Kenseth in the zone at CBP, head­ing to Dover

The Southern Berks News - - SPORTS - By Ernie Sax­ton For Dig­i­tal First Me­dia

It had been a while since I had been to a Phillies’ game. Re­cently I headed down to Cit­i­zens Bank Park. It is al­ways a chal­lenge to head down that way with I-95 in a con­stant state of con­struc­tion/re­pair. And of course there is al­ways the traf­fic – hor­ren­dous traf­fic.

How­ever Gary Camp, the tal­ented PR per­son at Dover In­ter­na­tional Speed­way, in­vited me. Matt Kenseth was there to talk about the com­ing NASCAR Sprint Cup race set for Dover Sun­day. The race is part of the 10-race Chase for the Sprint Cup ti­tle.

Be­fore Kenseth headed to the suite where the me­dia was en­joy­ing the pre-game ac­tiv­i­ties, he had to throw out the first pitch. He ad­mit­ted that he had not thrown a base­ball in quite a while. He did get the ben­e­fit of toss­ing the pitches, a cou­ple prac­tice throws, from in front of the pitcher’s mound. He tossed that first pitch to Phillies first base­man Tommy Joseph who was act­ing as catcher.

Kenseth did ad­mit to be­ing a lit­tle ner­vous be­cause peo­ple kept telling him not to bounce it. Of­ten times that does hap­pen when celebri­ties are in­vited to toss a first pitch.

Ac­tu­ally Matt tossed a pretty good pitch. Not a strike, but close.

Once done with his pitch­ing du­ties, his next stop was suite high above the field.

Kenseth claimed, “Dover has al­ways been his fa­vorite track. There’s noth­ing else like it on the cir­cuit.”

He won the last Cup race at Dover back on May 15.

“The May race had a lit­tle bit of ev­ery­thing,” said the tal­ented vet­eran.

When asked about re­tire­ment Kenseth (44) said he was in good phys­i­cal shape and planned to stick around for a while. He has no plans to re­tire.

My ques­tion about his thoughts on the Chase led me to be­lieve he is not a sup­porter but it is part of the busi­ness and he lives with it.

He gets blame for the Chase be­ing cre­ated as he ran away with the Cup ti­tle in 2003 and the next year the Chase was un­veiled. He has been in it all but one year. He laughed when I asked him about be­ing the one to blame for the Chase. As most read­ers know I am not a fan of the Chase.

Kenseth will be one of the fa­vorites when he takes part in the “Citizen Sol­dier 400” Cup race on Sun­day. Also in­cluded in the week­end is the “Drive Sober 200” Xfinity race on Oc­to­ber 1 and the Septem­ber 30th NAS- CAR K&N Pro Se­ries East race. Good tick­ets are avail­able.

*** The World of Out­laws Crafts­man Sprint Car Se­ries re­turns to the Key­stone State Septem­ber 29 through Oc­to­ber 1 for the his­toric Cham­pion Rac­ing Oil Na­tional Open. With 54 years of his­tory, this three-day show­down brings some of the big­gest names in mo­tor­sports to the half-mile leg­endary Wil­liams Grove Speed­way to set­tle a time­less ri­valry be­tween the Out­laws and the Penn­syl­va­nia Posse.

The three-day pro­gram ends Satur­day night with the big 40lap fea­ture pay­ing $50K-to-win. Thurs­day and Fri­day fea­ture a pair of 25-lap, $10,000-to-win mains. But more money is on the line for some spe­cial com­peti­tors.

*** Dodge has signed an agree­ment to be­come the ti­tle rights spon­sor of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Rac­ing Se­ries event at Maple Grove Race­way.

The 32nd an­nual Dodge NHRA Na­tion­als will be held this Thurs­day through Sun­day and is the third race in the sixrace NHRA Count­down to the Cham­pi­onship. The track is tra­di­tion­ally one of the quick­est on the NHRA cir­cuit and has been the site of sev­eral na­tional records through the years.

“The Dodge NHRA Na­tion­als in the Key­stone state is an in­te­gral part of the cham­pi­onship hunt,” said Brad Ger­ber, NHRA vice pres­i­dent and chief devel­op­ment of­fi­cer. “We are pleased to have Dodge in­volved with the event and will build upon their re­la­tion­ships in the sport of NHRA Drag Rac­ing.”

Fans of the Dodge NHRA Na­tion­als will be sure to take part in the in­au­gu­ral Mopar Mega Block Party free fan-ad­mis­sion event, at FirstEn­ergy Sta­dium in Read­ing from 4 to 10 p.m. Thurs­day. The sta­dium’s base­ball di­a­mond will be trans­formed into the Mopar brand’s home field for one night to kick­off an ac­tion packed race week­end.

The Dodge NHRA Na­tion­als will also fea­ture thrilling com­pe­ti­tion in the NHRA Lu­cas Oil Drag Rac­ing Se­ries. As al­ways, fans will have the op­por­tu­nity to in­ter­act with their fa­vorite driv­ers as they’re granted an ex­clu­sive pit pass to the most pow­er­ful and sen­sory-filled mo­tor­sports at­trac­tion on the planet.

*** The fi­nal Satur­day night rac­ing ac­tion at Grand­view Speed­way this sea­son is set for Satur­day, Oc­to­ber 15. This three di­vi­sion Triple Thun­der Thriller pro­gram pre­sented by Pi­o­neer Pole Build­ings will in­clude the 358 Mod­i­fieds and Big Block Mod­i­fieds in a 40 lap trick or treat event pay­ing $5,000 to win, $1,000 for tenth and $500 to take the green for all pre-en­tered driv­ers. Also on the rac­ing pro­gram will be the Sports­man and TSRS Sprints with all three di­vi­sions tak­ing part in a se­ries of qual­i­fy­ing events lead­ing up to the 40 lap Mod­i­fied fea­ture, 25 lap Sports­man fea­ture and a 25 lap TSRS Sprint fea­ture. Also on the pro­gram will be the Blast from the Past Vin­tage Cars.

Pit gates will open at 2 p.m. and the grand­stand will open at 4 p.m. The first green flag will fall at 6 p.m. to start the heat race qual­i­fy­ing. Adult ad­mis­sion is $25, chil­dren 6 to 11 $10 and chil­dren un­der the age of 5 will be ad­mit­ted for free. The pit fee is $35 and a li­cense is not re­quired.

As tra­di­tion with the an­nual Hal­loween Party events, there will be a Hal­loween Pa­rade for the chil­dren with prizes and even adults who dress for the oc­ca­sion will be up for prizes. As usual, the In­side/Out ac­tiv­ity and pre-race pit tours will take place free of charge.

Then on Sun­day, Oct. 16th, the Out­law En­duro and Blast from the Past Vin­tage rac­ers per­form at Grand­view in their fi­nal event of the sea­son start­ing at noon. Adult tick­ets just $10.

Ernie Sax­ton can be reached at Esax­

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.