Craig Murto

Craig Murto

If you didn’t go to Summit Point Motorsports Park last weekend, you missed a great opportunity and some great racing.

The West Virginia road course near Berryville hosts the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) regional Mid-Atlantic Road Racing Series (MARRS) events, as it has since at least 1970. For the past two years, the SCCA has ensured that spectators can attend their race weekends free of charge.

That includes camping, should you wish to bring in a camper or pitch a tent for the weekend. Nothing pleases a gearhead more than waking up on Sunday morning at 8:15 to the sound of race cars on the track practicing prior to Sunday’s races.

Last weekend, the local region combined with the New Jersey region, so some classes had plenty of cars for both Saturday’s and Sunday’s races. The Showroom Spec Miata class, one of eight groups that ran 15-lap races on Saturday and 20-lap feature races on Sunday, had 42 entries. There were more exotic cars in competition as well, such as the Spec Racer Ford group, consisting of single-seat, open-cockpit, full-fender race cars.

The next SCCA MARRS event at Summit Point will be over the three-day Labor Day weekend, with 15-lap races on Saturday and 20-lap events on both Sunday and Monday. Free admission and free camping are available. If you’re not taking advantage of this opportunity while you can, you must not be a race fan.

Many of the fans who attend racing at Summit Point made the short trip over to Winchester Speedway for Saturday’s racing. Last weekend they saw Trever Feathers beat Justin Weaver and Allen Brannon to win the Late Model feature, and Logan Roberson and Devin Brannon split the two crate-engine Late Model features.

In NASCAR Late Model racing in the Commonwealth over the weekend. Lee Pulliam grabbed the Late Model Stock Car win at South Boston Speedway. And at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Philip Morris beat Mike Looney in what was described as an “epic duel.”

If you’re planning your racing adventures for this weekend, Langley Speedway in Hampton will host twin NASCAR Late Model Stock Car features. Also on Saturday, Winchester Speedway will feature its Limited Late Model division, while Hagerstown Speedway hosts the Ultimate Late Model Series for a $5,000-to-win event.

Looking ahead to Aug. 10, both South Boston Speedway and Dominion Raceway in Thornburg will host twin NASCAR Late Model Stock Car features. The Late Model racers in the region have been on top of the NASCAR national weekly standings, and with both South Boston and Dominion enjoying healthy Late Model car counts this season it’ll be interesting to see which track the “big name” Late Model racers choose to tackle that evening.

If you wish to stay closer to home on Aug. 10, Shenandoah Speedway hosts the Virginia Sprint Series. The International Motor Contest Association (IMCA) RaceSaver 305 Sprint Cars have been the fastest-growing segment of open-wheel racing in the country for a number of years, and are very exciting on pavement. In fact, the IMCA 305 RaceSaver Sprint Cars have been credited with saving some tracks, such as Nebraska’s Eagle Raceway, which often hosts the RaceSaver Nationals. The Virginia group was the first to compete with the RaceSaver rules, as outlined by Madison, Virginia, genius French Grimes.

The major-league racing last weekend was thrilling. Denny Hamlin won the ultra-competitive NASCAR Monster Energy Cup race at Pocono. It’s true that every race cannot be a barn-burner, but the past couple of months of NASCAR races have all been thrillers. That includes the Xfinity and NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series events.

Scott Dixon won the IndyCar race at Mid-Ohio Road Course by only a 10th of a second over Swedish rookie Felix Rosenqvist. Fans were on their feet all around the course for that one, which will surely sell out next year. And in Formula One, wet and changing conditions on the Hockenheim circuit made the German Grand Prix one of the least predictable and highly entertaining F1 races in years, finally won by Max Verstappen.

It’s been a good year for racing so far. Be sure to make it a great year by getting to the races yourself.