommy Hinnershitz Spring Classic For Sprints This Week At Williams Grove

Memorial event now pays $7,500 to win with purse of over $30,000 up for grabs





Mechanicsburg – The Lawrence Chevrolet 410 sprint cars will compete in their first big event of the season at Williams Grove Speedway this Friday, April 18 at 7:30 pm when the 2014 Diamond Series kicks off with the running of the high-dollar Tommy Hinnershitz Memorial Spring Classic. 


Fireworks celebrating the oval’s 75th season of existence will also be on the card along with racing action featuring the super sportsman.


The prestigious 30-lap Tommy Classic event will pay $7,500 to win out of a total purse of more than $30,000 with time trials setting the heat and feature starting grids. 


The winners share has been increased from $6,000 to $7,500 for the Tommy race thanks to a generous sponsor and historian from the Eastern Museum of Motor Racing who intends the contribution to honor Hinnershitz, the man who won the first auto race at the track in 1939 during this 75th anniversary season at Williams Grove. 


Formerly known as the Early Bird Championship, The Tommy Spring Classic took its name in 2007, now run in honor of the winner of the first ever motor racing main event at Williams Grove Speedway back in 1939.


An eventual Hall of Fame driver, Hinnershitz of Oley went on to win the track title that year and again in 1949 and 1952. 


Winners of the event since taking the Hinnershitz name have been: Craig Keel, 2007; Brian Leppo, 2008; Lance Dewease, 2009; and Layton, 2010, 2012.


The event was lost to rain in 2011 and last season, thus making Layton the reigning Tommy champion. 


The Tommy Classic is also the first date of the 2014 Diamond Series at Williams Grove.


Don Kreitz Jr. is the defending series champion over the batch of races that carries its own point standings and season payoff.


Another Diamond Series event comes up the following week, April 25 with the first appearance of the season by the All Star Circuit of Champions Sprints at Williams Grove Speedway.  


The Williams Grove Speedway Saturday Series races begin on April 26 with the Super Sportsman, 358 late models and street stocks on the program at 6:30 pm. 


And remember, kids ages 12 and under are always admitted free at Williams Grove Speedway!   


Keep up to date on all the latest speedway news and information by visiting the oval’s official website at or by visiting the oval on Facebook or via Twitter.  




Early Bird Championship Winners


1983            No. 1A Bobby Allen

1984            No. 5W Randy Wolfe

1985            No. 29 Doug Wolfgang

1986            No. 10 Dave Blaney

1987            No. 29 Doug Wolfgang

1988            No. 69 Don Kreitz Jr.

1989            No. 1W Kenny Jacobs

1990            No. 69 Don Kreitz Jr.

1991            No. 23S Frankie Kerr

1992            No. 69 Don Kreitz Jr.

1993            No. 69 Don Kreitz Jr.

1994            No. 69 Don Kreitz Jr.

1995            No. 461 Lance Dewease

1996            No. 461 Lance Dewease

1997            No. 12 Kevin Gobrecht

1998            No. 19 Stevie Smith

1999            No. 11 Kevin Gobrecht

2000            No. 77E Dave Ely

2001            No. 12 Greg Hodnett

2002            No. 12 Greg Hodnett

2003            No. 77 Lance Dewease

2004            No.12 Greg Hodnett



2005            No. 88H Fred Rahmer

2006            No. 30 Doug Esh



2007            No. 9 Craig Keel

2008            No. 71 Brian Leppo

2009            No. 30C Lance Dewease

2010            No. 7 Chad Layton

2011            Rain

2012            No. 7 Chad Layton

2013          Rain