BAPS Motor Speedway is going to make more history for its primary divisions in early April on what should be a festive Saturday night.
Owner Scott Gobrecht and general manager Kolten Gouse announced earlier this week that they were developing a Hall of Fame for the Super Sportsman, 358 Late Model, and Street Stock divisions. On April 7, the first class will be honored.
The first group to be inducted into the Hall of Fame will feature eight members. Leading the way are Super Sportsman drivers Gary Wolford, John Murphy, and Larry Jackson. Jerry Burkett will be honored as a car owner.
On the Late Model side, Ed Jones and Carl Billet will carry the banner. Richie Hughes and Carl Graves will represent the Street Stock division.
“This is a special day for BAPS Motor Speedway,” Gouse said. “To be able to put a Hall of Fame together to honor our main divisions and reward the accomplishments of past drivers and car owners is something that is very important to our team. We plan to make this an annual event and further our commitment to our racers and fans.”
Here are the bios of this year’s Hall of Fame class:
Wolford finished with 86 career victories, the most by any driver in the series at Silver Spring Speedway. He also had 59 wins at other speedways to go along with two Silver Spring titles.
Murphy finished with 60 wins at Silver Springs and 83 overall. The biggest wins of his career came in the Super Sportsman 100, as he claimed the prestigious event in 1977, 1978, 1981, 1982, and 1986. He was also a five-time champion at Silver Spring.
Jackson was a threat to win in a Super Sportsman, regardless the track. Jackson captured 56 Super Sportsman wins at Silver Spring, four of which came in the Sportsman 100 (1980, 1985, 1988, 1989). He also won three track titles at the Springs, and was a four-time Sportsman Tour champion.
When you think of owners in the Super Sportsman, the conversation begins with Burkett. He fielded cars for the likes of Buzzy Richardson, Bobby Hersch, Lee Parthemore, Ken Bricker, John Murphy, Scott Ausherman, John Yinger, Rich Eichelberger, and Dwight Leib, which led to 57 wins in the division. He was a four-time champion as a car owner, winning titles at Silver Springs, Reading, Susquehanna, and the Sportsman Tour. He also was a winning car owner in the Sportsman 100.
Jones was a thorn in the side of the competition, winning 61 times in the Late Model division at Silver Spring Speedway. For good measure, he added an additional 12 victories at Susquehanna Speedway. His biggest scores came in the Paul Orendo 50 Lapper, as he claimed the event on four occasions. Jones was also the 1985 track champion at Silver Spring.
Billet was a beast running a Late Model, collecting 113 wins at Silver Spring (57) and Susquehanna Speedway (56). Like Jones, Billet excelled in the Paul Orendo 50, an event he won five times. He also added 52 Super Late Model wins to his resume. Want track titles, Billet had them, as he was a six-time champ at Silver Spring.
Hughes led the way in Street Stock competition, winning 36 times at Silver Spring and claiming seven more at Susquehanna. He was also a two-time champion at the Springs, claiming the title in 1990 and 1992.
Before Hughes was the top dog in the Street Stocks at Silver Spring, Graves was the man to beat. He won 33 times at the speedway and was a four-time champion, sitting atop the standings from 1982 through 1985. He also had 11 Limited Late Model wins on his gaudy resume.
For more information on the Hall of Fame and BAPS Motor Speedway, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 717-938-9170.